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研究生:邵雅琪
研究生(外文):Yea-chyi Shao
論文名稱:英語冠詞習得之探討
論文名稱(外文):A Study on English Article Acquisition by Mandarin-Chinese Speakers
指導教授:徐淑瑛徐淑瑛引用關係
指導教授(外文):Shyu, Shu-Ing
學位類別:碩士
校院名稱:國立中山大學
系所名稱:外國語文學系研究所
學門:人文學門
學類:外國語文學類
論文種類:學術論文
論文出版年:2009
畢業學年度:97
語文別:英文
論文頁數:80
中文關鍵詞:冠詞錯誤分析殊指英語冠詞習得定指
外文關鍵詞:overuse of the with personal proper name usagearticle acquisition orderEnglish article acquisitionFluctuation Hypothesisdefinitenessdefiniteness effect on article useerror types of article usespecificity
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中文摘要
本研究旨在探討母語為中文人士如何使用並習得英語冠詞系統。本研究對象為40位19至20歲台灣大學生,根據他們密西根聽力理解測驗成績結果,分為低程度和高程度二組,並將英語口說Cinderella故事內容錄製下來。根據本研究探討的議題,進行四方面語料分析:1) 語意層面分析、2) 句構層面分析、3) 錯誤歸納分析、4)冠詞使用正確率的分析。
在語意層面上的分析,主要是檢驗Ionin (2004) 提出的Fluctuation Hypothesis (FH),針對FH假設中四種語意類別的推測進行分析,並且探討特定冠詞(the)與殊指(specificity)之間的關聯性。分析結果為,三種語意推測獲得支持,但其中一種語意類別,因出現語境的名詞詞組太少,無法分析討論,此現象可能是由於不同的研究方法造成的結果。另外,本研究發現過度使用特定冠詞(the)的情形出現在殊指(specificity)語境中。
在句構上的分析,受到中文非定指名詞無法出現在前置動詞的位置,以及出現在前置動詞的名詞無法得到非定指語意表達之影響,研究發現受試者常省略在前置動詞的冠詞比在後置動詞的冠詞還多,但此現象只發生在低程度的受試者,對高程度的受試者反而省略在後置動詞的冠詞高於在前置位置的冠詞。結果說明中文名詞詞組在詞序上表現不同的語意表達,影響初學者在句構上冠詞的使用。另一方面,本研究也觀察到初學者在前置動詞過度使用特定冠詞(the)的次數比在後置動詞還高,表示母語為中文的初學者在過度使用特定冠詞(the)的情形,受中文名詞詞組在前置動詞多為定指(definiteness)之影響,大於受到指涉(specificity) 關係之影響。
在錯誤歸納分析方面,高程度和低程度的學習者在冠詞使用上有明顯差異。低程度學習者犯的錯誤比高程度還多。此外,研究發現低程度學習者錯誤地使用英文人稱専有名詞(the Cinderella)。
在冠詞使用上正確率的分析,研究發現學習者程度的不同影響了冠詞使用的正確性。高程度學習者的習得順序為the -> a -> ø ,低程度學習者為a -> the -> ø。
Abstract
The study aims to discuss how English article system is acquired by Mandarin-Chinese speakers at two domains, semantic domain and sentence level, by analyzing oral-story-telling data produced by forty 19-to-20-year old college students in Taiwan (20 males and 20 females), divided into low proficiency and high proficiency levels based on their results of Michigan Listening Comprehension Test. The production data was classified into four semantic types marked by a combination of two universal semantic concepts, specificity and definiteness for the purpose of examining Fluctuation Hypothesis (FH) proposed by Ionin (2004), who argued that L2 access to Universal Grammar by predicting L2 learners without article system will fluctuate between two parameter settings of specificity and definiteness. It is found that overuse of the did occur in [+specificity, -definiteness] contexts where target use is a, particularly for low-level learners. Besides, to closely probe into how L1 Mandarin-Chinese speakers use articles in L2 grammar within Ionin’s framework, a model for linguistic properties marking specificity and definiteness in Chinese was proposed so as to compare the differences between English article system and Chinese classifier system, arguing that the interference of L1 may take place at semantic domain by L1 Mandarin-Chinese speakers. The evidence that the substitution of nage for definite article the in [+specificity, +definiteness] contexts and that of numeral one yige for indefinite article a in only [+specificity, -definiteness] and [-specificity, -definiteness] contexts sheds the light on the possibility of the occurrence of L1 transfer at the semantic domain. As for article use in sentential positions, due to definiteness effect and subject indefinite effect in Chinese, it is predicted that L1 Mandarin-Chinese speakers would drop articles more often in preverbal positions than in postverbal positions. The result showed that low-level learners did drop more articles in preverbal positions than in postverbal positions, but advanced learners showed the contrast, which implies that the beginners are easily governed by the definiteness effect, that is, L1 is at play at the initial state of L2 grammar. Overall, the advanced learners used articles more accurately than the low-level learners did, suggesting that the advanced Mandarin-Chinese L2 English learners may gradually reset the parameter of L2 grammars in acquiring English article system.
