Skip navigation

The role of dynamic contrasts in the L2 acquisition of Spanish past tense morphology

The role of dynamic contrasts in the L2 acquisition of Spanish past tense morphology

Domínguez, Laura, Tracy-Ventura, Nicole, Arche, María J., Mitchell, Rosamond and Myles, Florence (2012) The role of dynamic contrasts in the L2 acquisition of Spanish past tense morphology. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 16 (3). pp. 558-577. ISSN 1366-7289 (Print), 1469-1841 (Online) (doi:https://doi.org/10.1017/S1366728912000363)

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

This study examines the second language acquisition of Spanish past tense morphology by three groups of English speakers (beginners, intermediates and advanced). We adopt a novel methodological approach – combining oral corpus data with controlled experimental data – in order to provide new evidence on the validity of the Lexical Aspect Hypothesis (LAH) in L2 Spanish. Data elicited through one comprehension and three oral tasks with varying degrees of experimental control show that the emergence of temporal markings is determined mainly by the dynamic/non-dynamic contrast (whether a verb is a state or an event) as beginner and intermediate speakers use Preterit with event verbs but Imperfect mainly with state verbs. One crucial finding is that although advanced learners use typical Preterit–telic associations in the least controlled oral tasks, as predicted by the LAH, this pattern is often reversed in tasks designed to include non-prototypical (and infrequent) form–meaning contexts. The results of the comprehension task also show that the Preterit-event and Imperfect-state associations observed in the production data determine the interpretation that learners assign to the Preterit and the Imperfect as well. These results show that beginner and intermediate learners treat event verbs (achievements, accomplishments and activities) in Spanish as a single class that they associate with Preterit morphology. We argue that dynamicity contrasts, and not telicity, affect learners’ use of past tense forms during early stages of acquisition.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: [1] FirstView - Published online: 20 November 2012.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Lexical Aspect Hypothesis, second language acquisition, Imperfect, Spanish, learner corpora
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Pre-2014 Departments: School of Humanities & Social Sciences
School of Humanities & Social Sciences > Department of Social, Political & Cultural Studies
Related URLs:
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2016 09:20
Selected for GREAT 2016: None
Selected for GREAT 2017: None
Selected for GREAT 2018: None
URI: http://gala.gre.ac.uk/id/eprint/8092

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item