Language Problem in India Essay

Language Problem in India Essay.

India is one the greatest or well you can also say one of the weirdest countries in the world…. it’s a country u could never have thought would come over 50 years living together…. Our country on its way had to deal with many great problems… and the one I am going to speak about is the language problem that the Indians faced… According to the linguistic survey of India, there are 179 languages and 544 dialects… That’s a pretty huge number….

A lot of languages…Many people use different kinds of languages…it varies over place to place…For example, Bengali is the language of the Hindu, Muslims and Christians alike in Bengal. It varies as per their state language their mother tongue etc.

The Constitution of India recognizes twenty one ‘official’ regional languages and Hindi as the ‘national official’ language. In addition, English is used as a ‘link’ language for communication between Hindi and non-Hindi states. An aspect of the language problem in India is that no language problem in India is that no language is spoken by an absolute majority of the people and even Hindi, the most widely-spoken language-even if one disregards its various dialects – is used by one about 40.

42% of the total population of India. This, at the national level, there is no linguistic majority or minority in the arithmetical sense. Language problem becomes a barrerier in the way of economical development of the country.

Language Problem in India Essay

Politics and The English Language Response Essay

Politics and The English Language Response Essay.

Clarity and simplicity, the only two factors that keep it real; at least the only two factors that help the readers understand the truth. Politics is always a tough thing to talk about, to follow, to express and even to educate yourself about. In the essay written by George Orwell “ Politics and the English Language” he deliberately expresses that writing of today isn’t the same writing of yesterday. In other words, George Orwell expresses his thoughts; today we have developed habits both bad and good, which can challenge truth behind the text and can manipulate the reader’s understanding.

As I came across the article ‘No plan B for pentagon in case of big budget cut” by Thom Shaker, an article which seems more for show than for information, seems to glorify the pentagon and the military. Numbers and statistics can easily be manipulated and played with so that the reader unless intuitive, has a hard time questioning, believing anything in print.

The article states that if the white house and congress fail to an agreement there will be massive budget cuts, and the defense department has yet to plan for it. George Orwell would classify this article to be an example of good writing.

George Orwell says to be simple and clear, almost as if so that the reader does not have to overcome any obstacles to understand the information thus presented. The writer while busy glorifying the pentagon and military, also states the issue spot on which was earlier mentioned of how the defense department has not planned for possible budget cuts, and soon enough the author backs it up and supports the issue or popular question presented. The author states that the reason behind not planning was to prevent preparedness and provide security, so that the congress does not invent to not agree with the White House. No specific jargon words, which Orwell mentions to dismiss in his essay(pg.3)

There are no “ bad habits” exhibited throughout the article, the author does a well done job at keeping it simple and clear at the same time as sophisticated and presentable, a young adult has the same understanding as a matured adult. No mumbo jumbo to “ deficit, manned and unmanned, contingency” Comprehendible, at a a broad demographic range. George Orwells quote from his essay“ but merely language as an instrument for expressing and not for concealing or preventing thought”. Keep it at a simple level, to not persuade a reader by their maturity of understanding from either side, matured adults vs. young adults.

Through Orwell’s “ rules of writing”you can truly understand how societies “bad habits” have influenced the writing of today. The improper use of techniques to seem sophisticated has lead to nonsense and confusion. Political writing always seems to be nonsense and confusion, unless you follow and do your own research the truth always seems to be manipulated. Politics and The English Language by Orwell influences that a change in political writing is needed.

Politics and The English Language Response Essay

IELTS Syllabus Design Essay

IELTS Syllabus Design Essay.

1. Introduction The attached English for academic purpose (EAP) syllabus is designed for an IELTS preparation course, which particularly focuses on the listening test.

The reasons behind this choice are that IELTS preparation course is very popular in China, and to be a specialist on teaching IELTS listening aligns with the author’s career plan.

All learners are male and female Chinese student aged between 18 and 25, who seek tertiary education in English-speaking countries. Additionally, all of them are in the intermediate level, and they wish to get a good grade in the listening test. This will be a five-week teaching, and three hours per week with a different unit. Additionally, it will be used in a hypothetical class in a private language school, and the approximate number of students for each class is 25.

In the following parts, the author will first give the definition of syllabus, and the importance and necessity of undertaking needs analysis. Then there will be a demonstration of the attached syllabus design, which include the justification of the selected types of syllabuses and the choice of the selection and grading of content.

At last, a conclusion will be given to summarise the key points in this essay.

2. The definition of syllabus Basically, a syllabus is a specification of what is to be included in a language course; and it concerns the selection of items to be learnt and the grading of those items into an appropriate sequence (Jordan, 2003; Hamer, 2002). Additionally, Nunan (1988) defines syllabus to a broad and a narrow approach. In a broad view, the syllabus and methodology should be together, because the difficulty of distinguishing content and tasks with the development of communicative language teaching (CLT). Whereas, a narrow view considers distinguishing syllabus design and methodology: syllabus design essentially focuses on the selection and grading of content, while methodology is more about the selection of learning tasks and activities (Nunan, 1988).

Linking to the attached syllabus, because listening is regarded as a receptive skill, and it requires few activities than productive skills, such as writing and speaking (Hyland, 2006). Hence, the attached syllabus is designed under the narrow view, and it is orientated with the selection and grading of content.

