The Acquisition of Preposition Stranding and Pied Piping in Interrogatives by Arab Jordanian EFL Speakers

Yazan Shaker Almahammed, Tun Nur Afizah Zainal Ariff, Harison Hanisa Mohd Sidek


The current study aimed primarily at investigating the acquisition of preposition stranding and pied piping by Jordanian EFL speakers. As secondary purposes, the study attempted to supply convincing accounts for the occurrence of preposition stranding and pied piping based on previous literature carried out on this area of language. The study also sought to show any instances of Null preposition phenomenon as acquiring preposition stranding and pied piping. In collecting the data needed for the study, grammaticality judgment and correction task was employed. The task consisted of 21 sentences; 15 of which were incorrect as a result of absence of prepositions and 6 were correct. 355 Jordanian EFL students from ten universities took part in this study. The results of the study indicated that, there were no statistical significant difference between the use of preposition stranding and pied piping among the respondents. More specifically, the respondents produced nearly equal rates of preposition stranding and pied piping. In addition, the results showed that transfer from Arabic is the best possible account for use of pied piping since both Arabic and English permit pied piping in interrogative clauses. In contrast, the frequent emergence of preposition stranding can be justified by salience factor. Lastly, the results revealed a strong evidence for the presence of Null preposition in the language of Jordanian EFL speakers. 

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