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Volume 17 Number 2, Summer 2020, Pages 319-757   


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Structural Analysis of Lexical-Bundles in Uncontrolled Environment of Spoken Discourse: The Same Heritage Language Groups

    Julian Chung & Kyoung Rang Lee


This study explores the lexical bundles in the speech of Korean English language users who share the same heritage language and culture, Korean, but with different proficiency in English: Korean-Americans whose first language is English (2nd-generation Korean-Americans; G2KAs), bilingual Korean-Americans who started to learn English at an early age (1.5-generation Korean-Americans; G1.5KAs), and Koreans who learned English in Korea (L2Ks). One of the big differences between native (NSs) and non-native speakers (NNSs) is that NNSs use verb-related lexical bundles dominantly unlike NSs. Thus, the structural patterns of lexical bundle uses in addition to verb uses were examined. The results were consistent to previous studies showing increasing use of lexical bundles with increase in English proficiency; NSs (G2KAs) used the lexical bundles more than G1.5KAs and L2Ks. However, in contrast to previous studies, G2KAs mostly used VP-related lexical bundles, G1.5KAs used lexical bundles in the widest range, and L2Ks used the most lexical verbs. The paper elaborates the details of the results and suggests further studies including the new group of English users, G1.5KAs, to help understand a possible influence of their heritage language and culture on English speaking.

Keywords: uncontrolled environment of spoken discourse, Korean-Americans, Korean English learners, Generation 1.5, lexical bundles, structural patterns