3. Needs analysis The term ‘analysis of needs’ first appears in a published survey report of language teaching by Michael West in 1926 (West, 1994). However, there was little attention given to the needs analysis in the following decades. The reason could be the traditional belief of basing curricula on language structures rather than on individual learner needs at that time (Richards and Rodgers, 1986). With the development of language teaching, the term ‘need analysis’ was re-raised by the Council of Europe Modern Language Projects group in the 1970s, and needs analysis is recognised as the starting point for devising syllabuses, courses, martials and the kind of teaching and learning that takes place (Strevens, 1977; Coffey, 1984; Fatihi, 2003).

Similarly, Jordan (2003) also suggests that designing a syllabus should involve examining needs analyses and establishing goals. In the meanwhile, the concept of learners’ needs becomes more broader, which refers not only to the language knowledge and skills that for certain target situation purposes, but also refers to necessities, lacks, wants, desires, motivations, constraints and requirements, which could be linguistic, affective, material or institutional (Hutchinson and Waters, 1987; Allwright, 1982).

According to Brown (1995:36), needs analysis is defined as “the systematic collection and analysis of all subjective and objective information necessary to define and validate defensible curriculum purposes that satisfy the language learning requirements of students within the context of particular institutions that influence the learning and teaching situation”. And there are several fundamental questions need to consider when conducting a needs analysis. As Jordan (2003) suggests and further summarises in the Figure 1, they are:

* Why is the analysis being undertaken? (E.g. to determine the type of syllabus and content) * Whose needs are to be analysed? (E.g. the learners’; the teachers’; the sponsors’) * Who performs the analysis? (E.g. sponsor; teacher; student) * What is to be analysed? (E.g. target situation; present situation; deficiencies) * How is the analysis to be conducted? (E.g. questionnaires; tests) * When is the analysis to be undertaken? (E.g. before the EAP course) * Where is the EAP course to be held? (E.g. the learners’ own country)

Figure 1. Needs analysis: summary

Source: Jordan (2003), Chapter 2, pp. 29.

The significance of conducting a needs analysis is that it is a device to know the learners’ necessities, needs and lacks, which directly determines the type of syllabus and content, as well as the appropriateness and effectiveness of the course (Fatihi, 2003). Also it is a process for identifying the instructional objectives in a valid curriculum, in order to facilitate the learning for language learners (Jordan, 2003). However, there are also some limitations of needs analysis, which include

1) the complicity of converting needs into goals since “an assessment of individual needs could result in multiple course objectives” (Dubin and Olshtain, 1986: 102);

2) the lack of an effective needs analysis procedure, as most needs analysis procedures fail to solve the leap between needs analysis and materials development (West, 1994); 3) the validity and reliability of the instruments used in a needs analysis and the results obtained (Van Hest and Oud-de Glas, 1990). Despite those limitations, it is still worth doing needs analysis because some studies have showed that it can be beneficial for the development of curriculum (Bosher & Smalkowski, 2002; Chaudron et al., 2005).

4. Demonstrating syllabus design 4.1 Selecting syllabus types

There are various types of syllabus design that have been used over the last few decades (Yalden, 1987). Generally, a number of different types of syllabus can be subsumed under two broad headings; namely, the product-oriented syllabus which focuses on the end result, and the process-oriented syllabus which focuses on the means to an end (Nunan, 1988). The various types syllabus under these two broad headings have been listed in the Figure 2. Additionally, a skills-based syllabus that is based on one or more of the four traditional language skills is highlighted in Jordan (2003). It seems that this type of syllabus is on the half way between product syllabuses and process syllabuses as suggested by Robinson (1991). Furthermore, another independent syllabus is lexical syllabus which was initially done by the work of COBUILD since 1980; and it is on the basis of vocabulary and lexis (Lewis, 1993; Harmer, 2002).

IELTS Syllabus Design Essay

Islam and Arabic Language Essay

Islam and Arabic Language Essay.

In 571, Mohammad the Prophet took his first order from the God, which is “read”. Then after many orders, Kor’an the holy book was completed. After the completion of Kor’an, it has been single and certain guide for all the muslims. Yet, if a person want to read and understand that book, that person has to know Arabic Language. The problem is why is Arabic main language of Islam and Koran even though the islam is universal? Before the Islam, arabic was just one of the Language that was spoken in only certain regions in Arabia.

But after the Islam whole Arabia had started to talk in arabic because arabia is the region which is starting point of Islam. It was natural but after spreading other parts of the World, The arabic had became main language of some regions which was unnatural. In christianity, for example, for many centuries, Latin was the language of Bible but it could not influence people that made people’s who live in Europe lanugage change.

Because unlikely to Islam, people can prey and worship in other language. These restrictions in Islam influence people’s language because worshipping and preying take a lot time and they have to be done everyday. In addition to that Kor’an has to be read in Arabic. Due to these reasons from tunus to Iraq arabic is the main language even though it is not their ancient language. Due to many reason arabic language has spread but some countries such as Iran and India has preserved their language altough they are muslims. The answer lies under their culture. Changing religion just not change belief of community, it also changes culture of community.

Thus Iran and India which posses strong culture and language whose roots are older than 3000 years old. It is impossible to change cultures that old. After the Islam, India has become a Great Britain Empires Colony and Iran was ruled by Seljuks yet the results were same these cultures could preserve itself. In a nutshell, spread of arabic language inevitable because of spread of Islam whose main language is arabic but also this influence cannot approach to certain nations due to their strong cultures. Yet it is still unclear that why is the universal religion islam’s main language is arabic? It is still being claimed that Kor’an has not been changed but this reason makes people think that maybe it has been changed because of this reasons.

Islam and Arabic Language Essay

Importance of the English Language in Present Day World Essay

Importance of the English Language in Present Day World Essay.

