Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 174

Search results for: grammar

174 A Survey of Grammar-Based Genetic Programming and Applications

Authors: Matthew T. Wilson

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This paper covers a selection of research utilizing grammar-based genetic programming, and illustrates how context-free grammar can be used to constrain genetic programming. It focuses heavily on grammatical evolution, one of the most popular variants of grammar-based genetic programming, and the way its operators and terminals are specialized and modified from those in genetic programming. A variety of implementations of grammatical evolution for general use are covered, as well as research each focused on using grammatical evolution or grammar-based genetic programming on a single application, or to solve a specific problem, including some of the classically considered genetic programming problems, such as the Santa Fe Trail.

Keywords: context-free grammar, genetic algorithms, genetic programming, grammatical evolution

Procedia PDF Downloads 65
173 Rethinking of Self-Monitoring and Self-Response Roles in Teaching Grammar Knowledge to Iranian EFL Learners

Authors: Gholam Reza Parvizi, Ali Reza Kargar, Amir Arani

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In the present days, learning and teaching researchers have emphasized the role which teachers, tutors, and trainers’ constraint knowledge treat in resizing and trimming what they perform in educational atmosphere. Regarding English language as subject to teaching, although the prominence of instructor’s knowledge about grammar has also been stressed, but the lack of empirical insights into the relationship between teacher’ self-monitoring and self-response of grammar knowledge have been observed. With particular attention to the grammar this article indicates and discusses information obtained self- feedback and conversing teachers of a kind who backwash the issue. The result of the study indicates that enabling teachers to progress and maintain a logical and realistic awareness of their knowledge about grammar have to be prominent goal for teachers’ education and development programs.

Keywords: grammar knowledge, self-monitoring, self-response, teaching grammar, language teaching program

Procedia PDF Downloads 444
172 Evaluation of the Grammar Questions at the Undergraduate Level

Authors: Preeti Gacche

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A considerable part of undergraduate level English Examination papers is devoted to grammar. Hence the grammar questions in the question papers are evaluated and the opinions of both students and teachers about them are obtained and analyzed. A grammar test of 100 marks is administered to 43 students to check their performance. The question papers have been evaluated by 10 different teachers and their scores compared. The analysis of 38 University question papers reveals that on an average 20 percent marks are allotted to grammar. Almost all the grammar topics are tested. Abundant use of grammatical terminology is observed in the questions. Decontextualization, repetition, possibility of multiple correct answers and grammatical errors in framing the questions have been observed. Opinions of teachers and students about grammar questions vary in many respects. The students responses are analyzed medium-wise and sex-wise. The Medium at the School level and the sex of the students are found to play no role as far as interest in the study of grammar is concerned. English medium students solve grammar questions intuitively whereas non-English medium students are required to recollect the rules of grammar. Prepositions, Verbs, Articles and Model auxiliaries are found to be easy topics for most students whereas the use of conjunctions is the most difficult topic. Out of context items of grammar are difficult to answer in comparison with contextualized items of grammar. Hence contextualized texts to test grammar items are desirable. No formal training in setting questions is imparted to teachers by the competent authorities like the University. They need to be trained in testing. Statistically there is no significant change of score with the change in the rater in testing of grammar items. There is scope of future improvement. The question papers need to be evaluated and feedback needs to be obtained from students and teachers for future improvement.

Keywords: context, evaluation, grammar, tests

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171 Redundancy in Malay Morphology: School Grammar versus Corpus Grammar

Authors: Zaharani Ahmad, Nor Hashimah Jalaluddin

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The aim of this paper is to examine and identify the issue of linguistic redundancy in two competing grammars of Malay, namely the school grammar and the corpus grammar. The former is a normative grammar which is formally and prescriptively taught in the classroom, whereas the latter is a descriptive grammar that is informally acquired and mastered by the students as native speakers of the language outside the classroom. Corpus grammar is depicted based on its actual used in natural occurring texts, as attested in the corpus. It is observed that the grammar taught in schools is incompatible with the grammar used in the corpus. For instance, a noun phrase containing nominal reduplicated form which denotes plurality (i.e. murid-murid ‘students’ which is derived from murid ‘student’) and a modifier categorized as quantifiers (i.e. semua ‘all’, seluruh ‘entire’, and kebanyakan ‘most’) is not acceptable in the school grammar because the formation (i.e. semua murid-murid ‘all the students’ kebanyakan pelajar-pelajar ‘most of the students’) is claimed to be redundant, and redundancy is prohibited in the grammar. Redundancy is generally construed as the property of speech and language by which more information is provided than is precisely required for the message to be understood, so that, if some information is omitted, the remaining information will still be sufficient for the message to be comprehended. Thus, the correct construction to be used is strictly the reduplicated form (i.e. murid-murid ‘students’) or the quantifier plus the root (i.e. semua murid ‘all the students’) with the intention that the grammatical meaning of plural is not repeated. Nevertheless, the so-called redundant form (i.e. kebanyakan pelajar-pelajar ‘most of the students’) is frequently used in the corpus grammar. This study shows that there are a number of redundant forms occur in the morphology of the language, particularly in affixation, reduplication and combination of both. Apparently, the so-called redundancy has grammatical and socio-cultural functions in communication that is to give emphasis and to stress the importance of the information delivered by the speakers or writers.

