Does it ‘feel’ non-native?
Native-speaker perceptions of information-structural transfer in L1 Dutch advanced EFL writing
Previous studies on information-structural transfer in texts produced by Dutch advanced learners of English as a Foreign Language (EFL) have found that one of the defining features in learners’ writing is a marked use of initial adverbials. The present study investigates the effect of this hypothesized L1 interference on native speakers’ perceptions. In line with Rosén (2006), it was hypothesized that the frequency and contextual use of clause-initial place adverbials in L1 Dutch EFL writing would lead native speakers of English to judge texts to be less coherent, continuous, and native-like than texts written by native speakers. Our qualitative and quantitative empirical study demonstrates that native speakers are not necessarily aware of initial adverbials and are more concerned with other elements of the text that influence cohesion and flow. This new perspective on information-structural transfer forms a starting point for further research into the communicative effect of interlanguage features.
Keywords: English as a Foreign Language (EFL), Dutch, second language acquisition, information structure, transfer, writing, pragmatics
Published online: 30 December 2017
Biber, D., Johansson, S., Leech, G., Conrad, S., & Finnegan, E.
Bohnacker, U. & Rosén, C.
Dreschler, G., & Hebing, R.
Hannay, M., & Keizer, M. E.
Krifka, M., & Musan, R.
Los, B., & Dreschler, G.
Van Vuuren, S., & De Vries, R.
Van Vuuren, S., & Laskin, L.
Van Vuuren, S., & Berns, J.
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