Archive | 2019
CLI in Lexical Accessibility
The present paper aims to explore the role of mother tongue (L1) influence while completing a lexical availability task. To learn more about how learners’ lexical knowledge is structured and accessed, and to look into their mental lexicon, a lexical availability task has been used (cf. Avila-Munoz & Sanchez-Saez, 2014). The assumed simultaneous activation of the native and target language in lexical accessibility in a lexical availability task might result in the L1 or any other previous linguistic knowledge playing a determining role (cf. Jarvis, 2009). In this sense, to look into the instances of lexical transfer can, therefore, be enlightening in order to learn more about the interface between lexical knowledge, lexical use, and lexical access. Accordingly, how L1 knowledge or knowledge of any other known language (Ln) influences second language (L2) lexical production in a lexical availability task of a group of Spanish pre-university students has been the focus of this study. Another point of interest is comparing how previous linguistic knowledge in a lexical availability task manifests in Spanish monolingual English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learners and learners who can speak other languages as L1, in addition to Spanish (bilingual Spanish-Ln EFL learners). Finally, some implications for the classroom derived from research-related results are discussed. Specifically, explicit lexical instruction and cross-linguistic lexical comparisons are called for with a focus on cognate use, and cognate awareness rising. Fostering and training in communication and compensatory strategy use can also help learners deal with vocabulary problems and lexical gaps.