Journal of Applied Linguistics, Vol 1, No 2 (2004)

Using information technology to support empirical SLA research

Florence Myles, Rosamond Mitchell
Issued Date: 16 Feb 2007


This article argues the case for more widespread adoption of information technology in second language acquisition research. The extent to which electronic datasets and analysis tools such as concordancers and parsers are being adopted across applied linguistics research more widely is briefly reviewed. Reasons for relative lack of adoption of such tools within SLA to date are discussed, and a case is made for use of the CHILDES suite of tools to support SLA research. The background to the CHILDES project in L1 acquisition research is explained, and a detailed account is provided of how CHILDES has been adapted to support a corpus-based programme of research into French L2. The article concludes with a brief assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of CHILDES, and an outline of issues to be addressed if the full benefits of information technology are to be realised in SLA.

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DOI: 10.1558/japl.v1i2.169

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