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A Comparison of Incidental and Intentional Teaching Strategies for Second Language Acquisition

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This thesis discusses second language acquisition and the theories behind various teaching methods implemented to facilitate incidental language acquisition as opposed to intellectual language learning. Through observations and data collected in two GER 101 classes at Arizona State University, I

This thesis discusses second language acquisition and the theories behind various teaching methods implemented to facilitate incidental language acquisition as opposed to intellectual language learning. Through observations and data collected in two GER 101 classes at Arizona State University, I will analyze and compare the success of using a traditional lecture that relies on exposition to promote language learning to using a modern interaction strategy that relies on the students communicating in the target language to learn an aspect of German grammar as an acquisition-based method.

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2014-05

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On Effective Instruction of the Japanese Relative Clause

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This study was designed to test a new method of instruction for Japanese language students' re-acquisition of the Japanese relative clause structure. 10 Japanese language students who had already been exposed to the Japanese relative clause in their previous semester

This study was designed to test a new method of instruction for Japanese language students' re-acquisition of the Japanese relative clause structure. 10 Japanese language students who had already been exposed to the Japanese relative clause in their previous semester were asked to take a pretest that assessed their (a) knowledge of basic grammar concepts such as a "subject" and "predicate," (b) their ability to apply those basic grammar concepts to the Japanese language, and (c) their grasp of the rules applying to the formation of the Japanese relative clause. Students were then placed into a control group containing 6 students and an experimental group containing four students. The experimental group received additional lessons consisting of explicit instruction of basic grammar in both Japanese and English, as well as basic noun relativization rules in each language. The study found that the explicit instruction helped student comprehension of the relative clause structure, although some difficulties remain in identifying the relative clause and in constructing it on their own.

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2013-05

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Hannah Höch's photomontage-paintings

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The German Dada artist Hannah Höch is considered one of the most significant artists of photomontage. What is less discussed is Höch’s continued use of other mediums, particularly watercolor, and how the two mediums of watercolor and photomontage are combined

The German Dada artist Hannah Höch is considered one of the most significant artists of photomontage. What is less discussed is Höch’s continued use of other mediums, particularly watercolor, and how the two mediums of watercolor and photomontage are combined in many of her artworks.

Berlin Dada criticized bourgeois artistic groups and mediums. The Berlin Dadaists Richard Huelsenbeck and Raoul Hausmann called for new ways of engaging with the medium of painting, which resulted in the group’s development of photomontage. However, other Dada artists such as George Grosz, Kurt Schwitters, Francis Picabia, and Hausmann, continued to engage with the traditional medium of painting.

Höch was integral to the development of photomontage. Like her Dada contemporaries, she also experimented with painting. She developed the new hybrid medium of photomontage-painting. I argue that Höch’s photomontages are better understood as photomontage-paintings. Höch’s photomontage- paintings combine the mediums of (watercolor) painting and photomontage into a singular medium. My reexamination of these works as photomontage-paintings presents a more accurate view of Höch as a multidimensional artist.

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2015

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Stability of grammaticality judgments in German-English code-switching

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Code-switching, a bilingual language phenomenon, which may be defined as the concurrent use of two or more languages by fluent speakers is frequently misunderstood and stigmatized. Given that the majority of the world's population is bilingual rather than monolingual, the

Code-switching, a bilingual language phenomenon, which may be defined as the concurrent use of two or more languages by fluent speakers is frequently misunderstood and stigmatized. Given that the majority of the world's population is bilingual rather than monolingual, the study of code-switching provides a fundamental window into human cognition and the systematic structural outcomes of language contact. Intra-sentential code-switching is said to systematically occur, constrained by the lexicons of each respective language. In order to access information about the acceptability of certain switches, linguists often elicit grammaticality judgments from bilingual informants. In current linguistic research, grammaticality judgment tasks are often scrutinized on account of the lack of stability of responses to individual sentences. Although this claim is largely motivated by research on monolingual strings under a variety of variable conditions, the stability of code-switched grammaticality judgment data given by bilingual informants has yet to be systematically investigated. By comparing grammaticality judgment data from 3 groups of German-English bilinguals, Group A (N=50), Group B (N=34), and Group C (N=40), this thesis investigates the stability of grammaticality judgments in code-switching over time, as well as a potential difference in judgments between judgment data for spoken and written code-switching stimuli. Using a web-based survey, informants were asked to give ratings of each code-switched token. The results were computed and findings from a correlated groups t test attest to the stability of code-switched judgment data over time with a p value of .271 and to the validity of the methodologies currently in place. Furthermore, results from the study also indicated that no statistically significant difference was found between spoken and written judgment data as computed with an independent groups t test resulting in a p value of .186, contributing a valuable fact to the body of data collection practices in research in bilingualism. Results from this study indicate that there are significant differences attributable to language dominance for specific token types, which were calculated using an ANOVA test. However, when using group composite scores of all tokens, the ANOVA measure returned a non-significant score of .234, suggesting that bilinguals with differing language dominances rank in a similar manner. The findings from this study hope to help clarify current practices in code-switching research.

