The impact of relational markers on expository text comprehension in L1 and L2

The impact of relational markers on expository text comprehension in L1 and L2 This article reports on an experimentinvestigating the impact of causal discoursemarkers (connectives and signaling phrases) onthe comprehension of expository texts in L1 andL2. Although several psycholinguistic studieshave investigated the impact of connectives andlexical markers of text structure oncomprehension (i.e. off-line), there is noconsensus on the exact effect of explicitdiscourse markers on text understanding; threedifferent findings are reported in theliterature: markers would have a facilitatingeffect, an interfering effect or no effect atall. The first goal of this article is toclarify this problem of contradicting resultsby limiting the scope of the study to causalrelations, and to one specific text type:expository texts. Furthermore, the naturalnessof the experimental texts was controlled,readers did not need specific backgroundknowledge to understand the texts and theexperimental method consisted of open answerquestioning. Our second goal is to investigateto what extent a supposed effect of linguisticmarking depends on readers proficiency in afirst or second language.The experiment consisted in the reading of short expository texts in two languages, Dutchand French, which both functioned as L1 and L2.The results indicate that readers benefit fromthe presence of causal relational markers bothin L1 and in L2. Implications for (theoriesof) text processing are discussed, as well asfor the further insights in readingcomprehension in L1 and L2. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Reading and Writing Springer Journals

The impact of relational markers on expository text comprehension in L1 and L2

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Publisher
Kluwer Academic Publishers
Copyright
Copyright © 2002 by Kluwer Academic Publishers
Subject
Linguistics; Language and Literature; Psycholinguistics; Education, general; Neurology; Literacy
ISSN
0922-4777
eISSN
1573-0905
D.O.I.
10.1023/A:1020932715838
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

This article reports on an experimentinvestigating the impact of causal discoursemarkers (connectives and signaling phrases) onthe comprehension of expository texts in L1 andL2. Although several psycholinguistic studieshave investigated the impact of connectives andlexical markers of text structure oncomprehension (i.e. off-line), there is noconsensus on the exact effect of explicitdiscourse markers on text understanding; threedifferent findings are reported in theliterature: markers would have a facilitatingeffect, an interfering effect or no effect atall. The first goal of this article is toclarify this problem of contradicting resultsby limiting the scope of the study to causalrelations, and to one specific text type:expository texts. Furthermore, the naturalnessof the experimental texts was controlled,readers did not need specific backgroundknowledge to understand the texts and theexperimental method consisted of open answerquestioning. Our second goal is to investigateto what extent a supposed effect of linguisticmarking depends on readers proficiency in afirst or second language.The experiment consisted in the reading of short expository texts in two languages, Dutchand French, which both functioned as L1 and L2.The results indicate that readers benefit fromthe presence of causal relational markers bothin L1 and in L2. Implications for (theoriesof) text processing are discussed, as well asfor the further insights in readingcomprehension in L1 and L2.

Journal

Reading and WritingSpringer Journals

Published: Oct 13, 2004

References

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