Socio-cultural influence and learning the English language by analogy: Implications for second language learners

  • Uche Oboko


Some second language learners of English in Nigeria are faced with the dilemma of learning the English language amidst the array of languages in a linguistic pluralistic environment as Nigeria. The intercourse of English and other languages is reflected in the language use of learners whose socio-cultural affiliations are demonstrated in their use of the target language. At various levels of education in Nigeria, effective teaching of the target language has been hampered due to socio-cultural influence and learning the English language through analogy which is lubricated by sociolinguistic factors in a multi-ethnolinguistic society. The situation has raised variants and faulty learning of the English language among learners in a second language situation. Data for the study were collected from 100 first year students of Madonna University, Okija Campus and 100 Ordinary National Diploma (OND) students of Delta State Polytechnic, Ogwashi-Uku admitted during the 2020/2021 academic session. Although the students were randomly selected, the researchers employed focused group discussions and written expositions to elicit their data. The work anchored its analysis on Corder‟s Error Analysis and Granger Contrastive Interlanguage Analysis (CIA) theory. Findings reveal that though English is the medium of instruction in the institutions used for the study, students face linguistic challenges imposed as a result of socio-cultural influence and learning the English language by analogy (application of the knowledge of the mother-tongue consciously or unconsciously to the target language), overgeneralization and non-mastery of grammatical features. The study suggests possible practices that would discourage anomalous learning of the target language.


Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 2346-7126