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Title: Mapping tense form and meaning for L2 learning – from theory to practice
Authors: Svalberg, Agneta Marie-Louise
First Published: 15-Mar-2018
Publisher: De Gruyter
Citation: International Review of Applied Linguistics in Language Teaching (IRAL), 2018,
Abstract: English tense presents second/foreign language learners with considerable cognitive challenges and, it will be argued, grammars and textbooks are generally inadequate sources of knowledge of the tense system as system. A modified version of Reichenbach's (1947. Elements of Symbolic Logic. New York: Macmillan) tense model is then presented. The original model has been criticized for its inability to deal with temporal relationships in natural text (e. g. Declerck, R. 1986. From Reichenbach (1947) to Comrie (1985) and beyond. Towards a theory of tense. Lingua 70. 305–364; Declerck, R. 2015. Tense in English. Its structure and use in discourse. London: Routledge; Carroll, M., C. Von Stutterheim & W. Klein. 2003. Two ways of construing complex temporal structures. In F. Lenz (ed.), Deictic Conceptualisation of Time, Space and Person, 97–134. Amsterdam: Benjamins). It is argued here instead that speakers employ the limited choices the system provides creatively, to express a wide range of temporal and interpersonal relations in the real world. The tense - aspect and tense - modality interfaces are briefly discussed. A pedagogical Language Awareness approach (Svalberg, A. M-L. 2007. Language Awareness and Language Learning. Language Teaching 40(4). 287–308) is then illustrated, with the theoretical model as mediating artefact providing visual and metalinguistic scaffolding, allowing learners to investigate tense use in context while drawing on both intuitive understanding and conscious knowledge.
DOI Link: 10.1515/iral-2016-0105
ISSN: 0019-042X
eISSN: 1613-4141
Version: Post-print
Status: Peer-reviewed
Type: Journal Article
Rights: Copyright © 2018, De Gruyter. Deposited with reference to the publisher’s open access archiving policy. (
Description: The file associated with this record is under embargo until 12 months after publication, in accordance with the publisher's self-archiving policy. The full text may be available through the publisher links provided above.
Appears in Collections:Published Articles, College of Arts, Humanities & Law

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