Second Language Acquisition

10 Units

This course will provide students with psychological, sociological and linguistic perspectives on the acquisition of a second language, with particular emphasis on English as a Second/Foreign language.

Faculty Faculty of Education and Arts
School School of Humanities and Social Science
Availability Semester 2 - 2016 (WebLearn GradSchool)
Semester 2 - 2016 (Callaghan)
Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of the psychological and social processes underlying acquisition and use of a second language;
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of the contribution to SLA of prior linguistic knowledge (“transfer” from native language; linguistic universals);
  3. Demonstrate the ability to identify, and to interpret the significance of, “errors” in learners’ language output;
  4. Demonstrate the ability to identify and evaluate the learner’s use of communicative strategies;
  5. Demonstrate skills in critical reading of relevant literature and presentation of ideas.

Topics to be covered include:

  • The learning process - theories of language learning; differences between first and second language learning
  • The learning environment - sociolinguistic factors affecting language acquisition
  • What makes a “good” language learner - psychological, attitudinal and maturational factors; Krashen’s “monitor”; the “critical period” hypothesis
  • The input - role of linguistic universals, first language, target language
  • The nature of the output - approximation to target (error analysis) vs developing system (interlanguage); acquisition order, development stages
Assumed Knowledge Foundations of Linguistics (LING6910) or equivalent.
Assessment Items
  • Written Assignment: Error Analysis
  • Presentation: Poster Presentation
  • Essay: Written Assignment

Contact Hours

Callaghan and WebLearn GradSchool


Face to Face On Campus 3 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
(or equivalent by distance mode)

Course Materials
  • The Study of Second Language Acquisition
Timetable 2016 Course Timetables for LING6030
Got a question?

Contact us for advice on how to apply, enrol, or for more information.

Ready to start?

Once you’ve read our Application guide you’re ready to apply