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1 EXAMINING THE EFFECT OF INSTRUCTION OF ENGLISH METALINGUISTIC TERMINOLOGY ON GRAMMAR PERFORM ANCE IN BEGINNING FRENCH By ALISON MARIE CLIFTON A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR IDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2007
2 2007 Alison Marie Clifton
3 With gratitude to my parents for their love and encouragement
4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I wish to express my gratitude to the faculty and staff in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures for their support throughout the writing process. I am also grateful for the encouragement that I received from fami ly and friends. I thank you for your unwavering faith in me.
5 TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS...............................................................................................................4 LIST OF TABLES................................................................................................................. ..........7 LIST OF FIGURES................................................................................................................ .........8 ABSTRACT....................................................................................................................... ..............9 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION..................................................................................................................10 2 CONTENT ANALYSIS.........................................................................................................20 3 METHODOLOGY.................................................................................................................28 Survey......................................................................................................................... ............28 Participants................................................................................................................... ...29 Materials...................................................................................................................... ....29 Procedure...................................................................................................................... ...29 Experimental Study............................................................................................................. ...30 Participants................................................................................................................... ...31 Materials...................................................................................................................... ....32 Procedure...................................................................................................................... ...34 Control group...........................................................................................................34 Experimental group..................................................................................................34 Assessment..................................................................................................................... .35 4 RESULTS........................................................................................................................ .......38 Survey......................................................................................................................... ............38 Experimental Study............................................................................................................. ...43 5 CONCLUSION..................................................................................................................... ..54 APPENDIX A SURVEY......................................................................................................................... .......58 B INFORMED CONSENT FORMS.........................................................................................59 C SCRIPTS AND POWERPOINT PRESENTATIONS...........................................................61 D ASSESSMENTS.................................................................................................................... .66
6 LIST OF REFERENCES............................................................................................................. ..68 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH.........................................................................................................69
7 LIST OF TABLES Table Page 2-1 Metalinguistic terminology used in the gr ammar explanations of four beginning level French texts................................................................................................................... .....27 3-1 Characteristics of survey participants................................................................................37 3-2 Characteristics of study participants..................................................................................37 4-1 Percentage of survey participants able to correctly identify terms....................................49 4-2 Comparison of percentages of survey partic ipants able to correct ly identify terms..........50 4-3 Mean scores of the total number of questi ons answered correctly....................................53 4-4 Mean scores of the numbe r of correct elements include d in participant responses...........53
8 LIST OF FIGURES Figure Page 4-1 Number of grammatical items correct ly identified by surv ey participants........................48 4-2 Comparison of percentages of survey partic ipants able to correct ly identify terms..........51 4-3 Number of grammatical items correctly id entified by participants with four or more years of foreign language study.........................................................................................52 4-4 Number of grammatical items correctly iden tified by participants with less than four years of language study......................................................................................................52
9 Abstract of Thesis Presen ted to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts EXAMINING THE EFFECT OF INSTRUCTION OF ENGLISH METALINGUISTIC TERMINOLOGY ON GRAMMAR PERFORM ANCE IN BEGINNING FRENCH By Alison Marie Clifton August 2007 Chair: Hlne Blondeau Major: French This study examines the effect of instruct ion of metalinguistic terminology on students ability to understand L2 grammar. The study consis ts of three distinct in vestigations. First, a content analysis of four firstyear French textbooks was conducte d to investigate the type of terminology employed in grammar presentations a nd the extent to which this terminology is defined. Next, a survey was conducted which aimed to assess beginning French learners knowledge of grammatical terminology. Finally, an empirical investigation was conducted in order to determine the effect of instruction of metalinguistic terminology on students ability to form the pass compos and imparfait French tenses.
10 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION Grammar instruction has played a vital role in classroom language teaching for many years. This tradition has been maintained and is apparent in the gramma r explanations that are present in many of the foreign language textbook s used in language classrooms today. Many language textbooks have maintained a traditiona l approach to presenting grammar, including using metalinguistic, or grammatical, terminology in explaining grammatical features. All the while, however, students seem to be entering langua ge classrooms with li ttle or no knowledge of the meaning of these terms, making these gr ammar explanations difficult to comprehend. This paper examines the relationship betw een the metalinguistic terminology that many foreign language textbooks em ploy in presenting grammar and the extent to which students understand the meaning of those metalinguistic term s. Furthermore, the paper investigates the effect of instruction of metali nguistic terminology on students comprehension of L2 grammar. The paper seeks to explore whether instructi on aimed at increasing students knowledge of grammatical metalanguage helps stud ents in learning L2 grammar. Over the past sixty years a variety of appro aches to foreign language teaching have been developed and applied for use within language cl assrooms. These approaches have espoused a range of attitudes concerning the importance of grammar instruction. Shrum and Glisan (2005) classify the progression of appro aches to foreign language instruc tion according to the period in which each approach emerged. One of the first documented approaches to foreign language instru ction was the grammartranslation method. This method was the preferre d method of instruction until the turn of the twentieth century. The approach was employed in the teaching of both Greek and Latin and stressed translation, the study of grammar rules, and rote learning of vocabulary terms (41). The
11 development of grammatical proficiency was a ce ntral focus of this me thod. Specifically, the grammar-translation method strove to develop students ability to identify grammatical elements of the target language using the correct metalinguistic, or grammatical, terminology. Beginning in the 1940s, the focus of language in struction shifted with the introduction of the audiolingual method. This approach aimed to develop students proficiency in the areas of listening and speaking through the use of stimul us-response learning: repetition, dialogue memorization, and manipulation of gr ammatical pattern drills (41). In contrast to the grammartranslation method, language teache rs using the audiolingual method were not expected to devote large amounts of class time to e xplicit grammar instruction. Instea d, learners received structured grammatical input through the use of repetition, dialogues, and pattern dr ills. Due to the high priority placed on this type of stimulus-response learning, the majo rity of student speech was not spontaneous, but rather tended to be quite scripted and unnatural. The cognitive approach of the 1960s encour aged more meaningful language use and creativity (41). In this view, it was thought th at students ought to become familiar with the grammatical rules of the target la nguage before trying to converse in that language. As a result, the cognitive approach placed a heavy emphasis on the teaching of grammar. Finally, in the 1970s language education sh ifted to an emphasis on improving students ability to effectively communicate in the target language. Proficiency-oriented instruction (Omaggio, 1986) emerged from the communicat ive competence ideology and stressed the importance of being able to use the target language to communicate in authentic contexts. As the emphasis in language education has shifted toward developing students communicative competence, questions have been raised concerning the importance of grammar instruction in the foreign language classroom. If the emphasis in foreign language education has
12 shifted to developing students capacity to comm unicate in the language in real world situations, is grammar instruction necessary ? Is the development of students grammatical competence important in a communicative context? I ndeed, many authors stre ss the importance of grammatical competence in developing comm unicative competence (L ong, 1983; Chastain, 1987; Terrell, 1991; Mohammed, 1996; No rris & Ortega, 2000; Ellis, 2002). Long (1983) evaluates the results from a numb er of previous studi es concerning both instructed and naturalistic L2 le arners. He presents evidence which shows that in general instructed L2 learners attain a higher degree of grammatical competence than naturalistic L2 learners. Based on the experiential evidence offered in his review, Long concludes that substantial support exists that indicates that grammar instruc tion is helpful: (1) for both children and adult learners, (2) for learne rs of all proficiency levels, (3 ) on both integrative and discretepoint assessments, and (4) in both acquisition-ri ch and acquisition-poor contexts (359). Thus, Long concludes that grammar instruction plays an important role in language learning. This conclusion suggests that, contrary to Krashens view of gramma r instruction, the teaching of grammar plays a significant role in learning a foreign language. Based on his own experience as a language instructor, Chastain (1987) argues that grammar instruction can aid lear ners in cultivating their ability to communicate in a second language. He suggests that gramma r explanations that are clear a nd succinct can act as advance organizers and help learners to better gras p the language items that are presented in the classroom. He concludes by advocating that in structors provide opportunities for students to develop both grammatical and communicative comp etence. While Chastain suggests a number of interesting possibilities concerning the role of grammar instruction in developing
