The present study investigated causal relations between lexical/grammatical knowledge and the ability to make homophonic distinctions among 170 native Chinese speakers learning Japanese as a second language (L2). The result of a structural equation modelling (SEM) analysis indicated that the ability to distinguish homophones depending on sentential context was strongly affected by grammatical knowledge, though not by lexical knowledge. Therefore, grammatical knowledge greatly assists Chinese learners of L2 Japanese to identify the specific homophone appropriate in a sentential context among multiple candidates.
- Chinese native speakers learning Japanese
- Japanese kanji