S-Space Language Education Institute (언어교육원) Language Research (어학연구) Language Research (어학연구) Volume 50 Number 1/3 (2014)
Access to UG in the Acquisition of Long-Distance Wh-Questions of L3 English by L1 Mongolian Learners
- Lee, Il-jae
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 언어교육원
- 어학연구, Vol.50 No.2, pp. 431-460
- This study examines a peculiar L3 error in the production of long-distance (LD) wh-questions in English, which does not seem to arise out of L1 Mongolian or L2 Russian. The linguistic behavior anticipated in Universal Grammar was to mark the LD wh-questions in English with a wh-expletive sort of what in matrix clause and with the meaningful wh-word in embedded clause such as *What do you think who Julianne likes?, instead of Who do you think Julianne likes? These rare L3 data in English were gathered from eight L1 Mongolian college students who already had working knowledge in L2 Russian. A cross-sectional oral-translation method was employed to elicit the data of L2 Russian and L3 English, which was further analyzed with the One-Sample Kolmogorov-Smirnov test to tell apart the group difference. According to the statistical analysis, the participants seemed to employ the L2 Russian grammar in the production of LD wh-questions in L3 English, but they selected the different wh-expletive what, not how as in L2 Russian. Since many other natural languages (Hungarian, German, Romani, among others) do employ what as the wh-expletive to mark their LD wh-questions, this study concludes that the participants somehow selected the linguistic option that is available in natural languages, but not available in their L1 Mongolian and L2 Russian.