Language is the source of communication. Its the way through which we share our ideas and thoughts with others. There are uncountable languages in this world. Because every country has their own national language, then they have different local languages spoken and understood by their people in different regions. Let’s talk about English. It is the language of England and has International Standard. Many people think English as American Language but it is not true.

In fact, when Columbus discovered America, he saw the country in the Stone Age with high illiteracy rate.

Those were the European and English people who brought education and knowledge even technology towards America. There are several factors that make us to learn English Language to go through in the current time. First of all, as I already mention, it has International Standard, that’s why everyone needs to learn English in order to get in touch on International Level.

If we see Educational field, we will find much of the syllabus is written in English.

Children are taught and encouraged to learn English on starting levels. And accordingly, as they promote to the next levels they study almost all the subjects in English. We see the Internet and find more than 90% of websites written and created in English. And even when you see some sites in other languages, they also give you the option to translate in English. All the research and studies you find will be written and typed in English.

All the information regarding each and everything contains English Language. There is another factor that make English very important in this world is it is the easiest language of the world to learn. Many people think that it is very difficult and confusing. But I suggest them to start and learn only for a week and they will feel easy with English. With good understanding and communication in English, we can travel around the globe. We get assistance and help in English in every part of world. You can test it by on line travel.

Better you visit some offices, companies, governmental organizations, and other departments, and you will see the importance of English as they hire the professional staff after getting know that whether the people they are hiring are good at English or not. This is the company’s will that their staff is not even well educated but also good English speaker, writer and Reader. Those who are still unaware about the importance of English. They should start learning English as a time will come when everything would be understood, spoken and written in English. Better watch some media and get the scope of English.

Importance of the English Language in Present Day World Essay

A Global Language: English Language Essay

A Global Language: English Language Essay.

English is an international language spoken all over the world that was originally borrowed from the world. If English is used as a global language, there might be some advantages related to communication and business. However, there are also several disadvantages in terms of losing mother tongue and taking time and money. The advantages outweigh the disadvantages, so English should be made the global language.

The first essential affirmative point is communication. There are more than 200 countries in the world. If everyone could speak English, they may have the ability to communicate with others whenever they are in strange countries.

Furthermore, using English, people can have more friends, widen peer relationships with foreigners and can not get lost. Overall, English becomes a global language; people may have more chances in communication.Another crucial advantage is improving business. If English was spoken widespread and everyone could use it, they would likely have more opportunities in business. Foreign investments from rich countries might be supported to the poorer countries.

For instance, a company and its proponents would be able to discuss, understand each other and develop the projects together.

The first disadvantage of issue is losing mother language. If English used as a global language, people may use it both at work and daily life. Children and teenagers might prefer to watch English cartoons or movies. Gradually, they make mistake when they use their mother languages. It can not be imagine if English is only one language in the world. Another serious negative point is taking much time and money. Old generation might need to study English to communicate with the youth ages. In addition, educational curriculum system could be changed to be suitable for the reform. These processes need quite long time and a large amount of money.

In conclusion, using English as a global language has both advantages and disadvantages. It is useful for communicating and business while could lead to be lost mother tongue and take much time and money.

A Global Language: English Language Essay

Histroy of English Language Essay

Histroy of English Language Essay.

History of English language will explain, why learning English as a second language is difficult without proper instruction, even though basic components are same. Throughout its history English has been influenced by the varieties of language. Living languages never remain static. Every language is the product of change and continues to change as long as it is spoken. Only dead languages like Latin or Sanskrit change no longer, since no one speaks them now. The changes, while they do occur are gradual and slow and hence almost imperceptible.

Over a span of centuries, however, their cumulative effect is appreciable.

Shakespeare English is difficult for modern readers; Chaucer’s is almost is incomprehensible without formal instruction. The History of the English language: The origin During the Roman invasion, the inhabitants of Britain spoke a Celtic language. English belongs, in all its stages, to the Indo European family of languages, formerly called Indo-Germanic, and still earlier Aryan. Indo European is the name given to the set of linguistic forms from which nearly all European languages as well as those of Persia and very large part of India can be shewn to descend.

The historians have used the word Indo-European because it merely suggests that the languages it comprises cover most of the Europe and India mark the length of its confines. The predominance and pioneering s of the position of the German Philologist English is one of the most important languages in the world today. More the an 350 million people in Great Britain are native speakers. In addition 150 million non-native speakers of English are there. English however is not spoken by large number of people in the world . Chinese, for instance spoken by more than 880 million people in China alone.

Among the western languages English has the advantage in numbers. Spanish in spoken by about 210 million people. Russian is spoken about 200 million people Portuguese is spoken about 105 million people etc . Importance of a language is associated with political role played by the nations using it and their influence in the international affairs. Several reasons may be adduced for current importance and popularity of English. Historically the colonial expansion of the British Empire over which the sun never sets, was responsible for the imposition of the English on aspiring natives.

Even after achieving independence many countries like Nigeria, India, Ghana continue to use English as official language for several reasons. The nature of the English language and its tolerance to change has made it very popular. One of the major assets of the English language is the mixed character or its vocabulary. English being the Germanic descent has many words from the Germanic languages viz, German Dutch, Flemish, Danish, Scandinavian, Swedish, Norwegian. It also shares a large number of words with the European languages derived from Latin viz,French Italian, Spanish and Portuguese.

