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Words in Time and Place: Exploring Language Through the Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary

By David Crystal

Offers a unique view of the English language and its development, and includes witty commentary and anecdotes along the way.


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The Indo-European Controversy: Facts and Fallacies in Historical Linguistics

By Asya Pereltsvaig and Martin W. Lewis

This book "asserts that the origin and spread of languages must be examined primarily through the time-tested techniques of linguistic analysis, rather than those of evolutionary biology" and "defends traditional practices in historical linguistics while remaining open to new techniques, including computational methods" and "will appeal to readers interested in world history and world geography."


Academic Paper


Title: Vocabulary knowledge in relation to memory and analysis: An approximate replication of Milton's (2007) study on lexical profiles and learning style
Author: Paul Booth
Institution: Kingston University
Linguistic Field: Language Acquisition
Abstract: This paper presents an approximate replication of Milton's (2007) study on lexical profiles and learning style. Milton investigated the assumption that more frequent words are acquired before less frequent ones. Using a vocabulary recognition test (X-Lex) to measure vocabulary size, Milton found that L2 English group profiles show a linear relationship between greater knowledge of high frequency words and lesser knowledge of low frequency items. The profiles also showed variability in individual profiles. Milton hypothesised that the individual differences in profiles are partly attributable to different approaches to learning, as elicited via language aptitude tests of memory and analysis. Learner profiles that showed a linear relationship with vocabulary frequency scored higher on analysis; learners who had irregular profiles scored higher on memory. The aim of this replication is to confirm whether learning style helps to determine what L2 lexis is learnt. It duplicates the vocabulary size test and the memory and analysis tests. However, the replication uses regression analyses, rather than a single ANOVA, to determine whether memory or analysis contributes to vocabulary knowledge. Moreover, the participants’ L1 backgrounds are mixed, and they are older. The results from this replication do not support Milton's findings, but a post-study supports the notion that at low proficiency there is a relationship between memory and vocabulary size. It is concluded that neither memory nor analysis is related to patterns in lexical profiles, but that memory contributes to vocabulary size.

CUP AT LINGUIST

This article appears IN Language Teaching Vol. 46, Issue 3, which you can READ on Cambridge's site or on LINGUIST .



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