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Languages are (like) visuals: linguistic considerations and potential usage

Author(s): Andrés Palacios Pablos

Journal: Ibérica
ISSN 1139-7241

Volume: 17;
Start page: 99;
Date: 2009;
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Keywords: visuals | non-figurative grammar | verbo-graphic metaphor | english verb | cognitive learning style

Consistent with students’ increasingly visual cognitive learning style, languages are (like) visuals (LAV) is proposed as a verbo-graphic metaphor applicable to the learning of non-figurative grammar issues of language. its validity as a special hybrid is assessed and assumed according to some principles of conceptual, pictorial and visual metaphor theories (Lakoff & Johnson, 1980; Lakoff, 1987; Forceville, 2002). To illustrate this proposal, a mapping is outlined, namely Words-In-Shapes Exchange (WISE). a representation of words in their syntagmatic sequence, Wise is exemplified here with the english verb group, resembling a game based on fitting visual shapes whose rules are adapted and therefore mappable onto the verbal rules. This analogy and its graphical nature particularly suitable to esP students’ academic training can readily ease the system acquisition, thus providing a useful remedial tool for raising learners’ linguistic awareness of agreement within the sentence, often a grammatical weakness in esP. such is the case with prospective architects and civil engineers, to whom a practical appendix is addressed. Though Wise description takes up most of the paper, some possible teaching and research potentials of this metaphoric visual application are also observed, inviting further study and testing of the expected results.
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