Article published in:EUROSLA Yearbook: Volume 9 (2009)
Edited by Leah Roberts, Georges Daniel Véronique, Anna Nilsson and Marion Tellier
[EUROSLA Yearbook 9] 2009
► pp. 4–32
Connectionist modelling of Aspect acquisition in Italian L2
Within the long tradition of second language acquisition (SLA) research on the development of the category of Aspect (Dietrich et al. 1995; Giacalone Ramat 2002), the present study compares the acquisitional pattern observed in learners of Italian L2 and those obtained by connectionist simulations, namely unsupervised neural networks, Self Organizing Maps, SOMs (Kohonen 2001). The research tests empirically whether SOMs can display the emergence of Aspect in the interlanguage produced by German-speaking and Spanish-speaking L2 learners and the interaction between Aspect, Actionality and Grounding in this development. The convergence between connectionist modelling and learners’ patterns provides evidence for the interaction that exists between data-driven mechanisms and cognitive principles in the complex process of second language acquisition.
Published online: 31 July 2009
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