Edited By Carmen Spiegel and Daniel Gysin
Registererweiterung in gesprochener Sprache – Ein Konzept für einen Projektkurs
Changing from casual to formal register in spoken language requires lexical, syntactical, as well as semantical skills and a certain amount of experience and linguistic flexibility. In order to find out how students deal with this kind of register shift and what linguistic problems they are confronted with, students from an 11th grade of a German comprehensive school are presented with situations in which they have to use different register. The study is based on about 6 hours of video material in which 3 German courses (about 80 students) are brought into 5 different situations that each have a casual and a formal context. Variations in politeness, the use of discourse particles and the particle „so“ among other features are analyzed. Making a point in a discussion or reasoning for or against something in an intelligible way and in (full) sentences seem for the students to be the first obstacle to a successful communication, especially on a formal level. Another problem seems to be that some of the students use „formulaic“ sentences which they perceive as being polite, but which are semantically unclear to them. In general the students try to adjust their linguistic register and style to meet the requirements of situation- and recipient orientation but limited vocabulary, syntactical skills as well as lack of experience in such situations make these communications very difficult. Looking at these data, it can be concluded that for students to successfully communicate in different register they need specific training that...
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