成人英语口语僵化现象个案思考

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论文字数:42514 论文编号:sb2022050615090246951 日期:2022-06-04 来源:硕博论文网

本文是一篇语言学论文,本研究对成人英语学习者的口语表现进行了定性和定量研究。了解口语表现的特点可能有助于理解语言发展,并有助于确定有效的语言教学和学习方式。
Chapter One  Introduction
1.1Research Background
As the most commonly used international language, English has a significant role in China. Accordingly, many adult EFL learners have been learning English for an extended period of time in order to master the language. Some of them started their learning as early as the kindergarten phase or even before it, and at the same time, one may keep learning with instructions from campus tutors until completing the doctoral degree. However, after a long-lasting learning span, in consideration of language proficiency, especially oral proficiency, the majority of the adult EFL learners are far away from what is called the native-like level. On the one hand, it is not uncommon to find an adult EFL learner who could not express thoughts in mind thoroughly and comprehensibly. On the other hand, worst of all, for some adult EFL learners, when there is no choice but to use English, they feel their mind go blank and cannot stretch the topic but end the speech with only a few simple sentences as soon as possible. The repetitions of such experiences make some of them wonder whether they are doomed not to be able to learn English well. Fossilization in SLA, which was first proposed by Selinker in 1972, deals with the seeming failure of language learning and discusses its reason.
In this thesis, an adult EFL learner refers to anyone beyond senior high school age or who  has  already  finished  senior  high  school. After  secondary  or  higher  education,  the quantity of learning changes significantly together with the transformation of their social role. With regards to students, on the one hand, they pay limited attention to oral English owing to the assessment methods; on the other hand, courses designed for oral English are rare; and for those who work already, under the will of improving English proficiency, lots of people do not know where and how to start. Considering what was mentioned above, both of those two groups usually need chances to make progress with their oral English.
In short, for some adult EFL learners, after a long-lasting learning span, it seems all the efforts done are useless, and it is painful to learn English.
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1.2 Purpose and Significance of the Research
In  the  field  of  second  language  acquisition  (SLA),  researchers  have  discussed  the possible reasons for fossilization, the seeming failure of language learning, from various perspectives. True the theories may be, learners cannot benefit directly from knowing that. For example, Seliker (1972) himself thinks that the main reason for fossilization is language transfer; however, even if a learner knows that, what exactly he/she can do to make things better is a hanging problem.
In this thesis, after checking on the putative fossilization reasons proposed in the SLA field, the author focuses on Susan Gass’s explanation and collects data to test the hypotheses made out of her theory: language fossilization is due to the lack of analysis out of poor analysis ability or plainly limited analysis and high affective filter. By combining the theory and the investment, identifying and classifying errors in adult EFL learners’ oral English, the author tries to figure out the basic logic of language learning and find out what are the possible reasons for oral fossilization and what adult EFL learners can do to alleviate oral fossilization which in this thesis is operationalized as the persistent errors in oral English. Three questions are in need to work out, to be in detail:  
(1) What kind of errors are persistent in adult EFL learners’ oral English? 
(2) What are the possible causes for the subjects’ oral fossilization?
(3) What are the solutions to oral fossilization? 
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Chapter Two  Literature Review
2.1 Research on Fossilization
After the construct was put forward into second language acquisition field, four main points  can  be  found  upon  research  on  fossilization:  the  definition  of  fossilization,  the classification of fossilization, the research method of fossilization, and the causal variables of fossilization.
2.1.1 Definition of Fossilization
In 1972, noticed the phenomenon that the overwhelming majority of second language learners never reach native-speaker competence, Selinker coined the construct fossilization. At that time, this term refers to the noticed phenomenon as well as a cognitive mechanism. As a performance-related structural phenomenon, fossilization manifests as varied putative fossilizable structures. As a cognitive mechanism, it was deemed as a component part of the latent psychological structure in the brain that takes charge of second language acquisition.
Since 1972, conceptions of fossilization evolve with time, however, many of the follow-up definitions are in fact extended interpretations of the notion of Selinker. There are three major issues in constant dispute: (1) whether fossilization is global or local; (2) whether fossilization  is  cognitive  mechanism  or  behavioral  reflex;  in  other  words,  whether fossilization is a process or a product; (3) whether fossilization manifests as errors or as errors and correct forms. 
For the first dispute, researchers thinking fossilization is global insist that it impairs the entire interlanguage system, and researchers holding fossilization is local allege that it only influences parts of the interlanguage system. For instance, Selinker and Lamendella (1978: 187) explicitly defined fossilization as “a permanent cessation of IL learning before the learner has attained TL norms at all levels of linguistic structure and in all discourse domains in spite of the learner’s positive ability, opportunity, and motivation to learn and acculturate into target society”. Nevertheless, global fossilization is impressionistic, it is assumed rather than established (Vanpatten, 1988). The available empirical evidence to some degree proves that fossilization is selective and that only certain linguistic features in certain subsystems may fossilize in the interlanguage of individual learners. 
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2.2 English Oral Proficiency
The prerequisite for estimating English oral fossilization is knowing what is English oral proficiency, that is to say, the connotation of English oral proficiency. 
As for language proficiency, through the history, its connotation changes from one to another.  In  1961,  in  the  book  Language  Testing,  Lado  holds  the  idea  that  language proficiency  consists  of  two  parts:  knowledge  and  skills.  With  regard  to  knowledge,  it contains  grammar,  vocabulary  and  phonology/graphology. As  for  skills,  there  are  four smaller  parts:  listening,  speaking;  reading  and  writing.  Bachman  (1990)  points  out  that though Lado has distinguished knowledge from skills, the relation between these two parts is not discussed; besides, a more serious shortage is its failure to recognize the full context of language use, that is the contexts of discourse and situation. 
In  1972,  Hymes  for  the  first  time  in  the  history  puts  forward  the  conception  of communicative  competence  which  contains  four  facets:  possibility;  feasibility, appropriateness and occurrence, since then, many scholars equal language proficiency to communicative  competence.  For  some  scholars,  the  communicative  competence  is  non-separable, so they go with the unitary competence hypothesis advanced by Oller (1976). For the others, different models for communicative competence are proposed one after another. Here the author focuses mainly on two researchers’ work: Wen Qiufang (1999) and Wang Haizhen (2015). 

