The Effects of Explicit Semantic Radical Instruction on Beginner Level CFL Reading Comprehension: The Third Dimension of Teaching Chinese as a Foreign Language
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The present study examined the effects of explicit semantic radical instruction on beginner level Chinese foreign language learners’ overall comprehension by descriptively translating a given Chinese text. The study also investigated how the participants would perceive the effects of instruction of semantic radicals and whether their motivation level in learning Chinese would change because of the explicit instruction on Chinese semantic radicals. The participants were asked to translate the same Chinese text before and after receiving explicit instruction of ten semantic radicals. The results demonstrated that the explicit instruction on Chinese semantic radicals helped participants significantly enhance their descriptive translation (indicating improved overall comprehension) of a given Chinese text. Overall, the participants recognized the facilitative role of semantic radicals in learning Chinese, and their intention to continue learning semantic radicals suggests their willingness to improve their Chinese proficiency.
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