Title

An investigation into Malay numeral classifier acquisition through an elicited production task

Document Type

Article

Publication details

Salehuddin, K, Winskel, H 2009, 'An investigation into Malay numeral classifier acquisition through an elicited production task', First Language, vol. 29. no. 3, pp. 291-313.

Published version available from:

http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0142723709103187

Peer Reviewed

Peer-Reviewed

Abstract

The act of categorization and labeling is fundamental in human cognition and language development. By studying numeral classifier acquisition, researchers are able to examine how children learn to categorize and label objects in their environment using a constrained framework. The current study investigated the acquisition of eight shape-based numeral classifiers in Malay through an elicited production task in 140 6- to 9-year-old children. The aim was to examine the developmental patterns observed in the production of Malay shape-based numeral classifiers. Results indicated that the ability to produce the correct numeral classifiers is a relatively prolonged process that involves an interaction of a variety factors, including semantic complexity, input frequency, and the formal teaching of numeral classifiers in school.