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The Application of Prototypical Category Theory to the Teaching of English Polysemy

Author: QinPeng
Tutor: ChenYuHong
School: Huazhong University of Science and Technology
Course: Subject Teaching
Keywords: Polysemy teaching Prototype Metaphor Metonymy Image Icon
CLC: H319
Type: Master's thesis
Year: 2011
Downloads: 95
Quote: 0
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Among the English vocabulary, polysemy is a common and important linguistic phenomenon. Simply put, if there is a word meaning two or more, then you can call polysemy. Blutner that polysemy is a linguistic unit has more than one meaning, and significance between closely related. Many linguists from different angles polysemy conducted research, this paper attempts a new perspective, the prototype category theory to study the polysemy and its teaching. Previous studies did not grasp the essence of polysemy, the language can not give a satisfactory explanation of the phenomenon. Structural semantics overemphasize the internal structure of the language, suits involving different languages ??in relations between the outside world and cognitive processes are ignored, and Saussure's theory can not explain any of polysemy different but closely related meaning. Prototype Theory emergence and development provides another perspective on Polysemy. According to prototype theory, polysemy usually have a core meaning or significance of its most basic prototype. All other meaning is in the prototype sense basis, through family resemblance linked these interlinkages sense constitutes a core meaning as the prototype category, polysemy meaning of the word expansion is through metaphor, metonymy and image schemas to achieved. Therefore it can be concluded: polysemy is justified extending meaning, metaphor, metonymy and significance of image schemas is caused by an extension factor. Research by the traditional influence of polysemy between different meaning of the word is considered to be independent and not linked to each other, which gives English teachers and students caused great difficulties. English teachers to encourage students to guess the meaning of the word according to the context, but some studies have demonstrated guess meaning of the word can not improve their long-term memory. Most students learn words through new words to the different meaning of the word is not systematic, so the result is not satisfactory. In order to clearly understand the students to grasp the situation and polysemy Prototype Theory of Polysemies Teaching, 50 from Hubei University freshman non-English majors participated in this experiment. This 50 students were randomly divided into two classes, 25 students per class. Class was the experimental group, the control group two classes, for the experimental group, the researchers will be applied to the Prototype Theory polysemy teaching, while the control group only using traditional teaching methods. In the present study, which 50 students will participate in two polysemy tests. The purpose of the test is to find out a good grip on whether students polysemy, former Test two is to identify students in the learning process polysemy major difficulties encountered. Test data show that students do not get a good grasp of polysemy, the biggest problem is that they are not well identified polysemy significance extends three justifications. But two months later, in the prototype category theory to teaching after polysemy, after testing two data show that two classes of students have significantly different results. Experimental group students polysemy more profound understanding and meaning of the word on the polysemy memories time more longer. Therefore, Prototype Theory as a guide polysemy teaching is effective and feasible, while polysemy learning process plays an active role. '

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CLC: > Language, writing > FOREIGN > English > Language teaching
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