Recent second language acquisition research has demonstrated that language learning is in essence the learning of constructions, or form-meaning pairings. Compared to first language acquisition research, however, our understanding of how constructions in a second language (L2) emerge and develop with proficiency and/or experience is limited. Furthermore, within this developing evidence base of L2 research, investigations have predominantly focused on verb-based constructions (e.g., verb-argument constructions), understood to be a core construction category of sentences. As a result, a large part of L2 speakers’ construction inventories remains to be investigated. To address this gap, a corpus-based investigation of the “article + adjective + noun” (AAN) construction in a written corpus of Chinese-speaking learners of English was carried out. Analyses show growth in construction types and developmental changes of adjectives in AANs with increasing amounts of L2 experience, consistent with usage-based understandings of language. Theoretical and pedagogical implications are discussed, including the extent to which previous findings for verb-based constructions apply to AAN constructions.
|Original language||English (US)|
|State||Published - Aug 2020|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Language and Linguistics
- Linguistics and Language