Open Journal of Modern Linguistics
2013. Vol.3, No.3, 190-202
Published Online September 2013 in SciRes (http://www.scirp.org/journal/ojml) http://dx.doi.org/10.4236/ojml.2013.33026
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
Effectiveness of Interactional Feedback: Implicit Learning of
English Contracted Forms
Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, USA
Received April 19th, 2013; revised May 24th, 2013; accepted June 2nd, 2013
Copyright © 2013 Rajaa Aquil. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribu-
tion License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original
work is properly cited.
The role of implicit and explicit negative feedback in language acquisition has been of major concern,
especially in Second Language Acquisition (SLA). Research in SLA has demonstrated that implicit nega-
tive feedback such as recast and implicit expansion are potential triggers of language development and
learning. Data from two experiments, using a pretest-posttest experimental control design, of two separate
groups of Arabic-speaking learners of English, one at Georgetown University (GU), and the other at
American University Cairo (AUC), provides some evidence that implicit negative feedback can facilitate
the acquisition and development of a complex linguistic feature, i.e., English contracted question forms.
An interlanguage analysis framework, A Psycholinguistic Interlanguage Analysis Framework was devised
to investigate learner’s output. Interlanguage analysis findings indicate that recast can be effective in
making a learner notice the contracted wh- & yes/no questions, provided that it follows a pattern known
to the learner and focuses on one point only, and that the learner is linguistically ready to learn the lin-
Keywords: Recast; English Contracted Questions and Statements; Implicit Feedback
The role of explicit and implicit instruction/learning1 as well
as explicit and implicit feedback has been of major concern in
Second Language Acquisition (SLA). Research in SLA demon-
strated that implicit negative feedback in language learning and
development, such as recast and implicit expansion, are effec-
tive in language development and learning (Adams, Nuevo, &
Egi, 2011; Akakura, 2012; Doughty & Williams, 1998a; R. Ellis,
2005; Hulstijn, 2005; Jong, 2005; Long, Inagaki, & Ortega,
1998; Mackey & Sachs, 2012; VanPatten, 1996; VanPattern &
Oikkenon, 1996; Williams, 2005).
This paper reports on a small-scale empirical study investi-
gating the effectiveness of recast, which is implicit feedback,
on the perception and learning of contracted question words and
utterances by Arabic-speaking learners of English. The paper is
organized as follows: Section 1 gives an overview about the
learning problem and pedagogical interventions employed. Sec-
tion 2 discusses research on explicit and implicit learning in
SLA, effective feedback as a solution to the learning problem,
and the research question of the study. Section 3 reports on the
experiment conducted to investigate the effectiveness of recast
in the learning and development of an English structure (con-
tracted forms of questions words and structures) by Arabic-
speaking learners of English.
The Learning Problem: English Contracted Form
Arabic-speaking learners of English find contracted forms of
English speech very difficult to decode and understand. They
have difficulty recognizing words in the contracted form of
question structures and declarative statements. For example, in
a question like “What do you want to eat?” in natural running
speech, not every word of the utterance is stressed and fully
articulated. Instead, the question is uttered in a short and con-
tracted form as illustrated in 1). See (Ladefoged & Johnson,
2011 chapter 5 on connected speech).
1) Wudjyu2 wanna eat?
What do you wanna eat?
What do you want to eat?
One of the main triggers of contraction is the relationship
between stressed and unstressed syllables3. When words con-
nect or string together, unstressed syllables generally tend to be
sacrificed. Vowels in these syllables are drastically reduced and
consonants are blended, to the extent that L2 learners may not
be able to identify the component words of an utterance.
Difficulty in decoding contracted English speech is an L2
1The terms instruction and learning are used with a different focus. Instruction
is used with the focus on teaching techniques, while learning is used when
the focus is the learner and the developmental stages the learner goes through.
2In this example, the vowel [u] of the word you is reduced to a schwa [ə] and
the consonants [d] and [y] get co-articulated, and thus a different allophone
is generated, a palatalized postalveolar [j] is produced. This process occurs
according to certain phrasing rules that are English-specific, such as rhythmic
and prosodic rules.
3Stress is defined as an emphasis that makes a particular word or syllable
stand out in an utterance. A stressed syllable is normally pronounced with
more emphasis than an unstressed one.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 191
listening problem for Arabic-speaking learners of English (Aquil,
2012a, 2012b, 2012c). Much listening pedagogy concentrated
on solving such learning problems in an explicit rule-based way,
rather than in an implicit instruction. For example, at The
American University in Cairo (AUC), I attempted various teach-
ing techniques to solve the problem of decoding, parsing and
understanding English contracted form. I made sure that stu-
dents knew all the vocabulary items of the utterances they would
hear. Nevertheless, this did not solve the problem because the
words were studied as vocabulary words lists, in isolation and
not in the co-articulated and overlapped way they are used in
fluent continuous English speech. Next, I resorted to phonology
and syntax, and explained to the learners the syntactic struc-
tures of the utterances and the phonological alternations that
some of the syntactic constituents undergo, e.g. contraction of
function words. I also taught phonological general rules of as-
similation and reduction, in addition to constant exposure to the
sound of the words and connected forms, but nothing changed.
Finally, I turned to pronunciation drills and listening discrimi-
nation, and identification tasks were attempted4. Regardless of
the type of technique and frequency and duration of exposure to
any one technique, the identification of connected utterances
was rarely realized.
Teaching approaches are important in foreign language in-
struction; the above mentioned language classroom context fol-
lows an explicit instruction approach, namely Focus on Forms.
It follows a structural and piecemeal syllabus and is based on
the believe that learners, after being presented and instructed
with a sequence of forms and functions planned in advance and
presented one by one by the teacher or the material, will even-
tually synthesize all the given forms and functions into a uni-
fied linguistic system (Doughty & Williams, 1998a). In fact, as
Doughty & Williams (1998b) confirm, explicit instruction re-
sults in unproductive outcomes5.
Explicit vs. Implicit Learning
For the last two decades, SLA researchers have studied the
effectiveness of explicit instruction, explicit explanation, and
input processing in solving learning problems (Adams et al.,
2011; Akakura, 2012; R. Ellis, 2005; Hulstijn, 2005; Jong, 2005;
Long et al., 1998; VanPatten, 1996; VanPattern & Oikkenon,
1996; Williams, 2005).
