This course will analyze the cognitive processes involved in the acquisition of Asian languages as second or foreign languages. We will start with discussion of first language acquisition and compare it with second language acquisition (SLA). Methodologies such as contrastive analysis and error analysis, and concepts such as interlanguage, native and non-native competence, bilingual competence, acceptability, correctness, standard language will be critically examined. We will also consider the variables that affect SLA, including age, context, exposure, attitude, cognition, attention and motivation. Special attention will be given to the applicability of current research paradigms and findings to the acquisition of languages such as Chinese, Japanese, Korean, and Hindi, both in terms of their structural characteristics and in their socio-cultural context.


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