Syntactical & lexical development in NNS-NNS Asynchronous CMC
Recent research into asynchronous CMC-based interactions between native speakers (NS) and nonnative speakers (NNS) of a language has linked them to increased motivation and participation, and a reduction in anxiety (Beauvois & Eledge, 1996; Leh, 1997; Aitsiselmi, 1999), and studies suggesting that such interactions may lead to increases in L2 proficiency have begun to appear in the literature (e.g., Floréz-Estrada, 1995; Ioanniou-Georgiou, 1999; Stockwell & Harrington, 2003). However, a problem faced by many second language teachers is the difficulty in finding suitable native speaking email partners with whom to hold exchanges, and teachers are often forced to conduct such projects solely with other nonnative speakers. This study is a follow-up study based on the methodology of previous research by Stockwell and Harrington (2003) to investigate if similar patterns of interaction and target-language (TL) development were also evident in an NNS-NNS setting. The study investigates 24 nonnative speakers of English studying at two different universities in Japan involved in a five-week email exchange project. Learner output was investigated for lexical and syntactic development over the exchange period through a combination of type/token ratio and T-unit analyses. The results of the study showed that there was evidence of TL development in the NNS-NNS interactions across the interaction period following a similar pattern to that found in the NS-NNS interactions, although significantly less pronounced. Examination of the interactions suggested that there were aspects that differed from the NS-NNS, which are also discussed.
Stockwell, G. (2005). Syntactical & lexical development in NNS-NNS Asynchronous CMC. The JALT CALL Journal, 1(3), 33-49.