Challenges in implicit learning research

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This chapter documents some of the methodological challenges in the use of artificial grammars in second language research. In the three experiments reported here, participants were exposed to an artificial language system based on Czech morphology under incidental learning conditions. After several modifications to the design of Experiments 1 and 2, Experiment 3 provided evidence that learners can acquire knowledge of L2 case marking incidentally. Taken together, these three experiments illustrate the challenges that researchers can face when carrying out incidental learning research, in particular the often unreported difficulty in establishing an initial learning effect when piloting a novel, semi-artificial language system.


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