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Title: Acquisition hierarchy of Korean as a foreign language 
Author: Hwang, Jiha
Date: 2002
Publisher: University of Hawaii at Manoa
Abstract: This study has three general objectives: 1. To observe and describe learner oral performance data; 2. To attempt to discover any clusters or hierarchical relationships, of whatever type, that may be indicative of acquisition processes; 3. To attempt to determine which factors account for the observed clusters and hierarchy. For this study, oral performance data collected from 111 learners of Korean as a Foreign Language (76 English native speakers and 35 Japanese native speakers) was analyzed for tokens of particles and verbal suffixes. Based on the findings obtained from statistical analysis of the tokens of the targeted variables, three stages of hierarchical development were proposed. The morphemes acquired in Stage 1 were identical for the English-speaking and Japanese-speaking groups, except for the inclusion delimiter -to (INC) which the Japanese speakers have acquired and which the English speakers have not yet acquired at this stage. For the learners studied, Stage 1 can be characterized as the period during which grammatical morphemes are acquired. In Stage 2 both case markers and delimiters emerge, but there is strong evidence of random variation for both Japanese and English native speakers. At Stage 3 additional systematic acquisition of delimiters continues. The three-stage acquisition hierarchy can thus be characterized as an alternation between a systematic stage and a diffused stage, followed by another stage of systematic acquisition. The early and systematic emergence of grammatical morphemes documented and observed in the case of Korean as a Foreign Language by this study contradicts the claims of models based on psychological processing constraints, which predict that pure grammatical morphemes will emerge late. However, the evidence in this corpus of adult instructed language learners clearly indicates that pure grammatical morphemes particles emerge in Stage 1 in Korean (five out of six early morphemes were grammatical morphemes). Theories based on the concept of psychological constraints, summarized in Pienemann's statement of 'easy to process, easy to acquire' somehow need to be able to account for these facts from KFL learner data.
Description: Thesis (Ph. D.)--University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2002. Includes bibliographical references (leaves 136-149). Mode of access: World Wide Web. Also available by subscription via World Wide Web xii, 149 leaves, bound ill. 29 cm
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.

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