Proceedings of the 6th International Technology, Education and Development Conference vol:6 pages:1660-1670
International Technology, Education and Development Conference edition:6 location:Valencia, Spain date:5-7 March 2012
There is a growing concern in Flanders about the deterioration of native (written) language proficiency amongst youngsters. In this paper, we will outline a study of the errors in texts written in Dutch by bachelor students. We will pin-point the most acute and most frequent errors in order to develop adapted language material to bridge the gap between the actual and the desired level of proficiency. An error coding scheme was designed that, in line with learner corpus research, combines linguistic information (spelling; lexicon; syntax; textual structure) and error information (erroneous use; omission; redundancy). The most widespread and recurrent errors belong to the categories textual grammar (especially referential coherence), syntax, punctuation and lexical use. Those errors typically cause interpretative problems which interrupt the reading process. The results are the starting point of a usage-based remediation process of the students’ written language proficiency by creating a growing awareness of correct formal language use.