The Instruction and Acquisition of the BA Construction by Students of Chinese as a Foreign Language tackles the linguistically unique and notoriously difficult BA construction in Chinese, covering its linguistic properties and acquisition by learners of Chinese as a foreign language, alongside teaching recommendations. Adopting the Interface Hypothesis and the Processing Instruction approach, Hongying Xu argues that not all linguistic properties of the BA construction are equally difficult to acquire and that properties that call for knowledge from interfaces—including semantics, pragmatics, and syntax—are more difficult to master than those that involve pure syntactic knowledge. Xu argues that instructors should provide manipulated input to help learners notice and process these properties before they are required to produce any grammatical and appropriate sentences using the ba construction.
Hongying Xu is associate professor in the Department of Global Cultures and Languages at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.
Chapter 1: The BA Construction
Chapter 2: Acquisition of the BA Construction among L2 Learners of Chinese
Chapter 3: Teaching the BA Construction in CFL
Chapter 4: Acquisition of the BA Construction: An Interface Perspective
Chapter 5: Awareness among L2 Chinese Learners on the Usage of the BA Construction
Chapter 6: Using the Processing Instruction Approach to Teach the BA Construction
Chapter 7: Implications from the Acquisition Studies and Guidelines for Instruction
Hongying Xu, interested in the role that grammar plays in acquiring a foreign language, has tackled an important but understudied element of Chinese grammar, the ba construction. Xu contributes to the SLA line of thought that proposes attention to the grammatical form and function within a variety of real-life communicative situations—not only the “traditional” and overused ones. The conclusions of her study, strongly supported by strict methodology and analysis, will inspire teachers of Chinese.
The Instruction and Acquisition of the BA Construction by Students of Chinese as a Foreign Language is unique because it presents both a detailed picture of the difficulties that second learners face in the acquisition of the ba construction in Chinese and an approach that instructors of Chinese can use to better teach the property. Thus, it will be a great resource to second language researchers interested in the syntax-semantics interface and second language instructors interested in learning how to use Processing Instruction principles to teach complex properties.