A substantial number of empirical works were carried out
with adults in classrooms, as well as in laboratory settings. These
studies have demonstrated the benefits of feedback, specifically
interactional implicit feedback, for reviews, see (Gass & Mackey,
2007; Long, 2007; Mackey, 2007).
Investigated studies suggest that implicit feedback does have
an effect on learning and language development. For example,
Long and his colleagues (1998), provide evidence from two
experiments, of pretest-posttest control group design that nega-
tive feedback, e.g. recast (defined as reformulations of a learner’s
erroneous utterance) is noticed by learners and is used for de-
velopment. Two experiments were conducted to assess the rela-
tive utility of recast in L2 Japanese and Spanish. Each study
showed some evidence that learners were able to learn from
implicit negative feedback. Williams (2005) found that learners
are able to learn form-meaning connections, even if they were
not explicitly taught the connections. Also, Mackey and Sachs
(2012) found that interactional implicit feedback helps in lan-
guage development, even with older adult Spanish-speaking
Concerning the effectiveness of explicit vs. implicit learning,
VanPatten and Oikkenon (1996) investigated whether improve-
ment in comprehension and production was due to explicit ex-
planation or to practice, namely, the activities used. Participants
in both processing instruction and practice-only groups outper-
formed an explicit explanation-only group. Similarly, in recent
studies, Adams et al. (2011) give evidence for a negative effect
of explicit feedback, even when it is among peers and in a lear-
Research on child language acquisition found implicit nega-
tive feedback, such as recast, effective in language development
and learning. Researchers found that parents follow their chil-
dren’s ungrammatical utterances with clarification requests (an
implicit negative feedback), but follow grammatical utterances
with parental exact repetitions and topic continuations, a form
of positive evidence (Demetras, Post, & Snow, 1986).
Bohanon & Stanowicz (1988) quantified the occurrences of
recasts and repetitions given by parents to their children’s gram-
matical and ungrammatical utterances. They found that 70% of
recasts and expansions followed children’s ungrammatical ut-
terances, and that 90% of exact repetitions followed the gram-
matical ones. Furthermore, Farrar (1992) found that corrective
recast followed 22% of children’s ungrammatical utterances,
and that children produced the corrected element two or three
times as often after corrective recast than after any other kind of
parental feedback that could be defined as positive evidence,
such as repetition and modeling.
If negative evidence, especially implicit negative evidence,
as in corrective recast, has been found to be facilitative in lan-
guage development in children, could the same kind of feed-
back be also facilitative in L2 development? This is the main
question that motivated the study.
Effective Feedback as a Solution to the Learning
As mentioned above, the concern over explicit vs. implicit
instruction and learning motivated SLA research into which
type of instructional feedback is effective in language learning
and development and ought to be used in the classroom; posi-
tive or negative feedback, implicit negative or explicit feedback.
Based on the findings of L1 acquisition studies in relation to
negative feedback, researchers in SLA launched studies to in-
vestigate the effectiveness of negative feedback in SLA class-
rooms (Doughty & Varela, 1998; Long et al., 1998; Ortega &
Long, 1997). For example Doughty & Varela (1998) found recast,
an implicit negative feedback, effective in the acquisition and
development of the past tense and past conditional. As men-
tioned above, recast as operationalized in Ortega & Long (1997)
is feedback given by parents or caregivers in the shape of a
reformulation of the children’s erroneous point. In Doughty &
Varela (1998), researchers designed a natural task that necessi-
tated the use of the past tense and past conditional for the task
to be completed and the communication achieved. Their study
4In the discrimination task, learners were asked to discriminate between two
utterances and report whether the utterances were the same or different. In
the identification task, learners were trained on the sound of the utterances
and in a subsequent exercise were asked to identify them.
5Doughty & Williams (1998) states the following outcomes: 1) the form is
never learned; 2) the form is learned but over generalized to wrong contexts;
3) the use of the form declines right after the intensive practicing ends; 4) a
learned form may disappear right after a new one is introduced.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
compared a treatment group that received the implicit Focus on
Form (FonF) technique, the corrective high-pitched reformula-
tion of the learner’s mistake (i.e., recast) with a control group
that did not receive any treatment. Intonation is used here as a
cue to attract the learner’s attention to the mistake. The position
of the recast was also very important, positioned in the dis-
course in such a way that the learner could notice the difference
between his or her utterance and the correct one. The effect of
the implicit FonF technique appeared in the students’ target-like
use of the two linguistic forms in question (past tense and past
conditional) and also in the learner’s interlanguage. The treat-
ment group outperformed the control group in both oral and
written elicitation measures and other comprehension tests. Si-
milarly, Long and his colleagues (1998) have also reported that
reactive implicit negative feedback in the form of recast is ef-
fective in achieving improvement on a previously unknown L2
structure, and is in fact more effective than positive evidence,
represented as modeling and repetition.
Work on Focus on Form (FonF) opened the door to a signi-
ficant body of work on feedback, investigating its effectiveness
in L2 acquisition and which type is more effective (Adams et
al., 2011; Akakura, 2012; Bigelow, delMas, Hansen, & Tarone,
2006; Mackey, 1999; Mackey & Oliver, 2002; Mackey & Philp,
1998; Williams, 2005). For example, (Bigelow et al., 2006)
found that the ability to recall recast was related to the learner’s
literacy level, especially if the learner’s L1 orthography was
different from English. Akakura (2012) examined the effec-
tiveness of explicit instruction on L2 learners’ implicit and
explicit knowledge of English articles. Mackey’s (1999) results
pointed to a link between interactional feedback as in recast,
and grammatical development.
Like the above studies, the current study’s aim is to investi-
gate which type of feedback is more effective in the develop-
ment and learning of an L2 complex linguistic feature, i.e. con-
tracted forms, by Arabic-speaking learners of English.
The Research Question of This Study
Would an isolated recast with a high pitch help learners learn
the new linguistic form (contracted question form) and repair
their previously uttered erroneous forms? In addition, is the
learning of the contracted form reflected in the learners’ inter-
language, as measured by their performance in an elicited imi-
Experiment: Effectiveness of Recast in Learning
Contracted English Question Forms
Two experiments were conducted at AUC and Georgetown
University (GU) that followed a one-shot pretest, treatment,
posttest experimental/control group design. The treatment, in
the experimental group, was in the form of implicit negative
feedback using FonF technique. The control group just listened
to a dialogue between native speakers of American English, in-
stead of the pedagogical treatment. The whole activity in both
conditions (experimental and control) took around 90 minutes.
