Vigo International Journal of Applied Linguistics VIAL

Ali Akbar Ansarin and Behnam Arasteh (1). Effectiveness of Consciousness-Raising in Acquisition of English Dative Alternation. VIAL. Number 9/2012: 9-38.


Three decades of research into form-focused instruction (FFI) have not been sufficient to provide SLA researchers and L2 teachers with a unanimous understanding of the best types of second language instruction. This paper reports a quasi-experimental study of the effectiveness of three different types of instruction on the acquisition of a problematic syntactic structure, i.e. dative alternation for EFL learners. Seventy five Turkish learners of EFL from three intact classes were selected with regards to a grammaticality judgment test (GJT) based on their knowledge of the target structure of dative alternation. Two types of FFI were operationalized as direct consciousness-raising (CR), as intentional endeavor, and grammar CR task and were checked against a control group treated based on zero grammar approach. Data analysis revealed that the direct CR instruction and grammar CR task statistically and practically fostered EFL learners' explicit knowledge of the target structure but the effectiveness of the zero grammar approach was not of a practical significance. The results also indicated greater effectiveness of direct CR instruction and grammar CR task than that of the zero grammar approach. The findings provided empirical evidence for the efficacy of both direct CR and grammar CR task and the inadequacy of zero grammar approach in improving second language learners' explicit knowledge of dative alternation.

Keywords: Dative alternation, consciousness-raising, form-focused instruction, zero grammar, explicit knowledge

(1) University of Tabriz, Iran.

Back to Contents of Number 9

Download full text of this article in pdf format