13 communicative competence, he does not provide a ny empirical support for his conclusions. As a result, these conclusions shoul d be considered with caution. Terrell (1991) points to some in formal evidence that seems to indicate that adult language learners do not necessarily utilize input to cons truct a grammar as children do. Consequently, he argues that adult language learners would be nefit from grammar in struction within a communicative context: We do not know whether students who are rest ricted to a classroom environment could acquire a verb system as complex as the Romance language systems without EGI [explicit grammar instruction] given th eir necessarily limited amount of exposure to input. My impression is that grammar-focused activitie s are necessary and that classroom students will not come close to the num ber of hours of input necessary for natural acquisition. (60) In his view, grammar instructi on helps adult students in acquiring language by serving as an advance organizer and an input organizer. Howe ver, an examination of the study shows that Terrell does not provide any experi ential evidence to confirm his view that grammar instruction is helpful in L2 learning. Therefore, th ese claims must be viewed with caution. Mohammed (1996) also emphasizes the importa nce of grammar inst ruction in foreign language education. He contrast s naturalistic language learni ng and classroom language learning contexts, pointing to the difference in learners contact time with the language. Due to a lack of contact time with the language faced by students in the languag e classroom, Mohammed argues that grammar instruction could help these students by supplementing the learners natural hypotheses formation and verification process ( 284). However, no experimental evidence is provided to lend support to this claim. In a recent investigation, Norris and Ortega (2000) conducted a meta-analysis of 49 experimental and quasi-experimental studies examining the effectiv eness of L2 instruction. The meta-analysis was motivated by the authors assessment that in spite of the fact that individual studies may boast a large sample size or an intr icate research design, a meta-analysis of studies
14 concerning the effectiveness of L2 instruction c ould offer results with higher validity than one study alone could supply. Although the meta-analysis sought to answer a to tal of six research questions, for the purposes of this study it is important to examine the following two general research questions put forth by the authors: (1) How effectiv e is L2 instruction overall and relative to simple exposure or meaning-driven communication? and (2) What is the relative effectiveness of different types and categories of L2 instruction? (428). In order to answer these questions, Norri s and Ortega synthesized seventy-seven experimental and quasi-experiment al studies by first classifying these studies according to the approach to L2 instruction employed in each. Next, the researchers qua ntitatively summarized the results obtained from these investigations. Then, the averag e effect size of each study was analyzed in order to gauge the extent to which the various approaches to L2 instruction were successful. Finally, confidence in tervals were calculated in order to measure the statistical reliability of the results obtained in each study. Results from the synthesis of studies showed th at focused instruction ge nerally gave rise to considerable increases in the learning of linguistic targets. Moreover, the analysis confirmed the general usefulness of grammar inst ruction in language learning. The quantitative meta-analysis conducted by Norris and Ortega adds to the body of knowledge concerning the effectiveness of L2 instruction by creating a replicable synthesi s of collective data regarding this important question. Ellis (2002) presents an examination of res earch concerning the effects of form-focused instruction on the acquisition of implicit knowle dge. In order to determine whether formfocused instruction contributes to the acquisiti on of implicit knowledge, Ellis analyzed eleven studies that sought to look at th e effect of form-focused inst ruction on learners communicative
15 free production. Although the studie s varied according to different characteristics such as the age of participants and the in structional environment (e.g., imme rsion, university level courses), all studies shared a common variable. That is, all participants had achie ved a level of language proficiency that allowed them the ability to co mmunicate in free-production tasks. Given that learners communicative free production was the measure of acquisition of implicit knowledge, it was essential for all students to be able to communicate in free-production tasks. The eleven studies were analyzed acco rding to six different groupings: (1) the effectiveness of instruction, (2) th e age of participants, (3) the nature of the linguistic target, (4) the scope of the treatment, (5) the type of inst ruction, and (6) the measure of acquisition (e.g., oral vs. written activities) (229). Contrary to the view espoused by Krashen (1981, 1993) that form-focused instruction is capable of cont ributing only to learned, explicit knowledge, the analysis presented by Ellis offers evidence that form-focused instruct ion contributes to both learned and acquired knowledge. Although form-focused instru ction did not prove to be effective in all of the studies (four of the stud ies failed to provide suppor t for the assertion that form-focused instruction contributes to acquired knowledge), Ellis conclude s that the noticing of target structures plays a central role in L2 learning by affecting both explicit and implicit knowledge. These authors agree then that grammar inst ruction and the development of grammatical competency can help to develop students la nguage skills and communicative competence. Although it can be concluded that grammar instruc tion can be beneficial for adult L2 learners, the debate centering on the most beneficial approach to presenting grammar continues. Mohammed (1996) distinguishes be tween three different types of grammar: learner, reference, and pedagogical. Learners grammar signifies a grammar that has been constructed by the
16 learner through the process of detecting grammatical patt erns and creating hypotheses concerning the grammatical rules that govern thos e patterns. In contrast, reference grammar seeks to explain language as completely as possible, often through the use of grammatical analysis and metalinguistic terminology. Pedagogi cal grammar denotes a grammar that has been reduced in scope in order to create simp le explanations that students can grasp. Due to its similarity to learners gra mmar, Mohammed concludes that informal pedagogical grammar may be the most effective form of grammar instruction. In this approach, grammar is reduced in scope and is explaine d using a minimum of metalinguistic terms. According to Mohammed, metalinguistic terms si mply encumber the learning process because students must be familiar with the terminology in order to understand the grammar rules that will then help them to practice and learn the languag e. In this way, learning becomes a three step process: (1) learn the meanings of the grammar terms, (2) learn the grammar rules, (3) apply those rules in order to communicat e in the language. But if th e terms being used in foreign language textbooks are the same traditional gramma r terms that have been used in English grammar textbooks for years, shouldn t students be familiar with them? In keeping with this question, Vande Berg (1999) conducted a survey to explore students familiarity with metalinguistic terms. The survey examined 110 beginning French learners knowledge of ten common grammatical terms. Th e participants were asked to identify one specific grammatical element in each of ten senten ces. The results from the survey reveal that the largest group of survey partic ipants (n = 27, approximately one -fourth of the students) gave correct responses to only four out of the ten questions. Furthermore, the results show that the mean of correct answers given by the 110 beginning French learners was 4.34 and that less than half of the students pinpointed the correct gramma tical element in seven out of the ten sentences
17 (647). Data from the Vande Berg survey im plies that some language students might not understand the meaning of even the most basic grammatical notions such as verb or subject (647). Thus, Vande Berg exposes the disparity between the grammar explanations laden with metalinguistic terminology that are often presen ted in first-year fore ign language texts and learners comprehension of these explanations. Vande Berg concludes that resu lts from her survey have implications for foreign language education. She proposes two opposing approaches for incorporating implications of her study into the language classroom. First, based on the findings revealed in the survey, she suggests that one possible implication may be that wh en teaching a lesson on grammar, foreign language teachers should start the lesson with an examina tion of the grammatical feature in English in order to ensure that students understand the te rminology used in the lesson. Then the teacher could go on to examine the grammatical featur e in the second language being studied. Nevertheless, Vande Berg acknowledges that this approach might not be suitable for a foreign language course, and thus proposes a second, some what contradictory, appr oach to integrating implications of her survey into the classroom. She suggests that it may be appropriate for foreign language teachers to stop using textbooks that focus heavily on grammar, and instead opt for methods that minimize grammar instruction. However, this suggestion must be considered with caution. To propose that grammar should be avoided simply because learners do not understand the terminology used in explaining it s eems unfounded. More research is needed in order to determine the effects of instruc tion of metalinguistic terminology on student performance on grammar tasks in the L2. Thus, my investigation seeks to find answers for the following research questions: (1) Do beginning level French textbooks use metalinguis tic terminology to explain how to form the
18 pass compos and imparfait French tenses? Which metalingui stic terms are used? Do the textbooks provide explanations as to the meaning of these terms? (2) Are students familiar with metalinguistic terminology? Can students identify the following elements in a series of sentences in their L1: adjective, adverb, auxiliary verb, conjugated verb, de finite article, direct object, indirect object, past part iciple, prefix, preposition, root word, subject pronoun and suffix? (3) Do students who receive instruction on the meaning of English grammar terms (e.g., auxiliary verb past participle ) perform better on exercises designe d to test their ability to form the pass compos and imparfait forms in French? In order to answer these research questions, I have conducted a three-fold inves tigation consisting of (1) a cont ent analysis, (2) a survey, and (3) an experimental study. First, an analysis of grammar presentations contained in four beginning level French textbooks was conducted. The goal of the content analysis was to examine (1) the amount and type of metalinguistic terminology contained in the presentation of how to form the pass compos and imparfait French tenses and (2) the degree to which these terms are explained. It was hypothesized that all of the textbooks woul d use metalinguistic terminology in presenting the grammar. However, few, if any, of the te xtbooks would provide ex planations as to the meaning of the metalinguistic terms. Chapter 2 provides the results of the content analysis. Second, to investigate the ex tent of first semester Fr ench students knowledge of grammatical terminology, a survey of ninety-f ive students was conducted. The researcher conjectured that generally, st udents would be unfamiliar with metalinguistic terminology. However, it was posited that student s with significant (4+ years) e xposure to the study of another language would be more familiar with metalingu istic terminology than students who had not studied a foreign language for a significant period of time.
19 Finally, an experimental study wa s conducted in order to examin e the effect of instruction of grammatical terms on students ability to form the French pass compos and imparfait The researcher hypothesized that students who r eceived instruction on me talinguistic terminology (e.g., auxiliary verb past participle ) would perform better on the pos ttest than the group that did not receive the instruction. Chapter 3 provides an overview of the me thodology used to conduct both the survey and experimental study, while Chapter 4 provides th e results of both survey and study. Finally, Chapter 5 presents a discussion of the limitations of this study and the conclusions that can be drawn from the study.
