CLA 1125 notes

2014-11-18 16.37.34


Possible Research Qs: (Most of Qs in CLA is more theoritical/linguistics, therfore nrequires some more proofs. and evidence)

  1. enhance vocabulary learning through ….(phonology, Gestalt, spelling, graphic novels, etc )
  2. ESP (not EAP)
  3. English in workspace
  4. geometric grammar (stroop test)
  5. fMRI for Synesthesia in my geometric grammar
  6. ontological mapping
  7. coding for Morse code or binary code
  8. referential scheme via geometrical grammar (in writing, reading, or conversation)

My research question would be:

Can G.G rules boost reading speed and enhance vocabulary learning? Is it possible to apply Gestalt theory in vocabulary teaching via G.G rules? If so, how to do it?

Reason for doing this:

Because I benefit from G.G rules, and it somehow has something to do with my synesthesia.

First let us know a little about Gestalt theory…

soruces of pics:



260px-Multistability Closure Common Continuation Reification L1

part as whole

Gestalt theory in a word :

“The whole is other than the sum of the parts.” — Kurt Koffka

The principles of data compression


  1. binary codes: 1001010001001000
  2. morse codes 
  3. image files (require sampling beforehand)
  4. sound files (require sampling beforehand)



Ok, now what? Why is G.G rules related to Gestalt theory and vocabulary teaching/boosting reading speed?

G.G rules:

Noun –> rectagular

Personal pronoun –> squares

be-V –> round

verb –> oval

adj –> underline

adv –> (null)

conj –> triangle

det –> stars *☆

clause –> square brackets [ ]

adj/adv clause –> round brackets ()

larger clause units–> curly brackets { }

* brackets can be used recruisvely

Take a look at my short samples:

gg rules demo


Now a whole long paragraph would look like this:

(I don;t have one here)



Lit reviews:  我得換掉這些,改放和Gestalt、cognitive grammar有關系的。而且要讓人瞭解為什麼之前的lit欠缺這方面的研究,所以我作這個是很有價值且有道理的。(


  1. Nilsen, A., & Nilsen, D. F. (2003). A new spin on teaching vocabulary: A source-based approach. Reading Teacher, 56(5), 436-439.
  2. CARPENTER, K. k., GEHSMANN, K. k., SMITH, R. r., BEAR, D. b., & TEMPLETON, S. w. (2009). Learning Together: Putting Word Study Instruction into Practice. California Reader, 42(3), 4-18.
  3. Sabeti, S. (2012). Reading graphic novels in school: texts, contexts and the interpretive work of critical reading. Pedagogy, Culture & Society, 20(2), 191-210. doi:10.1080/14681366.2012.672336
  4. Ho-hui, L. (2012). Teaching Vocabulary Through K.K. and Dictionary Phonetic Symbols to Taiwanese Elementary Students: A Collaborative Action Research Approach. English Teaching & Learning, 36(2), 35-78. doi:10.6330/ETL.2012.36.2.02
  5. Khabiri, M., & Rezagholizadeh, R. (2014). The Comparative Effect of Teaching Spelling through Mnemonics and Phonics on EFL Learners' Vocabulary Achievement and Retention. Theory & Practice In Language Studies, 4(7), 1463-1468. doi:10.4304/tpls.4.7.1463-1468
  6. Jarvis, L. H., Merriman, W. E., & Barnett, M. (2004). Input That Contradicts Young Children's Strategy for Mapping Novel Words Affects Their Phonological and Semantic Interpretation of Other Novel Words.Journal Of Speech, Language & Hearing Research, 47(2), 392-406. doi:10.1044/1092-4388(2004/032)
  7. Gill, S. R. (2006). Teaching rimes with shared reading. Reading Teacher, 60(2), 191-193. doi:10.1598/RT.60.2.9
  8. Thompson, G. B., McKay, M. F., Fletcher-Flinn, C. M., Connelly, V., Kaa, R. T., & Ewing, J. (2008). Do children who acquire word reading without explicit phonics employ compensatory learning? Issues of phonological recoding, lexical orthography, and fluency. Reading & Writing, 21(5), 505-537. doi:10.1007/s11145-007-9075-9
  9. George Lakoff

Gaps that I found in these papers:

  1. Little has been done on studying  syntax via Gestalt theory
  2. research on boosting reading speed and learning syntax/lexicons
  3. fMRI tests on these kinds of synesthesia are lacked (word category and shape/sense of touch)


Method I will use in my paper (and how I prove my hypothesis is right?)

