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Sample Capstone Project Paper on Linguistic Study

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Sample Capstone Project Paper on Linguistic Study


In the contemporary society, the study of language has been on the rising trend.  The human kind needs to interact with nature and with each other. The inception globalization has brought in much interaction between many languages.  It is due to this effect that there is need to look into various structures of the languages and set precedence on the way in which they blend.  The most important aspect of life is communication (Schumm, 2006).  By learning various patterns and variables in the construction of different words from different forms of races and cultural backgrounds makes us understand the real ways in which we can interact with each other.  This paper looks at the different constructs of the language for the persons learning English as their second language.  The construct of their sentence and the patterns of words in English will bring to light the way in which the person expresses their feeling (Marten, 2002).

The student will be analyzed regarding the morphology, the phonology, the syntax, the semantics and the pragmatics.  These analyses will contribute significantly to giving the essential tenets of the language study to understand the way in which such people communicate and provide various views of a solution to the pronunciations and the communication stances.  The primary aim of this study is to bring to light the importance of having variable languages to interact with and how important they regard communications and the interaction of the human beings as they carry out their normal activities (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).

The preliminary data on the student

The student in my case study comes from African background. The student from Kenya and has been in the United States for five years now.  As I examined the student, I realized that his first language was the Swahili language which is the most widely spoken language in the east African countries.  The student has gone through a structural efficient official study as from the primary level to the university level in their country.  This has allowed him to have a high sense of diction in English as the second language.  It is important to note however that in as much as his proficiency in the connotations of pronunciation is goods, certain words seem to be quite a daunting task for him to pronounce (Schumm, 2006). 

The sluggishness that is seen as he speaks us a belief that his mother language has affected the way he pronounces English words.  That calls for analysis in the construct of the sentences of his tongue. The real advents of the matter emanate from the fact that the student. Regarding writing, the student proficiently writes the English words with extreme concern on the construct of the same for which they are placed. Reading is not a problem to him.  He reads and understands every connotation of the English words.  He is well conversant with the very tenets of the use of and the meaning of every word in an English sentence (Marten, 2002).  On the other hand, he has a real mastery of the native language. The mother tongue has affected the English language regarding the way he pronounces certain words.  The role construct of the phrase in his first language has hit the various precepts brought in when speaking.  This notion has transcended into a mixture of the two styles being brought influence each other (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).

The difference between the two words is that in the native languages the student tends to be sluggish in pronunciation while when it comes to the English language, the speed becomes a little bit higher.  This brings on board the advent improvement regarding the speed with which he speaks. Additionally, the reception regarding the understanding of the English language due to high speed is still small. It takes him much time to take in certain word and process them adequately (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).  In this sense, it only calls for him to take his time in listening and properly digest the phrase and the construct of the sentences before they give their feedback.

From the analysis, the main driving force for which he learnt the English language was because of the strong type of vocabulary that English has. Additionally, he is motivated by the high sense of the diversity that English has regarding the many people that know for it is now like a universal language that connects very many individuals at large. He is a quick learner and thing that he is passionate about are the advent of gaining as much knowledge as possible.  He also gave me a hint that he would want to be a multilingual so that he can know the various cultural background of different races and tribes of the world.


In my study of the ELL student, it came to my notice that there are certain sounds of words that does not tally with those of the English language.  Firstly the student writes conventionally the ways other writes.  This notion was because he has learnt a lot in English during his university level and has had a high standard of mystery of the same. The difference however is still seen in the way he perceives certain words. For example, he would want to pronounce various words as the letter arranges are accentuated (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).  For example sometime he writes the word “difference” as “differences”. The fact that the letter e is silent, he takes it the way it is and brings to book that way.  This is one the way in which the native language has affected his hearing of sounds and the way the construct of English is.

During the times of learning, it is a fact that the student gave much priority to the original sounds that the letters of alphabets portend. This notion means that he would carry forward any sound in the alphabet the way it is and use it to contrast sound the word context with looking at the whole new flow of music so far brought out in the construct of a nutshell. For example when you join the letters I and s you will find the word” is” which is being pronounced as ‘iz” to him he would look into it and pronounce it as “is”.

At times in the beginning of his speech there seems to lack certain pertinent consonants that accentuate the sentence structure.  From this analysis is realized that in the student’s native language, the use of consonants at the start of the sentence is not a rule (Schumm, 2006). The phonology of their constructs demands that either a vowel or a consonant can also be use in the start of a sentence. Additionally the mastery of the silent sounds is not in the context of their native language. This connotation is because the student could not differentiate various aspects of the silent words that are put forward in the composition of certain sentences. 

