Analysing EFL learners’ written corpus for a better teaching and learning of gerund and to-infinitive structures
This investigation analyzes the use of gerund and to-infinitive verbs by Spanish learners of English using AntConc, a free concordance software program that scrutinizes the corpus for frequency, concordance, clusters and collocates. We analyzed these verb forms because there are few studies that focus on this aspect of English grammar (Mair 2000; Gries 2010) and also because the Spanish language has infinitive use but does not employ the gerund form after verbs (Niño-Murcia 1995). Our genuine corpus includes 155 participants and 247 writing samples by students in the Bachelor’sDegree in Early Childhood Education in the subject, ICT tools applied to the learning of English language, from the academic year 2013-2014 to 2015-2016. The aim of this research is to analyze the errors of Spanish learners of English for frequency and collocates to find out whether the errors are a result of frequency, L1 interference (Ellis 1994; Gass and Selinker 2001) and/or a mere aftereffect of a poor teaching method. The results of the corpus analysis thereof demonstrated that in most cases the errors have shown themselves to be a manifestation of interlanguage output. The implications of this study are useful to both teachers and learners.