An elicited imitation task was used for pretest and posttest.
The participants listened and repeated a prompt that included
the contracted wh- or yes/no question. Both of the tests and the
pedagogical treatment were sliced from natural occurring in-
teractions between two native speakers of American English.
See Appendixes A and B for a description of tests and peda-
Participants were students studying English at the Adult
Continuing Education Center at AUC; and also from a group of
students studying English at the Department of English as For-
eign Language (DEFL), at GU. Both groups were given consent
and demographic forms to fill out. Participants were randomly
assigned to either an experimental or a control group. Both
groups were administered the elicited imitation task as a pretest
and posttest. See Appendix A.
Eight participants came from AUC, where they were attend-
ing English classes three times a week6. Their proficiency level
in English could be described as basic to beginners, since their
TOEFL7 scores ranged from 310 to 350. Their ages ranged
from 20 to 25. Two were female and six male. They had vari-
ous majors: commerce, agriculture and engineering. In their
demographic forms, they indicated that they occasionally watched
soap operas and sitcoms in English and that they wanted to
learn English so that they could get some training before they
travel for professional training in Europe or the United States.
At GU, the participants were six Arabic-speaking male stu-
dents from the DEFL8. They were from Saudi Arabia, Kuwait
and the United Arab Emirates. The students attended intensive
English classes every day to prepare them for academic studies
at American universities. Their proficiency level ranged from
low intermediate to high intermediate or advanced (between
375 to 450 on the TOEFL exam9); and they were facing a re-
quirement to get TOEFL scores of more than 500 in order to
continue academically. Some of the students had been in the
United States for one year before the study was conducted,
while the others had been there for only three or four months.
1) Pretest and posttest
To test the learners’ ability to produce wh- & yes/no question,
elicited imitation, a psycholinguistic technique, was used. In
this technique, the subject is presented with a spoken string and
asked to repeat the utterance10. It has been used to test the com-
petence of learners in child L1 and adult L2 acquisition (Bley-
Vroman & Chaudron, 1994).
The items of the tests were devised in a way that ensured
their simplicity, by keeping the vocabulary and syntax simple
and consisting of high-frequency words, and the length of the
strings was kept short in order not to overload the learners’
short-term memory. Having constructed the instrument in rather
6Initially there were eleven; five in the control and six in the experimental.
However, because one of the subjects in the control group did not give any
response to the posttest, and another could not carry on the posttest in the
experimental group (the experiment took place during Ramadan the Muslim
fasting month) they had to be eliminated. The third subject from the experi-
mental group had to be eliminated because the recording machine had a
mechanical failure during his recording for both the tests and the treatment.
7This is the old version of TOEFL.
8Initially there were eight. One subject from the experimental group had to
be eliminated because it was discovered after administering the tests and the
treatment that he had a hearing problem. Also, a subject from the control
group had to be eliminated as he stopped responding toward the end of the
9This is the old version of TOEFL.
10They were told that they had only five seconds to repeat the prompt.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 193
simple grammar and vocabulary, the researcher hypothesized
that, if the learners could not repeat the utterances, the reason
would be due to the difficulty to parse contracted connected
English wh., yes/no questions and declarative statements.
The two alternate forms, A & B, of the testing instruments
were administered as (pre and post) in a counterbalanced-de-
sign. Each form consisted of 57 utterances produced by two
male native speakers of English. See Appendix A.
2) Pedagogical treatment
The pedagogical treatment was designed according to Long’s
(1998) Task Based Language Teaching. To ensure that the par-
ticipants had an interaction that necessitated their listening to
questions, a task was devised to emulate real life reporting. In
this task, the participants in the experimental group were in-
structed to take the role of reporters and ask an American native
speaker of English questions to find out the name of a celebrity.
They were told that the American native speaker of English did
not have enough exposure to foreign-accented English, and
would not answer any questions unless the questions were put
in the kind of English he was accustomed to. The participants
heard the questions through their headphones and were instructed
to ask them by repeating them. Upon hearing the participants’
elicitations, the researcher provided feedback, whenever neces-
sary. That is, if the participant could not repeat the question the
first time, the researcher would provide the isolated high-
pitched recast of the contracted wh- or yes/no question. If the
participant repeated it correctly, they would hear the answer
through their headphones11. Please note the examples in Ap-
pendix C. To ensure that the participants hear natural contracted
questions produced by native speakers of American English, a
game along the idea of “Jeopardy!” is used (Appendix A2 and
B). Two male native speakers from GU volunteered to play it.
The recorded material was digitized and the contracted ques-
tions and utterances were sliced out of the recording and were
used in the experimental group. As the participants heard them
through their headphones they were asked to repeat them while
the researcher gave implicit feedback “recast” every time the
participant uttered the form erroneously.
The collected data at AUC and GU was digitized and tran-
scribed phonetically by the researcher. In order to control for
L1 bias (since the researcher is a native speaker of Arabic) and
also to verify the produced phonetic transcription, two native
speakers of American English were asked to transcribe the same
data. A kappa index agreement (Cohen, 1960) was calculated.
Contractions of wh- & yes/no questions and declarative state-
ments were analyzed in test prompts and were coded according
to chunking, based on metrical analysis of the utterances, i.e.
distribution of stressed and unstressed syllables resulting in con-
tracted utterances. Chunking was operationalized as the pres-
ence of pauses after a phrase. Each phrase was coded for the
following items: 1) the auxiliary verb; 2) wh-word; 3) the pro-
noun; and 4) the main verb.
Each contracted utterance and wh- & yes/no question in the
test prompts received a score, dependent on the constituents of
the contracted segment. For example, a constituent in the con-
tracted segment was given a score of 1; thus, a segment that
contained 4 elements, (e.g. wh-, aux. verb, pronoun, and main
verb) received a score of 4. Participants received a score based
on the number of the items produced per utterance. In addition,
a score for L2 target-use was also included. Every time the
participant produced a correct L2 target-like use, he was given
a score of 1. Nevertheless, since learning could not take place
instantaneously, as it has been quite established, (Doughty &
Williams, 1998a; Lightbown, 1998) interlanguage analysis of
the acquisition development was undertaken. The aim of this
analysis was to look into whether there was any change in the
participants’ interlanguage between the treatment and control
group. See Table 1 below.
Inter Transcriber and Inter Rater Agreement
After the researcher transcribed the participants’ utterances
phonetically, two independent native speakers of American
English were asked to transcribe the utterances and validate the
researcher’s phonetic transcription. One of the transcribers was
familiar with phonetic transcription; however, the other was not.
