Productive Knowledge of English Binomials by Japanese Learners of English

Mitsuhiro Morita, Judith Wylie

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Abstract

The purpose of this research is to reveal (1) which English binomials Japanese learners of English have productive knowledge of and (2) what strategies they use to produce English binomials when they do not know the binomials. One hundred and three Japanese learners of English with intermediate proficiency level completed an online survey of 44 binomials. The participants were given the first word of a binomial and asked to type a word following “and”. The target word was provided by more than 75% of participants for 19 of the 44 binomials, meaning that learners have productive knowledge for certain binomials. An analysis of errors suggested that the participants relied heavily on semantic relationships between items in binomials.However, the use of a semantic strategy for producing the second words often leads to non-binomial expressions. From these results we suggest that giving more input to learners, as well as teaching the “Me first” principle (Cooper & Ross, 1975) explicitly would help the learners to develop more accurate and effective strategies for uncertain or unfamiliar binomials.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)83-92
JournalHiroshima Studies in Language and Language Education
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 01 Mar 2016

Keywords

  • second language
  • binomials
  • Bilingualism

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