A Study of Lexical Errors in ODL Students’ Writing: Implication for the Effective Development of the Writing Skill
This paper reports the findings of an investigation of lexical errors in the Open and Distance Learning students’ essays at the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN). The study made use of tagged sample essays to find out the frequency and types of lexical errors in different registers of guided writing administered to randomly selected 300 and 400 level students undergoing the B.A English programme in the university. These categories of students were selected because the university regulation stipulates that all their examinations have to be manually written. The findings of the study reveal that ODL students in the B.A English programme in NOUN committed lexical choice errors more than lexical form errors. Lexical choice includes individual and combined choice of lexical items. Lexical form involves derivational errors and spelling errors. There are broadly two kinds of errors including interlingual errors and intralingual errors. Transfer errors mean a failure to keep a conceptual separation between L1 and L2. They represent interlingual errors. Transfer errors are different for each L1-L2 pair, while intralingual errors are the result of inadequate knowledge of the second language. The study postulates that simplification and over generalization errors might be made by any language learner based on low L2 proficiency. It then concludes that lexical errors are a natural and a necessary phenomenon in language teaching and learning and they benefit learners immensely, especially as they will try to avoid committing such errors in subsequent writings. Indeed, teachers should not prevent students from making errors but should always find ways to identify and correct them in the ODL classroom. // Paper ID: 104
AuthorIyere, Theodore O
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