This article reports initial findings from a study that uses written data from second language (L2) learners of English at different proficiency levels (CEFR A1 to C1) in a large-scale investigation of verb-argument construction (VAC) emergence. The findings provide insights into first VACs in L2 learner production, changes in the learners’ VAC repertoire from low to high proficiency levels, and changes in learners’ dominant verb-VAC associations from low to high proficiency levels. The article also addresses the question what role formulaic sequences play in the L2 acquisition of VACs. Data analyses indicate that, from lowest to highest proficiency levels, the VAC repertoire of L2 English learners shows an increase in VAC types, growth in VAC productivity and complexity, and a development from predominantly fixed sequences to more flexible and productive ones. The findings help to expand our understanding of the processes that underlie construction acquisition in an L2 context.
(2009) Usage-based and emergentist approaches to language acquisition. Linguistics,
(2010) Language, Usage and Cognition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Chen, D., & Manning, C. D.
(2014) A fast and accurate dependency parser using neural networks. In Proceedings of the 2014 Conference on Empirical Methods on Natural Language Processing (EMNLP) (pp. 740–750). Retrieved from [URL] (last accessed April 2019).
Council of Europe
(2001) Common European Framework of Reference for Languages: Learning, Teaching, Assessment. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
(2008–) The Corpus of Contemporary American English (COCA): 560 million words, 1990-present. Available online at [URL] (last accessed April 2019).
de Marneffe, M.-C., & Manning, C. D.
(2008) Stanford typed dependencies manual (revised for the Stanford Parser v. 3.5.2 in April 2015). Retrieved from [URL] (last accessed April 2019).
Díez-Bedmar, M. B.
(2012) The use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages to evaluate compositions in the English exam section of the university admissions examination. Revista de Educación,
Eeg-Olofsson, M., & Altenberg, B.
(1994) Discontinuous recurrent word combinations in the London-Lund Corpus. In U. Fries, G. Tottie, & P. Schneider (Eds.), Creating and Using English Language Corpora: Papers from the Fourteenth International Conference on English Language Research on Computerized Corpora (pp. 63–77). Amsterdam: Rodopi.
Ellis, N. C.
(2002) Frequency effects in language processing: A review with implications for theories of implicit and explicit language acquisition. Studies in Second Language Acquisition,
Ellis, N. C.
(2003) Constructions, chunking, and connectionism: The emergence of second language structure. In C. J. Doughty & M. H. Long (Eds.), The Handbook of Second Language Acquisition (pp. 63–103). Malden, MA: Blackwell.
(2009) Language emergence: Implications for applied linguistics – Introduction to the special issue. Applied Linguistics,
Ellis, N. C., & O’Donnell, M. B.
(2014) Construction learning as category learning: A cognitive analysis. In T. Herbst, H. J. Schmid & S. Faulhaber (Eds.), Constructions Collocations Patterns (pp. 71–97). Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton.
Ellis, N. C., O’Donnell, M. B., & Römer, U.
(2013) Usage-based language: Investigating the latent structures that underpin acquisition. Language Learning,
(Supp. 1), 25–51.
Ellis, N. C., Römer, U., & O’Donnell, M. B.
(2016) Usage-based Approaches to Language Acquisition and Processing: Cognitive and Corpus Investigations of Construction Grammar. Malden, MA: Wiley.
Eskildsen, S. W.
(2009) Constructing another language: Usage-based linguistics in second language acquisition. Applied Linguistics,
Eskildsen, S. W.
(2012) L2 negation constructions at work. Language Learning,
Eskildsen, S. W., & Cadierno, T.
(2007) Are recurring multi-word expressions really syntactic freezes? Second language acquisition from the perspective of usage-based linguistics. In M. Nenonen & Niemi, S. (Eds.). Collocations and Idioms 1. Papers from the First Nordic Conference on Syntactic Freezes (pp. 86–99). Joensuu: Joensuu University Press.
Eskildsen, S. W., Cadierno, T., & Li, P.
(2015) On the development of motion constructions in four learners of L2 English. In T. Cadierno & S. W. Eskildsen (Eds.), Usage-based Perspectives on Second Language Learning (pp. 207–232). Berlin: Walter de Gruyter.
Gass, S., & Selinker, L.
(Eds.) (1983) Language Transfer in Language Learning. Rowley, MA: Newbury House.
Geertzen, J., Alexopoulou, T., & A. Korhonen
(2013) Automatic linguistic annotation of large scale L2 databases: The EF-Cambridge Open Language Database (EFCAMDAT). In Selected Proceedings of the 31st Second Language Research Forum (SLRF) (pp. 240–254). Carnegie Mellon University: Cascadilla Press.
Goldberg, A. E.
