THE ACQUISITION OF SPANISH L2 PRAGMATICS DURING A STUDY-ABROAD EXPERIENCE
Southeastern Oklahoma State University (UNITED STATES)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2014 Proceedings
Publication year: 2014
Conference name: 8th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 10-12 March, 2014
Location: Valencia, Spain
Abstract:This study examines the development of pragmatics by Spanish foreign language learners who participated in a four-week summer study abroad program at a language institute in Costa Rica. Participants were provided with definitions and some examples of pragmatics and sociolinguistic competence at the beginning of their foreign stay. They were asked to report situations in which they acquired appropriate pragmatic norms for the local culture following interaction and the making of any linguistic faux pas. At the end of their stay students submitted “Sociolinguistic Reports” in the form of journal narratives.
These narratives revealed acquisition in two main areas:
(1) speech conventions that differed from those learned via home country language training, and
(2) the realization that calques involving L1 transfer often proved to be unsuccessful and embarrassing.
Results showed that, with awareness-heightening input enhancement, L2 pragmatic norms can be acquired through a short-term study abroad experience.
Keywords: Pragmatics, Study abroad, Spanish, L2 acquisition.