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The rocky shores of the north-east Atlantic have been long studied. Our focus is from Gibraltar to Norway plus the Azores and Iceland. Phylogeographic processes shape biogeographic patterns of biodiversity. Long-term and broadscale studies have shown the responses of biota to past climate fluctuations and more recent anthropogenic climate change. Inter- and intra-specific species interactions along sharp local environmental gradients shape distributions and community structure and hence ecosystem functioning. Shifts in domination by fucoids in shelter to barnacles/mussels in exposure are mediated by grazing by patellid limpets. Further south fucoids become increasingly rare, with species disappearing or restricted to estuarine refuges, caused by greater desiccation and grazing pressure. Mesoscale processes influence bottom-up nutrient forcing and larval supply, hence affecting species abundance and distribution, and can be proximate factors setting range edges (e.g., the English Channel, the Iberian Peninsula). Impacts of invasive non-native species are reviewed. Knowledge gaps such as the work on rockpools and host–parasite dynamics are also outlined.
The roles that Universal Grammar (UG), a speaker’s first language (L1) and input play in the learning of second language (L2) phrasal and sentential meaning are considered. UG appears to guide L2 learners in identifying the meaning of constructions involving quantifier scope and anaphor interpretation. Input is necessary for L2 learners to acquire language-specific properties like the expression of ‘manner of motion along a path’ and the aspectual interpretation of verb forms. But L1 influence can be found in the early development of knowledge of input-derived meanings.
A comprehensive introduction to how people learn second languages (L2s), this textbook approaches the topic through five problems the L2 learner has to solve: 'breaking into' the L2; associating forms with meanings; learning sentence structure; learning phrasal and sentential meaning; and learning the use of the L2 in context. These problems are linked throughout to the L2 acquisition of lexis, morphology, syntax, semantics, phonetics/phonology and language-use in a reader-friendly way, using key studies to build a comprehensive picture of how L2s are learned. 'In a nutshell' summaries of chapter sections provide helpful signposts to the developing argument, whilst end-of-chapter activities encourage the reader to reflect on the ideas presented, analyse data and think creatively about the problems encountered. The roles of innate knowledge, input, and the age at which learning starts are also considered. This essential textbook will enable students to think objectively about language, and will be an asset to any introductory course on second language acquisition.
This chapter explores in more detail the acquisition of English verb forms by second language (L2) speakers. The structure of words is considered more carefully and the need to recognise the morpheme as the minimal meaningful unit is established. Words are built from lexical and functional morphemes. The strengths and weaknesses of four hypotheses about how learners acquire functional morphemes associated with verbs are discussed: the Aspect Hypothesis, the Missing Surface Inflection Hypothesis, the Morphological Deficit Hypothesis and the Feature Re-Assembly Hypothesis.
Learning a second language (L2) sound system (its phonology) is heavily influenced by the properties of the segments, syllables and prosody that have been established in a speaker’s first language (L1). Sub-phoneme contrasts that differ between the L1 and L2 are extremely difficult to acquire. New phonemes are acquirable, providing that the articulatory/acoustic features of which they are composed have already been selected in the L1. L1 syllable structure influences how syllables are produced in the L2, leading to the insertion of epenthetic vowels or the deletion of segments. Such cases are the basis for the Prosodic Transfer Hypothesis explanation for optionality in the use of verb forms by L2 speakers.
The findings of previous chapters are brought together to inform the kind of theory that is necessary to explain how second languages are learned. Such a theory involves the interaction of a conceptual/intentional system where propositions are formed, two types of innate knowledge (Universal Grammar (UG) and domain-general processes), three kinds of memory (working memory, short-term memory and long-term memory), and input. A number of existing hypotheses about the role of UG in second language (L2) learning and how L2 grammars develop over time are compared.
Many people can achieve good levels of communicative ability in a second language (L2). To do so they face five challenges: breaking into the L2, matching forms to meanings, learning the syntax of the L2, learning the semantics of the L2 and learning how the L2 is used in connected discourse and in different contexts. The chapter provides an example for each challenge and how L2 learners deal with it. It also considers whether learning an L2 makes you smarter.
The effects of learning a second language (L2) through natural exposure to samples of language, through instruction, through explicit correction and through being exposed to indirect negative evidence (recasts or clarification requests) are compared. Conclusions are drawn about the most effective kinds of input for promoting L2 learning gains.
The way that second language (L2) speakers interpret ‘garden-path’ and structurally ambiguous sentences is discussed and evidence presented that L2 speakers may parse such sentences differently from native speakers. Knowledge of how old and new discourse information (topic and focus respectively) integrate with grammatical properties is only acquired by highly proficient L2 speakers, as is knowledge of language choices conditioned by the context of use.
The syntax of early second language (L2) utterances is examined and how it develops over time. Topics covered are sentential negation, verb movement, question formation, relative clause interpretation and agreement between nouns and adjectives and nouns and determiners. The syntactic rules Merge, Move and Agree are introduced and there is discussion of the role of innate linguistic predispositions, first language influence and input in the development of L2 syntax.
Universal Grammar (UG) is defined and three arguments used to support its proposal are described: the poverty of the stimulus, the properties of child language acquisition, and the generativity of language. The components of UG (features, categories, rules, principles and parameters) are illustrated and the role that UG might play in second language learning is discussed.