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EYES, EARS AND GUESSWORK: CREATING ORTHOGRAPHIC AND PHONOLOGICAL MEASURES OF VOCABULARY BREADTH FOR BEGINNING AND ADVANC...

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Material Information

Title:
EYES, EARS AND GUESSWORK: CREATING ORTHOGRAPHIC AND PHONOLOGICAL MEASURES OF VOCABULARY BREADTH FOR BEGINNING AND ADVANCED SPANISH AND MANDARIN CHINESE SECOND-LANGUAGE LEARNERS
Physical Description:
Book
Language:
English
Creator:
Klinkel, Robert Matthew
Publisher:
New College of Florida
Place of Publication:
Sarasota, Fla.
Publication Date:

Thesis/Dissertation Information

Degree:
Bachelor's ( B.A.)
Degree Grantor:
New College of Florida
Degree Divisions:
Social Sciences
Area of Concentration:
Psychology, Spanish Language and Culture, Chinese Language and Culture
Faculty Sponsor:
Harley, Heidi

Subjects

Genre:
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
bibliography   ( marcgt )
theses   ( marcgt )

Notes

Abstract:
Spanish is the most studied language in the U.S., and the study of Mandarin Chinese is increasing the most rapidly. Efficient measures of vocabulary acquisition, although available in other languages, are not readily available in Spanish and Chinese. Vocabulary measures are important because they help to assess learners’ receptive vocabulary breadth, or size, as well as to predict overall language ability. The X_Lex and A_Lex are standard measures of vocabulary breadth that assess two dimensions of vocabulary knowledge: the X_Lex measures orthographic, or reading knowledge, while the A_Lex measures phonological, or listening knowledge. Thus, the X_Lex better predicts reading and writing ability while the A_Lex better predicts speaking and listening ability. The current study created Spanish and Mandarin variations of the X_Lex and A_Lex for the first time. The Spanish measures were easily adapted from previous French variations, while the Chinese measures required more extensive changes because assessing knowledge of Chinese typically focuses on character versus word knowledge. The measures use 100 words out of the most common 5000, 20 each from five 1000- word frequency bands, along with 20 plausible pseudowords to correct for guesswork. Participants simply mark words they know and leave the rest blank. The false alarm rate refers to the number of pseudowords marked and serves to correct against guesswork and overestimation of vocabulary knowledge. Total scores estimate the number of words known out of 5000. Given the floor effect experienced by beginner learners in past research, beginner variations of the Spanish and Chinese measures were designed based on word lists in the first five chapters of language textbooks to compare false alarm rates and the difference between orthographic and phonological knowledge across learner language level. Reliability assessments, correlations between orthographic and phonological knowledge, and the word frequency effect as a mediator of vocabulary scores all demonstrated the reliability and construct validity of the Spanish and Chinese X_Lex and A_Lex measures. Results also provided insight into language learning trends within language groups. Beginning Spanish learners had stronger orthographic vocabulary knowledge, but around the fourth-year of study phonological knowledge caught up. Advanced Spanish students had higher false alarm rates than beginners, and Spanish students overall guessed more on the aural A_Lex than the written X_Lex. For Chinese students, phonological knowledge exceeded orthographic knowledge overall, and aural character recognition was easier on the A_Lex than aural word recognition. Future research should use a more suitable Chinese word list, enlist a larger sample size, correlate total scores with the other language abilities (reading, writing, listening and speaking), and computerize the measures. A computerized, adaptive measure of vocabulary breadth that does not determine word frequency based on arbitrary 1000-word frequency bands and that uses a continuous model to correct for false alarm rates would improve upon the current X_Lex and A_Lex measures both here and in other languages.
Thesis:
Thesis (B.A.) -- New College of Florida, 2014
General Note:
RESTRICTED TO NCF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references.
General Note:
This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The New College of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
General Note:
Faculty Sponsor: Harley, Heidi
Statement of Responsibility:
by Robert Matthew Klinkel

Record Information

Source Institution:
New College of Florida
Holding Location:
New College of Florida
Rights Management:
Applicable rights reserved.
Classification:
S.T. 2014 K6
System ID:
AA00024760:00001

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