ERIC Number: ED335875
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Use of a Compounding Rule in Inferring the Meaning of Unfamiliar "Kanji" Compound Words.
Kuhara-Kojima, Keiko; Hatano, Giyoo
Two studies investigated whether Japanese college students (as educated adult readers) and fifth-graders (novices after having learned about 640 "kanji") would use, either consciously or not, one of the compounding rules for kanji to understand a compound word. Subjects in the first study were two groups of fifth-graders (49 in each) and two groups of college students (45 and 46). All were given one of two versions of a test in which they were required to: (1) select appropriate compounds for given sentences; and (2) guess the meaning of novel kanji. Results were analyzed for evidence of differentiation of meaning by the order of component kanji, inaccuracies and their sources, and differences between older and younger subjects. In the second study, 9 of each fifth-grade group and 12 of each college-age group explained their choices on the earlier test. None stated that they referred to a general compounding rule, but many did use a form-specific rule. Older readers referred most often to analogy alone, and younger readers most often did not refer to either rule or analogy in understanding compound words. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Compound Words; Kanji Script
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Educational Research Association (Chicago, IL, April 3-7, 1991).