20 CHAPTER 2 CONTENT ANALYSIS Most foreign language textbooks espouse the view that grammar instruction and the development of grammatical competence can help to develop students language skills and communicative competence. Many textbooks use traditional grammatical terms to explain grammar rules. The purpose of this chapter is to examine the grammar presentations provided by several different introductory French language textbooks con cerning how to form both the pass compos and imparfait tenses. Table 2-1 displays the meta linguistic terms used in the grammar explanations of thes e language textbooks. Chez Nous an introductory French textbook, provid es deductive grammar instruction by presenting students with explanati ons of essential French grammati cal concepts. The grammar is presented in English with examples given in Fr ench. Activities are included after the grammar explanation in which students advance from skill-de veloping to skill-using activities (xi). That is to say, students begin with several form-f ocused practice exercises and then proceed to activities that are increasingly meaning-focu sed, thereby integrating the development of communicative competence. In its presentation of the pass compos the text employs several grammar terms. For example, the presentation of the pass compos begins by explaining: To express an action completed in the past, use the pass compos The pass compos is composed of an auxiliary, or helping verb, and the past part iciple of the verb that expresse s the action. Usually, the present tense of avoir is the helping verb (192) The book then provides several examples of the pass compos with the auxiliary verbs and past participles highlighted in boldface. While the book does employ techniques such as these to draw st udents attention to important concepts, it never defines the grammar terms that are used. Begi nning language learners may become frustrated
21 with grammar presentations such as these that make use of unfamiliar terminology without explaining the meaning of these terms. The explanation of the imparfait offered in Chez Nous differs from the books presentation of the pass compos in terms of the number of grammar terms present in the explanation. The short description of how to form the impe rfect tense simply states: To form the imparfait drop the ons ending of the nous form of the present tense and add the imparfait endings. The only exception to this rule is the verb tre which has an irregular stem, t, as shown below (250). Next, the book supplies a chart which disp lays a number of examples of the imparfait with the imperfect stems and endings printed in boldface. In this explanation, the textbook employs only two metalinguistic terms ( tense and verb ), as opposed to the many terms employed in the explanation of the pass compos Portes ouvertes a textbook designed for use in first-ye ar French classes, follows what the authors call an inductive-deductive approach to teaching grammar (xvi). Generally when introducing a grammar lesson, the book first supplies several examples of the new structure, inviting students to try to work out for themselves the grammar rule s that govern the structure. This is the inductive half of the method. The deductive part of the approach, in which the structure is presented explicitly, appear s after the initial set of examples. The books discussion of the pass compos includes many grammatical terms, but nowhere in the discussion does the book provide an explanation of the meaning of these terms. For example, the lesson introduces the pass compos in this way: In French, as in English, there are several ways to talk about the past. One of the mo st common is to use the compound past, called the pass compos The compound past has two parts: the helping verb ( le verbe auxiliaire ) and the past participle ( le participe pass ) (327). This lesson explains that the
22 compound past has two parts (a help ing verb and a past participle), but the text does not clarify the meanings of these terms. Below this brief introduction, examples of the pass compos are provided in the form of an exchange between three people. For exampl e, the first sentence of the exchange reads: Alors, Arnaud, est-ce que tu as achet des cadeaux pour ta famille? (327). The examples of the pass compos are highlighted in boldface and students are asked to find the helping verb and to try to discover how the past participles of regular verbs are formed. The grammar explanation then resumes, stating: As you can see, avoir is used as a helping verb for verbs in the pass compos (327). This explanation serv es to identify one of the ve rbs that can be used as a helping verb in forming the pass compos but does not explain the actual meaning of the term helping verb The book then provides one example each of how to form the past participle of -er, -ir, and-re verbs. There is no explicit description of how to form the past participle; only the three examples are provided, and no explanation is given concerning the meaning of the term past participle Finally, the pass compos is defined using the following formula: SUJET + VERBE AUXILIAIRE + PARTICIPE PASS (328). Notice that th is definition consists entirely of grammatical terms in Fr ench that are never overtly defined. In contrast to the many metalinguist ic terms used in presenting the pass compos the books presentation of the formation of the imparfait uses relatively few metalinguistic terms. Only the terms present tense and verb are used in explaining how to form the imparfait : To form the imparfait replace the ons ending of the nous form of the present tense with the imperfect endings: -ais, -ais, -ait, -ions, -iez, -aient The verb parler is used as an example in the following table (385). However, neither the notion of tense nor the term verb is defined
23 within the presentation. This l ack of explanation may cause diffi culty for students in trying to understand the books explanation of the imperfect tense. The beginning-level French textbook, Parallles presents grammar explicitly and often divides the more complicated grammar lessons into several brief lessons in order to make the material more manageable for students. Prac tice exercises are found at the end of each lesson and range from exercises that cen ter on simply manipulating a part icular grammatical feature to exercises that focus on both grammar and meaning. In this text, as in the texts that were discussed earlier, many grammatical terms are em ployed without providing an explanation as to the meaning of those terms. For example, the explanation of the formation of the pass compos with avoir opens with the following statement: The pass compos is a compound tense formed with two elements: an auxiliary, or helping, verb + a past participle (184). Many students may be unfamiliar with the terms compound tense auxiliary verb helping verb and past participle Nonetheless, the text makes use of these terms without explaining their meaning. The explanation continues: Most Fren ch verbs use the auxiliary verb avoir Although it is used to form a past tense verb, the auxiliary verb is co njugated in the present tense (184). Here, the book explains that one particular verb, the verb avoir can be used as an auxiliary verb in forming the pass compos yet there is no definition provided as to the meaning of the term auxiliary verb In the same way, the book provides severa l charts and examples of how to form the past participle, but never de fines what is meant by the term past participle The lesson on the formation of the imparfait offered in Parallles makes use of a small number of metalinguistic terms, compared with the number of terms used in the books lesson on the formation of the pass compos Among those used in the lesson on the imperfect are the terms simple tense present tense verb and infinitive For example, the de scription of how to
24 form the French imperfect tense star ts with the following statement: The imparfait is a simple tense consisting of a stem + endi ngs. To find the stem, remove ons from the nous -form of the present tense verb, and add the following im perfect endings, which are the same for all French verbs (294). The book then provid es a chart which displays the imparfait endings. Notice that, as was the trend in the textbooks that were examined earlier, there is no definition provided for any of the metalinguistic terms used in the lesson. The beginning French textbook Jveux bien differs slightly from the other textbooks examined due to the emphasis that the program places on student-mediated grammar instruction. The program is made up of two textbooks; one is designed for use within the classroom, while the other is intended for use outside of the classroom. The latter te xt contains all of the grammar explanations, thus shifting the responsibility of grammar instru ction onto the student. Each grammar explanation provides several examples of the grammatical struct ure in question as well as an explicit presentation of the grammar in English. The explanation is followed by a number of mechanical exercises. The grammar presentation on the pass compos provided in the out-o f-class text begins with a dialogue in French that offers contextual ized examples of the past tense. Each of the examples is highlighted in boldface and examples of the pass compos with both avoir and tre are provided. The explanation then begins: In French, to talk a bout actions that occurred in the past, you use the past tense called the pass compos ( compound past ). This tense is called compound because it is made up of two parts: a helping or auxiliary verb which agrees with the subject, and a past participle (145). The book succeeds in explaining the meaning of the term compound tense but does not provide an explanation of the terms helping verb auxiliary verb or past participle Moreover, the book does not review the meaning of the term subject In
25 fact, nowhere in the text is an explicit definition of the term provided. Due to the fact that explicit grammar instruction is student-mediated in this program, it is surprising that the text does not overtly explain the meaning of these terms. The lesson concerning the imperfect tense follows the same format that is used for the lesson on the pass compos First, contextualized examples of the imperfect tense are provided in the form of a short narrative. Then the exam ples are followed by a brief explanation of how to form the past tense. The amount of metalingui stic terminology used in the explanation is minimal, as is apparent in the book s description of how to form the imparfait : To form the imperfect, begin with the nous form of the present tense, drop the ons ending, and add the endings ais, -ais, -ait, -ions, -iez, -aient This rule applies to all French verbs except tre which has the irregular stem t(the endings remain the same, however) (261). A chart presenting examples of the imparfait appears below this description. However, as was the tendency among the other first-year French text books that were examined earlier, this book generally does not provide an explanation or a review of the meanings of the metalinguistic terms that are employed in its grammar presentations. In the four textbooks examined, many of the sa me metalinguistic term s were included in the explanations of the formation of the pass compos and imparfait French tenses. Out of all of the terminology that was used in the explanations of both the pass compos and the imparfait only three concepts ( gender number and compound tense ) were defined. All other metalinguistic terms were never explicitly defined. The lack of explanati on of terms provided in first-year texts leads then to the following questions: Do stud ents understand the metalinguistic terminology contained in the grammar presentati ons of their textbooks? To what extent are
26 students familiar with these terms? The next chapter explains the methodology used in a survey that was conducted in an attempt to find answers to these questions.
27 Table 2-1. Metalinguistic terminology used in th e grammar explanations of four beginning level French texts Chez Nous Portes ouvertes Parallles Jveux bien auxiliary verb helping verb past participle verb present tense infinitive conjugated verb gender number subject pronominal verb noun compound past / compound tense subject pronoun adverb reflexive pronoun reflexive verb simple tense adjective = Term employed in grammar explanation = Definition of term provided
28 CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY The aim of this study is two-fold. First, th e study seeks to determine the extent of first semester French students knowledge of grammati cal terminology. In orde r to investigate the extent to which students are familiar with me talinguistic terminology, a survey of ninety-five beginning French learners was conducted. The first section of this chapter describes that survey. The second goal of the study is to determine the effect of instruction of grammatical terms on students ability to understand L2 gramma r. An experimental study was conducted to investigate whether students w ho receive instruction on the meaning of E nglish grammar terms (e.g., auxiliary verb past participle ) perform better on exercises desi gned to test their ability to form the pass compos and imparfait forms in French. The second section of this chapter reports on the method used in conducting the experimental study. Survey During the first phase of the study, a survey was conducted to esta blish participants knowledge of grammatical terms. The survey was adapted from Camille Kennedy Vande Bergs survey (1999). The questionnaire aimed to test participants on te rms that they would likely come across in the grammar explanations provide d in their foreign language textbook. This questionnaire was selected in order to compare this studys findings with those presented in Vande Berg and to observe whether the resu lts obtained in this study would support or undermine Vande Bergs findings. A few additional items (e.g., Name, E-mail address) were added to Part 1 of the survey. These items were added in order to solicit more information from survey participants. In addition to the extra items in Part 1, three sentences were added to the ten sentences in Part 2 of the Vande Berg questionnaire. The three sentence s were added in order to test participants
29 knowledge of the terms prefix suffix and root word terms that may be employed when explaining how to form the French pass compos and imparfait Participants The participants in the survey were ninety-fiv e students (34 males, 61 females) enrolled in beginning French at the University of Florida. Table 3-1 displays characteristics of the survey participants. The background information section of the survey showed that thirteen of the ninety-five students (13.7 %) had a native language other than E nglish. Two students listed both English and one other language (Italian and Spanis h) as native languages. Sixty-one of the ninety-five students (64.2 %) had previously studied Spanish, twenty-four (25.3 %) had studied French, six (6.3 %) had studied Latin, five ( 5.3 %) had studied German, three (3.2 %) had studied Italian, two (2.1 %) had studied Arabic, two (2.1 %) had studied Greek, one (1.1 %) had studied Hebrew and one (1.1 %) had studied Swedish. Materials Survey participants were provided with a shor t questionnaire in which they were requested to identify a specific part of speech in a particular sentence (e.g., Sentence 1: We often write to them about our classes. Circle the subject pronoun in sentence 1 .) The questionnaire consisted of thirteen sentences. To view the complete survey, please see Appendix A. Surveys were scored by hand and learners were assessed by the nu mber of parts of speech that they correctly identified. Procedure In order to gain an idea of the amount of know ledge that first-semester French learners have of the specialized language of grammar, thes e learners were asked to participate in a brief survey. Due to the fact that the surveys were conducted during the second week of classes, the survey was written in English in order to co ntrol for student comprehension in French.
