Studies in Language Sciences
Online ISSN : 2435-9955
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  • Mayumi Okamoto, Mitsuo Nakamura
    2022 Volume 20 Issue 2 Pages 1-19
    Published: September 01, 2022
    Released on J-STAGE: September 01, 2022
    JOURNAL OPEN ACCESS

    This paper examined the grammatical ability of 300 Japanese learners. Grammatical ability was operationalized through tasks entailing five grammatical choices. Specifically, this study addressed whether the students chose particular grammatical forms for contextually appropriate reasons and whether the students who made appropriate grammatical choices could use their knowledge in production tasks. Two separate studies (Study 1 and Study 2) were conducted. In Study 1, the students were given imaginary contexts and were asked to choose appropriate sentences and describe reasons for their choices. In Study 2, the students, who were also given imaginary contexts, were asked to complete production tasks; they were also asked to complete the tasks of Study 1. These studies yielded the following three results. First, the mean percentage of appropriate reasons for providing correct answers was 34.4%, which indicated that the students were notably lacking in knowledge of the grammatical choices to be made in context. Second, among the students who provided appropriate reasons, only 38.2% used the forms correctly in the production tasks, which indicated that having appropriate knowledge of grammatical choices was insufficient in itself for effective production. Third, the proficient students were likely to understand the grammatical choices explained in teaching materials, which indicated a positive effect of teaching grammatical choices. Thus, this paper provides evidence to suggest that the students should augment their knowledge of grammatical choices by heightening awareness of context.

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  • Shinichi Hotei
    2022 Volume 20 Issue 2 Pages 21-41
    Published: September 01, 2022
    Released on J-STAGE: September 01, 2022
    JOURNAL OPEN ACCESS

    The purpose of this study is to compare the effectiveness of English phrasal verb learning incorporating conceptual metaphors, English phrasal verb learning by memorizing, and English phrasal verb learning using conceptual metaphors and memorization. Sixty-nine Japanese high school students were divided into three groups with each teacher using a different teaching method: 23 in the cognitive group, 23 in the memorization group, and 23 in the mixed group (i.e., cognitive+memorization). The students were taught the phrasal verb invariants “UP, DOWN, OFF, ON” by imagining the meaning (i.e., the cognitive group), by memorizing the whole word (i.e., the memorization group), and by explicitly indicating the meaning with its imagery (i.e., the mixed group). The results suggest that the students had fixed meanings of English words in their minds and had difficulty inferring extended meanings.

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  • Yasuhito Kido
    2022 Volume 20 Issue 2 Pages 43-67
    Published: September 01, 2022
    Released on J-STAGE: September 01, 2022
    JOURNAL OPEN ACCESS

    This paper investigates the following two questions: (i) why adults tend to use V–V compounds which involve geminate consonants to children of low age, and (ii) why geminate consonants are included in the first appearance of V–V compounds by Japanese-speaking children. To solve these questions, we analyzed naturalistic data using the CHILDES database (MacWhinney, 2000). As a result, we reported that the lower the age of children, the more V–V compounds with geminate consonants adult used. In addition, we reported that all children first produced V–V compounds which involve geminate consonants. These findings have two main theoretical implications. First, the phonological characteristics of baby talk promote vocabulary acquisition from the point of view of V–V compounds. Second, the acquisitional characteristics of Hebrew compound nouns and Chinese resultative V–V compounds shown by Berman (2009) and Chen (2008) also apply to those of Japanese V–V compounds.

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