Contrastive Analysis

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Advanced writing April 24, 2009 Contrastive analysis: Prosperity, Decline and new Hopes of revival It should be mentioned that the history of foreign language teaching is so complicated. The complexities are the outcome of the rise of the assumptions of so many theories, approaches, methods and hypotheses that dominated this field , especially beginning from1940s and up till now. Today there are innumerable assumptions for approaches and methods that relate to language learning and teaching. All of them claim to be the right approach for learning and teaching a language. In the midst of these situations, foreign language teachers find it extremely difficult to decide upon an approach, a method or a hypothesis to adopt, so as…show more content…
On the other hand, theory stipulates that learning will be quite difficult, or even unsuccessful, when the two languages are different(qtd. in Dena 3) Decline of Contrastive analysis Contrastive analysis started losing interest and was gradually abandoned and replaced by other new assumptions and views about language learning and teaching. Many scholars started to direct sound criticisms to contrastive analysis, beginning from the mid of 1960s. For example, it is argued that most of the language learners do not result from interference, but rather they could be developmental. In this effect, Dulay and Burt mention that: report on a number of studies of the errors made by children learning English as a second language and consider that they are similar to those made by children learning English natively . The greatest number(87 percent) they considered to be developmental, that is, like those that a native language learner makes(qtd. in Spolsky 253). Other researchers arrived to the same conclusion. For example, it was pointed out that: Similarly, Baily, Madden, and Krashen(1974)report results similar to Dulay and Burt's showing some similarity in order of acquisition between adults and children learning English as a second language that is still different from the order in first language acquisition(Spolsky
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