30 Additionally, as Vande Berg asse rts, many first-year French te xts present grammar in English (646). As a result, many stude nts come across English, rather than French, terms in the explanations of grammar provided by these first-year French prim ers. According to Vande Berg, the survey was created to be clear and strai ght-forward with all sentences centering on the subject of education and college life (646). This topic was chosen in an effort to help the participants of the study (univers ity students) connect with the c ontext of the sentences contained in the survey. Students from five beginning level French classe s were asked to partic ipate in the survey. To control for feelings of coercion among the students, the researcher did not ask her own students to participate in the survey. In accord ance with the policies of the Institutional Review Board at the University of Florida, prior to re ceiving the survey, the stud ents who were asked to participate were informed that th eir participation in the study was completely voluntary and they did not have to answer any question that they did not wish to answer. Appendix B contains a copy of the Informed Consent form that all studen ts had to sign in order to participate in the survey. Experimental Study The second part of the study was experimental in nature. It was designed to examine any effects that the instruction of grammatical terminology may have on students ability to understand L2 grammar. The goal of the experime nt was to compare two groups of students (the experimental group, in which students received instruction on the meani ng of English grammar terms, e.g., auxiliary verb past participle and the control group, in which students did not receive instruction on the meaning of these terms). Both groups were instructed on how to form two French past tenses (the pass compos and the imparfait ) and both were given a posttest to gauge how well they were able to form these tenses.
31 Participants The participants selected for the study had to demonstrate a low level of metalinguistic knowledge, as it was hypothesized that instruct ion of metalinguistic vocabulary would aid students in their ability to form both the pass compos and the imparfait If participants already had a high level of metalinguistic knowledge, instruction of grammatical terminology would likely have no effect on their ability to form the two past tenses. Secondly, due to the fact that students in both the experimental and control gr oups were given a lesson in French grammar, study participants were required to be enrolled in Beginning French 1, an introductory French course for students with little to no experience in French. Undoubtedly, students with an advanced or even intermediate level knowledge of French would have had an advantage on the posttest. Finally, it was thought th at study participants should be native English speakers in order to control for comprehension of the two le ssons given in English and the posttests, which were written in English. Of the ninety-five students who participated in the survey, twenty-nine were found to have low metalinguistic knowledge. In this st udy, students were identified as having low metalinguistic knowledge if they an swered incorrectly seven or mo re of the thirteen questions included in the survey. Of the twenty-nin e students demonstrating low metalinguistic knowledge, twenty-four students (twelve male a nd twelve female students) qualified to participate in the study. In addition to low meta linguistic knowledge, all study participants were enrolled in French 1130: Beginning French 1 and we re native speakers of English. Participants were selected based on these criteri a in order to control for these variables. Of the twenty-four students who qualified, nine (five ma le and four female) students c hose to take part in the study. Table 3-2 displays characterist ics of the study participants.
32 Materials A set of scripts and PowerPoint presentations was used to teach the lesson on grammatical terminology and the lesson on the formation of the pass compos and the imparfait Scripts were employed in order to control for differences in teaching style of the two instructors who administered the study. Furthermore, the script s allowed the instructors to communicate all of the necessary information to par ticipants without havi ng to know the objectiv e of the study. This helped to control for instructor bias. The scripts used to t each the lessons can be found in Appendix C. The PowerPoint slide shows were used to teach both the lesson on grammatical terminology and the lesson on the formation of the pass compos and the imparfait They were intended to provide participants with explanations and examples of the grammar in a controlled manner. The PowerPoint slides were designed to control for any vari ation between the two groups (control and experimental) that the instructor might intr oduce into the lessons. The goal of the PowerPoint presentation on grammatical terminology was to explain the meaning of the terms compound verb auxiliary verb and past participle This PowerPoint presentation can be found in Appendix C. A definition was given for each term and examples in both English and French were provided in order to illustrate the meaning of these terms. The following definition was given for the term compound verb : A compound verb is a two-verb structure constructed from (1) a conjugated auxiliary verb and (2) a main verb. Following this explanation, several examples of compound verbs were provided. All of the compound verbs were highlighted in boldface and explicitly identified for the students. The next three slides contained in the PowerP oint presentation offe red an explanation of the term auxiliary verb within the context of the perfect tense in English. A definition of the perfect tense was provided as well as an explanation of how to form the perfect tense in English.
33 Numerous examples were supplied to illustrate th e function of the auxiliary verb in the perfect tense in English and the pass compos in French. The term past participle was also presented within the context of the English perfect tense and was defined by the Compact Oxford English Dictionary of Current English as the form of a verb, typically ending in ed in English, which is used in forming perfect and passi ve tenses and sometimes as an adjective. Examples of past participles were given within the context of both the English perfect tense and the French pass compos The PowerPoint presentation on the pass compos and the imparfait aimed to explain to participants how to form these two past tenses. The presentation followed the same format used in the French textbook, Chez Nous as this is the textbook used in beginning level French classes at the University of Florida. In the explanation of the pass compos provided by Chez Nous terms such as auxiliary verb and past participle appear, followed by many examples to illustrate how the tense is formed. Chez Nous explanation of the imparfait uses the term imparfait stem along with several examples to explain how to form the imperfect tense. Since the lesson centered on the formation of these two French past tenses, all examples provided in the PowerPoint were in French follo wed by their English translation. Control group participants received exp licit instruction on the formation of the pass compos and the imparfait Consequently, participants in the control group received only one lesson. In contrast, the expe rimental group was presented wi th two lessons. The first presentation supplied participants in the expe rimental group with expl icit instruction on the meaning of certain grammatical te rms that were pertinent to th e second lesson that they would receive. The second presentation was identical to that given to the control group. For both the control and experimental groups, th e instructor presented the materi al by lecturing directly from the PowerPoint slide show.
34 Procedure Control group The control group (n = 3) received instruction on the formation of the pass compos and imparfait forms. In order to control for researcher bias, an impartial instru ctor taught the lesson. The instructor was a native speaker of Haitian Creole and French. Participants were not permitted to ask questions during this time, but they were permitted to take notes. They were then given an exercise to test their comprehension of how to form both of the past tenses. The control session, includ ing the lecture and assessment, t ook about twenty-three minutes to complete. Experimental group The experimental group (n = 6) first receive d instruction on the metalinguistic terminology often used by first-year French text books to explain how to form the pass compos and the imparfait In order to further control for researcher bias, a second instruct or taught the lesson on metalinguistic terminology to the experimental gr oup. The instructor was a native speaker of Arabic and French. In the lesson, participants were presented with such grammatical terms as compound verb auxiliary verb and past participle These terms were defined and examples were given in both English and French to illustrate the definitions. Participants were not allowed to ask questions, but they were allowed to take notes. Following the lecture, participants were asked to complete an assessment to determine th eir ability to identify compound verbs, auxiliary verbs, and past participles in a series of sentences. After receiving this instructi on, the experimental group then received the same instruction that the control group received co ncerning the formation of the two past tenses. The same instructor who taught the le sson on the formation of the pass compos and the imparfait to the control group also taught the less on to the experimental group. However, the instructor did not
35 know which group was the control group and which was the experimental group. Furthermore, the instructor was not informed of the obj ective of the study until after both groups had completed the experiment. Explicit instruction of grammar in both groups was conducted primarily in English. Similar to the conditions set for the control group participants in the e xperimental group were not allowed to ask questions during either of the two presentations that they received. However, they were allowed to take notes. Finally, the experimental group completed the sa me exercise given to the control group to test their knowledge of how to form the pass compos and the imparfait Data was coded according to the number of correct responses given. In total, the experimental session, including two lectures and the assessment, took a bout twenty-five minutes to complete. Assessment The assessment tools used to evaluate the c ontrol and experimental groups were made by the researcher in order to targ et the grammar concepts that we re introduced in the study. The first assessment, that only the experimental group received, consisted of fifteen sentences grouped into three sectio ns. In the first section, particip ants were asked to identify the compound verb in each sentence, followed by the second section which asked participants to identify the auxiliary verb, and the final section in which participants were asked to identify the past participle. The assessments were scored by hand and participants were assessed by the number of elements that they correctly identi fied. A copy of the assessment can be found in Appendix D. In the assessment that both groups received, pa rticipants were supplied with seven presenttense sentences in French and were as ked to put the sent ences into both the pass compos and the imparfait (e.g., Put the following sentence into the pa ss compos and the imparfait. Je parle
36 franais .) In this way, the assessment was able to isolate and test students on only these two forms. This format was selected in an attemp t to attain a high level of face validity and to control for such factors as student memory of vocabulary items. The assessment asked participants to produce the written pass compos and imparfait forms; there was no oral component. The assessments were scored by hand and participants were assessed by the number of verbs that they correctly put into the past tense. Appendix D provides the assessment tool used to evaluate the pa rticipants in the study. The next chapter presents th e results of both th e survey and the experimental study.
37 Table 3-1. Characteristics of survey participants Gender N Percent (%) Female 61 64.2 % Male 34 35.8 % Year of Birth 1989 1 1.1 % 1988 16 16.8 % 1987 23 24.2 % 1986 19 20 % 1985 15 15.8 % 1984 10 10.5 % 1983 6 6.3 % Earlier than 1983 4 4.2 % No response 1 1.1 % Previous Language Study* Spanish 61 64.2 % French 24 25.3 % Latin 6 6.3 % German 5 5.3 % Italian 3 3.2 % Arabic 2 2.1 % Greek 2 2.1 % Hebrew 1 1.1 % Swedish 1 1.1 % *Note: Percentages do not equal 100 due to the f act that some participants studied more than one language prior to taking the survey. Table 3-2. Characteristics of study participants Gender N Percent (%) Female 4 44.4 % Male 5 55.6 % L1 English 9 100 % Score on survey 6 1 11.1 % 5 5 55.6 % 4 2 22.2 % 3 1 11.1 %
38 CHAPTER 4 RESULTS This chapter provides the results of both the survey and experimental study. In the first section, the survey results are pr esented, followed by a discussion of possible implications of the findings. The second section of the chapter offers the results of the experimental study as well as suggestions for future research. Survey The purpose of the survey was to investig ate beginning French learners level of familiarity with a variety of meta linguistic terms. As mentioned earlier, the survey used in this investigation was adapted from the survey cr eated by Vande Berg (1999). The Vande Berg survey was adapted for use in this study in or der to provide a measure of comparison of the results from the two studies. Ninety-seven surveys were given to students in five sections of beginning French, FRE 1130, at the University of Florida. Of those su rveys, ninety-five (98 %) were fully completed. The two incomplete surveys were not an alyzed for use in this investigation. Figure 4-1 shows the number of grammatical item s that the ninety-five survey participants correctly identified. The responses given by the pa rticipants create a sk ewed bell curve, unlike the even bell-shaped curve presented in the Va nde Berg study. The data collected from the survey produce this skewed bell curve due to the f act that the mode, that is the number of correct responses most frequently given by survey particip ants, was ten (out of a possible thirteen), with most participants falling to the right side of the chart. Consequently, the distribution of data is skewed to the right. The number of correct re sponses most frequently given by participants in the Vande Berg study was four (out of a possible ten), with most participants falling in the middle of the chart (647). Thus, the data from the Vande Berg study produce an even bell curve.
