Academic journal article Canadian Social Science

The Role of L1 Transfer on L2 and Pedagogical Implications/LE ROLE DU TRANSFERT DE LA L1 DANS L'ACQUISITION DE LA L2 ET LES IMPLICATIONS PEDAGOGIQUES

Academic journal article Canadian Social Science

The Role of L1 Transfer on L2 and Pedagogical Implications/LE ROLE DU TRANSFERT DE LA L1 DANS L'ACQUISITION DE LA L2 ET LES IMPLICATIONS PEDAGOGIQUES

Article excerpt

Abstract: The role of L1 transfer on the acquisition of L2 has always been the subject of controversary in the field of L2 learning and bilingual education. This article intends to examine controversial views about the transfer of L1 on the acquisition of L2 from the theories of Contrastive Analysis (CA), Contrastive Rhetoric (CR) and Creative Construction (CC) and Constructive Underlying Proficiency (CUP), hopefully offering an extensive analysis of the L1 transfer.

Keywords: Contrastive Analysis; Contrastive Rhetoric; Creative Construction; Constructive Underlying Proficiency

Résumé: Le rôle du transfert de la L1 dans l'acquisition de la L2 a toujours fait l'objet de controverses dans le domaine de l'apprentissage d'une deuxième langue et de l'enseignement bilingue. Cet article vise à examiner les vues controversées au sujet du transfert de la L1 dans l'acquisition de L2 à partir des théories de l'analyse contrastive (CA), de la rhétorique contrastive (CR), de la construction créative (CC) et de la compétence constructive sous-jacente (CUP), en espérant offrir une vaste analyse sur le transfert de laa L1.

Mots-clés: analyse contrastive; rhétorique contrastive; construction creative; compétence constructive sous-jacente

1. INTRODUCTION

In the field of L2 learning and bilingual education, cross-linguistic influence is a theme widely discussed in the literature. However, after several decades of study, linguistic researchers have not reached consensus on whether transfer of L1 knowledge has constructive or destructive influences in the acquisition of second language. Different existing theories have controversial opinions about the role of L1 influences on L2 learning. In the following, the author intends to discuss the role of L1 on the acquisition of the L2 through the perspectives of Contrastive Analysis (CA), Contrastive Rhetoric (CR) and Creative Construction (CC) and Constructive Underlying Proficiency (CUP), thus providing an objective understanding of the L1 transfer and providing new pedagogical implications.

2. ROLE OF Ll TRANFER ON L2

Different theories take different stances on the role of L1 transfer on the acquisition of L2. CA and CR hold that L1 interferes with L2 acquisition when L1 and L2 show differences. The CUP hypothesis maintains that L1 facilitates L2 learning. The CC claims that L1 has no effects on L2 acquisition.

2.1 Negative L1 influences on L2

The negative view of L1 influences on L2 is mainly represented two theories: CA and CR. Theoretically, theories in favor of L1 interference such as CA hold that L1 has more negative than positive effects in L2 learning (James 1980, Lado 1957). CA Hypothesis has both a psychological and linguistic aspect. The psychological aspect is based on behaviorist learning theory, and linguistic aspect, on structualist linguistics. Behavioristic theory of learning emphasizes interfering elements of learning, claiming that interference means difficulty in learning. Structualist linguistics lays a strong emphasis on differences between languages. James (1980) emphasizes two important points in CA hypothesis. Firstly, in L2 learning, transfer from the native language to target language occurs definitely and is often negative. Secondly, learning difficulties could be predicted by linguistic differences between two languages. The degree of difficulty is believed to depend primarily on the extent to which L2 patterns are similar to or different from Ll patterns. When two languages are identical, learning can take place easily through positive difficulties arise and error resulting from negative transfer are likely to occur. To sum up, the CA hypothesis attributes learning difficulty to differences/distances between the target language, which can be summarized as the "differences/distance=difficulty" hypothesis.

In short, negative Ll transfer to L2 is considered as the influence resulting from the differences between the target language and the native language. …

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