A Sociocognitive Exploration of Lexical Trails
Drawing upon a convergence of sociocultural theory and linguistic emergentism, this book presents a longitudinal investigation of the development of ESL users’ written lexicogrammatical patterning (collocations and colligations). A qualitative methodology (‘Lexical Trail Analysis’) was developed in order to capture a dynamic and historical view of the ways in which the participants combined words in their writing. This involved tracing single lexemes diachronically through individuals’ written corpora. The writers were interviewed about the histories of particular word combinations. Selected patterns were later tested using the principles of dynamic testing. The findings of these combined data types – essays, interviews and tests – suggest that sociocognitive resources such as memory and attention and the ability to imitate and adapt linguistic resources are paramount in the massive task of internalizing the lexicogrammatical patterning of a second language. The participants were agents of change, seeking assistance and adapting patterns to suit their changing goals. Their activity is theorized in a model of language patterning from which implications for second language learning and teaching are drawn.
List of Abbreviations 11
11 List of Abbreviations CLT Communicative Language Teaching COCA Corpus of Contemporary American English EAP English for Academic Purposes ICLE International Corpus of Learner English IELTS International English Language Testing System L1 First Language L2 Second Language NNS Non-Native Speaker NS Native Speaker OALD Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary SLA Second Language Acquisition ZPD Zone of Proximal Development 12
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