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Style, Mediation, and Change

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Intonation and Prosodic Structure

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Academic Paper


Title: Frequency of Input and L2 Collocational Processing - A Comparison of Congruent and Incongruent Collocations
Author: Brent Wolter
Institution: Idaho State University
Author: Henrik Carl Gyllstad
Email: click here TO access email
Institution: Lund University
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition; Psycholinguistics
Subject Language: English
Swedish
Abstract: This study investigated the influence of frequency effects on the processing of congruent (i.e., having an equivalent first language [L1] construction) collocations and incongruent (i.e., not having an equivalent L1 construction) collocations in a second language (L2). An acceptability judgment task was administered to native and advanced nonnative English speakers (L1 Swedish) to assess response times to and error rates for these collocations along with a matched set of unrelated items. The results suggested that advanced learners are highly sensitive to frequency effects for L2 collocations, which seems to support the idea that usage-based models of language acquisition can be fruitfully applied to understanding the processes that underlie L2 collocational acquisition. At the same time, however, the apparent continued influence of the L1 indicates that researchers may also want to draw on other models of language acquisition to gain a fuller understanding of the processes underlying the acquisition of collocations in a L2.

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This article appears IN Studies in Second Language Acquisition Vol. 35, Issue 3.

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