ERIC Number: EJ1074754
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Oct
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 65
Can Production Precede Comprehension in L2 Acquisition?
Second Language Research, v31 n4 p493-522 Oct 2015
So far, the comprehension and production language modes have typically been studied separately in generative second language acquisition research, with the focus shifting from one to the other. This article revisits the asymmetric relationship between comprehension and production by examining the second language (L2) acquisition of the noun phrase in Bulgarian by speakers of English. Drawing on data from a forced choice comprehension task and elicited production task, I show that in some cases production of certain grammatical features may precede the full comprehension of their relevance to the morpho-syntax of the target language. An explanation is sought based on (1) Jackendoff's (2002) parallel architecture of the linguistics modules, and (2) feature differentiation based on their relevance to syntax proper and semantics. Structural features with no semantic bearing (e.g. [gender]) are argued to be overlooked by the parser in comprehension. Conversely, features with a semantic load (e.g. [number]) are argued to cause an overload in the semantic tier in production. This, in turn, prevents their overt realization. This study sets the stage for future investigations into the phenomenon exploiting more refined methodology, which will allow for teasing apart the theoretical proposal from task effects.
Descriptors: Second Language Learning, Language Research, Semantics, Slavic Languages, Nouns, Phrase Structure, English, Native Speakers, Morphology (Languages), Syntax, Language Processing, Grammar, Task Analysis, Volunteers, Federal Programs, Second Language Instruction, Teaching Methods, Communicative Competence (Languages), Pictorial Stimuli, Identification, Coding, Statistical Analysis, Expressive Language, Receptive Language, Foreign Countries
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Bulgaria
IES Grant or Contract Numbers: BCS-0446667