Toegepaste taalwetenschap in discussie
  • ISSN 0169-7420
  • E-ISSN: 2213-4883
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In the literature about fossilization, several definitions have been given and several explanations have been suggested for this phenomenon. I see fossilization as a long-time stagnation in the T2 learning process, leading to errors based on transfer. Fossilization is caused by sociolinguistic, pyscholinguistic and purely linguistic factors. In this paper I concentrate on the acquisition of syntactic structures and on the role of input and instruction in that process. I argue that, although in the acquisition of some syntactic structures, UG plays an important role, this does not account for the whole learning process: learners have not only to reset parameters when acquiring T2 but have to proceduralize knowledge based on the surface structure of sentences. In the case of the use of past tenses in French, many of the Dutch advanced learners of three different levels of proficiency do not acquire native-like intuitions about the use of these tenses, although input as well as instruction are thorough on this point. I suggest that the past tense system is not UG-dependent and that the instruction does not allow proceduralization of the knowledge.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
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