This affected the agreement index between them. The transcriber
who was not familiar with phonetic transcription had the ten-
The psycholinguistic interlanguage analysis framework.
Stages Strategies Input/knowledge driven
1 Phonological priming by L1 lexical items Modeling L1:
Priming of an L1 cognate word or similar in pronunciation Input driven
2 Phonological priming by Auditory input. Modeling Input:
Priming of a sound heard in a recognized word. Input driven
3 Phonological priming by L2 lexical items Modeling & simplification by deletion or changes in
segments, syllables, and words Input & Knowledge driven
4 Extrasystemic utterances Modeling & Trickling Input & Knowledge driven
5 Use of intonation but lacks function words Simplification by deletion and or changes in function words Knowledge driven
6 Canonical word order with rising intonation Flooding
Over-generalization Knowledge driven
7 Canonical word order with Question word placement Analysis Knowledge driven
8 Subject Verb Inversion System Learning Knowledge driven
9 Correct but not target use Analysis & System Learning Knowledge driven
10 Correct target-like use Syntactic, semantic, lexical and phonological interaction Knowledge driven
11The researcher manipulated when the participants could hear the previously recorded answer.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
dency to make sense of every utterance said by the participants,
whether or not the utterances were meaningful. Apparently, her
lack of experience and the guttural sounds of Arabic caused
some problems, especially in the Cairo study.
A Kappa (Cohen, 1960) agreement of index was calculated
between the two transcribers, a fair agreement of .459 was
found for Cairo experimental group, and a poor agreement
of .356 for Cairo control group. As for GU data, a fair agree-
ment was found for the experimental and control groups, a 419
for the experimental and 420 for the control.
Acceptability of the participants’ utterances was also inves-
tigated. Two native speakers were asked to rate the participants’
utterances. Acceptability was operationalized as the condition
when a native speaker rater would understand and be able to
respond or answer an utterance produced by the participants. In
other words, raters had the question “Is the utterance intelligi-
ble enough in your terms to answer it?” If the raters felt that it
was intelligible, they gave it a point; if not, a zero was given.
A rather weak kappa agreement was achieved for both the
experimental and control groups in Cairo, an agreement of .289
for the experimental pretest, and .348 for the posttest. As for the
control group, an agreement of .363 was found for the control
pretest, and .296 for the posttest. GU data showed a fair agree-
ment of .433 for the experimental pretest, and .473 for the ex-
perimental posttest, while the control pretest got a poor agree-
ment of .306, and .347 for the control posttest.
Two independent t tests as a statistical procedure were con-
ducted to investigate any gains that occurred in the number of
units produced per contracted segments, and the gain in target
use of the utterances. No significant difference was found be-
tween the experimental and control group in relation to the
above measures in either study.
Despite the lack of statistical significance of the results, a
slight change was witnessed in the experimental groups, as illus-
trated by the following figures. In Figure 1 (Cairo data) the ex-
perimental group started lower in both measures; however, im-
proved in the posttests.
As for Figure 2 (GU data) the experimental group did better
than the control group in both measures. The observed changes
indicated that an interlanguage analysis was necessary to inves-
tigate whether some development occurred in the acquisition of
the English contracted forms in the experimental groups.
An interlanguage analysis was carried out based on a frame-
work in which I adapted processes involved in listening, for
example, top-down (knowledge-driven) and bottom-up (input-
driven) processes. I also incorporated elements from interlan-
guage frameworks found in the literature (Doughty, 1998; Ham-
marberg, 1993; Pienemann, 1989; Tarone, 1987).
Cognitive psychologists contend that listening is a complex
process (Anderson, 1976, 1983a, 1995) that involves interre-
lated stages and strategies. These include bottom-up or input-
driven processes, such as speech perception (identification of
phonetic sounds), word recognition (deciding which word has
been said), parsing (the assignment of structure to the words
recognized) and interpretation (assignment of meaning). The
Units produced & Target Use of Cairo Experimental and
Control Groups Pretest & Posttest.
Units produced and Target use of GU Experimental and
Control Groups Pretest and Posttest.
top-down or knowledge-driven processes include strategies
such as inferencing, predicting and checking expectations on
the basis of the incoming linguistic input, knowledge and ex-
To ensure that the framework is inclusive of listening proc-
esses as well as stages and strategies of language acquisition, I
constructed (A Psycholinguistic Interla nguage Analysi s Frame-
work) which is based on listening processes mentioned above
and on the following frameworks: Hammarberg’s (1993) learn-
ing strategies, Tarone’s (1987) phonological acquisition stages,
Pienemann’s (1989) developmental stages, and Doughty’s (1998)
acquisition stages of wh-. questions (see Doughty, 1998: p.
In the current analysis, learners’ utterances were coded ac-
cording to the following two categories: input-driven, and knowl-
edge-driven. The input-driven category included the following
strategies and stages: 1) phonological priming by L1 lexical
items; 2) phonological priming by auditory input; 3) phono-
logical priming by L2 lexical items; 4) extrasystemic formulaic
utterances; and 5) using intonation, no function words. The
knowledge-driven category included the following stages: 6)
canonical word order with rising intonation; 7) canonical word
order with placement of question words; 8) subject verb inver-
sion; 9) correct but not target-like use; and 10) correct target-
like use. Table 1 demonstrates the stages, strategies and their
sources, whether input-driven or knowledge-driven.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 195
When learners do not have sufficient prosodic, phonological
and grammatical knowledge of L2, they resort to input-driven
processes, such as segment or phoneme identification, or word
recognition. In this study, because Cairo learners did not have
sufficient prosodic, phonological and grammatical knowledge
in English, it was predicted that they would refer to input-
driven processes and their developmental stages would be geared
more toward the input. The analysis conducted supported this
prediction, as it was found that the subjects designated their
processing strategies toward the given input. See Table 2 for
processes employed by Cairo learners.
In the examples below, the learner in (1a & b) most likely
perceived the [h, n, and o] sounds in the utterance; however he
probably could not place them in the words correctly. The [o]
sound in the word “office”, which apparently he knew, affected
his production of the contracted segment, the underlined con-
stituent in the brackets, [ɪziniz ɔfi s]. Likewise, in data (1b) the
learner perceived the nasal sound in the word “can”, but be-
cause it was contracted she most likely could not parse it.
