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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: The prompt hypothesis: Clarification requests as corrective input for grammatical errors
Author: Matthew Saxton
Institution: University of London
Author: Carmel Houston-Price
Institution: University of Reading
Author: Natasha Dawson
Institution: Royal Holloway, University of London
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition
Abstract: The potential of clarification questions (CQs) to act as a form of corrective input for young children's grammatical errors was examined. Corrective responses were operationalized as those occasions when child speech shifted from erroneous to correct (E→C) contingent on a clarification question. It was predicted that E→C sequences would prevail over shifts in the opposite direction (C→E), as can occur in the case of nonerror-contingent CQs. This prediction was tested via a standard intervention paradigm, whereby every 60 s a sequence of two clarification requests (either specific or general) was introduced into conversation with a total of 45 2- and 4-year-old children. For 10 categories of grammatical structure, E→C sequences predominated over their C→E counterparts, with levels of E→C shifts increasing after two clarification questions. Children were also more reluctant to repeat erroneous forms than their correct counterparts, following the intervention of CQs. The findings provide support for Saxton's prompt hypothesis, which predicts that error-contingent CQs bear the potential to cue recall of previously acquired grammatical forms.

CUP at LINGUIST

This article appears in Applied Psycholinguistics Vol. 26, Issue 3, which you can read on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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