Main Article Content
The present paper presents an overview of research in support of Skill Acquisition Theory (SAT) in relation to learning a second language. Skill acquisition is defined as a gradual transition from conscious and effortful use of a cognitive skill to more automatic and fluent use of the same. As such, SAT provides a particularly insightful avenue for understanding second language development in the context of instructed second language learning. The paper focuses on the right conditions for the transition of declarative representations of second language grammar rules into procedural ones, claiming that it is only when learners have a real need for grammar rules that they become beneficial for the learner. The timing of providing grammar rules as well as the role of cognitive variables such as language learning aptitude and working memory are also addressed. Finally, future directions for explicit learning and sample second language classroom activities regarding grammar instruction are suggested.
Copyright © 2019 Blaže Koneski Faculty of Philology, Skopje
Journal of Contemporary Philology (JCP)
Anderson, J. R. (1993). Rules of the mind: Routledge.
Anderson, J. R. (2005). Human symbol manipulation within an integrated cognitive architecture. Cognitive Science, 29, 313–342.
Anderson, J. R., and Fincham, J. M. (1994). Acquisition of procedural skills from examples. Journal of experimental psychology: learning, memory, and cognition, 20(6), 1322.
Anderson, J. R., Fincham, J. M., and Douglass, S. (1997). The role of examples and rules in the acquisition of a cognitive skill. Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition, 23(4), 932.
Brooks, P. J., Kempe, V., and Sionov, A. (2006). The role of learner and input variables in learning inflectional morphology. Applied Psycholinguistics, 27(02), 185-209.
Byrne, D. (Ed.). (1986). Teaching oral English (2nd ed.). Harlow, England: Longman.
De Jong, N. (2005). Can second language grammar be learned through listening?: An experimental study. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 27(02), 205-234.
De Jong, N., and Perfetti, C. A. (2011). Fluency training in the ESL classroom: An experimental study of fluency development and proceduralization. Language Learning, 61(2), 533-568.
DeKeyser, R. M. (1997). Beyond explicit rule learning. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 19(02), 195-221.
DeKeyser, R. M. (1998). Beyond focus on form: Cognitive perspectives on learning and practic- ing second language grammar. In C. D. J. Williams (Ed.), Focus on form in classroom second language acquisition (pp. 42-63). Cambridge, England: Cambridge University Press.
DeKeyser, R. M. (2000). The robustness of critical period effects in second language acquisition. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 22(04), 499-533.
DeKeyser, R. M. (2003). Implicit and explicit learning. In C. Doughty and M. Long (Eds.), Handbook of Second Language Acquisition (pp. 313-348). Oxford, UK: Blackwell.
DeKeyser, R. M. (2007a). Skill acquisition theory. Theories in second language acquisition, 97-113.
DeKeyser, R. M. (2007b). (Ed.). Practice in a second language: Perspectives from applied linguistics and cognitive psychology. New York: Cambridge University Press.
DeKeyser, R. M. (2012). Interactions Between Individual Differences, Treatments, and Structures in SLA. Language Learning, 62(s2), 189-200.
DeKeyser, R. M. (2015). Skill Acquisition Theory. In B. VanPatten and J. Williams (Eds.), Theories in Second Language Acquisition: An Introduction (pp. 94-113). New York: Routeledge.
DeKeyser, R. M., and Sokalski, K. J. (1996). The differential role of comprehension and production practice. Language Learning, 46(4), 613-642.
DeKeyser, R. M., and Criado-Sánchez, R. (2012a). Automatization, skill acquisition, and practice in second language acquisition. . In C. A. Chapelle (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics (pp. 323-331). Oxford, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.
DeKeyser, R. M., and Criado-Sánchez, R. (2012b). Practice in second language instruction. In C. A. Chapelle (Ed.), The Encyclopedia of Applied Linguistics (pp. 4501-4504). Oxford, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.
Doughty, C., and Williams, J. (1998). Pedagogical choices in focus on form. Focus on form in classroom second language acquisition, 197-261.
Ellis, N.C. (2002). Frequency effects in language processing. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 24(2), 143-188.
Ellis, N. C. (2005). At the interface: Dynamic interactions of explicit and implicit language knowledge. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 27(2), 305-352.
