Pedagogical Grammar and Spanish Subjunctive: Findings, Attainments and Challenges

Fuertes Gutierrez, Mara (2019). Pedagogical Grammar and Spanish Subjunctive: Findings, Attainments and Challenges. In: Briz, Antonio; Martínez Alcande, María José; Mendizábal, Nieves; Fuertes Gutierrez, Mara; Blas, José Luis and Porcar, Margarita eds. Estudios lingüísticos en homenaje a Emilio Ridruejo. València: Universitat de València, pp. 477–491.



The acquisition and teaching of mood and, in particular, Spanish subjunctive has traditionally received quite a lot of attention within the field of teaching and learning Spanish as a second or foreign language, both from a theoretical and a didactical point of view. Several reasons can explain the interest of specialists and practitioners on this topic: first of all, there are still ongoing debates amongst grammarians on certain issues affecting the subjunctive and these disagreements usually have an impact on how teachers present a concept to their students; secondly, modality is not expressed through verbal inflexion in all languages and a variety of linguistic factors related to syntax, semantics and discourse-pragmatics seem to intervene in mood selection in Spanish (cf. NGLE, 2009: 1866), which means "when learners begin to acquire the subjunctive and make target-language mood selection, they need to have developed abilities to process complex syntax with some facility in Spanish" (Collentine, 2013: 271-272). Having to understand concepts usch as subordination can represent a problem for those learners who don't have a linguistic background and are studying the language for purposes which differ from becoming a grammarian, a philologist or a teacher of Spanish.

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