Hence English seems very familiar to anyone who speaks a Germanic and Roman language. Instead of making new words chiefly by the combination of existing elements, English has shown the marked tendency to go outside its own linguistic resources and borrow from other languages. These words have been so well assimilated into English the no one ever remembers or recognizes that they have been borrowed. Any etymological dictionary will show that English has borrowed from almost every language of the world; Hebrew Arabic Hindi Tamil,Malay,WestAfrica,Chinese,Brazil etc.

This is the reason why we call English a cosmopolitan vocabulary which is an asset to any language which seeks to attain international use. Modern linguists therefore accept the dynamic nature of language. One of their axioms is that there are no pure forms of language, for language, for languages keep changing all the time. If English had remained pure over the centuries, we should still be speaking the language of Chaucer. Throughout the history, the English language has accepted with comparative equanimity words from other languages with which it has been in contact.

There have been periods in which speakers and writers have indulged in large-scale use of foreign words. In general, most people will agree that the foreign contribution to English has been useful. Some languages avoid as far as possible the use of alien terms; instead they substitute new words made up of native elements. English however, has always accepted foreign words. Many hundreds of words of non-English origin are now part and parcel of the English vocabulary, indistinguishable from the native stock except to those with some knowledge of etymology.

Of all the world languages, English has probably the vocabulary which is the most copious, heterogeneous and varied, at the same time this also one of the reason that learning English as second language becomes difficult. All the people, with whom its speakers have come in contact during more than thirteen centuries of its growth, have left permanent marks on the language. Some of the contacts have been deep and lasting like Greek, French and Latin. A study of the history of the English language, therefore, unfolds the panorama of English history-both social and political.

With an empire over which sun never sets, the English language has been particularly open to foreign influences. The Romans with whom the ancient Germanic tribes had dealings, the Romanized Britons, the Latin fathers of the church who were once eagerly studied the Danish and Norwegian invaders, the Norman French conquerors, the revival of ancient Latin and Greek classics at Renaissance, the Italian artists and men of letters of the 16th century the colonizing nations of the same century—all these have made their contributions to the English language.

Arab mathematicians from Spain have enriched the language: so have American Redskins and Indian sepoys. The Italianate Englishman of Queen Elizabeth’s time of whom Shakespeare made fun and famous writers like Dryden, Alexander Pope, Jonathan Swift have left something of value in the English word—hoard. It is no doubt, that such statement might fairly be made about other language and their history; but what stands out so remarkably about English is the abundance, the unparalleled variety and the length of the time during which foreign influences have been effective.

Further, no other language has so much copious and heterogeneous material. In historical linguistics the contribution of particular foreign language to another is referred to as borrowing . In common parlance, ‘borrowing’ means getting something form somebody on the understanding that it is to be returned. Luckily, this definition does not apply to words which are borrowed, never to be returned. Linguists wonder whether ‘stealing’ might be a more appropriate term for this phenomenon. As Haugen says” The borrowing takes place without the lender’s consent or even awareness and the borrower is under no obligation to repay the loan.

One might as well call it stealing, were it is not the owner is deprived of nothing and feels no urge to recover his goods. The process might be called adoption, for the speaker does adopt element from a second language into its own. Even though English language has adopted variety of languages into it, the basic structure of the English language has not changed. English language’s basic structure is, it has fixed word order. Due to more than two hundred years of English rule, Tamil has borrowed copiously from English. Now these words are not recognized as foreign at all.

One hears an uneducated Tamil speaker use words like office school, ticket, gate, bus etc. In fact, practically no one remembers the Tamil equivalent of these words. The problem arises for the second language learners only when they were asked to use the language or reproducing it. Tamil is Dravidian language spoken by more than 65 million people. It is the official language of Tamil nadu state in India and one of the official languages of Srilanka also. Large Tamil-speaking communities also reside in South Africa,Singapore, Malaysia and the other Indian ocean islands.

The earliest Tamil inscriptions dates from 200B. C. The literature in the language have a 2,000-year history. There are 247 letters in the Tamil alphabet. The 247 letters in the Tamil alphabet can be divided into 12 vowels 18 consonants, 216 vowel consonants and 1 special letter. The vowel consonants are formed by combining the vowel letters and consonants letters. The vowel-consonants letters also have long and short sounds. The History of English is divided into three ages. Old English, Middle English and Modern English.

There are 26 letters and 44 sounds, in that there 6 pure vowels and 18 diphthongs and 20 consonants in English language. Compared to Tamil language English has less number of letters ,but ironically language that has 247 letters(Tamil) has limited in terms of vocabulary, but English language that has 26 letters has million words. According THE HINDU newspaper which published an article duirng 2006, The department of Tamil language in the University of Madras has benn revising, enlarging and updating the Tamil lexicon.

During 1924-39, the University of Madras had Published the Tamil Lexicon in seven volumes comprising 124,405 entries. Such a dictionary was pioneering venture in the pre-independence period. Prof. Vaiyapuri Pillai had played a huge role in the complication and publication. There have been persistent demands for updating and expanding the lexicon. The many social, political and technological changes in the six-decade period have direct bearing on the Tamil language. It is in this background that the Department of Tamil language of the Madras University had out forth its plan to revise enlarge and update the lexicon.

The present Tamil lexicon, under preparation ,will come out in 10 volumes, comprising atleast 500,000 entries ,will be bilingual in nature and at the same time render the meaning chronologically. On top of the vast difference in the number of letters in their alphabet, the Tamil language also differs in many grammatical items compared to the English language. The earliest period of English was formerly called as ANGLO SAXON. The history of English language is divided into three main periods .