Keywords: corpus grammar, morphology, redundancy, school grammar

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170 The Use of Authentic Videos to Change Learners’ Negative Attitudes and Perceptions toward Grammar Learning

Authors: Khaldi Youcef

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This investigation seeks to inquire into the effectiveness of using authentic videos for grammar teaching purposes. In this investigation, an English animated situation, Hercules, was used as a type of authentic multimedia to teach a particular grammatical structure, namely conditional sentences. This study also aims at investigating the EFL learners’ attitudes toward grammar learning after being exposed to such an authentic video. To reach that purpose, 56 EFL learners were required ultimately to respond to a questionnaire with an aim to reveal their attitudes towards grammar as a language entity and as a subject for being learned. Then, as a second stage of the investigation, the EFL learners were divided into a control group and an experimental group with 28 learners in each. The first group was taught grammar -conditional sentences- using a deductive-inductive approach, while the second group was exposed to an authentic video to learn conditional sentences. There was a post-lesson stage that included a questionnaire to be answered by learners of each group. The aim of this stage is to capture any change in learners' attitudes shown in the pre-lesson questionnaire. The findings of the first stage revealed learners' negative attitudes towards grammar learning. And the third stage results showed the effectiveness of authentic videos in entirely turning learners' attitudes toward grammar learning to be significantly positive. Also, the utility of authentic videos in highly motivating EFL learners can be deduced. The findings of this survey asserted the need for incorporation and integration of authentic videos in EFL classrooms as they resulted in rising effectively learners’ awareness of grammar and looking at it from a communicative perspective.

Keywords: multimedia, authentic videos, negative attitudes, grammar learning, EFL learners

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169 The Implementation of Special Grammar Circle (Spegraci) as the Media Innovation for Blind People to Learn English Tenses

Authors: Aji Budi Rinekso, Revika Niza Artiyana, Lisa Widayanti

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English is one of the international languages in the world. People use this language to communicate with each other in the international forums, international events or international organizations. As same as other languages, English has a rule which is called grammar. Grammar is the part of english which has a role as the language systems. In grammar, there are tenses which provide a time period system for past, present and future. Sometimes it is difficult for some English learner to remember all of the tenses completely. Especially for those with special needs or exceptional children with vision restrictiveness. The aims of this research are 1) To know the design of Special Grammar Circle (Spegraci) as the media for blind people to learn english grammar. 2) To know the work of Special Gramar Circle (Spegraci) as the media for blind people to learn english grammar. 3) To know the function of this device in increasing tenses ability for blind people. The method of this research is Research and Development which consists of several testing and revision of this device. The implementation of Special Grammar Circle (Spegraci) is to make blind people easily to learn the tenses. This device is easy to use. Users only roll this device and find out the tense formula and match to the name of the formula in braille. In addition, this device also enables to be used by normal people because normal written texts are also provided.

Keywords: blind people, media innovation, spegraci, tenses

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168 A Theoretical and Corpus-Based Analysis of English and Spanish Syntax Derived from Método de Los Relojes Verb Types According to Systemic-Functional Grammar as a Foundation for Methodological Adaption

Authors: Timothy William Lawrence

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The goal of this paper is to research and categorize the four basic verb types found in the Spanish descriptive grammar book Método de los Relojes using verb clauses as representation as found in M.A.K. Halliday's Systemic-Functional Grammar with the purpose of establishing theoretical along with syntactical parallels and deviations between English and Spanish. Results confirm theoretical correlations exist therefore leading to an analysis of English grammar syntax resulting in delineating commonalities and differences from Spanish. Corpora searches were carried out on different patterns of syntactical structures confirming divergences in verb syntax, making it possible to establish parameters to adapt English verbs to the criteria of the four basic Método de los Relojes verb types.

Keywords: corpus studies, Método de los Relojes, structural-functional grammar, verb syntax

Procedia PDF Downloads 43
167 Critical Comparison of Two Teaching Methods: The Grammar Translation Method and the Communicative Teaching Method

Authors: Aicha Zohbie

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The purpose of this paper is to critically compare two teaching methods: the communicative method and the grammar-translation method. The paper presents the importance of language awareness as an approach to teaching and learning language and some challenges that language teachers face. In addition, the paper strives to determine whether the adoption of communicative teaching methods or the grammar teaching method would be more effective to teach a language. A variety of features are considered for comparing the two methods: the purpose of each method, techniques used, teachers’ and students’ roles, the use of L1, the skills that are emphasized, the correction of students’ errors, and the students’ assessments. Finally, the paper includes suggestions and recommendations for implementing an approach that best meets the students’ needs in a classroom.

