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ERIC Number: ED140610
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1976
Reference Count: N/A
Acquisition of Japanese Relative Clauses: A Case Study on a Two-Year-Old. Annual Reports, Vol. 1.
Harada, Kazuko I.
By age two, a child begins to form complex sentences by joining two or more sentences or by embedding one sentence into another. Formation of conjoined structures is a simpler process and emerges earlier than that of embedding structures. This paper attempts to answer the following questions: (1) Do children produce or understand embedding sentences correctly from the beginning of their acquisition or do they make mistakes? (2) Are there discrepancies between syntactic perception of embedding sentences and comprehension of the meaning? A longitudinal study of syntax development and acquisition of relative clause construction in one Japanese child forms the basis of the theory. Data consist of 120 elicited imitations of Japanese relative clause sentences, collected at ages 2:8, 2:9 and 2:10. Past studies on acquisition of relative clause construction deal with difficulty of acquisition of relative types. In the present study, four types of Japanese relative clause sentences were used for a total of 40 test sentences. Results indicate the subject-subject type was both imitated and comprehended best, and the comprehension score exceeds that of imitation for each type. Various theories accounting for differences in ease of acquisition are discussed. (CHK)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: International Christian Univ., Tokyo (Japan).