The effects of image-schema-based instruction on learning/ acquiring polysemous prepositions.
Bouchenek, Hasna Lamis
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Polysemous prepositions, which express various meanings, represent a real challenge for students. The many meanings of these words have always been pedagogically treated in a piecemeal fashion and as largely arbitrary, or they have not been given the proper attention they deserve. This makes their learning more complicated because learners keep on experiencing difficulty with their semantics. However, the use of a new way to teach polysemous prepositions such as applying image-schemas seems to be very promising. The present study aims at presenting the characteristics of the semantics of polysemous prepositions and examining the efficacy of image-schema-based instruction on learning the semantics of the English prepositions above, across, in, on, out, over and through which serve as representative examples. It also investigates the students’ attitudes towards the usefulness of this form of instruction through administering a Students’ Questionnaire. Eighty students studying English as a foreign language at the University “Frères Mentouri”, Constantine 1 were chosen randomly. They were divided into a Control Group and an Experimental Group. Comparisons of the pre-test and post-test results show that the group who received instruction based on image-schemas experienced a change in their understanding and use of the semantics of the target prepositions. The analysis of the Students’ Questionnaire also reveals that the students held positive attitudes towards the use of image-schema-based instruction. On the basis of the results of the Students’ Questionnaire and the Experiment, it can be deduced that image-schema-based instruction plays an important role in improving the learning of polysemous prepositions, and it can serve as a vital tool in teaching them. This study provides evidence for the importance of dealing with polysemous prepositions and how revisiting the way they are taught through applying image-schema-based instruction can bring forth a new breath to their learning.
- Doctorat langue Anglaise