It was about one and a half years ago that I finally I arrived where I had always wanted to be and do what I had always wanted-- teach students, support small language communities and conduct research on African languages on my doorstep. The University of Cape Town and my new colleagues welcomed my efforts to establish the Centre for African Language Diversity-- CALDi as well as The African Language Archive-- TALA and I was recently appointed the Mellon Research Chair: African Language Diversity this initiative. The main aim of CALDi is to train young African scholars in descriptive linguistics and open up space for research into African languages at UCT with the hopes of countering the dominance of African linguistics outside the continent. It has been a great challenge for which my whole career has been a form of preparation...Read more
The Cambridge Handbook of Communication Disorders examines the full range of developmental and acquired communication disorders and provides the most up-to-date and comprehensive guide to the epidemiology, aetiology and clinical features of these disorders.
The ba-construction is probably the best-known syntactic construction in
Modern Standard Chinese, but little has been done on the acquisition of it
by second language learners. This study fills this gap. The theoretical
framework is Liu's (1997) aspectual analysis of ba. The study is
experimental. The constraint on the ba-NP and the constraint on the ba-VP
were investigated. The subjects were 65 students learning Chinese in the
intensive Chinese program at the Defense Language Institute (DLI) in
Monterey, California. They were in three proficiency groups. A group of 20
native speakers of Chinese also participated as a control group. The study
involved two experiments based on video clips: production and
grammaticality judgments. The subjects were asked to indicate their
confidence in their judgments. Results were that even though the learners
generally produced fewer ba-constructions than the native speakers, their
judgments of most of the sentences were as good as those of native
speakers, indicating that they had some good knowledge of the construction.
Moreover, learners with similar production patterns showed different
patterns in their grammaticality judgments, suggesting that the two kinds
of data complement each other in our understanding of language acquisition.
Results also show that the confidence dimension captured subtle differences
that would not have been captured by the judgments of grammaticality alone.
Production patterns used by learners to substitute for the ba-construction
and error patterns have also been identified. Finally, the variation among
native speakers in their judgments of the ba-construction calls for a more
systematic study of exactly how native speakers of Standard Chinese use the
ba-construction, especially those who have been exposed to other Chinese