Publications of the Month: October 2015

The Making of Vernacular Singapore English: System, Transfer, and Filtervernacularsingapore
Zhiming Bao
Cambridge University Press

Singapore English is a focal point across the many subfields of linguistics, as its semantic, syntactic and phonetic/phonological qualities tell us a great deal about what happens when very different types of language come together. Sociolinguists are also interested in the relative status of Singapore English compared to other languages in the country. This book charts the history of Singapore English and explores the linguistic, historical and social factors that have influenced the variety as it is spoken today. It identifies novel grammatical features of the language, discusses their structure and function, and traces their origins to the local languages of Singapore. It places grammatical system and usage at the core of analysis, and shows that introspective and corpus data are complementary. This study will be of interest to scholars and advanced students working on language contact, world varieties of English, historical linguistics and sociolinguistics.

Bao, Z. The Making of Vernacular Singapore English: System, Transfer, and Filter (Cambridge University Press, 2015).

 

Learning psychological research and statistical concepts using retrieval-based practice
Stephen Wee Hun Lim, Gavin Jun Peng Ng, and Gabriel Qi Hao Wong
Frontiers in Psychology
DOI 10.3389/fpsyg.2015.01484

Research methods and statistics are an indispensable subject in the undergraduate psychology curriculum, but there are challenges associated with engaging students in it, such as making learning durable. Here we hypothesized that retrieval-based learning promotes long-term retention of statistical knowledge in psychology. Participants either studied the educational material in four consecutive periods, or studied it just once and practiced retrieving the information in the subsequent three periods, and then took a final test through which their learning was assessed. Whereas repeated studying yielded better test performance when the final test was immediately administered, repeated practice yielded better performance when the test was administered a week after. The data suggest that retrieval practice enhanced the learning—produced better long-term retention—of statistical knowledge in psychology than did repeated studying.

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