A linguistically-informed way of introducing Japanese verbs to second language learners

J. R. Hayashishita, Daiki Tanaka, Ayumi Ueyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper describes how the Japanese speakers' knowledge is organized in regards to verbs, and proposes a linguistically-informed way of introducing it to second language learners. It is maintained by a number of researchers that each verb is stored with the information of its argument structure in the speaker's mental lexicon. That is, a given verb is stored with the information of how many arguments it takes and what types of arguments they are. In this paper, capitalizing on this assumption, we will maintain that the knowledge of the native speakers of Japanese is organized in such a way that if a verb gives rise to n-number of different meanings, there are n-number of lexical entries, and each such entry is independently stored with the information concerning the meaning of the verb, the verb arguments and their accompanying particles. After the description of the organization of Japanese speakers' knowledge in regards to verbs, as an effective way of introducing this to Japanese language learners, the paper proposes the format of an innovative approach to Japanese verbs reference book. This proposed format capitalizes on full sentence definitions in the sense of the Collins Cobuild Dictionary.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29-72
Number of pages44
JournalJournal of Japanese Linguistics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - May 1 2020

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Linguistics and Language
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education


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