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Title: The usefulness of explicit grammar teaching : an investigation of syntactic satiation effects and acceptability judgements in Libyan EFL contexts
Author: Abugharsa, Aisha Fathi
ISNI:       0000 0004 5990 3706
Awarding Body: Middlesex University
Current Institution: Middlesex University
Date of Award: 2016
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This study explores the possibility that techniques based on ‘syntactic priming’, a tendency to produce utterances with structures individuals have recently been exposed to, and ‘syntactic satiation’, which leads individuals to judge previously unacceptable utterances as acceptable, can be used to evaluate second language teaching methods. This is based on the assumption that the more robust an individual’s linguistic intuitions, the less susceptible they are to priming or satiation effects. An experimental methodology was developed and used to compare the effectiveness of the explicit (‘Grammar Translation’) method currently used to teach English in Libyan universities with an implicit (‘Direct’) method. Both methods present only positive evidence, i.e. what are assumed to be grammatical forms, and do not present what are assumed to be ungrammatical forms. The study assumed a ‘Principles and Parameters’ approach on which second language learning involves setting or resetting parameters to those relevant to the language being acquired. It focused on the ‘verb raising parameter’, which has different settings in Arabic and English, and on yes-no questions and adverb placement, whose structures are partly determined by the setting of this parameter. One group of participants was taught using the explicit method and one using the implicit method. After teaching, each group was exposed to activities designed to induce priming and satiation. For yes-no questions, the results showed robust intuitions for both groups. For adverb placement, they showed susceptibility to priming and satiation effects for the group taught using the implicit method. The findings are limited in what they suggest about the two teaching methods but they showed that both methods were effective in teaching these forms. They confirm that priming and satiation effects can arise in a second language and suggest that activities designed to induce these effects could provide a way of evaluating particular teaching methods.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available