E1: 拿一篇或幾篇難度不同的英文文章,請他們按照G.G.的rule來畫圖。之後再來對圖形的答案,以及用post-test檢查受測者是否閱讀速度加快了?grading will be easier in this test. (productive/receptive test)

E2: 反其道而行的測驗,故意把G.G的rule作反或調換規則,測試閱讀速度是否變得不同了。(stroop test)

E3: use cloze test to assist E1 &E2 (receptive test)

 ch stroop  51v-Stroop_test_S


(internal evidence)

(external evidence)

使用German  或其他歐洲語系作測試?或是用很難的英文字作測試?或是找很小的小孩,但能讀英文的?(如果是英文,我可以確保word order和grading可以完全符合我的標準,其他語言我就沒辦法了)

Results: I decided that I would only use English  in this experiment. (2015 Jan 6)

Main ideas in designing the methods:

  • Use graphical items to represent the syntatic relation among words in English. (avoiding the influence from known or unknown word meanings.)
  • As participants acquired G.G. rules, test their fluency on using it.

Timed test:

  • Test them on receptive way (apply the rules to circle the text, then check the accuracy)
  • Test them on productive way in composing a short composition (self-introduction with guided questions.)



Methods I designed in this experiment. (There are four major steps in total)

Steps for choosing participants:

  1. Find at least 3 or 4 participants for this experiment, closely examine their progress. All of them will be receiving G.G rules training. I have very limited time resources so I have to utilize all the suitable participants I could find. It’s impossible for me to go back to PCSH at the end of the semester for this experiment. They are busy with finals exams at this moment.
  2. My ideal participants would be my girlfriend (28), my younger sister (17), and some of my co-workers at the gas station, mostly teenagers with very poor English proficiency. They are the perfect participants for learning a new system that would overwrite their old understanding on English grammar and long articiles. I’d explain it later.
  3. I could arrange my test schedule with ease when I am at work and daily activities.

Steps for teaching them G.G. rules within very limited time (10 mins):

  1. (After work or at break to take care of my mom.) Explain the rule chart to them, and ask them to practice right away under my supervision. I’ve got suitable text for them. They should use text from elementary level,  such as Let’s Talk in English and partially from the easiest long text in Studio Classroom. (We are NOT choosing dialoguues for the experiment!)
  2. Make sure they have mastered G.G rules.
  3. Make sure they do not derive the classes of the words “only” from semantic meanings. They need to understand the core of G.G. rules is to work without semantic meanings.

Steps for conducting the tests:

  1. video and audio recording during training, explaining and testing. I expact each participants would take 1 hours to complete the whole process.
  2. noting down some important conversation in the recordings. This would help me clarify the actual problems they encountered when learning the system with little or no semantic clues.
  3. the chosen texts would be better if they are similar in syntatic forms. Their content is not that important. But it shall cause no fear for the participants.

Steps for analyzing the data of the experiments

  1. This is a timed test. We need a timer to measure how fast a participants can finish pharsing the provided text. (eg. 50 seconds in total to finish pharsing and circling the paragraph)
  2. Measure their finished time. (before and after G.G rules training)
  3. Find out their accuracy in applying G.G.rules.
  4. See if they have improved in reading speed. (at least in circling the words)
  5. No stroop tests at this moment/stage




Expected findings and unsolved issues:

Participants with very low proficiency will experience confusion on semantic meanings.

Participants with higher proficiency, such as Sunya, could use the simulation test material for Toeic as a way of measuring reading speed.

As for my younger sister.


Initial findings


Expected difficulties

some participants feel disinterested or find it difficult to learn G.G rules.


Expected findings

Most papers are useless junks. No statistics or useful description on method designs.


Important issues:

  1. Reading fluency 其實有隱含semantic understanding的意思。所以實驗題目名字要稍微修改一下,你測的是幾乎純syntactic parrtern understanding. 雖然這會幫助semantic understanding and pharsing.
  2. 第二次的test material,其syntatic form最好再複雜一些。
  3. 如果將來作投影片,要記得標上slide的頁面數字
  4. 要放上%,閱讀上會很有幫助(是不用太複雜啦)