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To browse Academia. Skip to main content. By using our site, you agree to our collection of information through the use of cookies. To learn more, view our Privacy Policy. Log In Sign Up. Error Analysis and Interlanguage. Aya Inayah. Ahmed Altherwi. Abu Aryam. Saman Butt. Error Analysis and Interlanguage S.

No parts of this publication may be Reports and Papers, No. Fehlerkunde, edited by G. Nickel, Xevvbury House Publishers Inc. We need to have such a knowledge if we are to make any well-founded proposals for the development and improvement of the materials and techniques of language teaching. These points are made in the first paper in this collection and developed in various ways in later papers. Roughly speaking one could say that the first half of the collection is concerned with the methodological problems of the study of errors and a consideration of the application of error analysis in second language teaching.

The second group of papers on interlanguage is more concerned with theoretical problems, particularly those of second language acquisition and the nature of interlanguage, or the second language learner's language as a type of language and its relation to other language types. Thus the study of interlanguage has a purely theoretical value independent of its ultimate relevance to language teaching.

It is part of the study of language or linguistics in its broader sense. Until the late sixties when the first paper in this collection was written, the prevailing theory concerning the problem of second language learning was behaviouristic and held that the learning was largely a question of acquiring a set of new language habits.

Errors were therefore predicted to be the result of the persistence of existing mother tongue habits in the new language. Most errors were ascribed to interference and consequently a major part of applied linguistic research was devoted to comparing the mother tongue and the target language in order to predict or explain the errors made by learners of any particular language background.

What was overlooked or underestimated were the errors which could not be explained in this way. The learning of the language as a system towards the functional use of first paper in this collection dates to a time when this essentially that system for communicative purposes. This has had its influence in behaviouristic account of second language learning was coming to second language acquisition research.

There is now a greater be seriously questioned. This was the result of the interest which awareness that under natural circumstances languages are acquired psycholinguists, influenced by Chomsky, were beginning to show in through the need and attempt to communicate, that is through first language acquisition. It was natural that one should ask conversation. But what is the nature of that conversation?

Is it just whether the cognitive processes which came into play in first like that between native speakers or does it have special character - language acquisition were the same as those used in second istics?

Native speakers of a language in fact adapt their use of language learning, and indeed in the early seventies, which marked language in a number of ways when interacting with learners and the beginning of serious empirical research into second language this is the data on which a learner works to create for himself his acquisition, this was the question which was uppermost in the knowledge of the language system and its use in communication.

With the general abandonment of the But the learner is himself hampered in his attempt to use his belief in a specific language acquisition device, this is no longer a interlanguage for communicative purposes by its relative simplicity question which actively engages the interest of investigators. At the and poverty. How does he overcome these disabilities? What same time the role of the first language in second language strategies does he adopt to minimize the disabling effect of his acquisition has become a more interes'ting question.

The term ignorance? These too are topics dealt with in papers in this interlanguage was coined by Selinker in the belief that the language collection. An understanding of interlanguage is no longer narrowly learner's language was a sort of hybrid between his LI and the target bounded by a consideration of the structural properties; we also want language.

The evidence for this was the large number of errors to know the communicative circumstances under which it develops which could be ascribed to the process of transfer. But when second and how it is manipulated by its speakers in their attempts to language acquisition researchers began to collect data from learners communicate.

We want to know these things because they too may not receiving formal instruction, particularly children, the pro - be relevant to language teaching and learning. Furthermore, these errors seemed to be found in most learners at the same stage of development and largely independent of the nature of their mother tongue.

Clearly interlanguage was not a hybrid language and had a developmental history of its own. The speculation"about a built-in syllabus for second language learning made in the first paper in this collection in seemed to be receiving empirical support. The notion of a 'natural sequence' for second language learning is now widely accepted with considerable support from experimental evidence.

The relevance of these findings for language teachers is clear: that if we could establish the natural order in which a knowledge of the second language is gradually built up by the learner, then the materials, particularly the structural syllabus, could be graded upon a more solid basis than the current one, which is a mixture of some concept of usefulness and some idea of linguistic dependency, but certainly not on any psycholinguistic evidence of language learning.

While establishing the presence and nature of a 'natural sequence' of development may be the principal objective of second language acquisition research, the field has broadened out in its scope to include other topics.

It almost seems as if they are dismissed as a matter of no particular importance, as possibly annoying, distracting, but inevitable by - products of the process of learning a language about which the teacher should make as little fuss as possible. It is of course true that the application of linguistic and psychological theory to the study of language learning added a new dimension to the discussion of errors; people now believed they had a principled means for accounting for these errors, namely that they were the result of interference in the learning of a second language from the habits of the first language.

They noted for example that many of the errors with which they were familiar were not predicted by the linguist anyway. The teacher has been on the whole, therefore, more concerned with how to deal with these areas of difficulty than with the simple identification of them, and here has reasonably felt that the linguist has had little to say to him.

In the field of methodology there have been two schools of thought in respect of learners' errors. The philosophy of the second school is and so are the objections to them. If then these hypotheses about that we live in an imperfect world and consequently errors will language learning are being questioned and new hypotheses being always occur in spite of our best efforts.

Our ingenuity should be set up to account for the process of child language acquisition, it concentrated on techniques for dealing with errors after they have would seem reasonable to see how far they might also apply to the occurred.

Both these points of view are compatible with the same Within this new context the study of errors takes on a new theoretical standpoint about language and language learning, importance and will I believe contribute to a verification or rejection psychologically behaviourist and linguistically taxonomic. The consequence of this for language. How he does this is largely unknown and is the field of language teaching is likely to be far reaching and we are perhaps intensive study at the present time by linguists and psychologists.

