The acquisition of Arabic as a first language

Authored by: Abdulkafi Albirini

The Routledge Handbook of Arabic Linguistics

Print publication date:  January  2018
Online publication date:  December  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138783331
eBook ISBN: 9781315147062
Adobe ISBN:


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The study of children’s first language (L1) acquisition traverses across different disciplines and fields, such as linguistics, psychology, and education, each with different goals and practices. It is not surprising therefore that the topic of L1 acquisition has been approached from different perspectives and has followed dissimilar methodologies. This epistemological and methodological diversity has paved the way for a wealth of information about children’s language development and behavior. Like their counterparts in several other languages, Arabic L1 acquisition studies differ in their disciplinary focus, scope, design, and implications. Several studies are descriptive in nature, focusing on the stages of language development or the order in which specific linguistic areas appear (e.g., Al-Buainain 2003; Badry 1983; Omar 1973; Rosenhouse 2000; Salim and Mehawesh 2014; Smadi 1979). Descriptive studies still represent an important and growing trend in Arabic L1 research.

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