Ellis, N. C., and Robinson, P. (2008). An introduction to cognitive linguistics, second language acquisition, and language instruction (pp. 13-34). Routledge.
Ellis, R. (2002). Grammar teaching: Practice or consciousness-raising. Methodology in language teaching: An anthology of current practice, 167, 174.
Ellis, R. (2006). Current issues in the teaching of grammar: An SLA perspective. TESOL quarterly, 40(1), 83-107.
Ellis, R. (2008). 31 Explicit Form-Focused Instruction and Second Language Acquisition. The handbook of educational linguistics, 437.
Erlam, R. (2005). Language aptitude and its relationship to instructional effectiveness in second language acquisition. Language Teaching Research, 9(2), 147-171.
Fitts, P., and Posner, M. (1967). Human performance. Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole.
French, L. M. and O’Brien, I. (2008). Phonological memory and children’s second language grammar learning. Applied Psycholinguistics, 29, 463–87.
Gatbonton, E., and Segalowitz, N. (2005). Rethinking communicative language teaching: A focus on access to fluency. Canadian Modern Language Review, 61(3), 325-353.
Goo, J. ( 2012 ). Corrective feedback and working memory capacity in interaction-driven L2 learning. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 34, 445 – 474.
Hinkel, E. (2006). Current perspectives on teaching the four skills. TESOL Quarterly, 40(1), 109-131.
Juffs, A. (2004). Representation, processing and working memory in a second language. Transactions of the Philological Society, 102, 199–226.
Juffs, A. and Harrington, M.W. (2011). Aspects of working memory in L2 Learning. Language Teaching: Reviews and Studies, 42 (2), 137-166.
Williams, J. (1999). Learner‐generated attention to form. Language learning, 49(4), 583-625.
Kachinske, I., and DeKeyser, R. (2019). The interaction between timing of explicit grammar explanation and individual differences in second language acquisition. Journal of Second Language Studies, 2(2), 197-232.
Kim, J. W., Ritter, F. E., and Koubek, R. J. (2013). An integrated theory for improved skill acquisition and retention in the three stages of learning. Theoretical Issues in Ergonomics Science, 14(1), 22-37.
Kormos, J., and Sáfár, A. (2008). Phonological short-term memory, working memory and foreign language performance in intensive language learning. Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, 11(2), 261-271.
Larsen-Freeman, D. (2009). 27 Teaching and Testing Grammar. The handbook of language teaching, 518.
Li, S. (2013). The interactions between the effects of implicit and explicit feedback and individual differences in language analytic ability and working memory. The Modern Language Journal, 97(3), 634-654.
Linck, J. A., Hughes, M. M., Campbell, S. G., Silbert, N. H., Tare, M., Jackson, S. R., Doughty, C. J. (2013). Hi‐LAB: A New Measure of Aptitude for High‐Level Language Proficiency. Language Learning, 63(3), 530-566.
Lightbown, P. M. (1998). The importance of timing in focus on form. In C. Doughty and J. Williams (Eds.), Focus on form in classroom second language acquisition (pp. 114-138). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Lightbown, P. M. (2000). Anniversary article. Classroom SLA research and second language teaching. Applied linguistics, 21(4), 431-462.
Long, M. H. (1991). Focus on form: A design feature in language teaching methodology. Foreign language research in cross-cultural perspective, 2, 39-52.
Long, M. H. (2007). Second and foreign language education. In Mathinson, S., and Ross, W. (eds.), Battleground schools: An encyclopedia of conflict and controversy (pp. 249-54). Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.
Long, M. H. (2009). Methodological principles for language teaching. In Long, M. H. and Doughty, C. J. (eds.), Handbook of language teaching (pp. 373-94). Oxford: Blackwell.
Lyster, R., and Sato, M. (2013). Skill acquisition theory and the role of practice in L2 development. In M. García Mayo, J. Gutierrez-Mangado and M. Martínez Adrián (Eds.), Multiple perspectives on second language acquisition. Amsterdam: Benjamins.
Lyster, R. (1994). The effect of functional-analytic teaching on aspects of French immersion students’ sociolinguistic competence. Applied Linguistics, 15(3), 263-287.
