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Cognitive Linguistics: The Case Of Find


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Exploring Cognitive Linguistic in teaching the verb 'find' to Malay English learner.

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Cognitive Linguistics: The Case Of Find

  2. 2. This paper is presented in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the course General Linguistics for TESL Faculty of Education University of Malaya Dr. Jessie Grace U. Rubrico, Facilitator PBGS 6304, Semester 2, AY 2009-2010 April 2010
  3. 3. Linguistics Definition: The study of language in general and of Subfields: phonetics, particular languages, their phonology, morphology, structure, grammar and grammar, syntax, semantics history (Longman and pragmatics Dictionary, 2003) Is learnt to enrich awareness of the humankind as it is closely related to human interaction
  4. 4. Cognitive Linguistics 1970S Human COGNITIVE Rejected dominant communication LINGUISTICS ideas and encounters Human cognition According to Matsumoto (2008), CL emerged in the 1970s due to the disapproval of the mainstream ideas that language is not part of cognition. In CL, language lies heavily on human cognition and it expands throughout human communication.
  5. 5. Cognitive Linguistics: Concepts The Status of Linguistic Cognition Mental The Spaces Status of and Meaning Mapping Core concepts & Goals The Structure The Status of of Cognitive Prediction Categories The Embodiment of Meaning 2 most relevant CL concepts (1) The status of meaning: Language occurrences are propelled by the necessity to convey meaning. The presence of all linguistics units are supported by meaning, not any is semantically blank. (2) The Embodiment of meaning: Meaning is fixed in the shared human experience; acts as a basis for understanding abundant concepts. (Janda, 2006)
  6. 6. Cognitive Linguistics: Main Areas Cognitive Cognitive Semantics Grammar Separate in practice but their domains of inquiry are tightly linked Cognitive semantics: The investigation of knowledge representation (conceptual structure) and meaning construction (conceptualization). Language is employed as a channel through which cognitive phenomena can be understood. Cognitive Grammar: The modeling of a language system (the mental grammar). (Evans et al., 2007)
  7. 7. Cognitive Grammar The mental grammar Form-meaning pairing An inventory of Fluency symbolic units Constant Entrenched application According to Langacker (1987), knowledge of language (mental grammar) is stored in the mind as symbolic units (form-meaning pairing). If they are applied constantly without hesitation, it means they have become entrenched; they become a habit or routine and the speaker is able to use them fluently. (Evans et al., 2007)
  8. 8. Cognitive Grammar: A Mental Inventory The storeroom of entrenched symbolic units The contents are not stored in a random way The mental inventory is created upon the It is structured based on relationships entrenchment. It is a major issue in 2nd between units language acquisition. Due to CL, the frequent occurrence of a certain linguistic Some units are subparts of other units units facilitates the target language construction that leads to the entrenchment. (Matsumoto, 2008) E.g. morphemes make up words, words make up phrases, phrases make up sentences These interlinking and overlapping relationships among units are called network
  9. 9. Cognitive Grammar: Pedagogy THE COGNITIVE PROCESS IN 2ND LANGUAGE LEARNING Learners’ mind In Learning the must be tuned understanding Steadily the forms as well The target to set apart the symbolic target units as learning between the units or the units clash obtains meaning of the linguistic with the independence new units and conceptual criterion of native ones from the the meaning structures the target native ones of the (meaning) language available ones (Matsumoto, 2009)
  10. 10. Theory of Language: The Innatist Model An innate mental Processed and produced Language is rule-based capacity for language through complicated and generative in nature (Language Acquisition cognitive processes Device LAD) The language has a ‘The Critical Period universal nature Hypothesis’ (Universal Grammar UG) The Innatist Model of Chomsky (1955) and Lenneberg (1967) as cited in Suharno (2009), is believed to be useful as a guiding principle in applying cognitive grammar to language pedagogy.
  11. 11. Theory of Learning: Cognitive Constructivism Stress on mental What goes on processes rather "inside the than observable learner's head” behavior It is vital to Learners understanding dynamically the learners’ construct the background knowledge knowledge or schemata In developing the instructional design for cognitive grammar pedagogy, Cognitive Constructivism Theory (as cited by Perry, 1999) is scrutinized further.
