1887
Volume 137, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0019-0829
  • E-ISSN: 1783-1490
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Abstract

This paper deals with approximations in the impromptu speech of Congolese students of English. The paucity of vocabulary knowledge prompts foreign language learners to fall back on readily accessible resources in spontaneous speech, such as approximations. The latter are characteristic of an elementary stage in target language development, their frequency relatively decreasing with advanced students. Approximations can be accounted for in terms of communication strategies and in the light of semantic findings. In respect of semantics, three categories of approximations are distinguished : superordinate terms, hyponyms, and cohyponyms. Approximations in a foreign language setting may stem from teachers' negative attitude to vocabulary instruction and from learners' inadequate input. Another source is passive vocabulary, which causes retrieval problems. To minimize this situation, teachers must pay particular attention to vocabulary instruction by teaching vocabulary systematically, rather than leaving it to develop independently.

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2002-01-01
2019-10-21
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