However, the nasal sound in “can” primed her to produce those
nonsensical words “nim, im,” which also happen to be nonexis-
tent in Arabic. In data (2c), I assume that the learner referred to
his knowledge of English words and parsed the contracted seg-
ment as a word related to the English word “heart”. Whereas in
data (2d), I am positing that the underlined word that was pro-
duced by the learner was primed by a lexical Arabic effect,
since this word exists in Arabic and it means “I have”.
The phonological priming and Arabic lexical effects priming
decreased in occurrence in the experimental posttest perform-
ance more than they did in the control group. The average per-
centage of phonological priming in the experimental pretest is
74%, but decreased to 19% in the posttest. As for the control
group the average percentage of phonological priming was 54%
in the pretest, and decreased to 26% in the posttest.
In terms of acquisition, Tarone (1987) mentions that learners
pass through certain stages. Learners employ these stages to
cope with the unfamiliar heard input. The tactics Tarone men-
tioned were found to be more among Cairo’s learners. A com-
parison in the tactics used by learners in each study revealed the
presence of these tactics 62% of the times in the experimental
and control groups in the Cairo study, but nothing was found in
regard to these tactics in GU data.
For example, in the data in Table 2 of GU data, the learners
deleted the unstressed word in the contracted segment. In ex-
ample (3e) the learner deleted the string that may have sounded
as uncommon and substituted it with an open syllable cv “we”
followed by the word “won”. As for data in (3f) the learner
deleted the whole contracted form of “wanna”.
Concerning the extra-systemic structures, these are formulaic
chunks and utterances that learners produce correctly and learn
as “set phrases” (Doughty, 1998; Doughty & Williams, 1998a;
Input-driven processes and stages as observed in Cairo data.
Learners resort to input-driven strategies, and language developmental stages are shaped and driven by given input.
The condition when a certain phonological sound affects the perception of another sound in the utterance, either through a short or long-distance effect. Learner
perceives and utters a word based on the sound in a subsequent word.
Original input Student’s output
Is he in his office
Can you be ready by six?
Has he paid back the money?
[nem. ju. im bai. sɪks]
ʔɪz. hi, kant. mo.ni]
Lexical priming and effects of L1 vs. L2
The condition when some words in the utterance primed the production of other words by the learner despite their absence in the original utterance. Lexical
effects may sometimes be primed by L1 or L2.
How do you come to know that?
[her.ti kom] [tu zat]13
[ʕan.di. ju. Kom] [tu. kom.in. ne]14
Simplification through deletion
What do you wanna eat?
Do you wanna come with me?
[wi. won. i:r]
[du. ju. wan. tu. kom. wiz. mi:]
Structures, or formulaic chunks and utterances produced correctly and learned as set phrases.
item (5) Test format B
item (33) Test format B
item (18) Test format B
item (37) Test format B
item (22) Test Format A
Do you like horror movies?
Do you know?
Do you think?
But you know
Where is it?
12Data from learner (1) in the control group posttest.
13Data from learner (3) in the experimental group pretest.
14Since rising intonation even when the verb is absent denotes a question, raters accepted it despite the lack of a verb, as mentioned raters were neither phoneti-
cians nor English grammar teachers.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
Huebner, 1983), before they carry on any systematic analysis of
the input. These extra-systemic elements may serve as precur-
sors, and sometimes as triggers, for further learning, as the
learners’ system may adjust to them some time after they ap-
pear. Intonation plays a very important role in extra-systemic
structures as it renders the structure malleable and easy to re-
member. These structures started to emerge in the posttests of
the experimental and control groups, Cairo data, 75% in the
experimental and 50% in the control. This could be taken as an
indication that some learning has taken place. It was amazing to
find the learners able to produce contracted segments, espe-
cially since in their pretests their production was very simpli-
fied phonologically and full of nonsensical words or primed by
L1 lexical terms.
Learners resort and use all the information they have about a
given language, whether phonology, vocabulary or syntax. They
also use all the strategies they have acquired interactively. The
following table demonstrates the examples, illustrating the stages
the learners of the experiment have gone through and the strate-
gies they employed.
Note that at the “intonation and canonical word order” stage
learners use the canonical word order of a question with a rising
intonation but without supplying the auxiliary verb as in the
examples of (6a-h) in Table 3 below. In fact, such utterances
exist a lot in the Cairo experimental group learners’ posttests
and in GU’s control and experimental pretests. As noticed in
the examples, in the yes/no question, the auxiliary verb is miss-
ing. Interestingly, when the raters checked the acceptability of
such utterances, they agreed that they were acceptable. Most
likely, raters accepted the learner’s output because it followed a
question intonation despite the absence of the auxiliary verbs15.
Extracts (6a and b) are from learners’ 1 and 4 Cairo experi-
mental posttest data, while extracts (6c-e) in Table 3 are from
the GU experiment pretest, and extracts (6f-h) are from learn-
ers’ 2 and 4 GU control post-test.
Learners at this stage could analyze the components of a
contracted question and produce even the segments that were
not salient. For example, a structure like “Does it have cheese
on it?” “was produced as ‘Does have cheese?’” by the learners
in the posttest of the experimental group in Cairo. For Cairo
learners this is a major breakthrough, because their initial pro-
duction of such structures in the pretest was basically unintelli-
gible and far from being English-like.
Likewise, in the GU pre-test data, learners deleted the pro-
noun from the question structures. For example the structured
“is it gonna rain today?” and “what’s it about?” were produced
by learners in the pretest as “Is gonna rain today?” and “What
is about?” However, in the posttests, such cases were not as
frequent. For example, learners at GU in the experimental group
produced 75% of utterances that had syntactic simplification,
like deletion of function word (e.g., an auxiliary, or a pronoun),
whereas in their posttest they did not have one case of syntactic
deletion. On the other hand, the control group had 83% of syn-
tactic deletion instances in the pretest, and decreased to only
44% in the posttest. This could be taken as strong support for
the syntactic accuracy the treatment technique has helped the
At the System Learning stage, learners analyzed the compo-
nents of the utterance and applied the knowledge they had. This
was observed specifically in the data of GU. Here, learners used
the knowledge they have acquired about English grammar,
phonology, syntax and vocabulary to help them parse the heard
input. This is exemplified by the words they substituted when
they could not parse the original ones. For example in (7c) the
learner substituted the word “around” by “be right here”. The
word used is neither different from the original in syntactic
category nor in semantics. In addition, his knowledge of the
phonological system might have helped him replace the un-
parsed word “around” with a word that had a similar sound [r]
as in “right here”. The same argument applies to (7b). The
learner substituted with words that fit syntactically and seman-
tically. The learner most likely could not hear the contracted
segment in “Is there good food there?” and substituted it with
“did they get food in there?” His knowledge of English might
have helped him to produce appropriate syntactic and semantic
Learners use knowledge they have about L2 grammar, phonology, syntax and vocabulary to parse heard input.
