ERIC Number: EJ892629
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Sep
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Acquisition of Dutch as a Second Language: The Explanative Power of Cognate and Genetic Linguistic Distance Measures for 11 West European First Languages
Van der Slik, Frans W. P.
Studies in Second Language Acquisition, v32 n3 p401-432 Sep 2010
This study reports on the impact of 11 West European first languages on the acquisition of Dutch. Using data from nearly 6,000 second-language learners, it was found that the mother tongue had a rather large impact on two language skills--namely, oral and written proficiency--as measured by the scores received by these learners on the State Examination of Dutch as a Second Language. Multilevel analyses showed that the effect of the mother tongue can adequately be modeled by means of the cognate linguistic distance measure, adopted from McMahon and McMahon (2005). The explanative power of the genetic linguistic distance measure (Cavalli-Sforza, Menozzi, & Piazza, 1994), on the other hand, was rather poor. Additionally, learner characteristics (age of arrival, length of residence, hours studying Dutch, education, and gender) and context characteristics (quality of schooling in the country of origin and multilingual country of origin) explained part of the variation in Dutch speaking and writing skills.
Descriptors: Second Language Learning, Multilingualism, Language Classification, Writing Skills, Language Skills, English (Second Language), Indo European Languages, Oral Language, Language Proficiency, Scores, Gender Differences, Second Languages, Native Speakers, Educational Quality, Cultural Context, Student Characteristics, Foreign Countries
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
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Identifiers - Location: Netherlands