Assessing anaphoric relations via the phased choice methodology

Darcy Sperlich*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


There has been a continued interest in discovering how learners of another language acquire a target language's anaphoric system. While our understanding of the issues has improved, the development of methodologies to assess the interpretation of anaphora in a learner's interlanguage has not. This paper is concerned with introducing a methodology named 'Phased Choice' to assess anaphoric reference, which more effectively tackles the issues facing anaphoric testing. The data was gathered from an experiment that focused on English and Korean learners of Chinese acquiring the Chinese reflexive ziji 'self', results showing that the Korean learners are at an advantage to their English counterparts due to the similar pragmatic strategies Korean and Chinese share. Moreover, the methodology in comparison to the literature shows its strength, dealing effectively with problems past tests faced.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)355-388
Number of pages34
JournalIRAL - International Review of Applied Linguistics in Language Teaching
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • anaphora
  • binding
  • Chinese
  • reflexive
  • ziji


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