Laura Sánchez Pérez


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Postadress Institutionen för språkdidaktik 106 91 Stockholm

Om mig

Jag är universitetslektor vid Institutionen för språkdidaktik.


Mina forskningsintressen är tvärspråkliga influenser i tredjespråksinlärning och utvecklingen av komplexitet, korrekthet och flyt (CAF).

För närvarande ägnar jag mig åt forskning om den roll som uppgiftskomplexitet, skicklighet och kognitiva faktorer spelar för att skriva på främmande språk.


I urval från Stockholms universitets publikationsdatabas
  • 2020. Laura Sánchez. Third language acquisition, 209-235

    One of the least understood (and also least investigated) factors conditioning interlanguage transfer from a prior non-native language (L2) to a subsequent non-native language (L3) is proficiency in the source language of influence. The present study examined whether L2 German syntactic proficiency, defined here as level of development in a cluster of structural properties related to verb placement, had any effect on the occurrence of interlanguage transfer in the L3 English. More specifically, the research question guiding the study asked whether mastery of these properties (discontinuous verb placement, verb final and inversion) constrained the timing, extent and type of such transfer. The corpus analyzed comprised L2 and L3 data from Spanish\slash Catalan bilingual learners (n = 238) aged 9--13. A series of ANCOVAs were run on the data, keeping constant various measures of L2 syntactic proficiency and controlling for L3 overall proficiency and biological age as covariates. The results of these tests yielded a significant effect for verb final (p = 0.046) and subject-verb inversion (p = 0.002). Furthermore, an inverse relationship was found between L2 syntactic proficiency and interlanguage transfer, in that low L2 proficiency in the use of verb final and (especially) inversion was associated with an overgeneralization of discontinuous verb placement in embedded clauses in the L3.

  • 2020. Laura Sánchez. Third Language Acquisition, 15-41

    This chapter conceptualizes and discusses two subtypes of multilingualism, namely, (a) third language acquisition in learners who have prior experience in acquiring one or more non-native languages, and (b) subsequent language acquisition in learners who are bilingual from an early age. The chapter also discusses the roles played by age (both biological age and age of onset) and proficiency in multilingual acquisition. As regards age, the discussion focuses primarily on two aspects, namely, differential effects in instructed and naturalistic contexts, and the apparent superiority of older learners and late starters against younger learners and early starters. It is stressed that further research is necessary in order to identify and single out the particularities of L3 acquisition for learners with prior experience in the concurrent or consecutive learning of one or more non-native languages. Likewise, the chapter highlights the need to obtain a deeper understanding of how age-related differences in the level of linguistic entrenchment in multilinguals constrain L3 learning after exposure to additional languages. With respect to the proficiency factor, it is argued that it is important to consider proficiency thresholds and to tease apart the distinctive effects of proficiency in the target language (the L3) and in the background languages when exploring linguistic development among multilinguals. These distinctive effects are also relevant for understanding crosslinguistic influence in L3 acquisition, above all in determining the potential source languages and the direction of this influence.

  • 2020. Camilla Bardel, Laura Sánchez.

    This book deals with the phenomenon of third language (L3) acquisition. As a research field, L3 acquisition is established as a branch of multilingualism that is concerned with how multilinguals learn additional languages and the role that their multilingual background plays in the process of language learning. The volume points out some current directions in this particular research area with a number of studies that reveal the complexity of multilingual language learning and its typical variation and dynamics.

    The eight studies gathered in the book represent a wide range of theoretical positions and offer empirical evidence from learners belonging to different age groups, and with varying levels of proficiency in the target language, as well as in other non-native languages belonging to the learner’s repertoire. Diverse linguistic phenomena and language combinations are viewed from a perspective where all previously acquired languages have a potential role to play in the process of learning a new language.

    In the six empirical studies, contexts of language learning in school or at university level constitute the main outlet for data collection. These studies involve several language backgrounds and language combinations and focus on various linguistic features. The specific target languages in the empirical studies are English, French and Italian.

    The volume also includes two theoretical chapters. The first one conceptualizes and describes the different types of multilingual language learning investigated in the volume: i) third or additional language learning by learners who are bilinguals from an early age, and ii) third or additional language learning by people who have previous experience of one or more non-native languages learned after the critical period. In particular, issues related to the roles played by age and proficiency in multilingual acquisition are discussed. The other theoretical chapter conceptualizes the grammatical category of aspect, reviewing previous studies on second and third language acquisition of aspect. Different models for L3 learning and their relevance and implications for representations of aspect and for potential differences in the processing of second and third language acquisition are also examined in this chapter.

    As a whole, the book presents current research into third or additional language learning by young learners or adults, considering some of the most important factors for the complex process of multilingual language learning: the age of onset of the additional language and that of previously acquired languages, social and affective factors, instruction, language proficiency and literacy, the typology of the background languages and the role they play in shaping syntax, lexicon, and other components of a L3.