39 As for the results obtained in this study, the left side of th e graph shows that none of the participants responded incorrectly to all of the questions that is to say th at all participants answered at least one question correctly. The right side of the graph shows that only two participants responded correctly to all thirteen questions. Fifteen of the ninety-five participants ( 16%) responded correctly to ten of the thirteen questions. Am ong all ninety-fiv e participants, the mean for the number of correctly identifi ed grammatical terms was 7.63. The mean among the 110 participants in the Vande Berg study was 4.34. In comparing the results from this study with those obtained in the Vande Berg study, it is important to note that the survey employed in th is study contained an additional three questions that were not part of the Vande Berg survey. Clearly, it is possible th at this addition could account for at least some of the differences ap parent in the general comparison of results between the two studies. Conseque ntly, it may be more helpful to compare the results of the two studies based on the percentages of participants that correctly answ ered the ten original questions contained in Vande Bergs survey. When the three supplementary ques tions are removed from the survey, the results reveal that the mean fo r the number of correctly identified grammatical terms was 5.35; a mean much closer to the mean of 4.34 reported in the Vande Berg study. In order to compare the results of the two studies in more deta il, let us briefly examine the findings of the Vande Berg study. Vande Bergs in itial assumption was that survey pa rticipants (all enrolled in introductory French courses) would have a low degree of metalinguistic competence. She argues that this assumption was confirmed by the results of her survey, namely that for seven out of the ten questions included in the survey, less than half of the students responded correctly.
40 The survey conducted as part of this study was seemingly not able to corroborate Vande Bergs findings. The thirteen grammatical terms th at were tested on the survey are presented in Table 4-1 and are categorized according to th e percentage of participants who responded correctly to each. Results from the survey showed that more than half of the students correctly answered eight out of the thirteen survey questions. Nevertheless, if we were to remove the three extra questions in this survey concerning the terms prefix suffix and root word only the ten questions original to Vande Bergs own survey w ould remain. In this case, we begin to witness results not unlike those found in Vande Bergs study. Table 4-2 compares the results from the two studies based on the percentages of survey participants who correctly identified the ten gram matical terms originally examined in the Vande Berg study. This comparison is illustrated in th e line graph in Figure 42. In both studies the term correctly identified most often was adverb Eighty-four percent of participants identified the adverb in this study, while only seventy-seven pe rcent of particip ants identified the adverb in the Vande Berg study. Ranking second in both studies was the term adjective Seventy-eight percent of participants in th is study and seventy-six percent in Vande Bergs study correctly identified the adjective. The terms subject pronoun and direct object ranked third and fourth respectively in this study. Sixty-two percent of participants correc tly identified the subj ect pronoun and sixty-one percent correctly identified the direct object. Vande Bergs survey results revealed the same trend. Direct object ranked third, with fifty-six percent of participants correctly identifying the term and subject pronoun ranked fourth, with forty-nine percent of participants correctly identifying this term.
41 Finally, the term preposition ranked fifth in both studies Fifty-eight percent of participants in this study and forty-five percent of particip ants in the Vande Berg study demonstrated the ability to correctly identif y the preposition. Alt hough the percentages of students who responded correctly tended to be hi gher in this study than in Vande Bergs study, it is interesting to note that in both studies the sa me five grammatical terms were ranked in the top five of those that students were most often ab le to correctly identif y. Although these results reveal that students generally performed better on this survey than those who participated in Vande Bergs survey, they present support for th e claim that students are generally unfamiliar with metalinguistic terminology. Results from the survey also provide at l east some support for the hypothesis that students with significant (4+ years) exposure to the study of another language will be more familiar with metalinguistic terminology than students who have not studied a foreign language for a significant period of time. Twenty -nine of the ninety-five survey participants (31%) identified themselves as having studied a foreign language fo r four or more years. We will call this group the 4+ group. Figure 4-3 illustrates the number of survey questions that these twenty-nine students answered correctly. Fi gure 4-4 shows the num ber of questions answered correctly by participants who studied a foreign language for less than four year s (n = 63). On three of the surveys the section in which students identify their years of forei gn language study was left blank. Consequently, results from these three surveys are not included in the analysis that follows. Figure 4-3 illustrates the results of the 4+ group. The graph is skewed to the right. This means that most of the twenty-nine participants in this group scored on the right side of the graph, answering more than half of the questions correctly. In fact, none of the twenty-nine
42 students scored a zero, one, two, or three on th e survey; the lowest sc ore was a four out of thirteen. Two students in this group scored a perf ect thirteen out of thirte en. Seven participants (24%) responded correctly to ten of the thirteen survey questions. The mean for the 4+ group was 8.48. Figure 4-4 represents participan ts with less than four years of previous foreign language study. This graph displays a more normally distri buted set of results than the skewed distribution shown in Figure 4-3. Most of the students who make up this group scored on the right side of the graph, but many also scored on the left side, cr eating a more even distribution of scores than that of the 4+ group. For example, out of the sixt y-three students with le ss than four years of previous foreign language study, ten identified nine out of the thirteen grammatical terms included in the survey. Yet, nine of these si xty-three students identi fied only five of the grammatical terms. The mean fo r participants with less than f our years of language study was 7.32. The group with less than four years of langua ge study had a mode (9) and a mean (7.32), which was less than the mode (10) and mean ( 8.48) for the 4 + group. This provides at least some support for the hypothesis that students w ith significant exposure to the study of another language will be more familiar with grammatical terms than those who have not received the same exposure. Additional research is needed in order to offer more support for this claim. Future research would benefit from larger sample sizes in both groups. Furthermore, it may be interesting to investigate whether differences ex ist between students who have had one, two, or three years of language study. Results from this survey, then, imply that many beginning language students do not know the meaning of many of the gr ammar terms employed in todays foreign language texts and
43 classrooms. While students who have studied a foreign language for seve ral (4+) years may be able to recognize many of these terms, the majo rity of students are unable to identify many common grammatical terms. These findings beg th e question, What effect might instruction of metalinguistic terminology have on the ability of beginning learners to un derstand L2 grammar? To help answer this question, let us turn to an analysis of the resu lts collected from the experimental study. Experimental Study The goal of the experimental study was to explore the effect of instruction of metalinguistic terms on students co mprehension of how to form the pass compos and imparfait forms in French as measured by their pe rformance on a posttest. I hypothesized that students who received instruction on metalinguistic terminology (e.g., auxiliary verb past participle ) would perform better on th e posttest than the group that did not receive the instruction. Posttests were coded and scored by hand base d on the number of questions that each participant answered correctly. The posttests were scored using two different sets of criteria. The first method of scoring awarded one point for every correct answer. The answer had to be completely correct to receive the point. For example in Number 5, one student provided the correct past participle ador to form the pass compos of the verb adorer but provided the incorrect auxiliary verb tre Consequently, no points were awar ded for this response. Based on this method of scoring, the highest number of total possible points th at a participant could receive was fourteen. This method of scoring was helpful in showing whethe r or not participants were able to fully understa nd and correctly produce the pass compos and the imparfait The second method of scoring awarded one point for each correct element that participants provided. As a result, in the fi rst section of the posttest, stud ents could earn between four and
44 five points per sentence. One point was awar ded for each of the following elements: (1) supplying a compound verb, (2) supplying the corr ect auxiliary verb, (3) correctly conjugating the auxiliary verb, (4) correctly forming the past participle, an d (5) correct placement of the nepas in negative sentences. In the second section of the posttest, participants could earn up to two points per sentence. One point was awarded for supplying the correct forms for both the imperfect stem and ending. Based on this method of scoring, participants c ould earn a total of up to forty-three points. This method of scoring a llowed the researcher to pinpoint those elements for which participants were unable to supply the correct response. The results were analyzed according to both the total number of questions that participants answered correctly and the total number of correct elements that participants included in their responses. The results are summarized in Tabl e 4-3 and Table 4-4. Ta ble 4-3 gives the mean scores for the number of questions answered correctly by participan ts in both the experimental and control groups. Table 4-4 shows the mean scor es for the number of correct elements given by participants in each group. Both methods of scoring revealed the same results. The control group yielded a higher mean score than did the experime ntal group both overall and on the pass compos section of the assessment, while the experimental gr oup delivered a higher mean score on the imparfait section. It is difficult to speculate why there was this difference in mean scores between the two groups. However, due to the low number of participan ts (the experimental group was made up of only six participants and the control group numbered even less at only three participants), there were not enough students in either group to be able to claim that the di fference in test scores between the two groups was significant. Additional studies that include more experimental and control group participants are needed to determine whether thes e results are conclusive.