They are old English (from earliest writings till 1100) Middle English extends from about 1100A. D- 1450A. D, from 1450A. D till date its Modern English. The English language is spoken or read by the largest number of people in the world, for historical, political and economic reasons. First and foremost feature of English language is its extraordinary receptive and adaptable heterogeneousness-the varied ease and readiness with which it has taken to itself material from almost everywhere in the world and has made the new elements of language its own.

Throughout its history English has accepted with equinamity words from other languages with which it has been in contact. Foreign elements with ease and assimilated them all to its character. Though it is copiousness of vocabulary is outstanding. A second outstanding characteristic of English is simplicity of inflexion-the ease with which it indicates the relationship of words in a sentence with only the minimum of change in their shapes or variation of endings. A third quality of English is its relatively fixed-word order.

An inflected language like Latin or Russian can afford to be fairly free in the arrangement of its words, since the inflexions show clearly the proper relationship in the sentence and ambiguity is unlikely. Of all world languages, English has probably the vocabulary which is most copious, heterogeneous and varied. All the peoples with whom its speakers have come into contact during more than thirteen centuries of the growth, have left permanent marks on the language. Some of the contacts have been deep and lasting like those of ancient Rome and France.

Others have been casual like those of Spain or Czechoslovakia. During the Roman invasion, the inhabitants of Britain spoke a Celtic language. While the Roman soldiers in town used Latin, the Britons in the countryside spoke Celtic. Later this was replaced by English. The history of the English language in Britain begins with the settlement of the Angels, Saxons and Jutes in Brtian. These three tribes came from the plains near Schelswing Holstein in North Germany. They had to encounter varying degrees of hostility from the Celts. For mutual protection the tribes combined into small kingdoms.

The most important among these were: Northumbria, Mercia. East Anglia, Wessex, Sussex, Essex and Kent. Under King Alfred Wessex enjoyed the leadership in learning. The English language of today reflects many centuries of developments. The political and social history of England has exerted a considerable impact on the language. The Christianizing of Britain in 597 brought English into contact with Latin civilization and many Latin words were added to the English vocabulary. Then the Scandinavian invasion resulted in considerable two people and their languages.

For two centuries after the Norman Conquest English remained the language of the lower classes. When English once more gained importance, it had been considerably changed from what it was in 1066. In a similar way the Hundred Years’ War, the rise of an important middle class, the Renaissance the development of the British empire, the growth of commerce and industry, science and literature have all contributed to make the English language what it is today. In short the English language reflects in its entire development the political, social and cultural history of the English people.

Histroy of English Language Essay

Why and When We Speak Spanish in Public by Myriam Marquez Essay

Why and When We Speak Spanish in Public by Myriam Marquez Essay.

In today’s society, there are over thousands of different languages or dialects speak around the world. And because America is such a diverse country with many individuals capable of speaking two or more languages, they tend to forget the importance of speaking English in America. As an American living in America, it’s not important whether they speak English or not, but what’s important is which language they choose to represent themselves freely. Language is speaked in many forms.

Some people may grow up learning one language but choose to speak another and others might simply grow up speaking only one language.

As Chinese myself, I have been speaking Chinese for my whole life. My first language was Chinese and although I’ve learned to speak Japanese and English throughout my childhood, however, Chinese have become one of the most common languages I speak daily. Similar to me, my parents also prefer to speak Chinese although they’ve been living in America for the past ten years.

They are not exactly so called American, but they have gotten use to the life style in America that they understand nearly perfect English.

But my parents still speak to me in Chinese when I call them to ask about their days. They tell me about their work, their days, their lives in Chinese and they speak to their friends to their native language. One time I got curious and I tried to have a conversation with them in English. They started alright, speaking English with their deep Chinese accent, but before I realized it, it turned into Chinese conversation. I asked them the reason behind this logic and they told me that it’s because they couldn’t seem to find the right English words.

I wondered for a second what this meant and I finally realized that it’s because they are not familiar with English language like they are with Chinese. Although they have been living in America for a long time and have mastered English language, they choose to speak Chinese freely because they feel comfortable speaking in their first language. Language we speak in our free time is a choice we choose. During my class time, I speak with my teachers and classmates in English because I am in America receiving English education.

However, when I go home or hang out with my friends, I choose to communicate with them in Chinese because they all speak the same language as I do. It’s not because I don’t like to or couldn’t speak English, I just feel like it’s more convenient to speak Chinese because some words are easy to speak in Chinese. Have learned three languages throughout my life, I sometimes feel that I get languages mixed up. When I hang out with my Chinese friends and I want to tell them something funny have happened in my life that day, I could tell them smoothly and make them laugh as I pleased.

By in opposite if I tell this little story in English to my friends who didn’t speak Chinese, it was a little different. I wouldn’t know the translation to some of the Chinese words and the meanings will be completely different. This is why I choose to express myself in Chinese during my free time because it connects to my friends and family better. Because I live in America speaking English is a must, but during my off time or free time I would feel comfortable express myself in my native language. Language is used every single day. We use language to communicate, contact and connect.

For the immigrants who speak bilingually, English is what they use outside of the house. Inside the house, they tend to feel safer speaking the language of their own. My family and I like to go out sometimes for dinner and we tend to always choose a Chinese restaurant. This doesn’t mean that we don’t prefer or dislike American food; it’s simply because of the environment. In a Chinese restaurant it’s better to speak Chinese because almost half of the waiter doesn’t quietly speak perfect English. And it’s a way to start a communication with them if you know their native language.

