The L2 corpus COREFL and referring expression selection in L1 Spanish-L2 English

Ana Díaz-Negrillo (University of Granada)
This talk presents a corpus of L2 English, COREFL, and a derived study on the selection of referring expressions (RE) in L2 English. COREFL is a written and spoken corpus of learner English, currently containing over half-million words and representing L1 Spanish, L1 German and L1 Czech learners of English. For comparative purposes, COREFL also contains two control subcorpora, i.e. native corpora (L1 English and L1 Spanish). The corpus is currently used to investigate the acquisition of REs. The talk presents preliminary results on mode-effects on RE selection in L2 English. It explores REs in reference maintenance coordination contexts in L1 Spanish–L2 English narratives across intermediate and advanced proficiency levels, compared to a native English control group. It looks at 3rd person singular grammatical subjects in written vs. spoken data from COREFL produced by the same participant in each proficiency group and under the same data collection conditions (task design and task topic). The results reveal, first, that native speakers’ RE selection is comparable both in their written and spoken discourse and, second, that learners’ RE selection is, in contrast, affected by mode of production: their RE choices in their spoken performance are more redundant than those in their written discourse.
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