ABSTRACT

This study examined the comprehension of English-speaking learners' word order with case markers in Korean using a "matching sentences to movies" method. Specifically, we tested how learners with different proficiencies identify agent/patient roles in various types of Korean sentences: 1) SOV word order with subject and object markers, 2) SOV word order with subject markers, 3) OSV word order with subject and object markers, and 4) OSV word order with subject markers. Based on previous research, we hypothesized that intermediate-level learners (but not beginning-level learners) would use case markers as cues to identify grammatical relations in sentence comprehension regardless of L1 similarity (i.e., word order and presence/absence of case markers). Ten beginning-level learners, and ten intermediate-level learners as well as ten native speakers of Korean participated in the study. The results indicate that native-like comprehension of OSV with case markers is attainable with intermediate proficiency regardless of L1 similarity.

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