It’s part of process of being friendly. If you speak the language of the waiter, they will be friendly to you because you have something in common with them. This is part of the nature. When my family and I walked into a Chinese restaurant and ask for their specials, it’s always nice to hear back a friendly response. Living in America and being an American sometimes is important to speak English, but depending on situations, choose to speak native language to communicate freely with one another can get each other closer.

Being Americans means we have the right of speech. People with different backgrounds have the right to choose which languages to speak during their own time. Being in America doesn’t reflect to the fact that all the people living here needs to use English to communicate with each other. Communication is a tool we use to tell each other things and this can be done in English or any other languages we prefer, as long as we feel comfortable with it.

Why and When We Speak Spanish in Public by Myriam Marquez Essay

The Main Theories in Second Language Acquisition Essay

The Main Theories in Second Language Acquisition Essay.

1. Introduction

The language produced by learners learning a second language is extremely varied. It can range from one learner to another in regard to many factors. These variations can be accounted for by a number of ideas including: first language (L1) interface, age differences, motivation, self-confidence, aptitude, anxiety, gender and social distance. In this essay I will define SLA and then outline five of the main linguistic theories. These outlines will form the basis for my analysis of the differences in language that are produced by learners.

Finally, I will consider what level of impact these theories have and how they can account for these differences and, the many difficulties and successes that learners have on their way to learning a second language.

2. What is SLA and what accounts for the language produced by learners? Saville-Troike (2006: 2) defines SLA as not just the learning of a subsequent language to that learnt in childhood but also the study of the processes involved and of those who are learning it.

The language produced by learners changes as they learn the language and that language can differ from one student to another, even if they have the same L1. The following theories provide an insight into how and why this language may vary. Some are backed up by empirical data, others are not, but all have their strengths and weaknesses and they all have supporters and critics. 3. The main theories in SLA

3.1. Contrastive Analysis Hypothesis (CAH)

In terms of the principles of CAH, Gass and Selinker (1994: 59) state that it is “a way of comparing languages in order to determine potential errors for the ultimate purpose of isolating what needs to be learned and what does not need to be learned in a second language learning situation”.Saville-Troike (2006: 34-35) explain that it focuses on the differences and similarities between the L1 and the Second Language (L2). This means that the similarities and differences between L1 and L2 play a crucial role in learners’ production. Saville-Troike (2006: 35) also points out that there will be a transfer of elements acquired in the L1 to the target L2. This transfer is considered positive if the same structure exists in both languages and the transfer results in the correct production of language in the L2.

However, it can also be negative if a language structure from the L1 does not exist in the L2 but the structure is transferred leading to the production of incorrect language. Arab students often omit the verb to be. For example, this book mine for this book is mine since both of them have the same meaning in Arabic /هذا الكتابُ لي /həðəlkɪtəbʊlɪ/. This kind of error might be made since the verb to be is rarely used in the present tense in Arabic. Because of this, Arab students may apply the Arabic rule to English. On the other hand, Arabic and English share the same idea regarding the position of object pronouns. The object pronouns are placed after the verb in English and Arabic.

In contrast, with French, they occur before the verb. Mitchell and Myles (1998: 30) say that the predictions of CAH, that all the errors made in learning the L2 are due to interface from L1, were shown to be unfounded. They claim that many studies and research explain convincingly that the majority of errors could not be attributed to the L1. In other words, CAH might not predict learning difficulties, and was only useful in the retrospective explanation of errors. This point considerably weakened its appeal. However, the heightened interest in this area did lead to the origin of Error Analysis. 3.2. Error Analysis (EA) and Interlanguage (IL)

3.2.1 Error Analysis (EA)

Mitchell and Myles (2004: 29-30) consider this approach to be influenced by behaviorism through the use of fundamental distinctions between the learners’ first and second languages to predict errors, adding that EA showed that CA was not able to predict most errors. They claim that the differences between L1 and L2 are not necessarily difficult, citing as an example the difference between English and French in terms of unstressed object pronouns. These cause a problem for English speakers learning French, but not for French speakers learning English. Saville-Troike (2006: 39-40) observes that EA distinguishes between systematic errors, which are due to a lack of L2 knowledge and mistakes, which are made when the knowledge has been processed. She highlights some of EAs shortcomings including: 1. Some people do not make errors because of L1 interface.

2. Focusing only on errors does not provide information regarding what the learner has acquired. 3. Learners may not produce errors because they avoid difficult structures. For example, Arab students avoid using models auxiliaries since they have difficulties in understanding their role in each sentence. They may use I want…, I need …., instead of could I have, I would like ……..? Overall, EA is not good at accounting for variability in SLA data. 3.2.2 Interlanguage (IL)

Saville-Troike (2006: 40-41) states that the term IL was introduced by Selinker in 1972, “to refer to the intermediate states (or interim grammars) of a learner’s language as it moves toward the target L2”. Ellis (1997: 19) hypothesises that the nature of variability changes during the process of L2 development in the stages below: 1. One form for multi-functions e.g., I live in Manchester, last year I live in London, next year I live in Amman. 2. Some forms have been acquired e.g. I live in Manchester, last year I lived in London, next year I lived in Amman. 3. The various forms start to be used systematically. Here the student may write the forms correctly but still use the incorrect forms when speaking. 4. The student uses the forms correctly and consistently.