One effect has been perhaps to Miller has pointed out that if we wished to create an shift the emphasis away from a preoccupation with teaching towards a automaton to replicate a child's performance, the order in which it study of learning. In the first instance this has shown itself as a tested various aspects of the grammar could only be decided after renewed attack upon the problem of acquisition of the mother careful analysis of the successive states of language acquisition by tongue.

This has inevitably led to a consideration of the question human children. The first steps therefore in such a study are seen to be whether there are any parallels between the processes of acquiring a longitudinal description of a child's language throughout the the mother tongue and the learning of a second language.

The course of its development. From such a description it is eventually usefulness of the distinction between acquisition and learning has hoped to develop a picture of the procedures adopted by the child to been emphasized by Lambert and the possibility that the acquire language McNeill The differences between the two are obvious but not for that Palmer Pahner maintained that we were all endowed by reason easy to explain: that the learning of the mother tongue is nature with the capacity for assimilating language and that this inevitable, whereas, alas, we all know that there is no such capacity remained available to us in a latent state after the inevitability about the learning of a second language; that the acquisition of a primary language.

The adult was seen to be as learning of the mother tongue is part of the whole maturational capable as the child of acquiring a foreign language. Recent work process of the child, while learning a second language normally Lenneberg suggests that the child who fails for any reason, i. This finding does not of course carry with it the implication that the motivation if we can properly use the term in the context for the language learning capacity of those who have successfully learnt learning a first language is quite different from that for learning a a primary language also atrophies in the same way.

It still remains to second language. Indeed the most widespread If we postulate the same mechanism, then we may also postulate hypothesis about how languages are learnt, which I have called that the procedures or strategies adopted by the learner of the behaviourist, is assumed to apply in both circumstances. These second language are fundamentally the same. If the acquisition of the first language is a fulfilment of input which is of course what we call the syllabus.

The simple fact of the predisposition to develop language behaviour, then the learning presenting a certain linguistic form to a learner in the classroom of the second language involves the replacement of the does not necessarily qualify it for the status of input, for the reason predisposition of the infant by some other force.

What this consists of that input is 'what goes in' not what is available for going in, and we is in the context of this chapter irrelevant. This may well be determined by the human being will learn a second language if he is exposed to the characteristics of his language acquisition mechanism and not by language data.

Study of language aptitude does in some measure those of the syllabus. After all, in the mother tongue learning support such a view since motivation and intelligence appear to be situation the data available as input is relatively vast, but it is the the two principal factors which correlate significantly with child who selects what shall be the input.

Ferguson has recently made the point that our syllabuses I propose therefore as a working hypothesis that some at least of have been based at best upon impressionistic judgements and the strategies adopted by the learner of a second language are vaguely conceived theoretical principles where they have had any substantially the same as those by which a first language is acquired.

The suggestion that we should take Such a proposal does not imply that the course or sequence of more account of the learner's needs in planning our syllabuses is not learning is the same in both cases.

Carroll made such a chair' -we do not normally call this deviant, ill-formed, faulty, incorrect, proposal when he suggested it might be worth creating a problem- or whatever. We do not regard it as an error in any sense at all, but rather solving situation for the learner in which he must find, by enquiring as a normal childlike communication which provides evidence of the state either of the teacher or a dictionary, appropriate verbal responses for of his linguistic development at that moment.

Our response to that solving the problem. Adults have a very strong tendency process of language acquisition by the child. Mager but not in connection with language teaching Mager ; it No one expects a child learning his mother tongue to produce is nevertheless worth quoting his own words: from the earliest stages only forms which in adult terms are correct or 'Whatever sequencing criterion is used it is one which the user non-deviant.

We interpret his 'incorrect' utterances as being calls a "logical" sequence. But although there are several schemes evidence that he is in the process of acquiring language and indeed, by which sequencing can be accomplished and, although it is for those who attempt to describe his knowledge of the language at generally agreed that an effective sequence is one which is any point in its development, it is the 'errors' which provide the meaningful to the learner, the information sequence to be important evidence.

As Brown and Frazer point out the best assimilated by the learner is traditionally dictated entirely by the evidence that a child possesses construction rules is the occurrence of instructor. We generally fail to consult the learner in the matter systematic errors, since, when the child speaks correctly, it is quite except to ask him to maximize the effectiveness of whatever possible that he is only repeating something that he has heard.

Since sequence we have already decided upon. It is by reducing the language to a simpler system than it He points out as the conclusions he draws from his small scale is that the child reveals his tendency to induce rules. Nevertheless it sequence. It seems entirely plausible that it would be so.

The would be wise to introduce a qualification here about the control of problem is to determine whether there exists such a built-in syllabus and to describe it. Second, they provide to the researcher evidence of how definite system of language at every point in his development, language is learnt or acquired, what strategies or procedures the although it is not the adult system in the one case, nor that of the learner is employing in his discovery of the language.

Thirdly and second language in the other. The learner's errors are evidence of in a sense this is their most important aspect they are indispensable to this system and are themselves systematic.


Error analysis and interlanguage

In linguistics , according to J. Richard et al. It is considered by Norrish , p. All the definitions seemed to stress either on the systematic deviations triggered in the language learning process, or its indications of the actual situation of the language learner themselves which will later help the monitor be it an applied linguist or particularly the language teacher to solve the problem respecting one of the approaches argued in the Error Analysis Anefnaf , the occurrence of errors doesn't only indicate that the learner has not learned something yet, but also it gives the linguist the idea of whether the teaching method applied was effective or it needs to be changed. According to Corder errors are significant of three things, first to the teacher, in that they tell him, if he or she undertakes a systematic analysis, how far towards that goal the learner has progressed and, consequently, what remains for him to learn.


Error analysis (linguistics)



Corder, S. Pit. Error Analysis and Interlanguage. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1981




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