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Investigating Linguistic Knowledge of a Second Language


Runhan Zhang

This book investigates several important issues revolving around the psycholinguistic modelling of language proficiency in terms of L2 linguistic knowledge, which is a topic of considerable interest and importance in SLA theories and language testing practice. Four tests including the Elicited Imitation Test, Timed Grammaticality Judgment Test, Untimed Grammaticality Judgment Test and Metalinguistic Knowledge Test are employed to examine the extent to which they provide separate measures of Chinese third-year university students’ L2 lingusitic knowledge. The role of four psychological factors – language analytic ability, language learning motivation, language anxiety and learner beliefs – in learners’ L2 linguistic knowledge is also explored.
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7. Investigating the relationship between implicit/explicit knowledge and general language proficiency: What can Chinese university students tell us?


7. Investigating the relationship between implicit/explicit knowledge and general language proficiency: What can Chinese university students tell us?

The Test for English Majors, Grade 4 (TEM4, see Appendix D) was used to examine the third year students’ general language proficiency. It is an English proficiency test, which is taken by university English majors at the end of their second year in China. Examinees are expected to have an intermediate ability of English in listening, reading and writing with a vocabulary of 5000–6000 words and a reading speed of 180 words per minute. It also examines students’ mastery of grammatical structures and vocabulary. It is compulsory for English majors in almost all Chinese universities and colleges. There are six parts in the examination paper. Part I is a 15-minute dictation, in which students are required to write down a passage after it is read four times. Part II is a 120-minute listening comprehension test, which requires students to choose the right answers to thirty multiple-choice questions according to conversations, passages and newscasts they hear. Part III is a 15-minute cloze test, which has 20 blanks and requires students to choose the best word or phrase for each blank. Part IV is Grammar & Vocabulary, which consists of thirty sentences and students are required to choose one word or phrase that best completes each sentence. Part V is a 25-minute reading comprehension test. There are four passages followed by questions or unfinished statements. Students are required to choose the...

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