Differences in Disambiguation for Dutch Learners of English
Anraad, E. van
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This paper will investigate whether Dutch learners of English make different choices in interpreting syntactically ambiguous sentences based on their level of proficiency in English. The ambiguous sentences used in the experiments all contain words that belong to two grammatical classes such as in “Research fans hope for spinal injuries” (Bucaria, 2004, p. 285). Studies on the subject of processing of syntactically ambiguous sentences by native speakers of English and on the differences in methods of disambiguation between L2 learners and native speakers have been conducted by various researchers. However, not much is known about differences in disambiguating syntactically ambiguous sentences between different levels of L2 learners of English. Three groups of Dutch learners of English with varying levels of English (beginner, intermediate, and advanced) took part in a translation task. The results suggest a relation between level of English and choices made in translating syntactically ambiguous sentences but no conclusive evidence has been found.