The raw deal emanates here is that the student pronounces words like “often”  the way ii is without considering the very existence of the silent sound “t”  in the word. This has transcended even in the way he brings out the context of his sentences to product the component of correct pronunciation.  The studies have shown that in the event that a native language does not obey the rule of silent sounds and the start of a word with consonants, there will be a difficulty in the learning of the student for the English pronunciation (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).  The digraphs and blends are not spelled correctly for this student and, therefore, he tries to build the points to provide goods sentence constructs, but the chain of command that is needed in the digraphs are not met.  This has brought much difficulty in his phonology and hence his perception of various sounds and the meaning of these sounds is a problem.  The problem is also seen when he tries to stick to one pattern of construct of sound for a letter and tends to forget the sound of the same letter in another context of words.




On the account of morphology, I took the student through a series of wards that have a construct with the same tempo of origin. This words were like, “come, overcome, become” among others. The student was very proficient to note that these construct are more of the same origin and proficiently connoted that they are probably having the same meanings.  The role of this study was to make sure that I know if the student is well aware of the morphological patterns that are used to form many vocabularies (Marten, 2002).  The various morphemes that the student knows are the correct, correction, correctness among others.  Research shows that it is through the knowing of various levels of the morphemes that a student is able to learn the vocabulary.  This fact is of true essence since it gives the learner the advent if interacting with other new words for which original root meaning is known.

The perception on the pronunciation of such words also gives them the easy time in knowing the pronunciation of the related morphemes. In the English construct,  student is able to clearly identify these concepts of morphemes in such a way that they are able to connote the high level of real meaning of the words they bring out.  To this end it important to conclude that the one that has promoted this strong sense of morphemes mastery is the construct of the native language (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).  For example a closer look at the language patterns of the student, it is very evident that even in their mother tongue, there are a set of morphemes in their words. This notion means that the English language and the Swahili language share the structure of morphology in the creation of words and the construction of various sentences.

A closer look the whole fabric of the morphemes of the original words, the student did appreciate the blend that comes in terms of meaning and the sound created. For example in the word “create’ comes the word creation which simply turning the verb into a noun.  The argument came out strongly on the variety of word for which he supports that the morphological constructs are almost the same as that of the native language which he learnt. In my conversation with the student, the student seems to have extensive knowledge of the toot, the prefixes and the affixes in a sentence (Schumm, 2006). 

The student was able to give much attention to give much attention to the distinction between the affixes and prefixes.  He accentuated the affixes are always put after the root verb for example in the word “faster”  he noted that the word fast become the source  and the letters “er” become the affixes .  In the word “proactive” he clearly distinguished that the word active is the root and the word pro is the affix.  This connotation made me believe that there is coherence between the native language and the current English language.  This has helped him to know most of the vocabulary in the English (Marten, 2002).  The whole concern was confirmed by the fact that in the construct of the morphemes, there were no errors that were reported at all. All the constructs were quite correct, and the student was very confident about his sentence structure of the morphemes.


I took the student through various forms of articles that we read together to ascertain the level of speed with which he reads.  From my findings, it came out clearly that the student was very fast in understanding of the native language.  The speed was much faster on the words spelt correctly and he exhibited high sense of understanding the speech and the reading of the vocabulary if the native language.  However the student took more time in the reading of the articles that were written in English. The student took more time in comprehending the various tenets of the constructions that were brought to book. The words were very careful t9o pronounce.  He would take time in reading and understanding the whole context before pronouncing it. This gave him less confidence in the structural construction and the spelling of the sentences in the articles. 

One more thing I learnt with him was that the student was could repeat the same mistakes in pronunciation and spelling of words. This actually reduced the speed for grasping, internalizing and spelling out the words in English. When I asked him where the difficulty was coming from, the student mention that he has to digest the whole wards and understand them first before pronouncing them.  This showed that the fluency in the peeking and reading the various articles was very poor.  It is important note the fluency is also affected by the native language (Marten, 2002).  This notion is because the commands and the rules of spelling and nature if the words in the native language is far much different from those of English language.  Blending the two would be quite a daunting task to execute. Analysis shows that fluency in terms of the pronunciation of the English words comes as a result of the resounding effect of the language background and the rules for construction of the phrase. Understating and the adaptability to changes in the environment are also viewed as one of the pertinent issues that affect the fluency (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).

