Multilingualism And The Second Language Acquisition Studies Essay

1527 Words Oct 21st, 2014 7 Pages
Multilingualism will be enhanced in the future since there will not be a language that dominates the world (1). This is why second language learning, or acquisition, is becoming a more and more intriguing topic today. One thing, among others, that stands in the way of successful second language acquisition is that there are negative transfers of learner’s first language (L1) on the second language’s (L2) syntax, while the bigger the syntactic differences between L1 and L2 are, the more negative transfers there will be (2, 3) (Fig. 1).
Therefore, it seems obvious that, regardless of the enormous individual variation in L2 learning (4), a Japanese German learner would experience more negative transfer than a Dutch native learning German, since the latter would be more familiar with either the rule computation or lexical association in the target language (5). So would a Chinese English learner comparing to a French native.

L1 Bidialectal Transfer Benefit
In first language acquisition studies, the mechanisms that prevent learners from producing wrong sentences (such as 4 or 5 below; asterisks indicate ungrammaticality) by analogy to normal sentences (such as 1 and 2) have been a source of mystery (6).
1) I loaded the bricks onto the truck.
2) I loaded the truck with bricks.
3) I poured the water onto the ground.
4) *I poured the ground with water.
5) *I filled the bricks onto the truck.
6) I filled the truck with bricks.
Such an ability to make right generalizations of verbs…

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