ERIC Number: ED234619
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1983-May
Reference Count: 0
Asian Readers: The Morpheme Conceptualization Barrier.
Greene, Jane F.
The acquisition order of English morphemes by adult second language learners from Asian language backgrounds was investigated. It was hypothesized that adult speakers of the noninflected Asian languages, having passed the critical stage for second language acquisition without having mastered the linguistic concept of morphology, might face an impediment to the acquisition of English. This impediment was investigated as the "Morpheme Conceptualization Barrier" hypothesis. The subjects were 159 native speakers of noninflected languages enrolled in high school and college English as a second language classes. They each completed three contextual passages from which morphemes had been deleted. The results demonstrated an order of acquisition which significantly differed from that found in previous studies in which a universal morpheme acquisition order was observed. It was concluded that a universal order of acquisition cannot be generalized to adult native speakers of noninflected languages. However, the subjects who had learned an inflected language prior to learning English evidenced an acquisition order of English morphemes similar to that found in previous studies. Findings supported the "Morpheme Conceptualization Barrier" hypothesis. (Author/RW)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the International Reading Association (28th, Anaheim, CA, May 2-6, 1983).