Some of the fluency building strategies that I outlaid for the student are the clear understanding of the whole context of the ward flow as they are constructed of the sentences.  The practice of the vocabulary is also a recommendation for the student in helping in the quick memorization of the words.  The fear that comes with unknowing is real and needs to be removed, the fluency will be quickened by the removing the fear of not knowing. This fear is only removable through thorough study of English as a language and getting to know how the constructs of these sentences helps in bring out the meanings. Additionally a clear understanding of the various structures of the phonemes will be very helpful to him. This notion could be achieved by making sure that the phonemic structures are well researched and known to an extensively deeper end (Marten, 2002).

Word recognition and spelling

In my research, I gave the student various words for him to spell and allowed him to use the word in the writing. The pace for which the student recognized these words was very slow.  It should be noted however that the student used most these words in the assay writing. The whole document had almost 50 percent of the words recognized. As it stands, with time the student was able to recognize the whole of the words very easily. The pace increased after some time. The study showed me that the mastery and the recognition of various words. The high frequency words like he, she, was, why and how among others were recognized by the student in the quickest way possible. The student was able to exhibit his understanding of the high frequency words with keen concern their correct pronunciation and logical meaning.  This showed that the student was improving in making the language part of his communication tool (Marten, 2002). 

As it stands most of the high frequency words have simple structure in terms of the word setting and the pronunciation. They form the building blocks for which the whole language of English is embedded.  Given the analysis of the word recognition, I found out that the student was very effective in having a visual recognition of the various tenets of high frequency words. This has enabled the student to spell the words without looking in the dictionary (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010). As the student writes, there is a high correlation with what he spells, what he reads and what he writes.  This notion shows that the student has grasped the clear understanding of the words through the frequent learning of the morphology and the phonetics that comes with various words constructions. 

The transcending conclusion is that the high frequency words have the strong sense of boosting the confidence and the morale of the students to learn more about the language.  The teachers should therefore look into the various ways in which they make their student to learn more about the high frequency word patterns so that they can possibly develop high sense recognition of the same (Leow, Campos & Lardiere, 2009).

Vocabulary development

In the test for vocabulary, I present various words for the student to recognize them and give their meanings. The student mainly understands the vocabulary used by his peers.  This was evidenced by the fact that he used to refer to the peers as the people who helped him know some of this vocabulary. Another source where he has` got his vocabulary is the use of the dictionary that has been translated from his native language to the English language. The student has a very rich in the vocabulary of the mother tongue. This has helped him translate most of them into English through the use of translated dictionary (Jordan, 2011). From the experience that I have had with the student, it has come out clearly that research and intensive reading and enquiry gives the many students the opportunity to know many vocabularies as and when they are mentioned. The transcending effect of this move is that the student is exquisite in mastering the various new words that may seem to be quiet sensitive to the practice of the English language.  This platform can be used by that many teachers addressing the issues of understanding the new words. 

The better grasping the knowledge of vocabulary meaning is through done by first looking the first language content of vocabulary and then translating it into the English vocabulary.  With this in mind, the meaning shall have already been settled, and the only task would be to check on the pronunciation of the whole context with a particular reference to the changes made regarding the phonetics and morphological structure of the vocabulary. Another avenue where the vocabulary can be understood well is through engaging in talks with peers who are very conversant with the English language (Marten, 2002).  For example, it through the interaction with English college students that he knows most of the vocabulary and the slings that comes with it.  This boost has made him do well in the curriculum of vocabulary.  The precedential nature of him yearning to learn comes from the well and clear understanding of the first language.  It is from this grasp that they can have the confidence to go further and understand other languages (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).  The coherence and the type of similarities seen in these two languages are also a determinant factor in mastery of these vocabularies.

Reading comprehension

 In this section, I took the student to reading various articles and making out a comprehension of the same.  The comprehension is deemed to bring to terms the speed at which the student could use the comprehension techniques in understanding the whole context of narrations. What came out clearly was that as the student was reading, he could pose in times of the vocabulary to comprehend the real meaning of the vocabulary (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010). Additionally, the halts made at the periods of the reading were also evident. Fluency was still an issue in the reading as he tried to bring most words together and comprehend them.  In the full reading, the student attempted to pronounce the words correctly so that as to up his game in both pronunciation and the better understanding of the phrase. Moreover, the student was very articulate in his sentence formation. This notion is because; he was able to obey every punctuation that was brought in the sentences (Boyle, & Scanlon, 2010).  In this prospect, the student exhibited the high sense of understanding the usage of the language diction and the commands in making the words come out clearly.