Keywords: language teaching methods, language awareness, communicative method grammar translation method, advantages and disadvantages

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166 Models and Metamodels for Computer-Assisted Natural Language Grammar Learning

Authors: Evgeny Pyshkin, Maxim Mozgovoy, Vladislav Volkov

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The paper follows a discourse on computer-assisted language learning. We examine problems of foreign language teaching and learning and introduce a metamodel that can be used to define learning models of language grammar structures in order to support teacher/student interaction. Special attention is paid to the concept of a virtual language lab. Our approach to language education assumes to encourage learners to experiment with a language and to learn by discovering patterns of grammatically correct structures created and managed by a language expert.

Keywords: computer-assisted instruction, language learning, natural language grammar models, HCI

Procedia PDF Downloads 416
165 Systemic Functional Grammar Analysis of Barack Obama's Second Term Inaugural Speech

Authors: Sadiq Aminu, Ahmed Lamido

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This research studies Barack Obama’s second inaugural speech using Halliday’s Systemic Functional Grammar (SFG). SFG is a text grammar which describes how language is used, so that the meaning of the text can be better understood. The primary source of data in this research work is Barack Obama’s second inaugural speech which was obtained from the internet. The analysis of the speech was based on the ideational and textual metafunctions of Systemic Functional Grammar. Specifically, the researcher analyses the Process Types and Participants (ideational) and the Theme/Rheme (textual). It was found that material process (process of doing) was the most frequently used ‘Process type’ and ‘We’ which refers to the people of America was the frequently used ‘Theme’. Application of the SFG theory, therefore, gives a better meaning to Barack Obama’s speech.

Keywords: ideational, metafunction, rheme, textual, theme

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164 The Role of Communicative Grammar in Cross-Cultural Learning Environment

Authors: Tonoyan Lusine

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The Communicative Grammar (CG) of a language deals with semantics and pragmatics in the first place as communication is a process of generating speech. As it is well known people can communicate with the help of limited word expressions and grammatical means. As to non-verbal communication, both vocabulary and grammar are not essential at all. However, the development of the communicative competence lies in verbal, non-verbal, grammatical, socio-cultural and intercultural awareness. There are several important issues and environment management strategies related to effective communication that one might need to consider for a positive learning experience. International students bring a broad range of cultural perspectives to the learning environment, and this diversity has the capacity to improve interaction and to enrich the teaching/learning process. Intercultural setting implies creative and thought-provoking work with different cultural worldviews and international perspectives. It is worth mentioning that the use of Communicative Grammar models creates a profound background for the effective intercultural communication.

Keywords: CG, cross-cultural communication, intercultural awareness, non-verbal behavior

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163 The Relationship between Iranian EFL Learners' Multiple Intelligences and Their Performance on Grammar Tests

Authors: Rose Shayeghi, Pejman Hosseinioun

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The Multiple Intelligences theory characterizes human intelligence as a multifaceted entity that exists in all human beings with varying degrees. The most important contribution of this theory to the field of English Language Teaching (ELT) is its role in identifying individual differences and designing more learner-centered programs. The present study aims at investigating the relationship between different elements of multiple intelligence and grammar scores. To this end, 63 female Iranian EFL learner selected from among intermediate students participated in the study. The instruments employed were a Nelson English language test, Michigan Grammar Test, and Teele Inventory for Multiple Intelligences (TIMI). The results of Pearson Product-Moment Correlation revealed a significant positive correlation between grammatical accuracy and linguistic as well as interpersonal intelligence. The results of Stepwise Multiple Regression indicated that linguistic intelligence contributed to the prediction of grammatical accuracy.

Keywords: multiple intelligence, grammar, ELT, EFL, TIMI

Procedia PDF Downloads 398
162 Enquiry Based Approaches to Teaching Grammar and Differentiation in the Senior Japanese Classroom

Authors: Julie Devine

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This presentation will look at the approaches to teaching grammar taken over two years with students studying Japanese in the last two years of high school. The main focus is an enquiry based approach to grammar introduction and a three tier system using videos and online support material to allow for differentiation and personalised learning in the classroom. The aim is to create space for motivated students to do some higher order activities using the target pattern to solve problems and create scenarios. Less motivated students have time to complete basic exercises and struggling students have some time with the teacher in smaller groups.

