Activation of L1 and L2 during production in L3: A comparison of two case studies

Björn Hammarberg

in Processes in Third Language Acquisition

Published by Edinburgh University Press

Published in print August 2005 | ISBN: 9780748635115
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780748651504 | DOI:
Activation of L1 and L2 during production in L3: A comparison of two case studies

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In the earlier study reported in Chapter 2, the roles which the respective background languages play in the acquisition and use of a third language were investigated. That case study was carried out by Sarah Williams and the author of this chapter, and was based on longitudinal data from Williams's spoken performance as an adult L3 learner. Among other things, it showed a clear division between the roles of the first (L1) and the second language (L2), which could be related to Williams's linguistic background and the acquisitional setting. These findings received further support in subsequent studies of her pronunciation and her word search during conversation (Chapters 3 and 4). This chapter draws on those prior studies and presents data from another adult learner with a partly different background. It compares and discusses the findings from these case studies in order to shed further light upon the conditions for the activation of L1 and L2 in L3 production. A third language, then, is defined as a language which is acquired or used in a situation where the person already has knowledge of one or more second languages, besides one or more first languages.

Keywords: background languages; language acquisition; third language; first language; second language

Chapter.  8032 words. 

Subjects: Language Teaching and Learning

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