45 The results of this study imply that beginning French learners who receive instruction on metalinguistic terminology prior to recei ving instruction on how to form the pass compos and imparfait French tenses perform as well as, but not necessarily better than, learners who do not receive instruction on metalinguistic terms. These findings may come as a result of the limitations of the lesson on metalinguistic termi nology that the experimental group received. Only the targeted terms compound verb auxiliary verb and past participle were defined, although several other metalinguistic terms (e.g., conjugated verb passive tense adjective ) were employed in the lesson. If participants were not familiar with the meanings of these terms, the lesson on metalinguistic terminology may not have b een as beneficial to participants as was originally hypothesized. Therefore, future research should include definitions for all metalinguistic terminology used in the lessons in or der to determine the effect of instruction of metalinguistic terms on students comprehension of L2 grammar. Before conducting the study, the original hypo thesis was that the experimental group (those who received instruction on metalinguis tic terminology prior to the lesson on the pass compos and imparfait forms) would perform considerably better than the c ontrol group (those who did not receive instruction on me talinguistic terminology) on both the pass compos and imparfait sections of the posttest. The experiment al group did score higher than the control group on the imparfait section of the posttest, but scored lower than the control group on the pass compos section and attained a lower mean score overall. Still, as was previously mentioned, there were not enough participants in either group to be able to claim that the difference in the two groups pos ttest scores was significant. Since the lesson on the formation of the pass compos and imparfait tenses given to both the experimental and control groups contained seve ral grammar rules and points to learn,
46 memory could have had an effect on the low ove rall mean scores for both groups. For example, in the first section of the posttest, students were expected to know which a uxiliary verb to use in forming the pass compos Similarly, in order to perfor m well on the second section of the posttest, students had to be familiar with the imparfait endings. In short, during the lesson participants were presented with a large amount of new information that they were required to process and commit to memory. As a result, ev en if students underst ood the grammar concepts being explained in the lesson, they may have perf ormed poorly if they were unable to remember the rules when taking the posttest. In this way, memory may have had an effect on student performance on the posttest. Future studies may want to test for memory in order to control for this variable. Additionally, given that the experimental gr oup scored a mean of 9.33 questions correct out of a possible 15 on the assessment that te sted their comprehension of the lesson on metalinguistic terminology, it is possib le that participants in this group were not able to learn the meanings of the terms during th e course of the lesson. Over all the participants in the experimental group responded correc tly to only 62% of the questions on the first assessment. Clearly, the students were not able to master the gram matical concepts after only one lesson. It is likely that if the pa rticipants in the experimental group had been given additional lessons on the meaning of the metalinguistic terms, they woul d have eventually been able to master these concepts. Furthermore, it is possible that thes e additional lessons may have had an effect on participants comprehension of th e lesson on the formation of the pass compos and the imparfait It would be interesting to investigate the effect of mo re than one instruction session on students ability to form the pass compos and imparfait
47 If, as the results from this study imply, inst ruction of grammar te rms has no significant effect on student performance in the L2 gram mar, then perhaps as Mohammed (1996) proposes, A technique of teaching grammar that is base d on the learners inform al representation of linguistic knowledge may be more effective than the traditional technique based on the linguists description of language (286). Ho wever, due to the fact that the results from this study are inconclusive, any implications that this study ma y have for foreign language teaching should be considered with caution.
48 0 1 22 7 12 7 1212 14 15 6 3 2 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 012345678910111213 Number of correct responses (13 possible)Participants (n = 95) Figure 4-1. Number of grammatical items co rrectly identified by survey participants
49 Table 4-1. Percentage of survey particip ants able to correctly identify terms Grammatical Term Percentage Adverb 84 % [Tie] Adjective / Root word 78% Prefix 76 % Suffix 75% Subject pronoun 62 % Direct object 61 % Preposition 58 % Definite article 49 % Conjugated verb 45 % Auxiliary verb 38 % Past participle 32 % Indirect object 27 %
50 Table 4-2. Comparison of percentages of survey participants able to correctly identify terms Present study Vande Berg Grammatical term Percentage Grammatical term Percentage Adverb 84 % Adverb 77 % Adjective 78 % Adjective 76 % Subject pronoun 62 % Direct object 56 % Direct object 61 % Subject pronoun 49 % Preposition 58 % Preposition 45 % Definite article 49 % Indirect object 36 % Conjugated verb 45 % Auxiliary verb 29 % Auxiliary verb 38 % [Tie] Definite article / Past participle 22 % Past participle 32 % --Indirect object 27 % Conjugated verb 19 %
51 84 78 62 61 58 49 45 38 32 27 77 76 49 56 45 22 19 29 22 360 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 80 90 AdverbAdjectiveSubject pronoun Direct object PrepositionDefinite article Conjugated verb Auxiliary verb Past participle Indirect objectGrammatical termsPercentage of participants Present study Vande Berg study Figure 4-2. Comparison of percenta ges of survey participants able to correctly identify terms
52 0000 1 3 2 444 7 11 2 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 012345678910111213 Number of correct responses (13 possible)Participants (n=29) Figure 4-3. Number of grammatical items correctly identified by participants with four or more years of foreign language study 0 1 2 1 5 9 5 88 10 8 4 2 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 012345678910111213 Number of correct responses (13 possible)Participants (n=62) Figure 4-4. Number of grammatical items correctly identified by participants with less than four years of language study
53 Table 4-3. Mean scores of the total number of ques tions answered correctly Experimental group Control group Mean score (out of a possible 14 points) 4.83 5.00 Percentage correct 34.5% 35.7% Pass compos mean score (out of a possible 7 points) 1.17 2.00 Percentage correct 16.7% 28.6% Imparfait mean score (out of a possible 7 points) 3.67 3.00 Percentage correct 52.4% 42.9% Table 4-4. Mean scores of th e number of correct elements in cluded in participant responses Experimental group Control group Mean score (out of a possible 43 points) 22.00 24.67 Percentage correct 51.2% 57.4% Pass compos mean score (out of a possible 29 points) 12.50 16.33 Percentage correct 43.1% 56.3% Imparfait mean score (out of a possible 14 points) 9.50 8.33 Percentage correct 67.9% 59.5%
54 CHAPTER 5 CONCLUSION The research presented in the literature re view of this study concentrated on whether knowledge concerning L2 grammar is important in learning a foreign language. Based on this research, it was concluded that in struction of L2 grammar can be helpful in acting as an advance organizer in a classroom context where language input is not as r eadily available as it is in a natural context. Next, the content analysis provided an exam ination of the way in which grammar is presented in a variety of beginni ng level French texts. All of the textbooks examined employed metalinguistic terminology in their pr esentations of grammar. However, in the majority of cases, the textbooks used these metalinguistic terms w ithout providing accompanying definitions as to what the terms meant. The survey that examined beginning Fren ch learners knowledge of metalinguistic terminology provided insight into why grammar pr esentations that make use of metalinguistic terminology to explain L2 grammar can prove to be problematic for some students. Results from the survey revealed that participants were generally unfamiliar with metalinguistic terminology. Finally, the experimental study examined the e ffect of instruction of grammatical terms often used in textbook grammar presentations. Th e results suggested that instruction of these terms may not significantly affect student perf ormance in L2 grammar. However, further research is needed to corroborate these findings. Any implications that this study may have fo r foreign language teaching must be viewed with caution as a result of a nu mber of limitations in the resear ch design. First, the number of participants in both the experimental and control groups was extremely low. With such a low number of participants, it is di fficult to claim that the differen ce in posttest scores between the
55 two groups was significant. More over, it is difficult to speculate as to why there was a difference in posttest scores among the experiment al and control groups. It is likely that an examination of all of the students who participated in the survey (rather than simply a small sample of the population) would yi eld findings different from those obtained in this study. This study assumed that only those st udents with low metalinguistic knowledge would benefit from instruction of metalinguis tic terminology. However, it is possi ble that students with mid to high levels of metalinguistic knowledge may also benef it from this instruction. More research is needed to compare the effects of instructi on of metalinguistic term inology on students with varied levels of me talinguistic knowledge. Second, as was mentioned briefly in the Re sults chapter, the le sson on metalinguistic terminology focused on three metalinguistic terms ( compound verb auxiliary verb and past participle ). However, it has been noted that the term auxiliary verb was never explicitly defined anywhere in the PowerPoint presentation on me talinguistic terminology. Rather, much like the presentations of grammar contained in the firstyear French textbooks examined in Chapter 2, the term was presented within the context of the E nglish perfect tense and several examples were provided to illustrate the function of the auxiliary verb. Due to this weakness in the design of the presentation of metalinguistic terminology, this study is limited in its ability to examine the effect of instruction of the term auxiliary verb on students ability to form the pass compos as the term was never explicitly defined. Additionally, although th e lesson on metalinguistic termi nology targeted three specific grammatical terms ( compound verb auxiliary verb past participle ), additional terms were employed in the explanation. Given that these additional terms were included but not defined, it is possible that students may ha ve had difficulty in understanding the lesson. In this case, the
56 experimental and control conditi ons would not have differed enough to test for the effects of metalinguistic instruction. Future research s hould correct this limitation by verifying that definitions are provided for all metalinguistic terms used in the experimental condition. Third, it is interesting to note that the control group completed the control session, including one lecture and one assessment, in tw enty-three minutes, while the experimental group completed the experimental session, which includ ed two lectures and two assessments, in only twenty-five minutes. In both sess ions, students were allowed to l eave as soon as they completed the assessments. The end of a session was ope rationalized as the time at which the last remaining student turned in his or her assessment. In the control group, one student continued to work on the assessment several minut es after the other participants had left. Conversely, before the experimental session began, several participants in the ex perimental group mentioned that they were under a time constraint due to other ob ligations. If participants felt rushed for time, it is possible that they hurried to complete the two assessments. Given these factors, it is possible that the difference in the duration of the two sessions could be a resu lt of differences in the pace taken by participants in both the control and experimental groups to complete their assessments. Moreover, these differences in pace could have had an effect on the differences in posttest scores between the control and experimental groups. Fourth, the assessment in which students were asked to identify compound verbs, auxiliary verbs, and past participles, was given only to the experimental group. However, administering this assessment to both the experimental and the control groups woul d provide insight into whether participants in the c ontrol group were able to dedu ce the meanings of the terms compound verb auxiliary verb and past participle through the lesson on how to form the French pass compos and imparfait Additionally, comparing the perf ormance of the experimental and
57 control groups on the assessment would provide evidence for the effect of the lesson on metalinguistic terminology that the experimental group received. If both groups do not receive the same assessment, the researcher is unable to fully measure the eff ect of instruction of metalinguistic terminology on student comprehension of L2 grammar. Fifth, the posttest which both the experi mental and control groups took assessed participants on how to form the pass compos and imparfait of only one type of verb: er verbs. Of these verbs, only one took tre as its auxiliary verb in the pass compos Furthermore, participants were not evaluate d on their ability to form the pass compos and imparfait of pronominal verbs. The choice to exclude certain types of verbs, such as -ir, -re, irregular and pronominal verbs, was made intentionally in orde r to help control for th e effect that memory might have on students ability to perform on such a task. However, it ha s been noted that if participants were expecting to s ee a wide variety of verbs on the pos ttest, the fact that some of the verbs were not included in the assessmen t may have affected student performance. Despite these limitations, this study can serv e as a pilot study. As such, the study has suggested several areas for future research. More research is need ed to correct the limitations of this study. Additionally, longitudi nal studies could be conducted in the future in order to examine longer term effects of instructi on of metalinguistic terminology on student comprehension of L2 grammar.
