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ERIC Number: ED332538
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991
Pages: 48
Abstractor: N/A
Captioned Television as "Comprehensible Input": Effects of Incidental Word Learning from Context for Language Minority Students.
Neuman, Susan B.; Koskinen, Patricia
One theory of second language acquisition argues that children's competence in a second language is a function of the amount of "comprehensible input" acquirers receive and understand, without formal instruction in reading or grammar. To examine this hypothesis, this study analyzes whether comprehensible input in the form of captioned television might influence bilingual students' acquisition of vocabulary and conceptual knowledge in science. The 129 bilingual seventh and eighth graders in the study were assigned to one of the following groups: (1) captioned television; (2) traditional television without captioning; (3) reading along and listening to text; and (4) textbook only. Students in these groups either viewed or read 3 units from a science series, twice a week for a period of 12 weeks. Pretest checklist vocabulary tests and prior knowledge pretests were administered before the study of each unit; vocabulary measures analyzing a continuum of word knowledge of 90 target words were administered, along with a written retelling activity analyzing recall of science information. An analysis of word-related and video-related factors suggested that contexts providing explicit information yielded higher vocabulary gains. Further analysis indicated that those who were more proficient in English learned more words from context than others. These results suggest that along with the development of instructional strategies sensitive to differing levels of bilingualism, comprehensible input may be a key ingredient in language acquisition and reading development. (JL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A