Pavlovian Neutral Stimulus with the Extempore Responsive-reaction of L2 Learners

By S. Gandhimathi and R. Ganesan.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Neutral stimulus and response-reactions seem to have some similarities and role in the context of second language acquisition, for one arises with the commencement of the other. Pavlovian stimulus is taken, here, to study the behavior of beginning L2 learners at the tertiary level. These learners, 20 in number, were from both Language 1 (L1) and Language 2 (L2) medium of instruction from one of the institutions in Tamilnadu, India. Ten learners who were from L1 medium, at the beginning of this study, did not have even 5% accuracy in the L2 while the remaining ten members had at least 5% accuracy in using English which was found through a pre-test. Pavlov, in his experiment, placed the bell as the neutral stimulus but here (in this study) the word ‘Activity’ (A) is used as a stimulus reminding learners that they have to learn the new language (English) skills. The threat posed to the participants is the target language (English) which 50% of the focus group learners had never understood. The other 50% were able to understand and write in it but were not able to use it effectively. The level of this threat is subsided through reinforcement. Learners were offered the opportunity to understand and gain the motivation to achieve the L2. When they heard the word ‘activity’, they were reminded of the learning of the L2 because the word ‘activity’ acted as the neutral stimulus.

Keywords: Motivation, Neutral Stimulus, Psyche, Reinforce, Response

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp.41-46. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 608.893KB).

S. Gandhimathi

Lecturer, Department of Applied Sciences, Faculty of English, Kongu Engineering College, Erode, Tamilnadu, India

Ms.S. Gadhimathi is a lecturer in English, Kongu Engineering College, Perundurai, Erode, Tamilnadu, India. She is a Ph.D scholar permeating her research on English for specific purposes from a psychological perspective. She is interested in bringing up a revolution upon the modes of teaching which is dynamic. Her research throws a fresh light into her experiments as a learner as well as a teacher. She is also interested in the psyche of the learners which generates the language phenomena. She is also fascinated towards establishing and designing the new need based curricula for the ESP learners.

R. Ganesan

Kongu Engineering College, Tamilnadu, India

Dr. R.Ganesan is a professor of English at Kongu Engineering College, Perundurai, Erode, Tamilnadu, South India. He has been teaching English since 1983. He is interested in teaching grammar, writing skills, ESP and is guiding a number of research scholars leading to M.Phil and Ph.D programmes in ELT, and British and American literature. He is interested in materials production for ELT learners, organizing and participating national and international conferences. He believes that English can be imparted only by making it learner-centered and resource related and by making the learners involved in the productive activities both the classroom and beyond.


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