Second Language Acquisition, or SLA for short, is the field that studies how people learn languages in addition to their native language. In this MA seminar, we will tackle four topics that are of central importance in SLA: (1) What is the role of the native language in second language acquisition? (2) What makes learning second language morphosyntax difficult? (3) What makes learning the second languageā€™s pronunciation difficult? (4) And how can second language acquisition be optimised in instructed settings?

In most classes, we will discuss fairly recent research papers and discuss their backdrop, methodological soundness, and the extent to which the conclusions are warranted by the results. The goal is for students to become more independent readers capable of judging the strengths and weaknesses of quantitative empirical research in second language acquisition (and the social sciences more generally) on their own.