Acquisition of Spanish as a Second Language (3) Analysis of research on the acquisition of syntax, phonology, lexicon, discourse.
SPAN 513 Acquisition of Spanish as a Second Language (3)
An in-depth analysis of current research carried out on the acquisition of Spanish as a second language. Focus will be on
syntax, phonology, lexicon, discourse, and pragmatics. Specific topics covered include the following: null-subjects, clicits;
movement and word order, tense and aspect, mood, agreement features, grammaticalization, modality, negation, functional
categories, tutored vs. untutored learners, UG vs. non-UG effects, the Noun Phrase Accessibility Hierarchy, markedness,
cohesive devices, speech acts, metaphors, idioms, the lexicon and culture, the phonological systems, including
In addition to developing an understanding of the current research on the acquisition of Spanish as a second language,
students will learn how to read the research literature from a critical perspective and how to read empirical data presented in
published research that might result in alternative interpretations from those espoused by authors of published work. This goal
will be achieved in two ways: requiring students to submit via e-mail to the professor and other students in the seminar two-
to three-page critiques of assigned readings; and oral presentations in class of readings selected by the student(s). Some of
the critical reports and presentations will be carried out jointly, and others will be done individually.
Students will also learn how to design and implement empirical research on the acquisition of Spanish as well as how to write
up the results of this research in a potentially publishable research report.
Finally, they will have the opportunity to present their research findings to the Penn State applied linguistics community, in a
mini in-house workshop at the end of the course. In preparation for this, time will be set aside near the end of the seminar for
students to present and discuss their research with their colleagues in the course.
Most of the readings for the course will be preselected by the professor; however, students will also be expected to carry out
independent reading of publications not included in the course syllabus and present and critique what they read in the seminar.
Note : Class size, frequency of offering, and evaluation methods will vary by location and instructor. For these details check the specific course syllabus.