Keywords: differentiation, digital technologies, personalised learning plans, student engagement

Procedia PDF Downloads 83
161 Raising Linguistic Awareness through Metalinguistic Written Corrective Feedback

Authors: Orit Zeevy-Solovey

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Grammar has traditionally been taught for its own sake, emphasizing rules and drills. However, in recent years, more emphasis is given to communicative competence. Current research suggests that form-focused instruction is notably efficient when incorporated in a meaningful communicative context. It is maintained that writing tasks related to the students’ academic fields will encourage them to express themselves openly in topics that are close to their hearts, without feeling too uneasy about grammatical forms. The teacher can further reduce students’ apprehension of grammar by announcing that credit will be given for merely doing the task and that grammar mistakes will not affect the grade. Students’ linguistic errors can then be corrected by giving metalinguistic feedback which involves providing learners with some kind of explicit remark about the nature of the errors they have made. Research has also shown that learners’ developmental readiness is an important factor influencing the effectiveness of written corrective feedback. Larger effect sizes appear as the proficiency level is higher. The purposes of this paper are to demonstrate how grammar can be taught indirectly through writing tasks, and more specifically, how the use of metalinguistic written corrective feedback given to advanced English as a Foreign Language (EFL) students can raise their linguistic awareness. Since errors are not directly corrected, the students have to work out the corrections needed through exploring grammar books and websites. Longitudinal studies of metalinguistic written corrective feedback comparing the number of errors in students’ first and fourth compositions have shown a decrease in errors.

Keywords: EFL, linguistic awareness, metalinguistic corrective feedback, teaching grammar through writing

Procedia PDF Downloads 46
160 Psycholinguistic Analysis on Stuttering Treatment through Systemic Functional Grammar in Tom Hooper’s The King’s Speech

Authors: Nurvita Wijayanti

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The movie titled The King’s Speech is based on a true story telling an English king suffers from stuttering and how he gets the treatment from the therapist, so that he can reduce the high frequency on stuttering. The treatment uses the unique approach implying the linguistic principles. This study shows how the language works significantly in order to treat the stuttering sufferer using psychological approach. Therefore, the linguistic study is done to analyze the treatment activity. Halliday’s Systemic Functional Grammar is used as the main approach in this study along with qualitative descriptive method. The study finds that the therapist though using the orthodox approach applies the psycholinguistic method to overcome the king’s stuttering.

Keywords: psycholinguistics, stuttering, systemic functional grammar, treatment

Procedia PDF Downloads 157
159 Logic and Arabic Grammar Debates at Medieval Ages: A Quest for Muslim Contributions to Philosophical Development

Authors: Umar Sheikh Tahir

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This paper focuses on the historiography of the relationship between Logic and Arabic grammar in the Muslim Medieval Ages (a period between 750 and 1100/ 150 and 500 Ah). This sensation appears in the famous debate among many others between grammarians represented by abū Sa'id al-Sairafī and logicians represented by abū Bishr Mattā on Logic and its validity. This incident took place in Baghdad around 932 AD. However, this study singlehandedly samples these debates as the base for the contributions of Islamic philosophers to philosophy of language as well as Epistemology. The question that shapes this research is: What is the intellectual development for Muslim thinkers to philosophy of language in regards to this debate? The current research addresses the Arabic grammar and logical debates by conducting historiography to emphasize on Islamic philosophers’ concerns about this issue. Consequently, this debate generates philosophical phenomena and resolutions in deep-thinking. In addition, these dialogues create a language impression for Philosophy in Islamic world from the period under study. Thereupon, Islamic philosophers’ discourse on this phenomenon serves as contribution to the Philosophy of Language.

Keywords: debates, epistemology, grammar and grammarians, Islamic philosophy, philosophy language, logic

Procedia PDF Downloads 133
158 Modern Nahwu's View about the Theory of Amil

Authors: Kisno Umbar

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Arabic grammar (nahwu) is one of the most important disciplines to learn about the Islamic literature (kitab al-turats). In the last century, learning Arabic grammar was difficult for both the Arabian or non-Arabian native. Most of the traditional nahwu scholars viewed that the theory of amil is a major problem. The views had influenced large number of modern nahwu scholars, and some of them refuse the theory of amil to simplify Arabic grammar to make it easier. The aim of the study is to compare many views of the modern nahwu scholars about the theory of amil including their reasons. In addition, the study is to reveal whether they follow classic scholars or give a view. The author uses literature study approach to get data of modern nahwu scholars from their books as a primary resource. As a secondary resource, the author uses the updated relevant researches from journals about the theory of amil. Besides, the author put on several resources from the traditional nahwu scholars to compare the views. The analysis showed the contrasting views about the theory of amil. Most of the scholars refuse the amil because it isn’t originally derived from Arabic tradition, but it is influenced by Aristotelian philosophy. The others persistently use the amil inasmuch as it is one of the characteristics that differ Arabic language and other languages.

