Stress assignment in the Spanish and English interlanguages

2001 2001

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Abstract (summary)

The objective of this dissertation is to determine how and to what extent the factors involved in primary stress assignment in nouns interact in the Spanish and English interlanguages. Both transfer and developmental factors are studied. The former include: L1 stress rule application in the L2 and L1 cognate stress transfer to the L2. The developmental factors considered are: L2 stress rule application and knowledge of the L2 marked stress.

The analysis is based on Harris and Hayes's theoretical descriptions for the Spanish and English stress systems, respectively, and on Dresher and Kaye's parametric model.

The sample consisted of 58 University of Massachusetts' students of Spanish: 30 beginners and 28 from the intermediate level; and 64 Simón Bolívar University's students of English: 32 from each level.

The general hypothesis, according to which in the Spanish and English interlanguages' stress assignment of nouns, transfer and developmental factors interact in such a way that the former are more decisive at the beginning levels and the latter, at the intermediate, was proven.

It was also found that in the first stages, learners rely on phonological rather than morphological information in finding out the second language stress system.

In the light of the Theory of Principles and Parameters, the results of this study show that L2 learners can reset their parameter values: from the unmarked to the marked setting and vice versa.

Finally, it is concluded that language idiosyncratic properties which lie outside the core grammar, such as: language specific conditions, prespecified metrical information in the lexicon, morphological considerations, etc. require systematic and intensive instruction and practice, since they constitute the main sources of error.

Indexing (details)

Bilingual education;
Multicultural education
0290: Linguistics
0282: Bilingual education
0282: Multicultural education
Identifier / keyword
Education; Language, literature and linguistics; English; Interlanguages; Phonology; Spanish; Spanish text; Stress assignment
Stress assignment in the Spanish and English interlanguages
Gonzalez, Jorge Enrique
Number of pages
Publication year
Degree date
School code
DAI-A 62/09, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
9780493392165, 0493392165
D'Introno, Francesco
University of Massachusetts Amherst
University location
United States -- Massachusetts
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Document type
Dissertation/thesis number
ProQuest document ID
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
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