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date: 17 August 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter outlines the major studies on second langauge (L2) attrition in Japanese returnees conducted in Japan. It covers research from Yoshida et al.’s study in 1989 to Taura’s study in 2016. Early researchers took an explorative stance to examine what happened to the L2 of Japanese returnees once they had left the L2 milieu. Then researchers shifted their focus towards testing various hypotheses including the regression and retrieval failure hypotheses. Since 2010, a new focus has been given to researching different language areas such as indefinite/definite articles, and story-telling skills. The exploratory data has been further diversified from spontaneous oral and written data to brain-imaging data. The overall findings in attrition research in Japan examining the language loss of Japanese returnees are chronologically detailed, along with how the research focus has shifted using different methods of data collection.

Keywords: L2 English attrition, Japanese returnees, fNIRS, brain-imaging data, school-aged children

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