WORD CLASS DISTINCTIONS IN SECOND LANGUAGE ACQUISITION

2010-01-31 09:20 来源: 作者:Eve Zyzika1 c1 and Clara Azevedoa2 网友评论 0 条 浏览次数 1

 

An Experimental Study of L2 Spanish

a1 University of California, Santa Cruz

a2 Michigan State University

Although the problem of word class has been explored in numerous first language studies, relatively little is known about this process in SLA. The present study measures second language (L2) learners’ knowledge of word class distinctions (e.g., noun vs. adjective) in a variety of syntactic contexts. English-speaking learners of Spanish from third-semester and third-year courses (N = 240) completed a receptive task that presented contrasting forms belonging to the same word family (e.g., feliz “happy” and felicidad “happiness”). The results indicate that learners from both groups are often unable to distinguish among word classes. In particular, learners have significant difficulty in discriminating between adjectives and nouns. Although ambiguous surface morphology contributes to word class confusions, the results suggest that L2 learners do not always recognize derivational suffixes that clearly mark word class. These difficulties are interpreted as stemming from weak syntactic morphological knowledge as well as incomplete knowledge of L2 distributional regularities.

(Received January 23 2008)

Correspondence:

c1 Address correspondence to: Eve Zyzik, Humanities 131, University of California, 1156 High Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95064; e-mail: ezyzik@ucsc.edu.

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