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Title: Acquisition of the verbal domain in child Greek evidence from a new child Greek corpus
Author: Doukas, Thomas
ISNI:       0000 0004 2717 4334
Awarding Body: University of Reading
Current Institution: University of Reading
Date of Award: 2011
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The current thesis addresses the acquisition of the verbal domain in early Greek by exploring tense, finiteness, and subject-verb agreement based on samples from two monolingual children aged 1;7 - 2; 11. The analyses of the data address two main theoretical accounts of language acquisition, namely, the generative approach and the usage-based approach. The results of the analyses, however, suggest that the latter approach did not provide sufficient empirical evidence to account for the data presented in this study. Previous research suggested that sigmatic past in Greek is more prominent than non-sigmatic past, and therefore, its acquisition is subject to a dual mechanism. The results of the use of past tense suggest that sigmatic forms are used more often than non-sigmatic ones. A frequency analysis suggests that high frequency past tense forms in adults are used more often by children than low frequency ones. Studies in child Greek proposed an early stage of development, during which children produce non-finite non-adult verbal forms, also referred to as the Root Infinitive stage. The data analysis show very few non-finite non-adult forms. These occur in children's speech only for a very short period at around the age of 2 years. The frequency analysis reveals that input does not relate to the production of RIs in children's speech. Previous studies on the acquisition of verbal morphology showed that children's use of person and number markings are not productive and that children use mainly the 3rd singular. The subject-verb agreement analysis shows that error rates are low in children's speech and that subject-verb agreement is used productively from very early. A frequency analysis shows that use of inflectional morphology is very similar between the two children but different to adults. To conclude, this thesis provides new evidence for very early acquisition of the verbal domain in child Greek.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available