The Korean Association for the Study of English Language and Linguistics

Current Issue

Korea Journal of English Language and Linguistics - Vol. 21

[ Article ]
Korea Journal of English Language and Linguistics - Vol. 21, No. 0, pp.56-70
Abbreviation: KASELL
ISSN: 1598-1398 (Print)
Print publication date 31 Jan 2021
Received 23 Dec 2020 Revised 18 Jan 2021 Accepted 26 Jan 2021

초등영어 학습자의 가산명사 판정에서 언어적 맥락과 명제적 정보의 활용
이현정 ; 성민창

Korean primary English learners’ use of linguistic context and propositional information in the judgment of count nouns
Hyun Jeong Lee ; Min-Chang Sung
Graduate student, Gyeongin Nat’l Univ. of Education, Tel: 031-470-6330 (
Professor, Gyeongin Nat’l Univ. of Education, Tel: 031-470-6335 (

© 2021 KASELL All rights reserved
This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons License, which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This study examined whether Korean learners of primary English effectively use linguistic context and propositional information to judge the acceptability of English count nouns. To this end, 44 fourth-graders at a primary school in Incheon participated in two tasks of acceptability judgment: sentence-based and picture-based. To make correct judgments about sentences containing count nouns, they had to use the linguistic contexts in the sentence-based task (i.e. determiners preceding the object nouns: e.g. two cats/*cat) and the propositional information in the picture-based task (i.e. number of the referent in each image: e.g. two dogs in a picture). Every sentence began with the 1st-person singular pronoun I and a past-tense verb and ended with a locative or temporal adverb phrase to make the number-related morpheme of the object noun less salient. While the participants showed similar levels of means and standard deviations in the two tasks, the between-task correlation was found to be insignificant, which implies that the participants varied from one another in their use of linguistic context and propositional information. In the sentence-based task, they appeared to be less capable of using linguistic context, especially when they had to reject the sentences with incorrect number forms such as a *cups. In the picture-based task, they were less able to use propositional information in the pictures to make correct judgments about count-noun forms. In particular, the mean scores were significantly lower for the items visualizing singular entities than those visualizing plural ones. Based on these findings, the present study suggests that primary English grammar education for count nouns and other basic linguistic units should systematically consider form, meaning, and use.

