Taking the Guesswork Out of Curriculum Design: Learning to Engineer Explicit Grammar Curricula through the Analysis of Multiple Influences on the Acquisition Process


While a study by Goldschneider and DeKeyser (2005) was able to explain how factors such as phonological salience, frequency, morphological regularity, semantic complexity, and syntactic complexity influence acquisition order, the examination of six similar morphological features provided only a limited perspective. The purpose of this study was to see if causal variables, both individually and cumulatively, could be used to predict acquisition orders with more highly disparate morphological and syntactic features. Results of Spearman rank calculations revealed that the integration of causal factors yielded the highest correlation to both the Processability Theory (rs = 0.821; p = 0.007) and Natural Order Hypothesis (rs = 0.529; p = 0.143), suggesting that these factors have a synergistic influence on morphosyntactic development. Methods to predict the acquisition of both syntactic and morphological features are suggested, along with an empirically-based method to guide explicit grammar instruction.

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Schenck, A. & Choi, W. (2012). Taking the Guesswork Out of Curriculum Design: Learning to Engineer Explicit Grammar Curricula through the Analysis of Multiple Influences on the Acquisition Process. Open Journal of Modern Linguistics, 2, 114-124. doi: 10.4236/ojml.2012.23015.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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