Lyster, R. (2004). Research on form-focused instruction in immersion classrooms: Implications for theory and practice. Journal of French Language Studies, 14, 321–341.
Lyster, R. (2007). Learning and teaching languages through content: A counterbalanced approach. Amsterdam: Benjamins.
Mackey, A., Adams, R., Stafford, C., and Winke, P. (2010). Exploring the relationship between modified output and working memory capacity. Language Learning, 60(3), 501-533.
Martin, K. I., and Ellis, N. C. (2012). The Roles of Phonological STM and Working Memory in L2 Grammar and Vocabulary Learning. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 34 (3), 379-413.
McLaughlin, B. (1990). Restructuring. Applied Linguistics, 11(2), 113-128.
Muñoz, C. (2006). The effects of age on foreign language learning: The BAF project. In Age and the rate of foreign language learning (pp. 1-40). Multilingual Matters.
Nassaji, H. (2017). Grammar acquisition. In The Routledge handbook of instructed second language acquisition (pp. 205-223). Routledge.
Nassaji, H., and Fotos, S. (2004). 6. Current developments in research on the teaching of grammar. Annual review of applied linguistics, 24, 126-145.
Nassaji, H., and Fotos, S. S. (2011). Teaching grammar in second language classrooms: Integrating form-focused instruction in communicative context. Routledge.
Neves, D. M. and Anderson, J. R. (198l). Knowledge Compilation: Mechanisms for the Automatization of Cognitive Skills. In J. R. Anderson (Ed.), Cognitive Skills and Their Acquisition, (pp. 57-84). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
O’Brien, I., Segalowitz, N., Collentine, J., and Freed, B., (2006). Phonological memory and lexical, narrative, and grammatical skills in second language oral production by adult learners. Applied Psycholinguistics, 27, 377–402.
Ortega, L. (2007). Meaningful L2 practice in foreign language classrooms: A cognitive-interactionist SLA perspective. In R. DeKeyser (Author), Practice in a Second Language: Perspectives from Applied Linguistics and Cognitive Psychology( Cambridge Applied Linguistics, pp. 180-207). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. doi:10.1017/CBO9780511667275.011
Paradis, M. (2004). A neurolinguistic theory of bilingualism (Vol. 18). John Benjamins Publishing.
Paradis, M. (2009). Declarative and procedural determinants of second languages (Vol. 40). John Benjamins Publishing.
Perrachione, T. K., Lee, J., Ha, L. Y., and Wong, P. C. (2011). Learning a novel phonological contrast depends on interactions between individual differences and training paradigm design. The Journal of the Acoustical Society of America, 130(1), 461-472.
Ranta, L., and Lyster, R. (2007). A cognitive approach to improving immersion students’ oral production abilities: The awareness, practice, and feedback sequence. In R. DeKeyser (Ed.), Practicing in a second language: Perspectives from applied linguistics and cognitive psychology. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Révész, A. (2012). Working memory and the observed effectiveness of recasts on different L2 outcome measures. Language Learning 62 (1), 93-132.
Robinson, P. (1997). Generalizability and automaticity of second language learning under implicit, incidental, enhanced, and instructed conditions. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 19(02), 223-247.
Rodgers, D. M. (2011). The automatization of verbal morphology in instructed second language acquisition. IRAL-International Review of Applied Linguistics in Language Teaching, 49(4), 295-319.
Sallas, B., Mathews, R. C., Lane, S. M., and Sun, R. (2007). Developing rich and quickly accessed knowledge of an artificial grammar. Memory and cognition, 35(8), 2118-2133.
Schmidt, R. (1990). The Role of Consciousness in Second Language Learning. Applied Linguistics, 11(2), 129-158.
Sheen, Y. (2007). The effect of focused written corrective feedback and language aptitude on ESL learners’ acquisition of articles. TESOL Quarterly, 41(2), 255-283.
Singley, M. K., and Anderson, J. R. (1989). The transfer of cognitive skill (No. 9). Harvard University Press.
Taatgen, N. A., and Wallach, D. (2002). Whether skill acquisition is rule or instance based is determined by the structure of the task. Cognitive Science Quarterly, 2(2), 163-204.