Keywords: Arabic grammar, Amil, Arabic tradition, Aristotelian philosophy

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157 Pictorial Multimodal Analysis of Selected Paintings of Salvador Dali

Authors: Shaza Melies, Abeer Refky, Nihad Mansoor

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Multimodality involves the communication between verbal and visual components in various discourses. A painting represents a form of communication between the artist and the viewer in terms of colors, shades, objects, and the title. This paper aims to present how multimodality can be used to decode the verbal and visual dimensions a painting holds. For that purpose, this study uses Kress and van Leeuwen’s theoretical framework of visual grammar for the analysis of the multimodal semiotic resources of selected paintings of Salvador Dali. This study investigates the visual decoding of the selected paintings of Salvador Dali and analyzing their social and political meanings using Kress and van Leeuwen’s framework of visual grammar. The paper attempts to answer the following questions: 1. How far can multimodality decode the verbal and non-verbal meanings of surrealistic art? 2. How can Kress and van Leeuwen’s theoretical framework of visual grammar be applied to analyze Dali’s paintings? 3. To what extent is Kress and van Leeuwen’s theoretical framework of visual grammar apt to deliver political and social messages of Dali? The paper reached the following findings: the framework’s descriptive tools (representational, interactive, and compositional meanings) can be used to analyze the paintings’ title and their visual elements. Social and political messages were delivered by appropriate usage of color, gesture, vectors, modality, and the way social actors were represented.

Keywords: multimodal analysis, painting analysis, Salvador Dali, visual grammar

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156 Left to Right-Right Most Parsing Algorithm with Lookahead

Authors: Jamil Ahmed

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Left to Right-Right Most (LR) parsing algorithm is a widely used algorithm of syntax analysis. It is contingent on a parsing table, whereas the parsing tables are extracted from the grammar. The parsing table specifies the actions to be taken during parsing. It requires that the parsing table should have no action conflicts for the same input symbol. This requirement imposes a condition on the class of grammars over which the LR algorithms work. However, there are grammars for which the parsing tables hold action conflicts. In such cases, the algorithm needs a capability of scanning (looking-ahead) next input symbols ahead of the current input symbol. In this paper, a ‘Left to Right’-‘Right Most’ parsing algorithm with lookahead capability is introduced. The 'look-ahead' capability in the LR parsing algorithm is the major contribution of this paper. The practicality of the proposed algorithm is substantiated by the parser implementation of the Context Free Grammar (CFG) of an already proposed programming language 'State Controlled Object Oriented Programming' (SCOOP). SCOOP’s Context Free Grammar has 125 productions and 192 item sets. This algorithm parses SCOOP while the grammar requires to ‘look ahead’ the input symbols due to action conflicts in its parsing table. Proposed LR parsing algorithm with lookahead capability can be viewed as an optimization of ‘Simple Left to Right’-‘Right Most’ (SLR) parsing algorithm.

Keywords: left to right-right most parsing, syntax analysis, bottom-up parsing algorithm

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155 Integrating Critical Stylistics and Visual Grammar: A Multimodal Stylistic Approach to the Analysis of Non-Literary Texts

Authors: Shatha Khuzaee

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The study develops multimodal stylistic approach to analyse a number of BBC online news articles reporting some key events from the so called ‘Arab Uprisings’. Critical stylistics (CS) and visual grammar (VG) provide insightful arguments to the ways ideology is projected through different verbal and visual modes, yet they are mode specific because they examine how each mode projects its meaning separately and do not attempt to clarify what happens intersemiotically when the two modes co-occur. Therefore, it is the task undertaken in this research to propose multimodal stylistic approach that addresses the issue of ideology construction when the two modes co-occur. Informed by functional grammar and social semiotics, the analysis attempts to integrate three linguistic models developed in critical stylistics, namely, transitivity choices, prioritizing and hypothesizing along with their visual equivalents adopted from visual grammar to investigate the way ideology is constructed, in multimodal text, when text/image participate and interrelate in the process of meaning making on the textual level of analysis. The analysis provides comprehensive theoretical and analytical elaborations on the different points of integration between CS linguistic models and VG equivalents which operate on the textual level of analysis to better account for ideology construction in news as non-literary multimodal texts. It is argued that the analysis well thought out a plan that would remark the first step towards the integration between the well-established linguistic models of critical stylistics and that of visual analysis to analyse multimodal texts on the textual level. Both approaches are compatible to produce multimodal stylistic approach because they intend to analyse text and image depending on whatever textual evidence is available. This supports the analysis maintain the rigor and replicability needed for a stylistic analysis like the one undertaken in this study.

