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Why do we struggle when we try to learn a language as adults?

Why do we struggle when we try to learn a language as adults?

Arche, Maria J. (2009) Why do we struggle when we try to learn a language as adults? In: School of Humanities and Social Sciences Research Conference, 28 May 2009, University of Greenwich. (Unpublished)

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Whereas the acquisition of a first language is successful for normally developing individuals, native-like attainment in a language learnt as adults is not guaranteed. As far as grammar is concerned, the area that typically shows up as more problematic is that of Morphology, and more specifically, that part of Morphology related to the specific ways languages have to indicate notions like temporal location (e.g. English –-ed for past tense She walked) or person agreement (e.g. English –s for the third person singular She sings). Language students and teachers are familiar with exclamations like “Oh, after so many years I still have problems with the past tenses in Spanish!” or “I cannot cope with the masculine/feminine thing in French!”
In this talk I will present two different accounts that are currently debated in the field of Second Language Acquisition about why it is not enough to memorize those “blessed endings” for us to master their use in our speech production. I will also introduce the latest study I have conducted in collaboration with colleagues, with the aim of evaluating the explanatory power of the hypotheses debated in current literature. [From the Author]

Item Type: Conference or Conference Paper (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: second language acquisition,
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Pre-2014 Departments: School of Humanities & Social Sciences
School of Humanities & Social Sciences > Applied Linguistics Research Group
School of Humanities & Social Sciences > Department of Languages & International Studies
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Last Modified: 14 Oct 2016 09:05

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