Chapter published in:Meaning and Structure in Second Language Acquisition: In honor of Roumyana Slabakova
Edited by Jacee Cho, Michael Iverson, Tiffany Judy, Tania Leal and Elena Shimanskaya
[Studies in Bilingualism 55] 2018
► pp. 203–227
Proficiency and transfer effects in the acquisition of gender agreement by L2 and L3 English learners
The present study examines proficiency and transfer effects in the acquisition of gender agreement in third person singular possessives (his/her) by second (L2) and third language (L3) learners of English. Within current generative second language acquisition research, gender agreement has been found to be a complicated feature to acquire for non-native language learners. A group of Basque/Spanish speakers (n = 117) and a group of Spanish speakers (n = 70) divided into three proficiency levels (elementary, intermediate and advanced) completed two written (a fill in the gap task and a written description task) two oral production tasks (an oral elicitation and a picture description). Our findings show that previous linguistic knowledge and proficiency level in English seem to have an influence on the type of errors attested in the L2 and the L3 groups.
Keywords: agreement, Basque, EFL, English, gender, L2, L3, possession, proficiency, Spanish
Published online: 16 November 2018
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