Language development Essay

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There are numerous theories that have, and continue to try, to explain language acquisition. The theory of language acquisition has been greatly influenced by linguists and psychologists (Kiymazarslan, 2001). Theories have centered on the "nature/nurture" debate.


There is also another debate relevant to language acquisition and which also differentiates theories - to what degree is language a separate process from cognition/behavior, or dependant upon them. As language is a complex system with various interacting elements, it is unlikely that a single theory of language acquisition is feasible (Clibbens, 2001). However it does appear that different factors are dominant at particular stages of development.
This paper will review theories of language acquisition and their relationship to the academic outcomes of 16 students enrolled in a childcare course. First, popular theories of language acquisition will be presented. Secondly the process of langue development in a child will be outlined, whilst emphasizing developmental stages that vocab, syntax and pragmatics occur. Finally, an indication of learning developments at secondary school and at higher education will be discussed, particularly in regard to students undertaking a childcare course. I would like to remind the reader of Clibbens warning of not to be caught up in the various debates which can deviate from the true purpose of helping all children, young people and adults to use language and communicate.
It is generally accepted that language acquisition is partly innate and partly environmental (Bickerton, 1990). ...
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