Volume 6, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2542-3835
  • E-ISSN: 2542-3843
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This study examined Chinese-as-a-second-language (L2 Chinese) learners’ speech production ability from a dual perspective: speech competence and speech performance. A total of 118 valid L2 Chinese learners finished two developed tests in this study, namely, the Chinese speech competence test and the Chinese speech performance test. The results suggested that L2 Chinese learners’ speech competence and speech performance, as a twofold rendering of their L2 speech production ability, not only showed a significant positive correlation with a large effect size (Pearson’s  = .598) but also significantly predicted each other with a large effect size (Cohen  = .555). However, such large effect sizes of the correlation and the prediction between speech competence and speech performance were not supported among the upper-intermediate L2 Chinese learners. This suggested that the development between speech competence and speech performance may be more unbalanced among the upper-intermediate L2 Chinese learners compared with their advanced counterparts. The study adds evidence to the call for a multidimensional evaluation of L2 speech production ability. It is hoped that the dual approach (i.e., speech competence and speech performance) proposed in the present study may contribute to a more comprehensive evaluation of learners’ L2 Chinese speech production ability. Consequently, classroom-based teaching can be tailored to facilitate a more balanced development of L2 Chinese learners’ speech competence and speech performance.


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