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Jost Gippert: Our Featured Linguist!

"Buenos dias", "buenas noches" -- this was the first words in a foreign language I heard in my life, as a three-year old boy growing up in developing post-war Western Germany, where the first gastarbeiters had arrived from Spain. Fascinated by the strange sounds, I tried to get to know some more languages, the only opportunity being TV courses of English and French -- there was no foreign language education for pre-teen school children in Germany yet in those days. Read more

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What is English? And Why Should We Care?

By: Tim William Machan

To find some answers Tim Machan explores the language's present and past, and looks ahead to its futures among the one and a half billion people who speak it. His search is fascinating and important, for definitions of English have influenced education and law in many countries and helped shape the identities of those who live in them.

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Medical Writing in Early Modern English

Edited by Irma Taavitsainen and Paivi Pahta

This volume provides a new perspective on the evolution of the special language of medicine, based on the electronic corpus of Early Modern English Medical Texts, containing over two million words of medical writing from 1500 to 1700.

Academic Paper

Title: Theoretical and empirical issues in the study of implicit and explicit learning
Author: Jan H. Hulstijn
Email: click here to access email
Homepage: https://home.medewerker.uva.nl/j.h.hulstijn/
Institution: University of Amsterdam
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition
Abstract: There are good theoretical and educational reasons to place matters of implicit and explicit learning high on the agenda for SLA research. As for theoretical motivations, perhaps the most central issue in SLA theory construction in need of explanation is the differential success in one's first language (L1) and in one's second language (L2). Although acquisition of an L1 results in full mastery of the language (provided that children are exposed to sufficient quantities of input and do not suffer from mental disabilities), learners of an L2—even after many years of L2 exposure—differ widely in level of attainment. How can we explain universal success in the case of L1 acquisition and differential success in the case of L2 acquisition? Among the many explanations that have been proposed, including brain maturation and brain adaptation processes (critical period), access to Universal Grammar, L1 interference, and sociopsychological factors (see Hyltenstam & Abrahamsson, 2003, for a review), one finds explanations that involve the notions of implicit and explicit learning. Scholars working in different disciplines, in different theoretical schools, and sometimes using different terminology have argued that L1 acquisition (or at least the acquisition of L1 grammar) relies principally on processes of what we might now call implicit learning, whereas the acquisition of an L2 often relies on both implicit and explicit learning (Bley-Vroman, 1991; DeKeyser, 2003; N. Ellis, this issue; R. Ellis, 2004; Krashen, 1981; Reber & Allen, 2000).


This article appears in Studies in Second Language Acquisition Vol. 27, Issue 2, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .

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