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Approaching motion in the ESL classroom

Attwood, A. (2017) Approaching motion in the ESL classroom. PhD thesis, University of Reading

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Abstract/Summary

The patterns used to express how a figure moves from one place to another may vary from language to language. These patterns are acquired early in childhood and are often resistant to restructuring (Slobin. 1996). As a result making the switch from Ll motion event patterns to a typologically different L2 pattern tends to be particularly difficult for language learners. Despite the evident challenges for learners. this area has been relatively neglected in language teaching. and there is virtually no research into how motion event construal can be taught. Taking a cognitive semantic approach. based on the theoretical framework for the typology of satellite-framed and verb-framed languages developed by Talmy (1985. 1991.2(00) and Slobin (1987. 1996. 2004.2005. 2006). this is the first study to compare the effectiveness of two instructional approaches in the teaching of L2 motion events with a focus on entering and exiting. Fifty-nine learners ofL2 English were quasi-randomly assigned to two groups: an input-based group and an input/output-based group. Pre-. post- and delayed post- tests were administered to assess learning and retention of the Manner verb+ Path satellite combination typical of English motion expressions. The measures included self-paced reading tests and picture-based written production tasks that were designed to draw on both implicit and explicit knowledge of motion event construal in English. The results showed Significant positive effects for both groups. As a result of the inSight gained. practical recommendations have been made for teachers approaching the domain of L2 English motion in the ESL classroom.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Thesis Supervisor:Treffers-Daller, J. and Laws, J. V.
Thesis/Report Department:Institute of Education
Identification Number/DOI:
Divisions:Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Science > Institute of Education
ID Code:72271

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