Furthermore, different error types produced by the participants were classified in the study and provided with theoretical discussion. A surprising finding is that the low-level learners highly misused the Cinderella for Cinderella in the data. Such error production may show the evidence of L2 access to UG since the Cinderella cannot be used in English and there is no determiner the projecting in Chinese proper name. The overuse of the further illustrates the existence of projecting D for L1 Chinese learners.
The acquisition rate of article use was measured by SOC (Suppliances in Obligatory Contexts) and TLU (Target-Like-Use). The results showed that the most difficult article use for both proficiency levels is zero article Ø. The advanced learners can use the more accurately than the learners at proficiency level due to the high occurrences of overgeneralization of the by the low-proficiency levels.
In general, the result of the current study bears on the issue of accessibility of UG and the possibility of parameter (re-) setting. It is also shown that L1 plays a significant role in L2 article use not only at the semantic domain but also at the sentential level by L1 Mandarin-Chinese speakers, especially for those at the initial state of L2 grammar.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgements ii
Chinese Abstract iv
English Abstract v
Table of Contents vii
Chapter 1 Introduction
1.1 Background and motivation 1
1.2 Purposes of the thesis 5
1.3 Significance of the thesis 5
1.4 Organization of the thesis 6
Chapter 2 Literature Review
2.1 Acquisition of English article system at semantic domain 7
2.1.1 Huebner’s (1983) semantic wheel model 7
2.1.2 Acquisition of semantic type [+/-SR] and [+/-HR] 9
2.1.3 Article-Choice Parameter (ACP) 11
2.1.4 Fluctuation Hypothesis (FH) 12
2.1.5 Previous studies on the performance of article choice by L1 Chinese speakers 14
2.2 Error production by L2 learners 17
2.3 Definiteness and specificity in Chinese 18
2.4 Research Hypotheses 26
2.4.1 Predictions for article choice in L2 English 26
2.4.2 Predictions for article use in sentential position 28
2.5 Acquisition order of English article use 29
2.6 Universal Grammar in L2 34

Chapter 3 Methodology
3.1 Source of the data 37
3.2 Participants & Task 37
3.3 Data analysis 38
Chapter 4 Results and discussion
4.1 Article choice in L2 English by Mandarin-Chinese speakers 43
4.1.1 Discussion of the task factor 46
4.2 Article use in sentential position 46
4.2.1 Dropping the and overuse of the 50
4.3 Results for error types of article use 51
4.3.1 Results for error types by two proficiency levels 54
4.3.2 Theoretical discussion on the misuse of the Cinderella for Cinderella 55
4.4 Acquisition order of article use 57
4.4.1 Acquisition order of article use by SOC 57
4.4.2 Acquisition order of article use by TLU 58
Chapter 5 Conclusion
5.1 Main findings of the thesis 61
5.2 Implication of the thesis 62
5.3 Limitations of the thesis and future studies 63
References 64
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