Pragmatic skills performance of an Indonesian child

Palupi, M.G. Retno (2004) Pragmatic skills performance of an Indonesian child. Masters thesis, Widya Mandala Catholic University Surabaya.

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Abstract

Development of oral language is one of the child's most natural and impressive accomplishments. All children learn their language at an early age through use and without formal instruction. However, children are born not just to speak but also to interact socially. Oral language is made up of three components: the phonological, semantic, and syntactic. However, the use of these three components in social situation will be complete with the existence of the fourth component, i.e. pragmatics which deals with rules of language use. Pragmatics rules are part of our communicative competence, our ability to speak appropriately in different speaking situations. Pragmatic skills in children manifest in various ways. It can be saying appropriately or related things during conversation, following rules of taking turns, making requests, answering calls, responding politely to thanking, expressing sympathy, etc. Thus, it is obvious then that even a very young child needs to master the rules for appropriate social language or pragmatics. Based upon this fact, the writer was inspired to conduct a study on pragmatic skills performance of an Indonesian child who is the writer's own son. This study is intended on the fulfillment of (1) providing a description of the conversational skills performed by an Indonesian child, and (2) providing a description of the communicative acts performed by an Indonesian child. The data of this study is the subject's spoken utterances which were recorded and noted down. The data collection was done within six months, i.e. when the subject was three years and four months and ended when the subject was three years and ten months. The data were transcribed and analyzed based on the theory of pragmatics on conversational skills and communicative acts. The findings of the conversational skills analysis show that the subject has good ability/skill in turn taking in which the successful turn taking accounts for 66.62% and failure in turn taking only accounts for 14.02% of the total turn taking performance. The successful turn taking is implemented in various performances such as exhibiting attentiveness while being a listener, signaling the next speaker to take turn, providing adjacent responses to many different questions and statements, and doing rapid turn taking. Failure in turn taking is implemented in negative overlapping and disability to provide adjacent responses. This failure in turn taking might result from the subject's undeveloped state of other conversational skills, i.e. topic selection and topic maintenance, and topic relatedness. As these skills were not developed well yet, they then influence the performance of the other conversational skills, in this case the skill of turn taking. The findings of the communicative acts analysis shows that the subject performed eight categories out of ten. They are (in frequency of occurrence order): Questions and Responses (33.96%), Directives and Responses (25.15%), Statements and Responses (19.495%), Markings and Responses (7.54%), Evaluations (5.66%), Commitments and Responses (5.66%), Declarations and Responses (1.25%), and Speech Elicitations and Responses (1.25%). The two communicative acts categories which were not performed by the subject are Performances and Demands for Clarifications. Failure in particular conversational skills and the absence of particular communicative acts codes might result from the subject's age in which at the age of three his pragmatic skills are still not yet well developed. This condition results in the subject's conversational inadequacies.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Department: ["eprint_fieldopt_department_Graduate School" not defined]
Uncontrolled Keywords: Pragmatic skills, performance, child
Subjects: English Education
Divisions: Graduate School > Master Program in Teaching English as a Foreign Language
Depositing User: Sri Kusuma Dewi
Date Deposited: 29 Aug 2016 09:46
Last Modified: 29 Aug 2016 09:46
URI: http://repository.wima.ac.id/id/eprint/6551

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