(1995) Constructions: A Construction Grammar Approach to Argument Structure. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Goldberg, A. E.
(2003) Constructions: A new theoretical approach to language. Trends in Cognitive Science,
Goldberg, A. E.
(2006) Constructions at Work. The Nature of Generalization in Language. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Goldberg, A. E., Casenhiser, D. M., & Sethuraman, N.
(2010) Criterial features in learner corpora: Theory and illustrations. English Profile Journal,
(2011) Conceptual transfer: Crosslinguistic effects in categorization and construal. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition,
1(Special Issue), 1–8.
(2013) Crosslinguistic influence and multilingualism. In C. A. Chapelle (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell. Retrieved from [URL] (last accessed April 2019).
Jarvis, S., & Pavlenko, A.
(2008) Crosslinguistic Influence in Language and Cognition. New York, NY: Routledge.
Kumar, U., Kumar, V., & Kapur, J. N.
(1986) Normalized measures of entropy. International Journal of General Systems,
(2016) Measuring Syntactic Development in L2 Writing: Fine Grained Indices of Syntactic Complexity and Usage-Based Indices of Syntactic Sophistication (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA.
Kyle, K., & Crossley, S.
(2017) Assessing syntactic sophistication in L2 writing: A usage-based approach. Language Testing,
Li, P., Eskildsen, S. W., & Cadierno, T.
(2014) Tracing an L2 learner’s motion constructions over time: A usage-based classroom investigation. The Modern Language Journal,
Lieven, E., Pine, J. M., & Baldwin, G.
(1997) Lexically-based learning and early grammatical development. Journal of Child Language,
(2013) L1 Influence and Individual Variation in the L2 Accuracy Development of Grammatical Morphemes: Insights from Learner Corpora (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). University of Cambridge, UK.
2022. English verb-argument construction profiles in a specialized academic corpus: Variation by genre and discipline. English for Specific Purposes 66 ► pp. 94 ff.
Huang, Lingmin & Yuanke Li
2023. Revisiting the relationships of n-gram measures to L2 writing proficiency: Comparisons between genres and connections to vocabulary levels. System 118 ► pp. 103136 ff.
Li, Yuan Ke & An Bang Fang
2022. Synergistic effects of multiword sequences structure, function, frequency and association on raters’ evaluations of essay quality. Frontiers in Psychology 13
Liu, Yingying & Xiaofei Lu
2020. N1 of N2 constructions in academic written discourse: A pattern grammar analysis. Journal of English for Academic Purposes 47 ► pp. 100893 ff.
Liu, Yingying & Kevin McManus
2023. Investigating the psychological reality of argument structure constructions and N1 of N2 constructions: a comparison between L1 and L2 speakers of English. Cognitive Linguistics 34:3-4 ► pp. 503 ff.
2023. Data-driven learning (DDL) activities: do they truly promote EFL students’ writing skills development?. Education and Information Technologies 28:10 ► pp. 13179 ff.
2021. Data-driven learning – a call for a broader research gaze. Language Teaching 54:2 ► pp. 259 ff.
O'Keeffe, Anne & Geraldine Mark
2022. Principled pattern curation to guide data-driven learning design. Applied Corpus Linguistics 2:3 ► pp. 100028 ff.
Park, Ji-Hyun & Min-Chang Sung
2023. Expansion of verb-argument construction repertoires in L2 English writing. International Review of Applied Linguistics in Language Teaching 0:0
2022. Applied corpus linguistics for language acquisition, pedagogy, and beyond. Language Teaching 55:2 ► pp. 233 ff.
2023. Usage‐Based Approaches to Second Language Acquisition Vis‐à‐Vis Data‐Driven Learning. TESOL Quarterly
Sun, Kun & Xiaofei Lu
2021. Assessing Lexical Psychological Properties in Second Language Production: A Dynamic Semantic Similarity Approach. Frontiers in Psychology 12
Sun, Kun & Rong Wang
2021. Using the Relative Entropy of Linguistic Complexity to Assess L2 Language Proficiency Development. Entropy 23:8 ► pp. 1080 ff.
Tan, Yi & Ute Römer
2022. Using phrase-frames to trace the language development of L1 Chinese learners of English. System 108 ► pp. 102844 ff.
Wu, Tianqi & Min Wang
2022. Development of the progressive construction in Chinese EFL learners’ written production: From prototypes to marginal members. Corpus Linguistics and Linguistic Theory 18:2 ► pp. 307 ff.
Wu, Xiaofang, Kunxue Xiao, Min Wang & Lifen Yang
2023. A corpus-driven study of lexicalization models of English intransitive verbs. Frontiers in Psychology 13
This list is based on CrossRef data as of 26 november 2023. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers.
Any errors therein should be reported to them.