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2011

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Shifts in attitude towards disability observed through seven German films

Description

Disability is a label accompanied by a multitude of misconceptions and stereotypes. During various periods in Germany, attitudes towards disability have ranged from disgust and fear, to acceptance and inclusion. Being disabled in Germany once meant certain isolation; at the

Disability is a label accompanied by a multitude of misconceptions and stereotypes. During various periods in Germany, attitudes towards disability have ranged from disgust and fear, to acceptance and inclusion. Being disabled in Germany once meant certain isolation; at the hands of the Nazi regime, it was met with almost certain premature death. Since those darker days of Germany's history, the country has become one that now affords its disabled citizens with the same rights as the non-disabled population and seeks to create a barrier-free environment. This study examines these perceptions of disability in Germany from the 1920s through the first decade of the 21st century. In order to accomplish this goal, cinema is used to provide insights into contemporaneous ideas about disability. By drawing upon analyses of six films that span the course of nearly 80 years, careful examination of disability portrayals reveal philosophical shifts in how the German people interpret disability. When analyzing these films, aspects of physical and mental disability are brought to the surface and discussed in terms of their sociopolitical and philosophical implications. To provide a social and cultural framework that gives significance to the changes in these cinematic roles, a historical survey of the German disability rights movement is folded into the discussion. The films explored in this study serve as culturally important visual aids that illustrate positive changes for the disabled living in Germany. Although not directly influencing cinematic portrayals of disability, the German disability rights movement that arose in the postwar period shaped ideas about disability and allowed disabled Germans to be accepted and included in society. With these rights now available disabled Germans are able to lead a self-determined life and portray themselves as equals.

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2010

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Euro-English: a debate and its implications for teaching English as a foreign language

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ABSTRACT This thesis investigates the acceptability of a new variety of English among the English teaching community in Germany. A number of linguists claim there is a new variety of English developing in continental Europe, also known as Euro-English. Their

ABSTRACT This thesis investigates the acceptability of a new variety of English among the English teaching community in Germany. A number of linguists claim there is a new variety of English developing in continental Europe, also known as Euro-English. Their research has surfaced multiple features that are unique to European speakers of English. Twenty-one teachers participated in a survey. They answered a questionnaire consisting of two parts. Part one investigates the background of the teachers, their attitudes towards different varieties of English, and their awareness of the research regarding Euro-English. Part two tests the acceptability of ten features that have been claimed to be specific for mainland Europeans. Results of this study reveal that there is little awareness of non-native varieties and many find it hard to accept the features of Euro-English. However, the teachers show a genuine interest in this topic. Where there is a general preference in holding on to the guidelines of standard norms, many comments indicate that teachers think about issues of identity and how their teaching could be affected by a broader scope that exceeds traditional methods.

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2012

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And the "victims" had the last laugh: an analysis of Jewish dark and gallows humor in Nazi Germany

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In the time of Nazi Germany the systematic targeting of Jews for persecution and extermination was rampant. Although this was a dark time for the Jewish people in Europe, they did not simply stand idly by and let this happen

In the time of Nazi Germany the systematic targeting of Jews for persecution and extermination was rampant. Although this was a dark time for the Jewish people in Europe, they did not simply stand idly by and let this happen to them. The Jewish people found a way to make a mockery of the situation that they wee in, as well as a way to poke fun at the people who persecuted them. The Jews used dark humor to mock the situations that they found themselves in. The interesting point here, though, is that they did not use all the aspects of dark humor that exist. The Jews used situational humor, critical humor, and gallows humor-humor about death-according to the incongruity theory of humor, to make a mockery of the plight that they were in. They did not use all of the different aspects of dark humor, but only the parts that would merge with their need to mock their situation, in order to be able to deal with the reality of what was happening in their lives. For the analysis in this thesis, I researched various collections of Jewish humor in Nazi Germany. I analyzed the jokes in relation to the different humor theories, and gave my conclusion on why these jokes were effective. Based on the evidence, I have come to several conclusions. The Jews that made these jokes only used the aspects of dark humor that would fit in with the atmosphere that they were trying to create. They would not use sexual jokes of any kind because of this. They used jokes that could be used as a shield, to comfort not only themselves but also their compatriots given their situation. The use of humor was a coping measure and a sign of defiance, that helped some of the victims of the Holocaust survive the attempted extermination of the Jews. Given the opportunity, I would widen my focus on this topic to include collective memory, as well, however the scope of such a project would be more fitting for a doctoral paper.