Keywords: multimodality, stylistics, visual grammar, social semiotics, functional grammar

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154 Exploring the Vocabulary and Grammar Advantage of US American over British English Speakers at Age 2;0

Authors: Janine Just, Kerstin Meints

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The research aims to compare vocabulary size and grammatical development between US American English- and British English-speaking children at age 2;0. As there is evidence that precocious children with large vocabularies develop grammar skills earlier than their typically developing peers, it was investigated if this also holds true across varieties of English. Thus, if US American children start to produce words earlier than their British counterparts, this could mean that US children are also at an advantage in the early developmental stages of acquiring grammar. This research employs a British English adaptation of the MacArthur-Bates CDI Words and Sentences (Lincoln Toddler CDI) to compare vocabulary and also grammar scores with the updated US Toddler CDI norms. At first, the Lincoln TCDI was assessed for its concurrent validity with the Preschool Language Scale (PLS-5 UK). This showed high correlations for the vocabulary and grammar subscales between the tests. In addition, the frequency of the Toddler CDI’s words was also compared using American and British English corpora of adult spoken and written language. A paired-samples t-test found a significant difference in word frequency between the British and the American CDI demonstrating that the TCDI’s words were indeed of higher frequency in British English. We then compared language and grammar scores between US (N = 135) and British children (N = 96). A two-way between groups ANOVA examined if the two samples differed in terms of SES (i.e. maternal education) by investigating the impact of SES and country on vocabulary and sentence complexity. The two samples did not differ in terms of maternal education as the interaction effects between SES and country were not significant. In most cases, scores were not significantly different between US and British children, for example, for overall word production and most grammatical subscales (i.e. use of words, over- regularizations, complex sentences, word combinations). However, in-depth analysis showed that US children were significantly better than British children at using some noun categories (i.e. people, objects, places) and several categories marking early grammatical development (i.e. pronouns, prepositions, quantifiers, helping words). However, the effect sizes were small. Significant differences for grammar were found for irregular word forms and progressive tense suffixes. US children were more advanced in their use of these grammatical categories, but the effect sizes were small. In sum, while differences exist in terms of vocabulary and grammar ability, favouring US children, effect sizes were small. It can be concluded that most British children are ‘catching up’ with their US American peers at age 2;0. Implications of this research will be discussed.

Keywords: first language acquisition, grammar, parent report instrument, vocabulary

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153 Communicative Competence versus Language Proficiency

Authors: Pouya Vakili

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The aim of present paper is to have a rough comparison between language proficiency and communicative competence, moreover, how different scholars in the field of second language acquisition/assessment have defined competence in different paradigms. Researchers differ, however, in how they view 'competence'. Those who are dealing with generative tradition associated with Chomsky have defined it as linguistic competence (knowledge of the grammar of L2). Other researchers have adopted a broader perspective that is examining how learners acquire communicative competence (knowledge of both the L2 grammar and of how this system is put to use in actual communication).

Keywords: communicative competence, competence, language proficiency, linguistic competence

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152 Developing Writing Skills of Learners with Persistent Literacy Difficulties through the Explicit Teaching of Grammar in Context: Action Research in a Welsh Secondary School

Authors: Jean Ware, Susan W. Jones

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Background: The benefits of grammar instruction in the teaching of writing is contested in most English speaking countries. A majority of Anglophone countries abandoned the teaching of grammar in the 1950s based on the conclusions that it had no positive impact on learners’ development of reading, writing, and language. Although the decontextualised teaching of grammar is not helpful in improving writing, a curriculum with a focus on grammar in an embedded and meaningful way can help learners develop their understanding of the mechanisms of language. Although British learners are generally not taught grammar rules explicitly, learners in schools in France, the Netherlands, and Germany are taught explicitly about the structure of their own language. Exposing learners to grammatical analysis can help them develop their understanding of language. Indeed, if learners are taught that each part of speech has an identified role in the sentence. This means that rather than have to memorise lists of words or spelling patterns, they can focus on determining each word or phrase’s task in the sentence. These processes of categorisation and deduction are higher order thinking skills. When considering definitions of dyslexia available in Great Britain, the explicit teaching of grammar in context could help learners with persistent literacy difficulties. Indeed, learners with dyslexia often develop strengths in problem solving; the teaching of grammar could, therefore, help them develop their understanding of language by using analytical and logical thinking. Aims: This study aims at gaining a further understanding of how the explicit teaching of grammar in context can benefit learners with persistent literacy difficulties. The project is designed to identify ways of adapting existing grammar focussed teaching materials so that learners with specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia can use them to further develop their writing skills. It intends to improve educational practice through action, analysis and reflection. Research Design/Methods: The project, therefore, uses an action research design and multiple sources of evidence. The data collection tools used were standardised test data, teacher assessment data, semi-structured interviews, learners’ before and after attempts at a writing task at the beginning and end of the cycle, documentary data and lesson observation carried out by a specialist teacher. Existing teaching materials were adapted for use with five Year 9 learners who had experienced persistent literacy difficulties from primary school onwards. The initial adaptations included reducing the amount of content to be taught in each lesson, and pre teaching some of the metalanguage needed. Findings: Learners’ before and after attempts at the writing task were scored by a colleague who did not know the order of the attempts. All five learners’ scores were higher on the second writing task. Learners reported that they had enjoyed the teaching approach. They also made suggestions to be included in the second cycle, as did the colleague who carried out observations. Conclusions: Although this is a very small exploratory study, these results suggest that adapting grammar focused teaching materials shows promise for helping learners with persistent literacy difficulties develop their writing skills.

