Education and Input as Predictors of Second Language Attainment in Naturalistic Contexts

Janko, Eleni, Dąbrowska, Ewa and Street, James (2019) Education and Input as Predictors of Second Language Attainment in Naturalistic Contexts. Languages, 4 (3). p. 70. ISSN 2226-471X

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.3390/languages4030070

Abstract

This study examines the effects of education and input as predictors of adult second language acquisition in naturalistic contexts. L1 Albanian learners of Greek who differed in amount of schooling (from 4 to 16 years) and length of residence (from 8 to 27 years) completed elicitation tasks that tested mastery of gender and number agreement, and past tense morphology. In addition, samples of spontaneous speech were assessed for fluency, grammatical complexity, and lexical richness in order to establish the learners’ overall proficiency in the L2. We hypothesized that education would facilitate attention to form and hence lead to better attainment of grammatical distinctions with relatively low functional load, particularly when these are complex. Quantity of input would be most strongly associated with aspects of language that are most relevant to communication, and in particular, fluency. These predictions were largely confirmed: education accounted for 15% of the variance on adjective number agreement and between 31% and 38% of the variance in performance on past tense morphology, which is considerably more complex. Fluency and clausal density, in contrast, were associated with length of residence but not with education.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: adult immigration, low education, input, oral skills, morphology
Subjects: Q300 English studies
R900 Others in European Languages, Literature and related subjects
X900 Others in Education
Department: Faculties > Arts, Design and Social Sciences > Humanities
Depositing User: Elena Carlaw
Date Deposited: 09 Sep 2019 08:48
Last Modified: 11 Oct 2019 13:00
URI: http://nrl.northumbria.ac.uk/id/eprint/40572

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