58 APPENDIX A SURVEY Part 1 Name: (Please PRINT) ____________________ E-mail address: __________________________ Local phone: (_____) _____________________ Are you 1 _____ Male 2 _____ Female What is your date of birth? Month _____ _____ Day _____ _____ Year 19_____ _____ What is your native language? ____________________ Have you already studied a foreign language? ____________________ If yes, which one(s)? ____________________ How long? ____________________ Part 2 Please circle the indicated elements SENTENCE 1: We often write to them about our classes Circle the subject pronoun in Sentence 1. SENTENCE 2: Did the teacher give you a homework assignment? Circle the definite article in Sentence 2. SENTENCE 3: He does well in math, doesnt he? Circle the preposition in Sentence 3. SENTENCE 4: The new printer works best Circle the adjective in Sentence 4. SENTENCE 5: Has he already written his paper? Circle the auxiliary verb in Sentence 5. SENTENCE 6: She likes to do her homework while watching TV Circle the conjugated verb in Sentence 6. SENTENCE 7: They havent met their new neighbors yet Circle the past participle in Sentence 7. SENTENCE 8: I disagree with that statement Circle the prefix in Sentence 8. SENTENCE 9: The new teacher is very approachable Circle the suffix in Sentence 9. SENTENCE 10: I enjoy acting Circle the root word in Sentence 10. SENTENCE 11: The cafeteria always serves delicious meals Circle the adverb in Sentence 11. SENTENCE 12: Give this to your roommate Circle the direct object in Sentence 12. SENTENCE 13: Did you tell her the assignment? Circle the indirect object in Sentence 13.
59 APPENDIX B INFORMED CONSENT FORMS Informed Consent Protocol Title: The effects of metalinguistic knowledge on student performance Investigator: Alison Clifton University of Florida Faculty Supervisor: Dr. Hlne Blondeau Please read this consent agreement carefully before agreeing to participate in this study. Purpose of the study : This study involves research to examine students ability to identify certain grammatical elements within a sentence. What you will do in this study : You will be asked to complete a survey consisting of thirteen questions. Afterwards, you may be contacted to participate in a follow-up study. Time required: The survey will take approximately twenty minutes to complete. Risks: There are no anticipated risks associated with participating in this study. Benefits: There are no immediate expected benefits from participating in this study. You will not be awarded any compensation for participating in the study. Confidentiality: Data collected will be kept confidential to the extent provi ded by law. Your participation in this study will remain confidential. Your responses will be assigned a code number and the list connecting your name with this number will be kept in a locked room. The list will be destroyed once all the data have been collected and analyzed. Participation and withdrawal: Your participation in this study is completely voluntary. You do not have to answer any question that you do not wish to answer. You may withdraw from the study at any time without penalty by informing the investigator that you no longer wish to participate (no questions will be asked). Contact: If you have questions about this study, please contact Alison Clifton, Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, University of Florida, 170 Dauer Hall, P.O. Box 117405, Gainesville, FL 32611-7405. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org You may also contact the faculty supervisor, Dr. Hlne Blondeau, email@example.com Whom to contact about your rights in this study: UFIRB Office, P.O. Box 112250, University of Fl orida, Gainesville, FL 32611-2250; ph (352) 392-0433 Agreement: I have read the procedure described above. I voluntarily agree to participate in the procedure, and I have received a copy of this description. Signature: ___________________________________ Date: _______________ Name (print): _____________________________________________ Principal Investigator: __________________________ Date: _______________
60 Informed Consent Protocol Title: The effects of metalinguistic knowledge on student performance Investigator: Alison Clifton University of Florida Faculty Supervisor: Dr. Hlne Blondeau Please read this consent agreement carefully be fore agreeing to partic ipate in this study. Purpose of the study : This study involves research to exam ine the effects of metalinguistic traini ng on students ab ility to produce the pass compos and the imparfait forms in French. What you will do in this study : Following a session of instruction on how to form both the pass compos and the imparfait past tenses, you will be asked to complete a grammar exercise consisting of fourteen questions. Time required: The entire session will take approximately one hour. Risks: There are no anticipated risks associated with participating in this study. Benefits: There are no immediate expected bene fits from participating in this st udy. However, you will be awarded compensation for participa ting in the study. You will receive ten points out of ten poi nts extra credit in the form of a quiz grade in your FRE 1130 class. Confidentiality: Data collected will be kept confidential to the extent provided by law. Your participation in this study will remain confidential. Your responses will be assigned a code numbe r, and the list connecting your name with this number will be kept in a locked room. The list will be destroyed once all the data have been collected and analyzed. Participation and withdrawal: Your participation in this study is completely voluntary. You do not have to answer any question that you do not wish to answer. You may withdraw from the study at any time without penalty by informing the investigator that you no longer wish to participate (no questions will be asked). Contact: If you have questions about this study, please contact Alison Clifton, Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, University of Florida, 170 Dauer Hall, P.O. Box 117405, Gainesville, FL 32611-7405. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org You may also contact the faculty supervisor, Dr. Hlne Blondeau, email@example.com Whom to contact about your rights in this study: UFIRB Office, P.O. Box 112250, University of Florid a, Gainesville, FL 32611-2250; ph (352) 392-0433 Agreement: I have read the procedure described abov e. I voluntarily agree to participate in the procedure, and I have received a copy of this description. Signature: ___________________________________ Date: _______________ Name (print): _____________________________________________ Principal Investigator: __________________________ Date: _______________
61 APPENDIX C SCRIPTS AND POWERPOINT PRESENTATIONS Research Script for Experimental Group Metalinguistic Terminology Note to the Instructor: In order to control for the differe nt variables in th is study, please do not deviate from this prepared script. This study involves research to examine the ef fects of metalinguistic training on students ability to produce the pass compos and the imparfait forms in French. Ill begin by distributing the Informed Consent form which de scribes the study. Your participation in this study is completely voluntary. You do not have to answer any question that you do not wish to answer. You may withdraw from the study at any time without penalty by informing the investigator that you no longer wish to participat e (no questions will be asked). Participation involves reading and signing the Consent Form, a nd then listening to two lectures. The first lecture explains certain grammar terms, while th e second lecture provides instruction on how to form both the pass compos and the imparfait past tenses. After the first lecture, you will be asked to complete a grammar exercise consistin g of fifteen questions. Once both lectures are completed, you will be asked to complete a sec ond grammar exercise consisting of fourteen questions. You may not ask any questions during the lecture. However, you may take notes. Lets begin. Note to the Instructor: You should now read the prepared explanations from the provided Power Point presentation, allowi ng students approximately 30 sec onds to view each slide. You should not deviate from the explanation provide d in the presentation. Please do not add any additional commentary or point to any specific explanations or examples during the lecture. Simply allow the students to list en and process the new material. After completing each PowerPoint presentation: I will now distribute a short exercise that will ask you to demonstrate how well you understood the material that was presented to you in the previous lesson. You do not have to answer any question that you do not wish to answer. Please read the directions caref ully. You may hand in the exercise to me when you have finished.
62 Research Script for Control and Experimental Groups Formation of the Pass compos and Imparfait Note to the Instructor: In order to control for the differe nt variables in th is study, please do not deviate from this prepared script. This study involves research to examine the ef fects of metalinguistic training on students ability to produce the pass compos and the imparfait forms in French. Ill begin by distributing the Informed Consent form which de scribes the study. Your participation in this study is completely voluntary. You do not have to answer any question that you do not wish to answer. You may withdraw from the study at any time without penalty by informing the investigator that you no longer wish to participat e (no questions will be asked). Participation involves reading and signing the Consent Form, a nd then listening to a lecture on how to form both the pass compos and the imparfait past te nses. Once the lecture is completed, you will be asked to complete a grammar exercise consisting of fourteen questions. You may not ask any questions during the lecture. However, you may take notes. Lets begin. Note to the Instructor: You should now read the prepared explanations from the provided PowerPoint presentation, allowi ng students approximately 30 seconds to view each slide. You should not deviate from the explanation provide d in the presentation. Please do not add any additional commentary or point to any specific explanations or examples during the lecture. Simply allow the students to list en and process the new material. After completing the PowerPoint presentation: I will now distribute a short exercise that will ask you to demonstrate how well you understood the material that was presented to you in the previous lesson. Again, you do not have to answer any question th at you do not wish to answer. Please read the direc tions carefully. You may hand in the exercise to me when you have finished.
