Volume 1, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2215-1478
  • E-ISSN: 2215-1486
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This paper studies longitudinal changes that occur in academic learner Finnish. The approach is data-driven, and it shares the usage-based view of language. The data are part of the Corpus of Advanced Learner Finnish and the studied features are determined statistically by tracing the morphological forms that show the clearest changes in their frequency during the observation period of 16 months. Features found to depict such changes are then studied in greater detail to find out the constructional nature and possible reason for the observed change. The results show that the use of the preterite tense constructions decreases while the present tense constructions increases and that the change is not due to any single lexical unit. The use also becomes quantitatively more native-like. The change is likely due to emergence of a new linguistic register — academic Finnish — and the results thus support the usage-based theory of language acquisition.


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