Thischapter is based on the description of methodology employed to collect andanalyze the data in order to solve the research problem. To ensure thereliability of data, the data has been collected from the Arab students. As thereliability of data is pivotal to any research, it has been defined as therange to which the result is consistent over time and an exactillustration of the total population inwhich the results shall not reproduce any similar methodology, then theresearch instrument can be considered reliable (Joppe,2000). Keepingthe case of reliability into consideration an observation method was devised tocollect data more accurately. The advantage of observational technique usedhere in this study can be summed up as an opportunity to collect larger amountsof data, rich particularly on the participant’s behavior in particularcontexts. The repeated observations helped in earning a multilayeredunderstanding of the participants as well. Researchin the area of Mother Tongue Interference in learning a foreign language is nodoubt multidimensional. One of such varied dimensions can be the use ofPsycholinguistic research methodology to carry out the research in this area.
Although any of the experimental procedures has not been used in this researchbut it is quite justifiable to use such a type of research methodology toaccess the different paradigms of Mother tongue interference in learning of aforeign language. Because of the fact that it is the question of processing oflanguage and its dimensions that need to be reasonably argued and testedagainst proposed hypotheses and theories. Since,there are many theories and propositions that has been made and ascertained byearlier works in this area but it still posed a question as why is there thepersistence of mother tongue interference.
So, in this case the presentresearch work has been designed to address such a question, although attheoretical level or in a qualitative paradigm only. There has been certainlimitations to this research and for that cause there are some recommendationsand suggestions for further research which has been given at the end of the conclusionof this study.Languageinterference is a crucial area of study, even in the present times. It has been and is being worked out in variousdimensions like that of Pedagogy, Pragmatics, Cognitive Science, and ErrorAnalysis etc. Using different methodologies and procedures it has been studiedboth quantitatively as well as qualitatively by many researchers so far. Theliterature supports the view that everyone has been trying their best to add tothis problems of this type of study. However,as an attempt, this study has also been designed well; keeping in view thebasic research methodology in Psycholinguistic paradigms. For the very firststep a pilot study was conducted.
As a pilot study was conducted being inspiredby the type of Processing Research. Processing research has its basis inpsycholinguistic processing. It does not form the basis for the structure oflinguistic forms, as can be seen in other types of Linguistic researches.
Itneeds to be revisited that the field of Psycholinguistics highlights andtestifies the actual mechanisms involved in learning.Formingthe basis of processing research this study turns qualitative in nature.Moreover, the use of cyclical data analysis procedure i.e. examining patternsof occurrence in the elicited data and then using those patterns of occurrencesto draw inferences and recursively generate and test hypotheses, sufficed themethodical need. Some quantity of data has been presented in the AnalysisChapter of this thesis.
This quantification has two main purposes. Firstly, itis the basis for generation of hypotheses and secondly, it verifies theoccurrences of patterns in the data collected. 1. need for psycholinguisticmethodologyBecause of the fact that psycholinguistics is thefield which studies the dynamics of language processing, this dynamics isstudied in two manners called the techniques of on-line and off-lineprocessing. The on-line techniquesquantify and measure the variables that ‘tap’ into language processing as soonas it happens, and off-line techniques focus on and measure variables relatedto the consequent outcomes of such processing (Garrod, 2006) Although the psycholinguistic methodology is mostlyexperimental and quantitative in nature but it is also qualitative in natureand uses observational techniques for the generation of hypotheses. The presentstudy tried to keep in focus the basic assumption of Psycholinguistic Theory ofLanguage which may be defined as the study of the way human language isprocessed in brain. This assumption which, is a quite developed and reliablemethod in itself, paves the way for Language interference reasons.
In languageinterference studies a researcher observes some structural changes in a targetlanguage that is learned by a population. Moreover, this methodology that has been adopted willhelp in qualitatively validating the research problem and hypotheses, whichassumes that there is already an inherently exercised structure of ArabicLanguage in the population under study, which poses for the errors committed inlearning English as Foreign language. Interestingly, these errors are by largea case of negative transfer in the shape of morphological elements andstructures from Arabic to English, which are discussed in Chapter-5 of thisthesis. 2. research designThe approach employed to this study is purely qualitativeone, in which the observational technique has been judiciously used to sufficethe purpose of data collection. The population has been observed very keenlyfor a pilot study and as well as for the overall data collection process. Inoverall process of data collection the ethical and moral guidelines have beenfollowed.
This study is exploratory in nature. As Mason (1996) noted, “observationusually refers to “methods of generating data which involve the researcherimmersing him or herself in a research setting, and systematically observingdimensions of that setting, interactions, relationships, actions, events, andso on, within it” (p. 60). The same has been tried at its best to collectproper data for morphological analysis in order to arrive at the reasons ofMother Tongue Interference.
Precisely, a cross sectional survey design was used.The vital and crucial components of the population were taken intoconsideration and then a random selection or random sampling technique for the cross-sectionof research subjects was implemented to fetch the required data.