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Adventures in English Syntax

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Modality Across Syntactic Categories

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Dissertation Information


Title: The Tense-Aspect System in Japanese Learners of Italian: A corpus-based study Add Dissertation
Author: Mauro Costantino Update Dissertation
Email: click here to access email
Institution: Università degli Studi di Torino, Euro-Asian Studies PhD School: Dialectology, Linguistics, Onomastics: Linguistics, Applied Linguistics, Linguistic Engineering
Completed in: 2010
Linguistic Subfield(s): Applied Linguistics; Text/Corpus Linguistics; Language Acquisition;
Subject Language(s): English
Italian
Japanese
Director(s): Mario Squartini
Alda Nannini
Carla Marello
Manuel Barbera

Abstract: The aim of this work is to analyse the interlanguage of Japanese students
learning Italian. Language learning research is, in recent years,
dedicating more and more time and efforts to the study of the acquisition
of Italian both as a second language and as a foreign language resulting in
many detailed and valuable works. Nonetheless, it could be argued that the
case of Japanese learners is somehow a different issue. Even though the
amount of Japanese learners of Italian has been increasing in the last
10--15 years a consistent and organized move towards a didactic on Italian
for Japanese is somehow still lacking. The present study does not hope to
cover that gap, but hopes to start building the foundation for a future
productive field of research.

This work focuses on the acquisition of the Italian tense-aspect system by
Japanese learners. I start analysing the acquisition patterns of the
tense-aspect system, trying to understand the underlying difficulties and
their causes. For this purpose I base my study on a set of data especially
collected for the corpus VALICO, of which the present study is part. The
VALICO project (www.valico.org), born at the University of Torino, Italy,
aims to build a corpus of learners of Italian as a foreign language in
order to offer a tool for teachers, learners and scholars that would allow
a comparative study of the various interlanguage varieties of learners of
Italian all over the world. Eventually, I offer a teaching approach
proposal, based on the outcome of the study, especially focused on teaching
the tense-aspect system of the Italian language to Japanese learners.