63 PowerPoint Presentation on Grammatical Terminology Welcome! Bienvenue! T T h h a a n n k k y y o o u u f f o o r r p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p a a t t i i n n g g i i n n t t h h i i s s s s t t u u d d y y P P l l e e a a s s e e d d o o n n o o t t a a s s k k q q u u e e s s t t i i o o n n s s I I f f y y o o u u w w i i s s h h y y o o u u m m a a y y t t a a k k e e n no o t t e e s s L L e e t t s s b b e e g g i i n n What is a Compound Verb? A A c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b i i s s a a t t w w o o v v e e r r b b s s t t r r u u c c t t u u r r e e c c o o n n s s t t r r u u c c t t e e dd f f r r o o m m ( ( 1 1 ) ) a a c c o o n n j j u u g g a a t t e e d d a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b a a n n d d ( ( 2 2 ) ) a a n n o o t th h e e r r v v e e r r b b C C o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b = = c c o o n n j j u u g g a a t t e e d d a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b + + m m a a i i n n v v ee r r b b W W e e a a r r e e s s p p e e a a k k i i n n g g a a r r e e s s p p e e a a k k i i n n g g i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b I I w w i i l l l l s s t t u u d d y y w w i i l l l l s s t t u u d d y y i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b More Examples W W e e a a r r e e c c e e l l e e b b r r a a t t i i n n g g a a r r e e c c e e l l e e b b r r a a t t i i n n g g i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b H H e e d d o o e e s s n n o o t t w w o o r r k k d d o o e e s s w w o o r r k k i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b I I c c a a n n s s w w i i m m c c a a n n s s w w i i m m i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b Compound Verb Recap C C o o m m p p o o u u n n d d V V e e r r b b = = ( ( 1 1 ) ) c c o o n n j j u u g g a a t t e e d d a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b + + ( ( 2 2 )) m m a a i i n n v v e e r r b b Auxiliary Verbs and the Perfect Tense in English Y Y o o u u m m a a y y u u s s e e a a c c o o n n j j u u g g a a t t e e d d a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b w w i i t t h h a a p p a a s s tt p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p l l e e i i n n o o r r d d e e r r t t o o c c r r e e a a t t e e t t h h e e p p e e r r f f e e c c t t t t e e n n s s e e i in n E E n n g g l l i i s s h h P P e e r r f f e e c c t t T T e e n n s s e e = = c c o o n n j j u u g g a a t t e e d d a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b + + p p a a s s t t p p aa r r t t i i c c i i p p l l e e
64 I I h h a a v v e e b b o o u u g g h h t t a a h h o o u u s s e e h h a a v v e e b b o o u u g g h h t t i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b i i n n t t h h e e p p e e r r f f e e c c t t t t e e nn s s e e h h a a v v e e = = a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b b b o o u u g g h h t t = = p p a a s s t t p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p l l e e What is the Perfect Tense? I I n n E E n n g g l l i i s s h h t t h h e e p p e e r r f f e e c c t t t t e e n n s s e e i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b t t hh a a t t c c a a n n e e x x p p r r e e s s s s a a c c t t i i o o n n s s t t h h a a t t h h a a p p p p e e n n e e d d i i n n t t h h e e p p a a s s t t P P e e r r f f e e c c t t T T e e n n s s e e = = C C o o n n j j u u g g a a t t e e d d a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b + + p p a a s s t t p p aa r r t t i i c c i i p p l l e e I I h h a a v v e e s s e e e e n n t t h h a a t t f f i i l l m m h h a a v v e e s s e e e e n n i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b h h a a v v e e = = a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b s s e e e e n n = = p p a a s s t t p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p l l e e More Examples of Compound Verbs in the Perfect Tense I I n n e e a a c c h h o o f f t t h h e e f f o o l l l l o o w w i i n n g g s s e e n n t t e e n n c c e e s s t t h h e e c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v ee r r b b a a p p p p e e a a r r s s h h i i g g h h l l i i g g h h t t e e d d : : Y Y o o u u h h a a v v e e f f o o u u n n d d m m y y b b a a g g ? ? V V o o u u s s a a v v e e z z t t r r o o u u v v m m o o n n s s a a c c ? ? T T h h e e c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b i i n n t t h h i i s s s s e e n n t t e e n n c c e e i i s s m m a a d d e e u u p p o o f f t t hh e e a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y h h a a v v e e ( ( a a v v e e z z ) ) a a n n d d t t h h e e p p a a s s t t p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p l le e f f o o u u n n d d ( ( t t r r o o u u v v ) ) What is a Past Participle? T T h h e e p p a a s s t t p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p l l e e i i s s t t h h e e f f o o r r m m o o f f a a v v e e r r b b t t y y p p i i c c a a ll l l y y e e n n d d i i n n g g i i n n e e d d i i n n E E n n g g l l i i s s h h w w h h i i c c h h i i s s u u s s e e d d i i n n f f o o r r m mi i n n g g p p e e r r f f e e c c t t a a n n d d p p a a s s s s i i v v e e t t e e n n s s e e s s a a n n d d s s o o m m e e t t i i m m e e s s a a s s a a n n a a d d j j e e c c t t i i v v e e ( (h h t t t t p p : : / / / / w w w w w w a a s s k k o o x x f f o o r r d d c c o o m m / / c c o o n n c c i i s s e e o o e e d d / / p p a a s s t t p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p l l ee ) ) Y Y o o u u h h a a v v e e a a l l r r e e a a d d y y l l o o o o k k e e d d a a t t t t h h e e p p r r e e s s e e n n t t s s ? ? V V o o u u s s a a v v e e z z d d j j r r e e g g a a r r d d l l e e s s c c a a d d e e a a u u x x ? ? More Examples of Past Participles I I h h a a v v e e t t r r a a v v e e l l e e d d t t o o G G e e r r m m a a n n y y h h a a v v e e t t r r a a v v e e l l e e d d i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b h h a a v v e e = = a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b t t r r a a v v e e l l e e d d = = p p a a s s t t p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p l l e e S S h h e e h h a a s s b b r r o o k k e e n n h h e e r r a a r r m m
65 h h a a s s b b r r o o k k e e n n i i s s a a c c o o m m p p o o u u n n d d v v e e r r b b h h a a s s = = a a u u x x i i l l i i a a r r y y v v e e r r b b b b r r o o k k e e n n = = p p a a s s t t p p a a r r t t i i c c i i p p l l e e Thank you for your participation!
66 APPENDIX D ASSESSMENTS Experimental Group Assessment 1. Please circle the compound verb, if any, in the following sentences. SENTENCE 1: I did not study. SENTENCE 2: You have already eaten? SENTENCE 3: He drove to school. SENTENCE 4: We will work it out. SENTENCE 5: You ate cereal this morning? 2. Please circle the auxiliary ver b, if any, in the following sentences. SENTENCE 6: Did you lose your wallet? SENTENCE 7: They have already told me that story. SENTENCE 8: I could drive faster than that. SENTENCE 9: The man who robbed the bank was tall. SENTENCE 10: She should not trust him. 3. Please circle the past participle if any, in the following sentences. SENTENCE 11: I have shown all of the plans to my supervisor. SENTENCE 12: We did not learn the material. SENTENCE 13: They had already to ld him the story when I arrived. SENTENCE 14: I didnt give it to you. SENTENCE 15: It was done as it was said.
67 Assessment for Control a nd Experimental Groups Put the following sentences into the pass compos. 1) Je parle franais. 2) Georges va en Grce chaque anne. 3) Maria coute un disque. 4) Vous nappelez pas les pompiers ? 5) Julie et Jean adorent cette maison. 6) Tu travailles en France. 7) Nous apportons les photos de notre famille. Put the following sentences into the imparfait. 8) Je parle franais. 9) Georges va en Grce chaque anne. 10) Maria coute un disque. 11) Vous nappelez pas les pompiers ? 12) Julie et Jean adorent cette maison. 13) Tu travailles en France. 14) Nous apportons les photos de notre famille.
68 LIST OF REFERENCES Bragger, Jeannette D., and Donald B. Rice. Jveux bien! Boston: Heinle & Heinle, 1995. Chastain, Kenneth. Examining the Role of Gra mmar Explanation, Drills, and Exercises in the Development of Commu nication Skills. Hispania 70 (1987): 160-166. Ellis, Rod. Does form-focused instruction a ffect the acquisition of implicit knowledge? A review of the research. Studies in Second Language Acquisition 24 (2002): 223-236. Fouletier-Smith, Nicole, and Pam Le Zotte. Parallles: Communication et culture 2nd ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2000. Haggstrom, Margaret, et al. Portes ouvertes: An Interactive Multimedia Approac h to First-Year French Austin: Harcourt Brace & Company, 1998. Krashen, Stephen D. Second language acquisition and second language learning Oxford: Pergamom, 1981. Krashen, Stephen D. The effect of grammar teaching: St ill peripheral. TESOL Quarterly 27 (1993): 717-725. Long, Michael H. Does second language instru ction make a difference? A review of the research. TESOL Quarterly 17 (1983): 359-382. Mohammed, Abdulmoneim. Informal Pedagogical Grammar. IRAL 34 (1996): 283-291. Norris, John M., and Lourdes Ortega. Effectivene ss of L2 instruction: A research synthesis and quantitative meta-analysis. Language Learning 50 (2000): 417-528. Omaggio, Alice. Teaching Language in Context: Prof iciency-oriented Instruction Boston: Heinle & Heinle, 1986. Shrum, Judith and Eileen Glisan. Teachers Handbook: Contextualized Language Instruction 3rd ed. Boston: Heinle & Heinle, 2005. Soanes, Catherine, and Sara Hawk er, eds. Past Participle. The Compact Oxford English Dictionary of Current English 3rd ed. June 2005. 16 Feb 2007 http://www.askoxford.com/conc ise_oed/pastparticiple Terrell, Tracy. The Role of Grammar In struction in a Communi cative Approach. Modern Language Journal 75 (1991): 52-63. Valdman, Albert, Cathy Pons, and Mary Ellen Scullen. Chez Nous: Branch sur le Monde Francophone 3rd ed. Upper Saddle Ri ver, NJ: Prentice Hall, 2006. Vande Berg, Camille Kennedy. Metalinguistic Competence of Beginning French Students. The French Review 72 (1999): 644-657.
69 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Alison Marie Clifton graduated from the University of Florida in August of 2007 with a Master of Arts degree in French Linguistics. She was awarded MA student of the year in French Linguistics for the 2006-2007 academic year. In May of 2005, Alison received her Bachelor of Arts degree in French and In ternational Studies, graduating magna cum laude from Stetson University in Deland, Florida. She was induc ted into Phi Beta Kappa, the National German Honor Society, and was named Ou tstanding Senior in both French and International Studies. Alison has been accepted into the doctoral program in French at the University of Illinois at UrbanaChampaign and will begin her studies in August of 2007.