1.1 Background to the Study
Language is an organic entity which is
wrapped in its own intricacies and complexities. Every aspect of it is
interconnected and no aspect is less important than the other. And they
are always very important in the overall rendering of sense and sense
making. In the English grammar, the most important is the verb which can
stand alone and still render a level of sense; something that every
other word class is not able to do.
However, when comes to gaining bearing
during an interlocution, prepositions are the word class that make it
possible. By definition, it is the word that gives out the relationship
between a word found in the sentence and the word which serves as the
object of that particular sentence. And like most other word class it
has a string of words which also serves in it’s stead; referred to as
At any rate, the importance of this word
class in a sentence isn’t felt usually by native speakers as it is seen
as one of the minor parts of the word classes. It is rather learners of
the language in question that have trouble using it. Take for instance
the adverb which can take almost every position in the sentence being
used by a none speaker whose native language is more strict in that
regard. When this happens as it often does with prepositions, what is
heard is a fragmented speech with an incomplete sense so that only an
eloquent native speaker can hazard what is meant.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Learning a language is learning all it’s
convoluted complexities and internalising it’s workings and being able
to use it for communication and art. And the first step is usually to
understand the language and make meaning of what is communication.
Often, learning of a language understand but are not yet able to make
full intelligible sentence construction mostly because of the none
content words and word classes. Such include the use of prepositions and
prepositional phrases in sentences. The research effort which has gone
into this study reveals an academic gap in the study of the correlation
between prepositions and prepositional phrases in regards to the English
and Yoruba languages with the aim of establishing their various effects
on language learning generally. This is the research problem which has
given rise to the present study.
1.3 Research Questions
1.3.1 what are the effects of prepositions and prepositional phrases on the English and Yoruba languages.
1.3.2 How distinct are these effect on the two languages and their peculiarity.
1.3.3 What is the nature of the relationship between prepositions and prepositional phrases in the two languages.
1.4 Objectives of the Study
The objectives of this research work are
founded on the academic need to study prepositions as they relate to
prepositional phrases as they bear upon language acquisition. To achieve
this for the English or Yoruba languages the present research aims at:
- Establish the various effects of prepositions and prepositional
phrases in the learning of either the English language or the Yoruba
- To describe the processes and nature of these effects and how they influence the acquisition of the two languages.
1.5 Significance of the Study
The findings of the study will go a long
way in making language learning especially those of English and Yoruba
much easier as a knowledge of the use and effects of prepositions and
prepositional phrases will be seen in their operational level. The work
will be highly beneficial to language tutors especially those who
specialize in teaching second language learners of English or the Yoruba
language so that adequate attention will be given to prepositions and
prepositional phrases having understood their roles in language
1.6 Research Hypothesis
The research assumes that the
correlation between prepositions and prepositional phrases are
significant enough to affect language acquisition especially in respect
to the English and Yoruba languages.
1.7 Scope of the Study
The study is limited to English and
Yoruba languages and the word class of prepositions and prepositional
phrases. The second chapter will focus on reviewing related studies on
the significance of prepositions and prepositional phrases on language
learning and their significance generally.
1.8 Limitations of the Study
Time generally conspired as a limiting
factor for this research work as there are lost of literature to go
through in the course of this writing which time constraints could not
allow one to thoroughly review them.
1.9 Definition of Terms
This is the part of speech (word class)
which shows the relationship between a particular word and the object of
a sentence. In simpler terms it tells the position of objects.
This refers to the preposition, the object it is indicating its location and every other modifier in between them in a sentence.