As the student gave this these readings his best, there was, however, a disconnection regarding the giving out the summary of the whole text. This showed that the student had not understood the real meaning of the sentence structure of the entire book. In this prospect, I found various defaults that contributed to the same. One of them is the misunderstanding if the phrase structure. The student was very exemplary in the mastery of the new words. But when it comes to relaying this to the sentence structure to get the real meaning, the student was indeed not able to inculcate this notion.  In the long end, the student could comprehend the many sentences brought out in the comprehension making it difficult to address pertinent issues of the text was given. Conversely, as the student reads, he tends to swipe his fingers across each line of the text.  This advent is to increase his concentration in each and every word that he is reading. This development has helped him read and comprehend most of the text that has been given to him recently (Durand, 2004).

The writing ability

I took a chance of taking the student through intensive writing practice to discern the real stage for which the student.  It realized that the student was very conversant with the various spellings that he needed to write.  He wrote without strain on the vocabulary and the sentence structure brought. It is also on this platform that the student made astounding steps to try to get the meanings of the words and the sentence structure he formed. In general terms, the student is at his current stage. From the writing, it is evident that the student has learnt the rules and the conventions of writing the grammar. This was because the student could correctly punctuate some of the sentences he made and give their correct meaning. The student could use the various dictions regarding the vocabulary and the sentence structure to openly express himself. 

One of the pertinent issues that came out clearly was the choice of words that the student used in constructing his sentences and giving them their meanings was the effect of the cultural background.  The context for the student made his sentences in the write-up was quite religious. The student was keen not to use the vulgar language in his essay. Again he gave much attention to the precepts of cultural cohesion and adherence to set standards and norms of the society.  In the context of the sentences, there was a problem of direct translation of the words and their constructs from his first language (Casper, 2007). This direct conversion has brought in the challenge of clear cut understanding of the whole text that he wrote.

The new development shows that the mother tongue always takes the better understanding of the beliefs, norms and the cultural beliefs. Changing and learning another language is like creating a breach of the already laid down principles brought forward, to this end, it important to acknowledge the importance of mother tongue in the development of related skills. Writing as an art requires practice, so I placed my student in a series of practices to sharpen his ability to write meaningfully. The results were positive since he had already he had the context of vocabulary knowledge, the only issue that he had was the formation and recognition of meaning for the various sentence structures.


After a thorough research on the student, I came to realize that the student is very proactive in term of the learning the language. One of the goals I would set for the student is to learn more about the sentence structure and formation. The areas that need more attention are the enhancement the reading skills and the writing ability because this posed a significant challenge for the research. I am not still sure about his abilities in the field of endowment with the vocabulary (Boyle & Scanlon, 2010). The optimality regarding fluency is still at stake and need to be checked. The student has the right attitude and the morale of learning, and this will help him even in times of sentence formation. The errors the student made formed the best foundation for which the student was gauged and through improvements exhibited by the student, the student was highly rated. I also that realized that the proficiency of the first language of the student has given him a better opportunity to learn the English language through translation in a proficient manner (Marten, 2002). Finally, I would share the knowledge acquired here through publishing my research and sharing out my experience on the same. 

Assessment Tools and Technique

From my analysis, there are various areas that the student did not score well in the phonology for this reason; I would recommend the use of DIBBELS, which will help in the phonological awareness for the student. Additionally, regarding vocabulary mastery of the student, an assessment tool of Peabody test to help him relate the first language vocabulary and the English vocabulary is essential.  








Boyle, J. R., & Scanlon, D. (2010). Methods and strategies for teaching students with mild disabilities: A case-based approach. Belmont, Calif: Wadsworth.

Casper, M. (2007). Increase of student gain scores on the DIBELS test at James W. Sikes Elementary. Lake Wales, FL: Warner Southern College.

Durand, J. (2004). Phonetics, phonology, and cognition. Oxford [u.a.: Oxford Univ. Press.

Jordan, T. (2011). Does DIBELS, a Test of Fluency, Correlate with End-of-Year ISAT Test Scores, Which Assess Comprehension?.

Leow, R. P., Campos, H., & Lardiere, D. (2009). Little Words: Their History, Phonology, Syntax, Semantics, Pragmatics, and Acquisition. Washington: Georgetown University Press.

Marten, L. (2002). At the syntax-pragmatics interface: Verbal underspecification and concept formation in dynamic syntax. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Schumm, J. S. (2006). Reading assessment and instruction for all learners. New York, NY: Guilford Press.

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