1994．第9卷第1期（Vol. 9 No. 1）．pp. 3137
Schemata and Memory for Sentences: The Effects of Exposure to a British Environment on the English of Hong Kong Teachers at University in England
Sixteen fairly long sentences, eight with United Kingdom and eight with Hong Kong background themes, were presented one at a time on audio-cassettee to 144 Hong Kong teachers of English, who listened to each one and immediately wrote down what they thought they had heard. Sixty-four had never been to England, forty had been at university there for three months and forty for nine months. The sentences were also presented to twenty native English-speaking undergraduate students in the United Kingdom. Schematic background of the sentences significantly influenced recall, with both national groups doing best on schematically familiar sentences. The recall of the United Kingdom sentences by the Hong Kong teachers improved in relation to exposure to an English environment and the time they had to acquire 'British' schemata. The study highlights the benefits of prolonged periods of exposure to authentic English and associated improvements in language proficiency.