“acquisition-learning hypothesis: A theory that there are two ways to describe the learning of language. One way is subconscious acquisition, which is how infants learn their native language. The other is learning through acquisition and study, which is the typical approach found in schools. Many teachers of foreign language now prefer the subconscious acquisition approach, which attempts to approximate living in a foreign country and being immersed in the use of the new language. See also immersion.”
Excerpted from: Ravitch, Diane. EdSpeak: A Glossary of Education Terms, Phrases, Buzzwords, and Jargon. Alexandria, VA: ASCD, 2007.