Swedish learners’ usage of relative pronouns in English. An informant testing study
The complexity of the grammatical rules governing relative pronouns in English can cause foreign language learners to experience uncertainty in when to apply which relative pronoun. The aim of this study is to explore Swedish learners’ choices and usage of relative pronouns in English to identify possible patterns and to compare the usage with that of native speakers. A quantitative analysis of a gap sentence test answered by 76 EFL learners in a Swedish upper-secondary school revealed several patterns. For one thing, the results suggest that the relative pronoun that is greatly preferred where possible by Swedish learners compared to native speakers. For another, that the zero construction rarely is utilized. In addition, the results indicate that the constraint on relative pronoun choice in non-restrictive clauses is difficult for many learners to adhere to in writing. To a certain extent the findings also support the NPAH as a difficulty scale for relative clause acquisition.
English as a foreign language (EFL)
English as a second language (ESL)
SPL kandidatuppsats i engelska