3.3. The Monitor Model Theory

Mitchell and Myles (1998: 35) point out Krashen’s theory was based on five hypotheses which are: 1. Acquisition – Learning hypothesis Gass and Selinker (1994:144) refer to Krashen’s assertion that ‘acquisition’ and ‘learning’ are separate knowledge, and that language acquisition is a subconscious process. The acquirers of language are not consciously aware of the grammatical rules of the language, but they rather develop a kind of correctness. This is certainly the case for young children learning their L1. On the other hand, language learning refers to the conscious knowledge of L2. The learners know the rules, they are aware of them, and are able to talk about them. Gass and Selinker (1994: 148) criticise this hypothesis. They claim that it does not show evidence of the distinction between acquisition and learning as two separate systems. However, Krashen said that many can produce language fluently without having been taught any rules and there are many that know the rules but are unable to apply them whilst speaking (Lightbown and Spader 1999: 38).

1.Monitor Hypothesis

Krashen’s hypothesis states that what learners learn is available as a monitor (Saville-Troike (2006: 45). Learners will make changes and edit what they are going to produce. The language that learners have consciously learnt works as an editor in situations where they have sufficient time to edit, are focused on form and know the rule (Gass and Selinker 1994: 145-146). This conscious editor is called the Monitor. There are variations in use of the monitor that affect the language that learners produce. Acquired language skills can lead to improved fluency but overuse of the monitor can lead to a reduction in fluency (Krashen 1988: 30-31). Moreover, Krashen (1988: 30-31) believes that there is individual variation among language learners with regard to ‘monitor’ use.

He claims that the learners who use the ‘monitor’ all the time are ‘over-users’, often producing stilted language whereas, ‘under-users’ will often speak quickly but with a lot of errors. Learners who use the monitor appropriately are considered ‘optimal-users’. These find a good balance between speed and accuracy, continuing to refer to want they have learnt but acknowledging the importance of communication. He emphasise that lack of self-confidence is the major cause for the over-use of the ‘monitor’. Gass and Selinker (1994: 149) criticise this hypothesis as they believe that the monitor is only useful in production but it is useless in comprehension since it consists of learned knowledge that is used to edit utterances.

1.Natural Order Hypothesis

According to the natural order hypothesis the acquisition of grammatical structures (rules) proceeds in a predictable order (Gass and Selinker 1994: 145). They add that in a given language, some grammatical structures generally tend to be acquired early while others are acquired late regardless of the L1. They say “the natural order was determined by a synthesis of the results of the morphemes order studies and are a result of the acquired system, without interference from the learned system”. Krashen cited the example that many advanced students in English will still not be able to apply the rule for the third person singular verb, where an –s has to be added to the verb, when speaking quickly.

1.Input Hypothesis

According to the input hypothesis, SLA cannot take place without sufficient and necessary comprehensible input (Mitchell and Myles 2004: 165). Acquirers develop competency over time by receiving comprehensible input to move their present level to the next. Gass and Selinker (1994: 146) emphasise that this hypothesis is central to Krashen’s description of acquisition and is a complement to the Natural Order Hypothesis.

1.Affective Filter Hypothesis

Krashen’s hypothesis suggests that not everyone has the same ability in learning a second language and that self-confidence, motivation and anxiety all affect language acquisition (Gass and Selinker 1994: 148). He proposed that an Affective filter acts as a barrier to language input. Krashen (1988: 38) explains that a number of affective variables play a crucial role in SLA. These variables include motivation, self-confidence and anxiety. He claims that learners who are highly motivated, self-confident and less anxious are better equipped for success in SLA. Low motivation, low self-esteem, and anxiety contribute to raise the affective filter which prevents comprehensible input from being used for acquisition. In other words, if the filter is high, the input will not pass through and subsequently there will be no acquisition.

On the other hand, if the filter is low and the input is understood, the input will take place and acquisition will have taken place. Gass and Selinker (1994: 148) say that the filter and filter hypotheses explain the failure of SLA according to two parameters: insufficient input and high affective filter, or both. Gass and Selinker (1994: 150) criticize the Filter Hypothesis because it does not explain how it works? Or how the input filter works? However, others see that it as something that can be seen and applied in the classroom and that it can explain why some students learn and produce better language than others (Lightbown and Spader 1999: 40).

3.4. Universal Grammar (UG)

The definition of UG by Chomsky (1976, as cited by Cook, 2001: 181-182) is “the system of principles, conditions, and rules that are elements or properties of all human languages … the essence of human language”. According to Chomsky, there are principles, which allow or prevent a specific structure from occurring in all human languages, and parameters, which govern ways in which human languages differ, usually expressed as a limited choice between two options. These principles and parameters are built in the human mind. In other words, children have an innate faculty that instructs them while learning of language (Mitchell and Myles, 2004: 33).

Saville-Troike (2006: 48-49) gives an example of a principle that Chomsky posited which is that every phrase in every language has the same elements including a head. For example, a noun phrase has to have a noun, a verb phrase has to have a verb and prepositional phrase has to have a preposition. On the other hand, an example of parameter is the direction of the head. For example, Arabic is a head last language and English is a head first language. According to Mitchell and Myles (1998: 61-68), UG can account for variations in learner language as follows:

1. No access hypothesis

This hypothesis suggests that UG becomes less accessible with age and therefore its involvement will not be available to adult learners. Chomsky believes there is a critical period for language acquisition and UGs application. Adult L2 learners have to be prepared to apply more general problem-solving skills. Evidence by Johnson and Newport (1989, as cited by Mitchell and Myles, 1998: 65) showed that immigrant children mostly become native-like speakers of L2, but their parents very rarely do. I believe this supports Chomsky’s hypothesis.