Keywords: explicit teaching of grammar in context, literacy acquisition, persistent literacy difficulties, writing skills

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151 Syntactic Ambiguity and Syntactic Analysis: Transformational Grammar Approach

Authors: Olufemi Olupe

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Within linguistics, various approaches have been adopted to the study of language. One of such approaches is the syntax. The syntax is an aspect of the grammar of the language which deals with how words are put together to form phrases and sentences and how such structures are interpreted in language. Ambiguity, which is also germane in this discourse is about the uncertainty of meaning as a result of the possibility of a phrase or sentence being understood and interpreted in more than one way. In the light of the above, this paper attempts a syntactic study of syntactic ambiguities in The English Language, using the Transformational Generative Grammar (TGG) Approach. In doing this, phrases and sentences were raised with each description followed by relevant analysis. Finding in the work reveals that ambiguity cannot always be disambiguated by the means of syntactic analysis alone without recourse to semantic interpretation. The further finding shows that some syntactical ambiguities structures cannot be analysed on two surface structures in spite of the fact that there are more than one deep structures. The paper concludes that in as much as ambiguity remains in language; it will continue to pose a problem of understanding to a second language learner. Users of English as a second language, must, however, make a conscious effort to avoid its usage to achieve effective communication.

Keywords: language, syntax, semantics, morphology, ambiguity

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150 Programming with Grammars

Authors: Peter M. Maurer Maurer

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DGL is a context free grammar-based tool for generating random data. Many types of simulator input data require some computation to be placed in the proper format. For example, it might be necessary to generate ordered triples in which the third element is the sum of the first two elements, or it might be necessary to generate random numbers in some sorted order. Although DGL is universal in computational power, generating these types of data is extremely difficult. To overcome this problem, we have enhanced DGL to include features that permit direct computation within the structure of a context free grammar. The features have been implemented as special types of productions, preserving the context free flavor of DGL specifications.

Keywords: DGL, Enhanced Context Free Grammars, Programming Constructs, Random Data Generation

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149 The Use of Instructional Media in a Thai EFL Classroom: Student Teachers' Preferences and Attitudes

Authors: Khanita Limhan

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Due to the fact that the instructional media is a very crucial implement in English as Foreign Language (EFL) teaching and learning because it simply motivates or demotivates the learners to learn English. Furthermore, it could enormously involve the learners in the real language. The mixed-method research investigates undergraduate student teachers at the Faculty of Education in aspects of the preferences and attitudes towards the use of instructional media in a Thai EFL classroom. Therefore, there were 21 female and 4 male students, who are being educated to be secondary English teachers in Thai educational system, participated in this study. Moreover, the data was gathered from six open-ended questions; obviously, all were given at least 30 - 45 minutes to express their preferences and thoughts in their native tongue at the end of the English for English teacher course. The results of this study indicated that 64 % of student teachers preferred to study English grammar through songs and music; 54% of them desire to learn English grammar through English movies; and 40% of them want to acquire English grammar by watching short documentaries. Since, the participants illustrated that they feel neither anxious nor bored; however, they feel very excited and fun while studying. In addition, they pointed out that they could improve their listening proficiency; obtain new vocabulary; and comprehend the cultural content authentically from the instructional media. It can be concluded that the use of instructional media affects students and teachers’ motivations and attitudes on English teaching and learning.

