An overview of the age factor and its pedagogical implications for vocabulary acquisition
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DepartamentoUniversidad de Granada. Departamento de Filologías Inglesa y Alemana
Critical periodPeriodo críticoAge factorFactor edadSecond language acquisitionAdquisición de segundas lenguasLexiconLéxicoVocabularyVocabularioAge effectsEfectos de la edadInstructed settingsInstrucción en el aula
SponsorshipTrabajo fin de máster. Universidad de Granada. Departamento de Filologías Inglesa y Alemana. Curso académico 2010-2011.
This research deals with the age effects on the acquisition of vocabulary as a second language in an instructed setting. The literature review on the age factor in reference to vocabulary acquisition shows an advantage of the late starters over the early starters in instructed settings. However, early starters surpass late starters in naturalistic settings in the long run when the basic conditions are fulfilled. Under the light of these assumptions, this study tries to show how late starters outperform early starters in instructed settings. The study made in this assignment is an adapted replication from the one conducted by Miralpeix in 2006. Measures such as Type-Token ratio or lexical density have been obtained via VocabProfile (Nation, 1995) and several comparisons have been done between late and early starters. The study differs from the one of Miralpeix in the number of activities that were given to the students. Moreover, new measures were obtained such as tokens per family and types per family. Findings suggest that there is an advantage of late starters over early starters in measures such as type token ratio although this fact must be taken cautiously because this study does not focus on ultimate attainment, a state in which early starters are usually better than late starters, but on rate. To finish with, some pedagogical implications in relation to age effects are exposed.