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Form and function in the acquisition of Korean wh-questions*

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  17 February 2009

Patricia M. Clancy
Affiliation:
University of Southern California

Abstract

In this paper the order in which wh-questions are acquired in the production and comprehension of two Korean children, aged 1;8–2;8 and 1;10–2; 10, is analysed and compared with the available crosslinguistic data. Consistencies in acquisition order are hypothesized to be based on universals of cognitive development, which constrain the comprehension and production of wh-forms and influence the order in which mothers introduce them, and on functionally based similarities in the input of form/function pairs across children and languages. Discrepancies in acquisition order are attributed to differences in interactive style across caregivers and children, leading to different input frequencies of particular forms and individual children's selection of different forms for use.

Type
Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1989

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Footnotes

*

This research was supported by a grant from the Social Science Research Council, Korea program, and by a Sloan Foundation postdoctoral fellowship from the Center for Cognitive Science at Brown University. I also gratefully acknowledge the mothers and children who participated in this study, Keumjin Lee for her invaluable assistance collecting and transcribing the data, Pamela Downing and Murvet Enc for their comments on earlier drafts, Douglas Biber and Steven Krashen for their assistance with statistical analyses, Tae-Hyun Back for assisting in the data collection, and Doyung Choi for help with data coding.

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