Applying Cognitive Linguistics to Enhance the Semantics of English at: An Experimental Study (Baghdad University)

  •  Raghad Fahmi Aajami    


The current study is quantitative by nature; it cognitively studies the polysemous network of the English preposition at and its various meanings. The results of the pre-test conducted by the researcher have tentatively revealed that Iraqi second language (L2) learners fall in the perplexity because of the multi-usages of this preposition. This incomprehensive view of the preposition at motivates the researcher to analyze this preposition semantically according to insights from cognitive linguistics (CL) that was developed by Evans and Tyler (2003). Accordingly, sixty-eight second year university students participated in this experimental study. The pre-test and post-test data were analyzed using SPSS. Results have shown the following: First, a progress of more than (0.05) has been detected as far as students' understanding of the multiple usages of the preposition at. Second, the results of the questionnaire have shown a prominent positive change in the students' attitude toward CL approach. Third, the main source of difficulty regarding the diversity in the semantics of the preposition at has been displayed. Fourth, CL as an approach has proven its effectiveness in accurately comprehending of the semantics of the English preposition at.

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