Intonation and canonical word order
Learners use the canonical word order of a sentence, but with a rising question intonation.
Original input Learner output
a. Do you have your textbook?
b. Did you ask him about the accident?
c. Do you have your ID?
d. Do you know where it is?
e. Is he absent?
f. Do you know if there’s a good movie in town?
g. Do you have your textbook?
h. Do you have your textbook?
a. You have your textbook?
b. You ask about accident?
c. You have your ID?
d. You know where it is?
e. He’s absent?
f. You know if there’s a good movie in town?
g. You have your textbook?
h. You have textbook?
Analysis and provision of previously missing functional words
a. Are you gonna be around this afternoon?
b. Is there good food there?
c. Are we going to be right here this afternoon?
d. Did they get food in there?
15Since rising intonation even when the verb is absent denotes a question, raters accepted it despite the lack of a verb, as mentioned raters were neither phoneti-
cians nor English grammar teachers.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 197
To conclude this section, please note Table 4, which illus-
trates the frequencies of the input and knowledge-driven strate-
gies and their percentages as observed in the Cairo and GU
Note that certain strategies were observed in the Cairo data
but were not observed in the GU data, and vice versa. For ex-
ample, the following were absent in the GU data: L1 phono-
logical priming and input phonological priming. This could sug-
gest that GU learners did not need to resort mainly to input-
driven strategies, because they used strategies of the input as
well as knowledge interactively to parse the input.
Data also showed that development took place with certain
stages and strategies. They were absent in the experimental
pretest and emerged in the posttest in Cairo data: extrasystemic
utterances and target use. Also in the GU data, the development
was also evident with the experiment pretest and posttest, spe-
cifically in the following: L2 phonological priming in the ex-
perimental pretest occurred 22% of the time, while in the post-
test it was nonexistent; with extra systemic utterances it was
53% of the time in the pretest, but decreased to 0% in the post-
test. The same development took place with the strategy of
“rising intonation but with no function words,” which was 67%
of the time in the pretest, whereas it decreased to 33% in the
posttest. Also the “canonical word order with rising intonation
strategy” was 55% of the time in the GU experimental pretest,
but completely absent in the posttest.
As for the impact of the treatment and feedback, the table
demonstrates that learners in the experimental group in Cairo
resorted to phonological priming less often than those in the
control group, 0%, 25%, and 15% percent of the time among
the experimental group versus 25%, 34% and 25% percent of
the time among the control group. Extrasystemic utterances
were found more in the data of the posttest of the experimental
group than the data of the posttest of the control group, e.g.
75% percent of the time versus 0% percent of the time.
In sum, we could infer from the percentages provided in the
table that the treatment and the kind of feedback could have had
an effect on the learning and development of contracted forms
of English by Arabic-speaking learners of English.
The aim of the study was to find whether implicit negative
feedback in the form of “recasts” is effective in the develop-
ment and learning of contracted forms in questions and declara-
tive statements of English by Arabic-speaking learners of Eng-
lish. Obviously, I cannot draw conclusions based on this small-
scale study in relation to effectiveness of “recasts” per se as a
trigger in implicit learning. Nevertheless, interlanguage data
from the two experiments conducted on two separate groups of
Arabic-speaking learners of English gives some evidence that
the implicit negative feedback, specifically “recast,” can be ef-
fective in the learning and the development of a complex Eng-
lish language structure, namely, the perception and production
of contracted English statements and questions. Pedagogical
treatment, and specifically feedback and FonF (Doughty &
Williams, 1998a), provided by the researcher whenever neces-
sary, help in the acquisition of the complex English structure of
contracted forms in questions and declarative statements. The
treatment and feedback may have made the learners notice the
form and practice it. The devised interlanguage analysis frame-
work, The Psycholinguistic Interlanguage Analysis Framework,
illustrates the different input-driven, as well as knowledge-
driven strategies learners may use in processing and learning
new input. The analysis shows that the learners’ resort and
usage of input-driven and knowledge-driven strategies is de-
pendent on the learners’ proficiency level. The conducted study
also gives evidence that once input-related problems are peda-
gogically treated, learners can concentrate on other meaning-
Frequencies and percentages of interlanguage developmental stages and processing strategies.
Experimental Control Experimental Control
Pre Post Pre Post Pre Post Pre Post
L1 phonological priming
Input phonological priming
75 25 54 34
L2 phonological priming
79 15 60 25 22
75 50 53 56
Rising intonation no function words
25 35 25 15 67 33
Canonical word order w/rising into
18 33 50 55
Correct but not target
25 51 50 10 33
18 25 10 66 88 70 76
Simplification word level
76 63 55
Simplification syntactic level
75 83 44
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
Of utmost interest and importance are the findings related to
the learners’ interlanguage and to their perception and acquisi-
tion of contracted statements and wh- and yes/no contracted
questions, phonologically and grammatically. However, there
are differences in the strategies used by the learners. GU learn-
ers used strategies that referred to their knowledge of English
vocabulary and grammar in parsing the auditory input. Actually,
the advanced learners used both input and knowledge-based
inferential strategies. The learners in Cairo, on the other hand,
because of their lack of sufficient knowledge of English gram-
mar and vocabulary, employed input-driven strategies, some
based on L1, and some on the auditory input. They employed
knowledge-driven strategies only when the structure or com-
ponents were familiar.
This finding supports the notion that the manipulation of in-
put in the form of focus on form could be effective, since the
learners’ default attention was on the input. In fact, although the
results do not show that there is a statistically significant dif-
ference in target-like use16, and in the number of units produced
between the experimental and control groups, the interlanguage
analysis conducted reveals that the experimental group, espe-
cially in the Cairo study, started noticing the form. After the
treatment, contracted forms started to emerge. It is true that
they appeared as extra-systemic elements; nevertheless, they
are there; perhaps as precursors for learning, that could trigger
further learning, especially when the learner starts to analyze
the input (Vihman, Velleman, & McCune, 1994).