Keywords: primary English education, count noun, form, meaning, use

1. 곽은주⋅진실로(Kwak, E. and S. Chin). 2011. 텍스트 차원에서의 복수 표현의 영한번역 전략(English-Korean translational strategies of plural expressions in texts). ≪번역학연구≫ (The Journal of Translation Studies) 12-1, 7-34.
2. 교육부(Ministry of Education). 2015. 『영어과 교육과정』(Curriculum for English Language Education). 서울: 교육부(Seoul: Ministry of Education).
3. 김수경(Kim, S.). 2017. 초등영어 언어 형식 학습에서 명시적 교수법과 암시적 교수법의 효과에 관한 연구(A Study on the Effects of Explicit Teaching and Implicit Teaching on Language Form Learning in Elementary English Classes). 석사학위논문(Master’s thesis), 한국교원대학교.
4. 김유정⋅홍선호(Kim, Y. and S. Hong). 2017. 대화식 저널 쓰기 활용 교사 피드백이 초등영어 학습자의 문법 정확성에 미치는 영향(The efects of corrective feedback in dialogue journal writing on elementary school students’ grammatical accuracy). ≪언어학연구≫ (Journal of Linguistic Studies) 22-2, 19-37.
5. 김혜영⋅구재명(Kim, H. and J. Koo). 2016. 형태 중심과 형태 초점의 어휘 지도 방법이 우연적인 문법 습득에 미치는 영향(Effects of teaching vocabulary through focus on forms and focus on form instruction on the incidental acquisition of L2 grammar). ≪영어영문학 21≫(English Language and Literature 21) 29-3, 273-296.
6. 신명희(Shin, M.). 2003. 초등학교 학생들의 영어 발화 분석을 통한 중간 언어 특성 고찰(Interlanguage Utterance Analysis in Korean Elementary School Students’ English). 석사학위논문(Master’s thesis), 한국교원대학교.
7. 양현권⋅정영국(Yang, H. and Y. Jeong). 2008. 『교육영문법의 이해』(Understanding Educational Grammar of English). 서울: 한국문화사(Seoul: Hankook Press).
8. 오인생⋅홍경선(Oh, I. and K. Hong). 2015. 2009 개정 교육과정용 초등 6학년 영어 교과서 5종의 어휘항목 분석(An analysis of the vocabulary lists for 6th-grade English textbooks on 2009 revised national curriculum). ≪언어학연구≫(Journal of Linguistic Studies) 20-2, 95-120.
9. 이선민⋅김태은(Lee, S. and T. Kim). 2015. 간접적 피드백의 유형에 따른 문법 오류 수정과 문장 쓰기 능력 향상(Effects of the different types of indirect corrective feedback on grammatical error correction and sentence-level writing ability). ≪한국초등교육≫(The Journal of Korea Elementary Education) 26-4, 141-162.
10. 이송이⋅김남국(Lee, S. and N. Kim). 2017. 한국 대학생의 명사 가산성 인식 연구(A study on perception of countability of English nouns). ≪언어학연구≫(Journal of Linguistic Studies) 42, 25-47.
11. 이혜형(Lee, H.). 2008. 7차 교육과정과 개정 교육과정에서 제시한 기본 어휘 목록 비교 분석(A Comparative Study on the English Basic Vocabulary Lists of the 7th and Revised National Curricula). 석사학위논문(Master’s thesis), 총신대학교.
12. 이효주(Lee, H.). 2014. 멀티미디어 활용을 통한 초등영어 문법능력 향상 방안에 관한 연구(A Study of Improvement of Elementary English Grammatical Ability Through Multimedia). 석사학위논문(Master’s thesis), 국민대학교.
13. 최란(Choi, R). 2014. 오류일지 활용 피드백이 초등영어 학습자의 오류에 미치는 영향(Effects of Error-Log Based Feedback on Errors in Primary English). 석사학위논문(Master’s thesis), 서울교육대학교.
14. 하영아(Ha, Y.). 2008. 초등학생의 영어 명사 가산성 이해에 관한 연구(A Study on Elementary School Students’ Use of English Noun: Focused on Understanding of Countability). 석사 학위논문(Master’s thesis), 한국교원대학교.
15. 홍미영(Hong, M.). 2015. 코퍼스 기반 초등학교 6학년 검정 영어 교과서 어휘 분석(A Corpus-Based Analysis of Vocabulary in Elementary English Textbooks for the Sixth Grade). 석사학위논문(Master’s thesis), 대구교육대학교.
16. Mitchell, R., F. Myles and E. Marsden. 2019. Second Language Learning Theories. London: Routledge.
17. Goldberg, A. E. 1995. Constructions: A Construction Grammar Approach to Argument Structure. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press.
18. Goldberg, A. E. 2019. Explain Me This: Creativity, Competition, and the Partial Productivity of Constructions. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.
19. Hickmann, M., H. Engemann, E. Soroli, H. Hendriks and C. Vincent. 2017. Expressing and categorizing motion in French and English: Verbal and non-verbal cognition across languages. In I. Ibarretxe-Antuñano, ed., Motion and Space Across Languages: Theory and Applications, 61–94. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
20. Langacker, R. 1991. Concept, Image, and Symbol: The Cognitive Basis of Grammar. Berlin: Mouton.
21. Larsen-Freeman, D., M. Celce-Murcia, J. Frodesen, B. White and H. Williams. 2015. The Grammar Book: Form, Meaning, and Use for English Language Teachers. Boston: National Geographic Learning.
22. Pienemann, M. 1998. Language Processing and Second Language Acquisition: Processability Theory. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
23. Quirk, R., S. Greenbaum, G. Leech and J. Svartvik. 1985. A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language. Harlow, Essex: Longman.
24. Sabourin, L. and M. Haverkort. 2003. Neural substrates of representation and processing of a second language. In R. van Hout, A. Hulk, F. Kuiken and R. Towell, eds., The Lexicon–Syntax Interface in Second Language Acquisition, 175-195. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
25. Shintani, N. and R. Ellis. 2010. The incidental acquisition of English plural –s by Japanese children in comprehension-based and production-based lessons: A process-product study. Studies in Second Language Acquisition 32(4), 607-637.