Interlanguage variation and transfer of learning

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


One branch of research in second language acquisition has investigated the ways a learner's interlanguage (IL) varies between tasks. IL variation research has examined linguistic, psycholinguistic, and sociolinguistic constraints, and has revealed much about this phenomenon. An additional potentially-useful perspective that has, to this point, been virtually unused in IL variation research and theory, is the cognitive psychology construct transfer of learning. This paper examines the relationship between IL variation and transfer of learning. An argument is made that IL performance is learning transfer; so, variation in IL performance may in some cases be related to constraints on learning transfer. If that is the case, research and theory on learning transfer can contribute to research and theory on IL variation, and several ways this may happen are described.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)95-118
Number of pages24
JournalIRAL - International Review of Applied Linguistics in Language Teaching
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 19 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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