  • 2019. Laura Sánchez. English Language Teaching 12 (2), 113-126

    In an era of globalization, multilingualism is no longer the exception but the rule. To fully promote the commnicative and functional development of multilingual learners, different educational programs at school have been implemented in the past few years. The study presented here is a contribution in this direction, by investigating the linguistic development in a second foreign language (L3 English) of students who were exposed to asymmetric input exposure in this and another non-native language. This other language was the L2 (German), which the learners (n= 50, 11-13 years old) were studying in a CLIL context together with the native languages of the participants (Spanish and Catalan). Within such a context, the purpose of the study is two-fold. On the one hand, it attempts to investigate the linguistic attainment in the L3, measured in terms of various dimensions of writing performance in a composition task, namely, fluency, accuracy, structural complexity and lexical complexity. On the other hand, the study aimed at exploring the contribution of various components of working memory (short-term memory and attention switching) to performance in these linguistic dimensions. The results suggest that individual differences in storage capacity and in capability for attention and task switching had an effect on the accuracy of the learners’ performance, and to a lesser extent, also lexical complexity. Moreover, it was found that in general, attentional abilities had a greater impact than memory. These results are discussed in light of previous findings, while proposing directions for further investigation in the field.

  • 2017. Laura Sánchez, Camilla Bardel. L3 Syntactic Transfer, 223-250

    This chapter addresses the role of proficiency in a prior non-native language (L2 proficiency) on transfer in third language learning. It discusses some methodological considerations and gaps in previous research, while also bringing up conceptual difficulties in defining, operationalizing and measuring L2 proficiency. An empirical study is presented on the role played by overall proficiency in L2 German on the occurrence of transfer in L3 English written production in Spanish/ Catalan bilingual learners (n = 73). The statistical treatment of the data relied on an ANCOVA with number of transferred items as the dependent variable and L2 proficiency as the independent variable. Biological age and proficiency in the target language (L3 proficiency) were used as covariates in this analysis.

  • 2017. Camilla Bardel, Laura Sánchez. L3 Syntactic Transfer, 85-101

    This chapter provides a nuanced view of the L2 status factor model, emphasizing explicit metalinguistic knowledge as the key factor governing transfer, together with individual differences in working memory and the operations associated with it. We argue that individual differences regarding the degree of explicit metalinguistic knowledge attained either in L1 or in L2 and differences when it comes to working memory, attention and noticing should be taken in consideration when accounting for transfer from previously acquired or learned languages in L3 learning.

  • 2016. Laura Sánchez, Camilla Bardel. Revue Française de Linguistique Appliquée 21 (2), 123-138

    The study attempts to investigate whether there is a relationship between individual differences in cognitive abilities, learners' perceptions about typology relations, and negative transfer in written production. To this aim, data were analyzed from Spanish/Catalan bilingual learners of L3 English (n= 47) aged 10-15, with German as L2. The cognitive abilities measured were working memory, attention control, and attention switching. Furthermore, proficiency in the L3 was also controlled, based on the results of the participants' performance in the Oxford Placement Test. It was found that learners with lower attentional abilities had a harder time in identifying areas of structural contrast between the L2 and the L3, which, in turn, resulted in a higher rate of transfer from this language.

  • 2016. Laura Sánchez. Tredjespråksinlärning, 189-206
  • 2015. Laura Sánchez. Bilingualism 18 (2), 252-269

    This paper reports the findings of a four-year longitudinal study that examined the role of prior linguistic knowledge on the written L3 production of 93 Spanish/Catalan learners. Two research questions guided the study: the first asked whether a background language (L1s Spanish/Catalan, L2 German) would activate in parallel with L3 English during word construction attempts involving verbal forms, and if so, which would be the source language of blending. The second addressed the progressive readjustments of L2 activation and blending in the course of the first 200 hours of instruction. The elicitation technique was a written narrative based on a story telling task. Data were collected first when the learners were on average 9.9 years old (T1), and again at the ages of 10.9 (T2), 11.9 (T3) and 12.9 (T4). The focus of analysis was on word construction attempts that involved verbal forms. The results suggest that a background language, the L2, did indeed activate, especially at early stages of L3 acquisition.

  • 2015. Laura Sánchez. Crosslinguistic Influence and Crosslinguistic Interaction in Multilingual Language Learning, 71-94
  • 2014. Laura Sánchez.

    With the rise of multilingualism, studies have proliferated that investigate the interaction of the different languages. The study presented here sets out to examine the role that proficiency plays on the occurrence of a specific interaction, namely interlanguage transfer from a prior non–native language (L2 German) upon another non–native language (L3 English) at the level of syntax in Spanish/ Catalan bilinguals. Data were collected from 80 learners of L3 English who were at different proficiency levels (as indicated by a 30-item cloze test), while data for the analysis of transfer was elicited using a story telling task. Statistical tests revealed significant differences across proficiency levels, i.e. low and pre–intermediate (p= .032), low and intermediate levels (p= .000), and pre–intermediate and intermediate levels (p= .018).

  • 2011. Laura Sánchez. New Trends in Crosslinguistic Influence and Multilingualism Research, 86-104
  • 2011. Laura Sánchez.
  • 2011. Laura Sánchez.
  • 2008. Laura Sánchez.
  • 2008. Laura Sánchez, Scott Jarvis. TESOL quarterly (Print) 42 (2), 329-333
  • 2008. Laura Sánchez.
  • 2006. Laura Sánchez.
  • 2006. Laura Sánchez Pérez. International Journal of Multilingualism 3 (4), 296-302
Visa alla publikationer av Laura Sánchez Pérez vid Stockholms universitet

Senast uppdaterad: 15 mars 2021

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