Keywords: attitudes, preferences, student teachers, instructional media

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148 Impact Of Flipped Classroom Model On English as a Foreign Language Learners' Grammar Achievement: Not Only Inversion But Also Integration

Authors: Cem Bulut, Zeynep B. Kocoglu

Abstract:

Flipped classroom (FC) method has gained popularity, specifically in higher education, in recent years with the idea that it is possible to use the time spent in classrooms more effectively by simply flipping the passive lecturing parts with the homework exercises. Accordingly, the present study aims to investigate whether using FC method is more effective than the non-flipped method in teaching grammar to English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learners. An experimental research was conducted with the participants of two intact classes having A2 level English courses (N=39 in total) in a vocational school in Kocaeli, Turkey. Results from the post-test indicated that the flipped group achieved higher scores than the non-flipped group did. Additionally, independent samples t-test analysis in SPSS revealed that the difference between two groups was statistically significant. On the other hand, even if the factors that lie beneath this improvement are likely to be attributed to the teaching method, which is also supported by the answers given to the FC perception survey and interview, participants in both groups developed statistically significant positive attitudes towards learning grammar regardless of the method used. In that sense, this result was considered to be related to the level of the course, which was quite low in English level. In sum, the present study provides additional findings to the literature for FC methodology from a different perspective.

Keywords: flipped classroom, learning management system, English as a foreign language

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147 A Mixed Method Approach Investigating EFL Teachers' Beliefs and Practices towards Classroom-Based Assessment in Saudi Higher Educational Institutions

Authors: Mashael AlSalem

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While research into language assessment has expanded in recent years, few if any studies to date have targeted the nature of thought processes used by teachers when constructing classroom-based assessment. This study reports on teachers’ conceptions of English grammar assessment and their classroom assessment practices in their Saudi higher educational facilities. A mixed-method approach using both qualitative and quantitative research instruments was employed to elicit teachers’ perceptions of English grammar assessment and their relationship to their current practices. Participants of the study included EFL teachers from 4 different educational facilities: King Saudi University, Princess Noura University, Imam Mouhamed Islamic University, and Institute of Public Administration. Data collection involved questionnaire (N=100), semi-structured interviews (N=30), retrospective thinking (N=20), and document analysis (N=20). Activity theory is used as an interpretive framework to explore and investigate the entire system of constructing classroom-based assessment. Preliminary findings reveal several similarities and differences between the participants’ stated beliefs and their current practices of assessing English grammar. Findings also showed that teacher participant’s beliefs about how English grammar should be assessed are influenced mostly by prior learning experience as well as their teaching instruction practices. Their practices, on the other hand, was more guided by educational policies and lack of teacher training in the field of assessment, among other factors. This research makes a significant contribution to knowledge in three different areas: it enriches the literature on language teacher cognition; it builds on the body of research on language classroom assessment, and it expands on the possibilities to use AC to investigate the relationship between teachers’ beliefs and practices.

Keywords: activity theory, classroom-based assessment, language teacher cognition, mixed method approach

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146 The Effect of Language and Literature Integration on the Teaching of English Vocabulary and Grammar in Secondary Schools in Zamfara State, Nigeria

Authors: Umar Bello

Abstract:

Literature has become an invaluable subject which has added a great value and contribution to the teaching of English language and the discovery of many other developed ideas. Literature produces an exhilarating impulse that imprints a lasting picture on the mind of a learner. Many researchers have devised various means and approaches to language Teaching methods which remain unconvinging and which yield little result, but it has remained unconvincing because it has only produced little results. Devicing a method that eliminates monotony and boredome to learners is a good factor that enhances students’ motivation to learning. In this sense, literature and language become unavoidable components that aid intellectual development. This study examines the indispensability of literature as a means of English Language teaching to secondary school classes. The researcher has developed many instructive activities which are believed will help students to improve their study in grammar and vocabulary. The researcher has used quasi-experimental approach using experimental group and control group to find out how literature enhances the students grammar as well as their vocabulary. The findings revealed a positive performance in the experimental group doing better than the control group using simple percentage. The results make it clear that literature allows learners to pay more attention and develop more interest to their studies. In giving a perspicacious linguistic development, literature therefore remains an essential tool for language teaching classrooms, thereby enhancing their grammatical and vocabulary usage.

Keywords: teaching vocabulary, integration, poetry, classroom

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145 Wh-Movement in Second Language Acquisition: Evidence from Magnitude Estimation

Authors: Dong-Bo Hsu

Abstract:

Universal Grammar (UG) claims that the constraints that are derived from this should operate in language users’ L2 grammars. This study investigated this hypothesis on knowledge of Subjacency and resumptive pronoun usage among Chinese learners of English. Chinese fulfills two requirements to examine the existence of UG, i.e., Subjacency does not operate in Chinese and resumptive pronouns in English are very different from those in Chinese and second L2 input undermines the knowledge of Subjacency. The results indicated that Chinese learners of English demonstrated a nearly identical pattern as English native speakers do but the resumptive pronoun in the embedding clauses. This may be explained in terms of the case that Chinese speakers’ usage of pronouns is not influenced by the number of embedding clauses. Chinese learners of English have full access to knowledge endowed by UG but their processing of English sentences may be different from native speakers as a general slow rate for processing in their L2 English.

Keywords: universal grammar, Chinese, English, wh-questions, resumption

Procedia PDF Downloads 393