A gratifying result is the progress the experimental group in
GU has made in terms of avoiding syntactic simplifications and
deletions, as demonstrated in Table 4. A rather strong support
for the treatment is that the control group did not do as well as
the experimental in this regard. Table 4 demonstrates that GU
learners in the control group produced correct but not target-
like items 33% of the time. The learners in the experimental
group did not produce any non-target items, but actually pro-
duced correct and target-like items 88% of the time in the post-
Solution of the learning problem, contracted questions and
statements, did not take place at the expense of communication
and meaning. On the contrary, meaning and communication
were vital and crucial elements in making the technique suc-
ceed. The study was designed to make sure that the participants
were exposed to natural running speech, and were given a peda-
gogical treatment, which ensured the emulation of real-life
tasks as in reporting. Hence, there was no dichotomy between
natural language as spoken among native speakers of English
and classroom-comprehensible input.
The findings reveal that, because the investigated form con-
tracted wh- & yes/no, and contracted statement involve multi-
ple linguistic components, for example, phonology, prosody,
syntax, and semantics, some prior knowledge is probably nec-
essary in order to make the best use of the corrective potential
power of recast (Saxton, 1997).
This brings us to the question of whether there is a relation-
ship between implicit and explicit instruction/learning, and
whether prior knowledge is explicit or implicit. In other words,
should learning follow Anderson’s theory of skill acquisition
(Anderson, 1982, 1983b; DeKeyser, 1998, 2001; VanPatten,
DeKeyser (1998) says that SLA should follow the theory of
skill acquisition by introducing linguistic information or knowl-
edge in the form of declarative knowledge, and via practice it
becomes procedural and then automatic; in other words, ex-
plicit learning becomes implicit. I would like to argue along the
lines of DeKeyser’s (1998) and VanPatten’s (2010) argument
that both explicit and implicit knowledge and learning are in
place, and we cannot separate between them. VanPatten regards
mental representation as abstract and implicit knowledge that
underlies all language, while skill refers to the use of language.
I add that skill can be developed and enhanced through practice,
especially if it is carried out implicitly in communicative class-
room activities, with the incorporation of implicit negative
feedback, such as recast, whenever it is necessary.
The findings of this study point to the possible interaction
between explicit and implicit learning, specifically the weak
interface position (R. Ellis, 2005: p. 144). According to Ellis
(2005) researchers have three positions in relation to the inter-
face between explicit and implicit learning. The first version
posits that explicit learning can turn into implicit knowledge
through practice only when the learner is developmentally rea-
dy to acquire the linguistic element (Check Processability The-
ory (PT) Pienemann, 1989, 2007).
The second version holds that explicit knowledge contributes
indirectly to the acquisition of knowledge implicitly by involv-
ing and promoting some of the top-down or knowledge-driven
information like declarative rules (N. Ellis, 1994). The third
version posits that learners use their explicit knowledge to pro-
duce output that in turn is used as input for implicit learning to
take place (Schmidt & Frota, 1986; Sharwood Smith, 1981).
The findings of the interlanguage analysis in the current stu-
dy give support that the three versions of interface are present.
For example, we can witness the presence of the weak version
as it is observed when learners in both studies do not produce
the contracted form correctly until they go through certain in-
put-driven and knowledge-driven stages and strategies. The evi-
dence for the presence of the second version can be found in the
data of GU learners, especially if compared with the Cairo data.
As mentioned, the GU learners were linguistically more profi-
cient than Cairo learners, and thus were able to tap into the
declarative knowledge of rules in parsing the heard input. As
for the third version, since it is related to output and production,
I argue that it reflects practice. There is no better indication of
its presence than the increase in the number of produced units
and their L2 target-like use, as seen in the data of Cairo learn-
The present paper sheds some light on two major research
concerns in SLA, i.e. linguistic knowledge and development of
a given linguistic feature. Data from two experiments conduc-
ted on two separate groups of Arabic-speaking learner of Eng-
lish, at the American University Cairo (AUC) and Georgetown
University (GU) gives some evidence that implicit negative
feedback, as in “recast,” could be effective in the learning and
the development of a complex English language structure, name-
ly the contracted forms in questions and declarative statements.
The pedagogical treatment based on Fonf, and the implicit
feedback, as in “recast,” provided by the researcher when nec-
essary helped in the learning and development of contracted
forms. This was observed in the learner’s interlanguage data,
especially the emergence and increase of contracted forms in
16This could be attributed to the small number of the participants.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. 199
the learners’ output, even though these were extrasystemic for-
mulaic-like utterances. A framework, A Psycholinguist ic Inter-
language Analysis Framework, was devised to investigate the
data. The framework was based on cognitive listening processes,
input and knowledge-driven, as well as different interlanguage
frameworks established in the literature.
Interface between explicit and implicit learning was also de-
monstrated in the findings of the analysis, specifically with GU
learners. These learners did better than their peers in Cairo be-
cause they were able to tap into their explicit/implicit knowledge
that they learned at GU, and also because they were able to
utilize both input as well as knowledge-driven strategies while
processing the input.
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Pretest/Posttest Instrument Pretest/Post-Test Form A