2. Full access hypothesis

Mitchell and Myles (1998: 61) state that the processes of L1 and L2 acquisition are very similar. The differences noticed between them are due to the difference in cognitive maturity and in the learner’s needs. It is clear that L2 learners acquire principles and parameter settings of L2 which are not similar to L1 settings. Evidence given by Flynn (1996 as cited by Mitchell and Myles 1998: 66) explained that Japanese L1 learners of English as L2 successfully acquire L2 head parameter settings. They use principles in English which do not operate in Japanese.

3. Indirect access hypothesis

Mitchell and Myles, (1998: 61-62) point out that access to UG is only available to learners indirectly via the L1. They say “there will be just one instantiation (i.e. one working example) of UG which will be available to the L2 learner, with the parameters already fixed to the settings which apply in the L1”. Evidence given by Schachter (1996 as cited in Mitchell and Myles, 1998: 67) showed L2 learners’ failure to acquire principles absent in their L1 and/or failure to reset parameters.

4. Partial access hypothesis

Mitchell and Myles (1998: 62) say that some aspects of UG are still available and others are not. They give an example stating that principles may still be available but parameter settings may not. In addition, White (2003:1-2) represents the application of the idea of UG to the area of SLA. She argues that SLA is constrained by principles and parameters of UG which is well explained in his book “Second Language Acquisition and Universal Grammar”. In terms of criticism, Mitchell and Myles (1998: 70) say that UG as a whole has been exclusively concerned with syntax and the developmental linguistic route followed by learners when learning a L2. Thus, the social and psychological variables that affect the rate of the learning process are beyond its remit and therefore ignored.

3.5. Socio-linguistic theories

Mitchell and Myles (1998: 163) define sociolinguistics as the study of the effect of all aspects of soceity on the language in use. I will focus on the sociocultural theory discussed in Lantolf (1994). Lantolf (1994: 418) emphasises that the origin of sociocultural theory refers to Vygotsky’s ideas. In terms of variations in learner language, Vygotsky (1978 as cited in Mitchell and Myles, 1998: 146 ) defines the Zone of Proximal Development(ZPD) as ” the difference between the child’s developmental level as determined by independent problem solving and the higher level of potential development as determined through problem solving under adult guidance or in collaboration with more capable peers’.

Saville-Troike (2006: 112) says that one way is to help learners within the ZPD is through scaffolding which is defined as verbal guidance which an expert helps a learner to solve a specific task or collaboration of peers to solve a task that is difficult for any one of them individually. This means that little collaboration or guidance are the main reason for variation in learner language. For example, talk between peers could be helpful as in the following example: Student 1: could I say I am loving you, daddy?

Student 2: I am loving ………..
Student 1: yes, I do not stop loving my daddy.
Student 2: love is a state verb
Student 1: yes, so I am love you, daddy.
Student 2: I think simple present form with state verbs?
Student 1: Ah, I love you, daddy.

4. Conclusion

To sum up, it is clear that not one individual theory on its own can account for all the variations in learners’ language. Each one has valid points and I have shown some of the variations in language these hypotheses may produce. However, in a lot of cases, there is a lack of empirical evidence and further investigation into these theories may identify new learning and teaching methods. Teaching methods have to take into account that L2 learners are varied. Learners do not have the same characteristics so they do not all acquire a L2 in the same way and at the same rate.

Motivation, aptitude, age, social background and self-confidence affect the learners’ abilities. At the current time, and with the knowledge that is available to us, I think it is important for teachers to consider the most important aspects of each theory when preparing their lessons. Clearly not all theories will be addressed in every lesson, but with careful thought and consideration, the ideas may be applied and the results will show whether or not they are effective for that particular group of students.

The Main Theories in Second Language Acquisition Essay

The Nature of Reading Skills Essay

The Nature of Reading Skills Essay.

Until recently the many and diverse reading skills and strategies for use in every day situations have been largely subordinate to a narrower range of skills required for dealing with simplified readers (especially at the elementary and intermediate levels). Furthermore, on a few language courses, efficient reading skills have been pushed into the background in an attempt to develop oral fluency skills. Attempts at dealing with the many complex reading skills frequently come too late, at the tertiary level ( i. e. at university, technical college), when pupils/students suddenly find themselves confronted with professional and technical literature in the foreign language. There exist few comprehensive systematic programs which have been constructed from a detailed analysis of the skills required for efficient reading. Much test material is still limited to short reading extracts on which general comprehension questions are based.

Reading comprehension test material is very closely related to the type of practice material used by the teacher to develop the reading skills.

Few language teachers would argue against the importance of reading: what is still urgently required in many classrooms tests is greater awareness of the actual processes involved in reading and the production of appropriate exercise and test materials to assist in the mastery of these processes. Before reading tests in the foreign language can be successfully constructed, the fist language reading skills of the pupils must be ascertained. Clearly there is often little purpose in testing in the foreign language those basic reading skills which the pupils have not yet developed in their own language.

However, the mere fact that a pupil has mastered some of the required reading skills in the first language is no guarantee at all that he or she will be able to transfer those skills to reading another language. Reading itself means reading and understanding. A foreign language learner who says that he or she can read the words but does not know what they mean, does not read in this sense. He or she is merely decoding – translating written symbols into corresponding sounds.

Reading is an exercise dominated by the eyes and the brain. Different aspects of nature of reading can be illustrated and clarified. Some assumptions about those are the following: 1. We need to perceive and decode letters in order to read words. 2. We need to understand all the words in order to understand the meaning of a text. 3. The more symbols (letters or words) there are in a text, the longer it will take to read it. 4. We gather meaning from what we read.

The Nature of Reading Skills Essay