ERIC Number: ED243334
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Mar
The Destabilization of Interlanguage as Intent and Form Fluctuation.
Research on interlanguage (IL), the intermediary language produced by a speaker when it is perceptible that he is not a native speaker, has concentrated on procedures to stabilize interlanguage at a given point, and on stabilized products, rather than on the destabilization that occurs when learning is pursued. Although it has been widely accepted that IL's stabilize by target language rules being distorted and stretched, it is not as clear whether IL rules are over- or underextended in turn to evolve the process of de- and restabilization when target language rules are ultimately integrated. Teachers in particular wish more attention were paid to destabilization, since destabilization means progress in language learning. In this study, IL destabilization was explored in interviews with eight students of English as a foreign language. The students' participation in three cognitive operations was highlighted: (1) their perception of what to say (intent), (2) their retrieval of available expressions (form), and (3) the adjustment of intent and form. Based on the results, it is argued that variability in IL depends on the fluctuation of intent and form in each learner's destabilization process as well as on subsystems and styles being stabilized differently. Hence, it may be more helpful and pedagogically more relevant to assist the cognitive operation that promotes the destabilization of IL and the intake of the target language than provide new input or feedback. (Author/MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (18th, Houston, TX, March 6-11, 1984).