A Cross-linguistic Intervention to Promote Language Awareness in Dutch Secondary Education

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Submission Summary

In this study we address two questions: 1. What knowledge is used by students in L1 (Dutch) grammar tasks and 2. To what extent is their L1 knowledge transferable to their L2 (English and German)?

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Abstract :

Language education in Dutch secondary schools does not appear to be focused on language awareness. Learning and testing activities mainly concerned with getting the 'right answer', instead of the reasoning that precedes it. In this study, we explored the extent to which nine pre-university students (aged 15-16) used implicit/explicit knowledge in their reasoning. They completed a 30-minute written test, consisting of Dutch, English and German grammaticality judgement tasks (GJTs) and parsing exercises. Afterwards they orally explained how they had arrived at each answer (stimulated recall). To determine the type and origin of the knowledge used, statements were selected from the transcripts by means of a coding scheme. It appeared that the students mainly used implicit knowledge in the GJTs, whereas explicit knowledge was used in the parsing exercises, regardless of the target language. Transfer of explicit knowledge was directed exclusively from Dutch to the foreign languages.

Language awareness, grammaticality judgement tasks (GJTs), parsing exercises, stimulated recall, implicit and explicit (syntactical) knowledge

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Utrecht University
Mentor ; coordinator of symposium S084
Utrecht University | UAS Utrecht

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