  12. 12. Cognitive Constructivism: Concerns Knowledge Learning Motivation Instruction According to Perry (1999), as knowledge is discovered by the learners themselves, the teacher’s role is to assist the learning by supplying the essential resources. To succeed, learners must possess intrinsic motivation and supported by appropriate instructional methods that enable them to modify the new information based on their schemata.
  13. 13. Cognitive Grammar: The Application
  14. 14. Objectives To promote the learner’s insight into the foreign language system To make learners learn by thinking about and trying to make sense of what they see, feel and hear To maximize communicative competence and accuracy in language use
  15. 15. Content Cognitive Innatist Classroom Constructivism Model Instruction Approach
  16. 16. Learning Techniques & Activities Problem- Project- based based learning learning Cognitive Discovery strategies learning Learners need to be involved with activities that make them think critically before coming up with meaningful analysis. Thus, Suharno (2009) suggests these four techniques to be associated with a cognitive theory of language learning.
  17. 17. The Case of “find”: Reasons They are not Every Malay- speaking fully aware the Reasons of verb find can learner of take various choosing English knows the verb find types of “find” complements
  18. 18. The Case of “find”: Definitions Get enough Get by searching Exist in a place money/time etc See by chance Experience In a court of law Discover state of someone/somet Think/feel hing Do something Learn something without by study meaning to (Matsumoto, 2008)
  19. 19. Get by searching • I can’t find the car keys. • Can you find me my bag? • The child was eventually found safe and well.
  20. 20. See by chance • Look what I’ve found! • I didn’t expect to come home and find this gift.
  21. 21. Discover state of something / someone • He tried the door and found it unlocked. • She looked at her glass and was amazed to find it was empty.
  22. 22. Do something without meaning to • She woke up and found herself in a hospital bed. • He found he was shaking.
  23. 23. Learn something by study • I managed to find a solution to the problem. • His study found that married men and women had similar spending patterns.
  24. 24. Think / feel • Will Gary and Gail find happiness together? • She finds it a strain to meet new people.
  25. 25. Experience • We found the beds very comfortable. • I found the people to be charming and very friendly.
  26. 26. Exist in a place • You’ll find this style of architecture all over the town.
  27. 27. Get enough money / time etc • He’s struggling to find the time, the support, and the resource to do all this.
  28. 28. In a court of law (to make official decision) • The jury found him guilty of manslaughter.
  29. 29. Conclusion Main concerns: Entrenchment of the symbolic units (form- Learning the form meaning pairing) and the conceptual structure (meaning) Knowledge are simultaneously constructed actively by learners Techniques: Theory of language learning: Project based learning, Problem- Innatist Model & based learning, Cognitive discovery learning, Constructivism cognitive strategies
  30. 30. REFERENCES Azar, B. (2007). Grammar-Based Teaching: A Practitioner's Perspective. TESL E- Journal. Volume 11, Number 22. Retrieved from: http://tesl- Canton, R. L. (2001). Theories in Language Learning: Vast Divides or Traversable Straits? Literature Review/Concept Paper, 1-13. Retrieved from: Evans, V. et. Al (2007). The cognitive linguistics enterprise: an overview. Retrieved from: Janda, L. A. (2006). Cognitive Linguistics. Glossos (2). Retrieved from: Kristiansen, G. et al. (2006). Introduction to Cognitive Linguistics: Current applications and future perspectives. Retrieved from:
  31. 31. Longman (2003). Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English (New Edition). Pearson ESL. Moore, B. J. (1998). Situated Cognition versus Traditional Cognitive Theories of Learning. Education. Retrieved from:;jsessionid. Noriko Matsumoto (2008). Bridges between Cognitive Linguistics and Second Language Pedagogy: The Case of Corpora and Their Potential. SKY Journal of Linguistics 21, 125–153. Retrieved from: Perry, W. G. (1999). Forms of Ethical and Intellectual Development in the College Years. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass Publishers. Turewicz, K. (2005). Understanding Prepositions through Cognitive Grammar: A Case of In. Retrieved from: Tyler, A. & Evans, V. (2003). Applying Cognitive Linguistics to Pedagogical Grammar: The Case of Over. Retrieved from: Suharno (2009). Cognitivism and Its Implication in the Second Language Learning. Retrieved from: and-its-implication-in-the-second-language-learning/