Foreword – April 2007

| January 8, 2014

April 2007. Volume 2 Issue 1

Foreword

For this first edition of the Linguistics Journal for 2007 we are pleased to present eight articles. Congratulations to all the authors whose papers have been accepted. Interest in the journal has increased significantly from the end of 2006 and so the structure of the editorial board has been changed accordingly. Three new Associate Editors, Helmut Daller, Julian Good and Biljana Cubrovic have been appointed to supervise submissions and there are now more than thirty-five editors reviewing papers. Let us hope this healthy situation for the journal continues.

The first paper by Larisa Nikitina and Fumitaka Furuoka looks at beliefs about Russian language learning among novice and intermediate level students at Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) in Malaysia. Using an adapted self-reported questionnaire based on Horwitz (1988), Nikitina and Furuoka explore the similarities and differences between the two sets of learners. Their quantitative analysis concludes that “the tenacity of learners’ beliefs depends on whether those beliefs were shaped by the micro-context (the learning situation) or macro-context”, the former of which is less stable. The most “malleable” beliefs concern language aptitude, perceptions of how difficult learning is, and how communication and learning strategies should be used.

The second paper comes from Hessa Al Falasi at the American University of Sharjah, in the United Arab Emirates. Al Falasi’s study investigates compliment responses among mostly female Arabic learners of English, asking whether pragmatic transfer can occur. Using discourse completion tests (DCTs) and interviews to study the compliment response strategies by native speakers (NSs) and Arabic non-native speakers (NNSs) of English, findings suggest that some L1 pragmatic norms were in fact transferred over to English usage. It is revealed that these norms are sometimes perceived by Arabic speakers as being universal in nature. Al Falasi’s study stands in interesting contrast to a Thai-based study published in the Linguistics Journal June 2006 edition by Payung Cedar.

The next paper is by Mohammad Ali Salmani-Nodoushan from the University of Zanjan in Iran who investigates politeness markers in Persian requestives. This study very much complements an article published in the January 2006 edition by Hamid Allami on ‘griping’. In Nodoushan’s study, the effects of 465 complainers’ sex, age, perceived situational seriousness, and social class on the use of conversational strategies in their complaining behavior are observed. Two nonparametric tests were conducted, a Mann – Whitney U Test and Kruskal Wallis H Test, the results of which Nodoushan represents in a ‘cline of significance’ for each of the independent variables in question.

Mohammad Reza Talebinezhad and Giti Mousapour Negari, both from Isfahan University in Iran, look at the effect of explicit teaching of concept mapping in expository writing on Iranian EFL students’ self-regulation. This highly practical study employs Printrich et al’s (1991) questionnaire on motivation strategies for learning among sixty university students, divided into experimental and control groups. Findings reveal that concept mapping had a positive effect on the subjects under investigation.

Farzaneh Khodabandeh, from Mobarakeh Payameh Noor University in Iran, contrasts English and Persian newspaper headlines. Khodabandeh’s study employs Conversation Analysis to analyze the syntactic and lexical features in the headlines and reveals that there were similarities in the use of dynamic verbs, active voice, short words, declarative sentences, finite clauses, and simple sentences. Differences were seen in the use of tense forms, headline types, modification, and omission of words.

Daniel Nkemleke from the Technische Universität Chemnitz in Germany looks at the pragmatic use of questions in Cameroon English, particularly the speech act of ‘asking’ in informal contexts. 160 questions not conforming to native English categories of questions in Quirk et al (1985) were identified from recorded data of Cameroonian Bantu ‘home’ languages. The paper concludes that the ‘interplay’ of syntax between English and ‘home’ languages may result in the type of question forms found in the data.

Raphiq Ibrahim from the University of Haifa and Rambam Medical Center in Israel asks whether exposure to second spoken language facilitates word reading ability, the purpose of which is to provide direct evidence of a causal role for bilingualism in reading acquisition. Three groups of first graders of monolingual Hebrew speakers, bilingual Russian-Hebrew speakers and monolingual Arab speakers are observed in various reading skills, the data of which is analyzed with one-way ANOVA and correlations to compare the reading speed, errors of text and measures of vocabulary between Hebrew and Arabic groups. Among the conclusions drawn is that early exposure to L2 has a positive effect on reading ability showing that bilingualism is a “powerful predictor of the speed and effieciency of reading acquisition”.

The final article based on the MA dissertation by Yan Wang from the University of Wisconsin-Madison looks at a functional study of the final particle mono in Japanese conversational discourse. Using a discourse analytic approach, the employment of mono in sequence organization and how it shows attitudes towards propositions and addresses are both examined. This study illustrates how this particle reveals a speaker’s subjectivity and operates as a modality marker in conversational discourse.

We hope you enjoy reading these articles in the Spring edition of the Linguistics Journal and look forward to your own contributions in 2007.

John Adamson, Ed.D.
Senior Associate Editor
The Linguistics Journal


 

Volume 2. Issue 1. April 2007

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Foreword by Dr. John Adamson.

1. Larisa Nikitina and Fumitaka Furuoka. Beliefs about Language Learning: A Comparison between Novice and Interm ediate Level Students Learning Russian at a Malaysian University 
2. Hessa Al Falasi. Just Say “Thank You”: A Study of Compliment Responses
3. Mohammad Ali Salmani-Nodoushan. Politeness Markers in Persian Requestives
4. Mohammad Reza Talebinezhad and Giti Mousapour Negari. The Effect of Explicit Teaching of Concept Mapping in Expository Writing on EFL Students’ Self-regulation 
5. Farzaneh Khodabandeh. A Contrastive Analysis of English and Persian Newspaper Headlines
6. Daniel Nkemleke. “You will come when?”The pragmatics of certain questions in Cameroon English 
7. Raphiq Ibrahim. Does Exposure to Second Spoken Language Facilitate Word Reading Ability?
8. Yan Wang. A Functional Study of the Final Particle mono in Japanese Conversational Discourse

Category: 2007