Title

A case study of the factors in the development of Spanish linguistic accuracy and oral communication skills: Motivation and extended interaction in the study abroad context.

Comments

A Case Study of the Factors in the Development of Spanish Linguistic Accuracy and Oral Communication Skills is published by Edwin Mellen.

Abstract

This study examines the impact of a one-semester study abroad experience in Argentina on the second language acquisition of five North American university Spanish learners. The goal is three-fold: (1) to measure development of linguistic accuracy of (a) tense selection, (b) aspect selection, (c) subject-verb agreement and (d) adjectival agreement; (2) to measure development of oral skills in performing the functions of narration, description and opinion; and (3) to relate patterns of social contact via analysis of social network logs to development in oral ability as measure by gains in linguistic accuracy and oral communication skills over time. The author submits that the two vital factors that lead to acquisition gains in the study abroad context are motivation and extended significant target language interaction with native speakers in social networks. The study shows through qualitative and quantitative data that those who had high motivation were those that had more extended networks, which correlated with gains in linguistic accuracy and development in performing discourse functions.

Disciplines

Anthropological Linguistics and Sociolinguistics | Applied Linguistics | First and Second Language Acquisition | Spanish Linguistics