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Applied Linguistics Research and Methodology

Proceedings from the 2015 CALS conference

Edited By Kristina Cergol Kovacevic and Sanda Lucija Udier

This book offers a selection of sixteen papers presented at the 29th international annual conference of the Croatian Applied Linguistics Society held in 2015. The papers in this book tackle an array of applied linguistics research concerns and provide methodological solutions to many a related problem. The authors’ contributions fall into three main strands of research focus: 1) methodological issues in second language teaching and learning research, 2) experimental research in applied linguistics and 3) spoken and written corpus studies. Almost each individual paper focuses on a different methodological issue in applied linguistics research, treading the path to new related studies.

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Second language acquisition and age effects: The research conundrum (Simone E. Pfenninger / David Singleton)


Simone E. Pfenninger – David Singleton

Second language acquisition and age effects: The research conundrum

Abstract: The upsurge of interest in research on the age factor in foreign language settings in recent decades has raised new methodological and assessment issues. Although much research has been devoted to identifying age effects and to their interaction with social, personal and affective variables, the effect of different methodological approaches has more often than not been disregarded. Because of the complexity associated with the age factor, its study cannot be a simplistic or monolithic enterprise; rather, it must accommodate this complexity by diversifying the number and type of methodological procedures in order to illuminate the role of relevant variables. This paper responds to calls for greater reflection on quantitative and qualitative research on the age factor and on the question of generalizability specifically. It also discusses the potential benefits that mixed-effects (or multilevel) models can provide to any SLA research that involves sampling of populations within educational establishments, with a particular focus on chronological age and age of onset of acquisition in their roles as continuous and categorical predictors.

In den letzten Jahrzenten hat die Steigerung des Interesses für die Untersuchung des Altersfaktors in Fremdsprachkontexten neue methodologische und Bewertungsfragen geöffnet. Obwohl viele Untersuchungen der Identifizierung der Alterseffekte und ihrer Interaktion mit sozialen, persönlichen und affektiven Variablen gewidmet sind, wurde der Effekt unterschiedlicher methodologischer Ansätze selten berücksichtigt. Wegen der mit dem Alterseffekt verbundenen Komplexität...

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