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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

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Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: Processing empty categories in a second language: When naturalistic exposure fills the (intermediate) gap
Author: Christos Pliatsikas
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Institution: University of Reading
Author: Theodoros Marinis
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: University of Reading
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition
Abstract: An ongoing debate on second language (L2) processing revolves around whether or not L2 learners process syntactic information similarly to monolinguals (L1), and what factors lead to a native-like processing. According to the Shallow Structure Hypothesis (Clahsen & Felser, ), L2 learners’ processing does not include abstract syntactic features, such as intermediate gaps of wh-movement, but relies more on lexical/semantic information. Other researchers have suggested that naturalistic L2 exposure can lead to native-like processing (Dussias, 2003). This study investigates the effect of naturalistic exposure in processing wh-dependencies. Twenty-six advanced Greek learners of L2 English with an average nine years of naturalistic exposure, 30 with classroom exposure, and 30 native speakers of English completed a self-paced reading task with sentences involving intermediate gaps. L2 learners with naturalistic exposure showed evidence of native-like processing of the intermediate gaps, suggesting that linguistic immersion can lead to native-like abstract syntactic processing in the L2.


This article appears IN Bilingualism: Language and Cognition Vol. 16, Issue 1.

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