Pragmatic comprehension in Japanese as a foreign language

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31 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study developed an original instrument that measures pragmatic comprehension in Japanese as a foreign language (JFL). It examined the ability to comprehend implied meaning encoded in conventional and nonconventional features and the effect of proficiency on comprehension. There were 63 college students of Japanese at 2 proficiency levels who completed a listening test measuring their ability to comprehend 3 types of implied meaning: indirect refusals, conventional indirect opinions, and nonconventional indirect opinions. Comprehension was analyzed for accuracy (scores on a multiple-choice measure) and comprehension speed (average time taken to answer items correctly). There was a significant effect of item type on accuracy but not on comprehension speed. A proficiency effect was observed on accuracy but not on comprehension speed. Analyses of error data and introspective verbal reports revealed the nature of comprehension difficulty among JFL learners.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)558-576
Number of pages19
JournalModern Language Journal
Volume92
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - 2008
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

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