2024 Student Research Conference:
37th Annual Student Research Conference

Transfer Between L2 Romance Languages to L3 Portuguese


Alexandra C. Thornhill
Dr. Douglas Ball, Faculty Mentor

This study seeks to provide information on three main questions about third language (L3) acquisition: What role does background language proximity play? What role does metalinguistic knowledge play? How do learners of Latin perform on L3 aural tasks compared to learners of living languages? This study is conducted through the framework of the Typological Primacy Model and how it works within the L2 Status Model of L3 acquisition. The participants consist of seven L2 groups: Spanish, Italian, Latin, English, Korean, French, and Catalan. Within these language groups, participants are divided into language levels: Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced. Participants took part in a survey, pretest, weeklong mini-course, and posttest on the target language, Portuguese. Lessons and tests focused mainly on relative clauses, verb-subject agreement, pronoun drop, and article-noun gender agreement. This study has further implications for language teaching and acquisition in how to better use background languages to the learner’s advantage.

Keywords: Applied Linguistics, Romance Languages, Portuguese, Latin, Transfer, Language Acquisition , Third Language Acquisition , Metalinguistics

Topic(s):Linguistics

Presentation Type: Oral Presentation

Session: TBA
Location: TBA
Time: TBA

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