Theories of Language Acquisition Essay

Theories of Language Acquisition Essay

Length: 697 words (2 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Theories of Language Acquisition


The theories of language acquisition are essentially centred around
the nature nurture argument.

The theory that children have an innate capacity for language was
created by Noam Chomsky (1928- ) an American linguistic. This nativist
approach states that learning language is part of the genetic makeup
of human species and is nearly independent of any particular
experience which may occur after birth. Once a childs brain has been
exposed to speech for the very first time it will receive and make
sense of these utterances, due to its particular programming. Chomsky
believes that there is a language acquisition device somwehre in the
brain which enables children to distinguish between linguistically
acceptable and non-acceptable language.it also provides children with
the basic rules of grammar that govern the use of language, which are
exacted through trial and error.

The nativists belive that this language acquisition device explains
why all normal children acquire language during the same time period
in a certain order and for the fact that children can understand new
sentences and formations of sentences without ever having had
experience of them before.

It is evident, however that there are many weaknesses with this
theory; primarily that it is not a complete enough theory to explain
the whole of language acquisition. It does notr explain why socially
deprived and isolated children, for example geneie, have non-existant
language skills. even when they were reintroduced into society, they
failed to acquire much more than a very basic level of linguistic
knowledge. If this theory was co...


... middle of paper ...


...thought and
language. Being exposed to this interaction at first will eventually
enable them to build their inner resources. Adults, whilst talking to
children alter the way they speak to allow room for the child to take
part in a conversation. For example they use simplified utterances,
distinctive intonation patterns and questions which invite direct
participation. Adults also expand on the child’s speech which has been
proven to increase his/her awareness of grammatical structures. This
child directed speaach is an important means of creating a positive
relationship between parent and child, which forms the basis for
future communication.

However, Piaget greatly disagreed with child directed speech,
believing it to be an impoverished form of speech, not allowing
children to learn the correct forms of language.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

The Second Language Acquisition Theories Essays

- Second Language Acquisition Theories (Summarization of Cummins’ and Krashen 's Theories and Implications to ELL)
 According to Cummins, the first type of communication is Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills (BICS) and it pertains to the social development of a language which can normally be attained fairly quickly within the first few years of acquiring a new language. The social conversations are usually informal forms of communicating where individuals use this type of communicating when speaking or listening to another individual face to face where the vocabulary content is less difficult....   [tags: Language acquisition, Linguistics]

Better Essays
1111 words (3.2 pages)

Essay on Teaching Theories of Language Acquisition

- Understanding the meaning of a word is a key part of communicative ability and is extremely important for both the construction and conception of a foreign language. To learn a word, one needs to know about its general usage and situational limitations, know its original form and the forms that can be derived from it, the networks it can form with other words and, all the meanings of this particular word(Richards 1976 cited in Ghazal, no date). In relation to the importance of vocabulary learning, Pikulski and Templeton suggested that students learning new words will lead to improve listening, speaking, reading and writing vocabularies....   [tags: vocabulary, applications, phones]

Better Essays
3053 words (8.7 pages)

Questions On Second Language Acquisition Theories Essay

- P1.A1. Second Language Acquisition Theories Steven Krashen developed 5 theories of Second Language Development. The Acquisition-Learning Hypothesis states that people acquire language naturally, without any formal training, simply through their interactions with others (Freeman and Freeman p.62). Language learning, however, is a more complex process which requires instruction. Both of these processes are necessary for a person to acquire a second language. Implications for teaching include creating authentic social interaction time with peers in the classroom, collaboration with peers, modeling appropriate language use and using repetition (Vose)....   [tags: Language acquisition, Linguistics]

Better Essays
1043 words (3 pages)

Theories of Language Acquisition Essay

- Theories of Language Acquisition The theories of language acquisition are essentially centred around the nature nurture argument. The theory that children have an innate capacity for language was created by Noam Chomsky (1928- ) an American linguistic. This nativist approach states that learning language is part of the genetic makeup of human species and is nearly independent of any particular experience which may occur after birth. Once a childs brain has been exposed to speech for the very first time it will receive and make sense of these utterances, due to its particular programming....   [tags: Papers]

Better Essays
697 words (2 pages)

Second Language Acquisition Theories And Supports Many Of The Six Proposals

- The proposal that I believe in the most is Get It Right in the End. The main reason why I identify with this proposal is because in my opinion it seems to touch upon several different second language acquisition theories and supports many of the six proposals. Lightbown and Spada (2006) discussed how this proposal believed in the idea that certain language features, such as pronunciation or certain aspects of grammar will arise naturally if the student has the proper exposure. They also believe that students need the proper motivation in order to successfully acquire a language....   [tags: Linguistics, Language acquisition]

Better Essays
781 words (2.2 pages)

Three Main Theories of Child Language Acquisition Essay

- There are three main theories of child language acquisition; Cognitive Theory, Imitation and Positive Reinforcement, and Innateness of Certain Linguistic Features (Linguistics 201). All three theories offer a substantial amount of proof and experiments, but none of them have been proven entirely correct. The search for how children acquire their native language in such a short period of time has been studied for many centuries. In a changing world, it is difficult to pinpoint any definite specifics of language because of the diversity and modification throughout thousands of millions of years....   [tags: cognitive theory,imitation,positive reinforcement]

Better Essays
892 words (2.5 pages)

Essay Analysis of Learning Experience with Theories of SLA

- 1. Introduction Different from foreign language learning, second language acquisition (SLA) refers to “the learning of a nonnative language in the environment in which that language is spoken” (Gass, 2001, P. 5). According to the research timeline conducted by Myles (2010), the theories of second language acquisition date back to 1957 when Skinner (i.e., the representative of modern behaviorism) proposes stimulus-operant-response (S-O-R) theory emphasizing imitation and habit-formation, which is then intensely critiqued by Chomsky asserting that children are born with ability to acquire language and they can create new sentences besides imitation....   [tags: theories of second language acquisition]

Better Essays
2321 words (6.6 pages)

Theories in Second Language Acquisition by James P. Lantolf and Steven L. Thorne

- ... It starts with a brief introduction about the theory then some detailed information. SCT focuses on how language(s) learned through mediated process on human mentality by taking part in cultural activities, which include interaction. The next point they stated is the theory and its constructs, which are mediation, internalization, and imitation. Mediation has a deep connection with SCT, and it is basically the use of tools that human needs to mediate their own psychological activity. Weather it is physical or symbolic tools....   [tags: cultural knowledge, ]

Better Essays
609 words (1.7 pages)

Essay about The Field Of Second Language Acquisition

- The role of input: Many theories in the field of second language acquisition highlight Krashen’s input hypothesis in some degree and focus on how an L2 learner uses the input they are exposed to whether spoken or written. Krashen’s theory of input is a fundamental approach to SLA along side the interaction hypothesis which transfer raw data into the production of language (output) directed by feedback. According to Krashen, the input hypothesis is the answer to how the natural order hypothesis takes place which assists L2 learner to moves from one stage to the next in SLA....   [tags: Linguistics, Second language acquisition]

Better Essays
793 words (2.3 pages)

Literacy And Learning Theories And Frameworks Essay

- Literacy and ESOL Theories and Frameworks Research Report I carried out a research into theories and principles relating to language acquisition and learning, and literacy learning and development. I then analysed associated teaching approaches relating to both areas. Teaching methods are based upon notions about learning. Second language learning theories teaching methods are closely related to concepts about learning a first language. It is important for a teacher to be aware of the theories available in order to make informed practical choices....   [tags: Linguistics, Language acquisition]

Better Essays
1533 words (4.4 pages)