The Contribution of L1 Phonemic Awareness into L2 Reading: The Case of Arab EFL Readers

  •  Yousef Alshaboul    
  •  Sahail Asassfeh    
  •  Sabri Alshboul    
  •  Talal Alodwan    


Cross-language transfer is the extent, if any, to which phonological awareness in L1 facilitates learning to read in L2. This has been an area of investigation wherein researchers looked into the orthographic and phonological component processing skills L2 learners develop and utilize to facilitate word recognition. Given the difference between the orthographic systems of Arabic (L1) and English (L2), how difficult is it for beginning Arab EFL learners to develop these skills? Arab EFL learners seem to have difficulty with prelexical word recognition processes leading to slower and perhaps even less accurate L2 word recognition skills. This study examines the possibility of transferring Arabic phonological awareness to learning English. Results are reported, most important of which is the confirmation of cross-language transfer.

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