Using Latent Semantic Analysis to Explore Second Language Lexical Development

Scott Crossley, Tom Salsbury, Philip McCarthy, Danielle McNamara

This study explores how Latent Semantic Analysis (LSA) can be used as a method to examine the lexical development of second language (L2) speakers. This year long longitudinal study with six English learners demonstrates that semantic similarity (using LSA) between utterances significantly increases as the L2 learners study English. The findings demonstrate that L2 learners begin to develop tighter semantic relations between utterances and words within a short period. The results have implications concerning the growth of lexical networks. This study also has important implications for inductive learning and contextualized vocabulary learning.

Subjects: 13. Natural Language Processing; 14. Neural Networks

Submitted: Feb 17, 2008

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