Production of Relative Clauses by Second Language Speakers of English Margo Katherine Wilke Undergraduate Research Internship Program Spring 2024 Closed linguistics, second language acquisition, language production This project investigates how advanced second language speakers of English who are native speakers of Mandarin Chinese use relative clauses when describing a picture of an object, person, or animal. For example, in response to a picture of a punching bag that a woman is punching, what do they say? Three possible choices are expected: (1) active structure "the bag that the woman is punching" or (2) passive structure with agent omitted "the bag that is being punched” or (3) passive structure with agent included “the bag that is being punched by the woman”. Previous research has shown that native speakers of English make different choices depending on whether the picture is depicts something that is animate (person or animal) or inanimate (object). Specifically, native speakers were more likely to the active structure in (1). However, when describing a man instead of a bag, they were more likely to choose the passive structure as in (2) or (3). The current study, led by PhD student Yue Li, investigates how advanced second language speakers of English choose between different options for relative clauses when describing pictures. This work will test whether second language learners of English who are native speakers of Mandarin Chinese are sensitive to animacy in the same way as native speakers of English, and whether their native language background has any influence on their responses. Native speakers of Mandarin Chinese and native speakers of English will be recruited to participate in this study. Mandarin speakers will be tested in both Mandarin and English to investigate possible influence of Mandarin knowledge on English responses. Elaine J Francis Yue Li In the spring 2023 semester, the undergraduate intern would assist with project design in the following ways: (1) creating a bibliography in Zotero from PDF files provided by the supervisors; (2) helping choose the sentences to be tested in English and Mandarin; (3) helping make the illustrations to be used in the experiment; (4) helping to implement the experiment in a computer interface; (5) helping to pilot test the English and Mandarin versions of the experiment. In the fall 2023 semester, the intern would assist with recruitment of participants, data collection, and data visualization. The intern should have some background in linguistics (at least one previous course) and knowledge of Mandarin Chinese. Ideally, they should also have experience with art and drawing. Specific knowledge of the experiment procedures and software is not needed in advance and will be trained. 2 6 (estimated)

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