1. Are we going out to eat tonight?
2. Is there good food there?
3. Can you be ready by six?
4. What do you wanna eat?
5. Does it have cheese on it?
6. But I thought you didn’t like cheese.
7. Well, Italian cheese is different.
8. Then that will take us to Paolos.
9. I wanna go with you.
10. Please take the basket from here.
11. Could have gone if they’d asked us.
12. I’d like to return this soup it has a fly in it.
13. She had her dinner with him.
14. Is it gonna rain today?
15. Did you hear anything on the radio about the weather?
16. Is it cold in your country?
17. Did it snow there?
18. Does it snow a lot there?
19. It doesn’t snow much?
20. I don’t like rain.
At a bank
21. Where is the withdrawal slip?
22. Where is it?
23. Do you know where it is?
24. When will he be in his office?
25. He is always on time.
26. She is in her office by 10 o’clock.
27. Then you should come back at 1 o’clock.
28. Have you forgotten anything?
29. How do you come to know that?
30. He won’t help me unless you ask him.
31. Has he paid back the money?
32. He has a lot of money.
33. They have lots of money.
34. I wonder how this confusion is caused.
35. Do you know the procedure of this application?
36. This matter is not yet resolved.
37. Well we could have made it if they showed us the way.
38. Did you know about the pre-registration procedure?
39. She didn’t tell me.
40. I’m from Belize.
41. I should have gone with you.
42. Is he absent?
43. His mother is not home yet.
44. Is she in this class?
45. She visited him.
46. She had her dinner with him.
47. He had a fight with her.
48. Were you in class yesterday?
49. Do you know what happened to them?
50. Did you ask him about the accident?
51. Did you tell him about the accident?
52. Did you ask them about the accident?
53. He didn’t tell them.
54. Should we call them.
55. I don’t wanna go with him.
56. Could you give me a ride.
57. I won’t give you a ride unless you give me a big hug.
Pretest/Post-Test Form B
Going to the Movies
1. Are you going to the movies tonight?
2. Are you going to be around this afternoon?
3. Do you know if there are any good movies in town?
4. Repeat that one.
5. Do you like horror movies?
6. Is that movie about a haunted house?
7. Why don’t you like that story?
8. What is it about?
9. Do you want to come with me?
10. I wanna go with you.
11. Is it cold and windy outside?
12. When will the storm be over?
13. Is it raining too?
14. Why me in this weather?
15. Was it this cold last night?
16. Is it freezing outside?
17. But don’t realize how cold it is outside?
18. Do you think you will freeze?
19. Aren’t you gonna take the dog for a walk?
20. I think you should go now.
21. What is the problem, why aren’t you taking the dog out?
22. You will need the leash to take the dog out.
23. I took the dog out last night.
24. It was a great walk last night with the dog.
25. Oh, it is not so bad outside.
26. I don’t like dust.
27. I don’t think he’s gonna make it till tomorrow.
28. The dog really needs to go for a walk outside.
29. You will be fine.
At a library
30. Can I help you?
31. Please take this baseball from here.
32. Do you have your ID?
33. Do you know where my file is?
34. Is there a fine?
35. I wonder when this confusion was made.
36. This matter needs to be resolved.
37. Did you know about the pre-registration procedure?
38. What time will professor Smith be back?
39. Is he in his office?
40. He is in his office by 1:00.
41. Can you stop by and see him.
42. I won’t give you your grade unless you get your book.
43. Do you have your textbook?
44. By next year I won’t be here.
45. Were you absent yesterday?
46. I should’ve gone with you.
47. What is your English professor’s name?
48. I’m from Tamir.
49. Where do you generally do your shopping?
50. Do you mean clothes shopping or food shopping?
51. I generally go to Bloomingdales.
52. Where did you buy that?
Copyright © 2013 SciRes.
53. When did you buy them?
54. Did you get that in the shoe department?
55. Did you buy that matching Gucci bag?
56. Did that cost a lot?
57. But I thought the sale was on.
A2 Game of Jeopardy
The game took place between the researcher and two native
speakers of American English. Please see below the instruc-
tions that were given to native speakers of English playing the
game. The whole conversation was recorded in a recoding booth,
and digitized. Subsequently, the contracted statements and
questions constructions were sliced off the recording and used
for the pretest and posttest. The topics were everyday topics
which include survival functional language items: Eating out,
the weather; At a bank, At school, Going to the movies, At the
library, and Shopping. For each topic, an introduction summa-
rizing the situation was given by the researcher to the native
speakers for the purpose of establishing context, as in the fol-
“The following conversation is between two friends. They
have the habit of going out every Saturday night. It is Saturday
night and they are discussing where to go and what to eat. The
utterances you are about to hear are statements given by one
friend in answer to another friend. Please provide the proper
question to the given statement as quickly and naturally as pos-
The researcher uttered a sentence that was an answer to a
question to be provided by the native speakers. The first to utter
the question would be the winner. Here is an example:
1) Response/prompt from the researcher
“Sure, we’re going out to eat tonight.
We’re going to Paolo’s.”
Expected question: (from the native speaker)
“Are we going out to eat tonight?”
2) Response/prompt from the researcher
“But of course, there is good food there.”
“Is there any good food there?”
3) Response/prompt from the researcher
“OK. I’ll be ready by six.”
“Will you be ready by six”?
Pedagogical Treatment Material Development
Guess the celebrity
Instructions to native speakers:
Your task is to carry on a conversation asking and answering
questions. One of you thinks of a celebrity from the given
names below but does not reveal the person to his partner.
Some of the characters are fictitious and historical and you may
not have enough information about. In such cases, please spe-
culate. The partner’s task is to ask questions in order to figure
out who that celebrity is. If you happen to feel that you know
the person, please refrain from mentioning their name until the
end of the task. Please ask a variety of question forms, wh. and
yes/no questions. Also make sure your questions are related to
the following themes and topics. Thank you for your coopera-
Jacqueline Kennedy John Kennedy
Marilyn Monroe Elvis Presley
Princess Diana Maradona
(Argentinian soccer player)
Queen Elizabeth II Prince Charles
Madonna Mahatma Gandhi
Indira Gandhi Nelson Mandela
Sophia Loren Martin Luther King
Margaret Thatcher Albert Einstein
Cleopatra James Bond
Hillary Clinton Bill Clinton
Themes and topics
Whether the celebrity is dead or alive and their health-related
The celebrity’s taste in clothes
The celebrity’s taste in music
The celebrity’s involvement in sports
The celebrity’s favorite sports
The celebrity’s accomplishments and achievements
The celebrity’s lifestyle
The celebrity’s bad side, if there is any
Example of Given Feedback
The experimental group was exposed to the instructional
condition where they got:
1) Recast, with high pitch, of an isolated (contracted wh- + aux
or yes/no) phrase.
2) Expansion, with a related declarative utterance.
3) Expansion with a related declarative utterance followed by
recast with high pitch of (contracted wh- + aux or yes/no)
phrase, in one exchange.
The following is the format all the recast prompts followed:
The phonetic and intonation representation.
Heard Prompt through the headphones
Is she alive or dead?
ɪʃi alaivər dɜd
Recast with high pitch of an isolated phrase:
Expansion with a related declarative utterance:
Expansion with a related declarative utterance, followed by
recast with high pitch of (contracted wh- + aux) phrase, in one
I’m alive. Is she alive or dead?
An example from the pedagogical treatment discourse
Prompt: Is she alive or dead?
Student: no response
Teacher: Is she?
Student: no response
Teacher: I am alive. My father is dead.
Teacher: I am alive, my father is dead. Is she alive or dead?
Student: She live or dead? (Rising intonation)
Teacher: Is she, alive or dead
Student: Is she alive or dead?
Agent: She is dead. This person is dead.