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ERIC Number: EJ1124043
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2016-Dec
Pages: 17
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0033-6882
"*Why You Can't Ask a Proper Question?"--The Learning Difficulties of Hong Kong ESL Students
Lee, Jackie F. K.
RELC Journal: A Journal of Language Teaching and Research, v47 n3 p295-311 Dec 2016
Despite the high frequency of occurrences of "wh"-interrogatives in daily use, there are repeated negative comments about the poor mastery of the wh-interrogative structure among Hong Kong students. However, so far little attention has been paid to their difficulties in the acquisition of the structure. There is a strong need to understand what linguistic knowledge they possess, and identify the learning difficulties in order to seek ways to address them. This study obtained its quantitative data from three classes of Hong Kong Secondary 3 students through a written test and an oral test. The major learning difficulties found include the word order transfer from the Chinese language, failure to use correct verb phrase structures, and erroneous use of some "wh"-words ("whose," "which," and "how") and "wh"-phrases (e.g. "how far," "whose bag"). The findings also reveal learning difficulties related to learner variables. Students of different English proficiency levels showed wide variation in their understanding of interrogative structures. The pedagogical implications are discussed.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Hong Kong
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A