LINGUIST List 14.2502

Mon Sep 22 2003

Diss: Socioling/Lang Acquisition: See: 'The...'

Editor for this issue: Naomi Fox <>


  1. g0300901, The mixed language policy

Message 1: The mixed language policy

Date: Fri, 19 Sep 2003 12:33:38 +0000
From: g0300901 <>
Subject: The mixed language policy

Institution: National University of Singapore
Program: Department of English Language and Literature
Dissertation Status: Completed
Degree Date: 2003

Author: Hazel Lei Chia See 

Dissertation Title: The mixed language policy: an alternative to the
one-person-one-language policy for a child with bilingual caregivers

Linguistic Field: 	Sociolinguistics 
			Language Acquisition 

Subject Language:	English (code: ENG)
			Chinese, Mandarin (code: CHN)

Dissertation Director 1: Madalena Cruz-Ferreira

Dissertation Abstract: 

This thesis is an exploratory case study of the mixed language policy
(MLP) as a viable alternative to the one-person-one-language policy
(OPOLP). Through a comparative analysis of the English language
proficiency of a MLP vs. a OPOLP child using two frameworks of
analysis, namely, Halliday's (1975) language functions development,
and Klima and Bellugi's (1966) development of question-forms, no
significant differences were identified between the two children.

Despite previous negative evaluations of the MLP based on scant and
unsystematic research evidence, this systematic case study revealed
its ability in producing a high degree of early language
differentiation. The MLP child in this study is an unbalanced
bilingual, in favour of English. This is more likely to be related to
the emphasis and support of English in Singapore's context, and to a
lower amount of exposure to Mandarin, rather than the failure of the
policy per se. Additionally, caregivers report a high ease of use of
the MLP, as well as a high confidence in its success.

Overall, this suggests that the MLP is a viable option, and further
research using larger sample sizes will aid in determining its
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