英语论文怎么写
英语论文怎么写

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Chapter Three Research Design ........................................ 26
3.1 Objectives ..................................... 26
3.2 Subjects ................................. 26
Chapter Four Results and Discussions ............... 33
4.1 The Research Data ....................................... 33
4.2 The Persistent Errors in Oral English ........................... 35
Chapter Five Conclusion .................................... 56
5.1 Major Findings ................................... 56
5.2 Implications of the Research ....................... 57
Chapter Four  Results and Discussions
4.1 The Research Data
As mentioned earlier in the method of data collection, there are 100 texts for analysis in total, and each subject has contributed 20 texts. The overall number of words produced by each subject is shown in figure 4.1. Within the figure, FV refers to the full version of the text, and PV refers to the pure version of the text which excludes all the inserting sounds and all the false starts, functionless repetitions, and self-corrections. Below is an example for FV and PV of the same sentence. In the transcribed text, an inserting sound is marked by (um), an identifiable pause is marked by …, a wrong pronounced word is marked by a strike-through, false starts, functionless repetitions, and self-corrections are put inside brackets with strike-through as well as highlight color {}.  
E.g. 02 (QXK, D02):
FV: {In my opinion, (um)}in my view, the Jesse and Celine… {(um)they attracted by other,} they attract each other {by… (um)…}by hate the couple {argue…} arguing, {like reading,} they like reading books, have rich feeling… and so on.
PV: In my view, the Jesse and Celine, they attract each other by hate the couple arguing, they like reading books, have rich feeling and so on. 
From figure 4-1 it is easy to find that the subjects’ performances are different from each other out of different language proficiency. Among all the subjects, Alice’s text length is extremely short compared to others. It is the same in reality; some adult English language learners might not like speaking in English with regards to all sorts of reasons. The author believes that whatever the subject says can represent his/her inner language proficiency.

语言学论文参考
语言学论文参考

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Chapter Five  Conclusion
5.1 Major Findings
This study aims to explore oral fossilization of adult EFL learners. Three questions are asked: 
(1) What kind of errors are persistent in adult EFL learners’ oral English? 
(2) What are the possible reasons for the subjects’ oral fossilization? 
(3) What are the solutions to oral fossilization? 
After the qualitative and quantitative data analysis, major findings are as follows. 
Firstly, the errors found show the evidence of oral fossilization. Within the phonological level, the sense groups are highly fragmented and disjointed, the stress and connection of syllables  are  insufficient.  And  within  the  morpho-syntactic  level,  there  are  confusions between parts of speech, which is analyzed under clause level, as well as errors on clause level and errors beyond clause level. From the three-level analysis, the author generalized nine  types  of  errors  in  total:  clause-related  error,  noun-related  error,  verb-related  error, adjective-related error, adverb-related error, prepositional phrase-related error, non-predicate verb phrase-related error, coordination-related error, and subordination-related error. Among all  the  nine  error  types,  the  most  salient  one  is  the  verb-related  error.  Other  errors  like CLAUSE, N-RE, PREP, SUBORDI are also comparatively severe. The error tagging system offered in this study not only helps the learner to check or monitor their output but, more importantly, to  analyze their input, which may, in turn, help  the learning as  well as the defossilization on the lexical-syntactic level.
Secondly, among all those different perspectives, the author believes that the lack of analysis and the affective filter are the two most salient contributors to oral fossilization. The analysis can be from varying levels, in this study, the author explored the phonetic level and lexical-grammatical level, which the author believes are the foundation for oral English. Other  levels  are  like  those  components  in  the  English  oral  proficiency:  discourse  level, pragmatic level, strategic level, etc. The lack of analysis can be out of limited analysis ability as well as plainly limited analysis, and the affective filter includes input affective filer as well as output affective filter.
reference(omitted)


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