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Children’s Grammatical Sensitivity to the Uninterpretable Case Feature in Korean Long Form Negation: A Pilot Study

  • Global Creative Leader: Education & Learning
  • Abbr : GCL
  • 2020, 10(2), pp.267-289
  • DOI : 10.34226/gcl.2020.10.2.267
  • Publisher : Research Institute for Gifted & Talented Education, Soongsil University
  • Research Area : Social Science > Education
  • Received : May 14, 2020
  • Accepted : June 9, 2020
  • Published : June 30, 2020

Choe Mun-Hong 1

1전남대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

The purpose of this study was to investigate child language learners’ sensitivity to grammatical constraints that are not sufficiently evident in the input that they receive. The uninterpretable feature involved in Korean long-form negation was taken into consideration, where the choice of the nominative –ka or the accusative –ul alternates in association with verb type. Five preschool children (ages between 4;8 and 5;6) were asked to perform an oral repetition task along with a judgment-and-correction task, through which an observation was made to determine if they are sensitive to the grammaticality in question. The results revealed that although there was a measurable degree of individual difference, all the children sensitively discerned grammatical and ungrammatical forms. In particular, they often dropped illegitimate case markers when repeating sentences containing them, implying that they have a firm internal representation of relevant syntactic well-formedness.

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