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ERIC Number: EJ1108510
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016
Pages: 25
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0965-8416
Students' Accounts of Grammatical Forms of German That Are Difficult, Unattainable, and Irrelevant for Self-Expression
Chavez, Monika
Language Awareness, v25 n3 p197-221 2016
This study examined the responses of 39 first-year, 63 second-year, 20 third-year, and 19 fourth-year US college learners of German when they were asked what forms of L2 grammar they, respectively, find particularly difficult; do not expect to ever acquire fully; and believe are not necessary for self-expression. Nominal morphology--particularly case markings--figured prominently responses as a whole. Forms that were considered unattainable were also found to be difficult but the reverse was not true, which suggests that for learners in this study difficulty did not automatically connote impossible acquisition. Furthermore, Year 1 learners were on the whole the most optimistic group with regard to their expected final attainment; Year 2 learners the most pessimistic. This study raises questions about (1) whether researchers and learners adhere to different definitions of "acquisition" even as they both concern themselves especially with nominal morphology/case and verb placement; (2) whether especially beginners' assessments of a form's difficulty, attainability, and communicative relevance work together to direct their allocation of attention, i.e. whether there are attitudinal components to "noticing"; and (3) what learning and attitudinal trajectories are suggested by unexpected differences between learner populations (e.g. between Year 1 and Year 2) as well as unexpected similarities (e.g. between Year 1 and Year 4 learners).
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A