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2011

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Identifying and developing online language teaching skills: a case study

Description

Online language learning is becoming increasingly popular with advances in technology that facilitate the acquisition of language in virtual environments (Duensing et al., 2006). Much of the recent literature on online foreign language instruction has focused on the possibilities presented

Online language learning is becoming increasingly popular with advances in technology that facilitate the acquisition of language in virtual environments (Duensing et al., 2006). Much of the recent literature on online foreign language instruction has focused on the possibilities presented by online technologies but has failed to examine the practical side of how and by whom online language courses are delivered. Several authors have published articles on the skills needed to be a successful online language teacher using empirical approaches (Comas-Quinn, 2011; Ernest et al., 2013; Shelly et al., 2006) and some focus more on the theoretical discussions (Compton, 2009; Hampel & Stickler, 2005). The current study drew on the existing frameworks in the previous literature to operationalize and measure the participants’ online language teaching skills while they taught a class online. These participants were graduate student instructors of Spanish at a large public university (n = 3). Using a case study approach to data analysis (Duff, 2008), and gathering data through a background questionnaire, pre-and post assessments, bi-monthly teaching journals, self- and researcher observations, an exit survey and a semi-structured post-interview, this study investigated how the participants online language teaching skills, proposed by Hampel and Stickler (2005) and Compton (2009), changed over the course of them teaching an online language course and the factors that seemed to influence more or less development in each skill area. Additionally, it compares the main findings from this study with those found in previous literature and offers recommendations of how to promote the development and sustainability of these online language teachers’ skills. This study serves as one of the few empirical studies conducted in the United States that concretely operationalizes and measures through carefully designed instruments the prescribed online language teaching skills in an effort to gain insights into what contributes to their development and how to sustain their continued growth.

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2015

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A translation study of Silentium! by Wolf Haas

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Wolfgang Haas is an award-winning Austrian author known primarily for his entertaining and quirky detective novels which follow the misadventures of Simon Brenner, an Austrian private investigator. These novels are notable for their subtle and not-so-subtle critiques of contemporary Austrian

Wolfgang Haas is an award-winning Austrian author known primarily for his entertaining and quirky detective novels which follow the misadventures of Simon Brenner, an Austrian private investigator. These novels are notable for their subtle and not-so-subtle critiques of contemporary Austrian society and culture, their sometimes grisly content, and their unique and colloquial use of the Austrian variety of the German language. Haas has received numerous literary awards in the German-speaking world and attributes his success to the unique way he tells his stories, rather than the stories themselves. Of the seven Brenner novels that have been published thus far, only one is available in English translation, and he remains virtually unknown in the English-speaking world. This thesis includes a brief biography of Haas and an overview of his career, an analysis of his unique writing style and the problems they pose for a translator, and an English translation of the first two chapters of the novel Silentium! (1999).

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2013

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A laughing matter?: the role of humor in Holocaust narrative

Description

Approaches to Holocaust representation often take their cues from both academic and public discourse. General opinion demands serious engagement that depicts the full range of the brutality and inhumanity of the genocide and the victimization of targeted groups perpetrated by

Approaches to Holocaust representation often take their cues from both academic and public discourse. General opinion demands serious engagement that depicts the full range of the brutality and inhumanity of the genocide and the victimization of targeted groups perpetrated by the National Socialists. Such a treatment is considered necessary to adequately represent the Holocaust for generations to come. The analysis of four texts will show that humor is not only appropriate but is also an important addition to Holocaust discourse. This study argues that humor plays an important role as a stylistic tool for discussing the Holocaust as well as for its remembrance and representation. Jurek Becker's novel Jakob der Lügner and Ruth Klüger's autobiography Weiter Leben: Eine Jugend are witness-texts by Jewish authors. Humor in these two works helps the authors engage and work their experiences. Klüger's autobiography also utilizes humor to critically engage in the discussion of Holocaust representation. This study also analyzes two non-witness Jewish texts: the stage play Mein Kampf by George Tabori and the feature film Mein Führer, die wirklich wahrste Wahrheit über Adolf Hitler by Dani Levy. These two works utilize overt humor to challenge established Holocaust representations. Drawing on ideas from Mikhail M. Bakhtin, Julia Kristeva, Giorgio Agamben, the core argument of this study demonstrates humor performs two main functions in the Holocaust literature and film chosen for this investigation. First, it restores a potential loss of dignity and helps victims endure the incomprehensible. Second, it challenges the prevailing truth and the established order.

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2013