Acquisition of Word Order in the Adjective-Added Korean Classifier Phrases

Volume 18
Issue 1
Kum-Jeong Joo
This study explores the acquisition of internal orderings of adjective-added
Korean classifier phrases. When a classifier phrase includes an adjective, two
constraints rule out impossible orderings: adjectives occur before the noun
they modify, and no modifying elements can intervene between the number
and the classifier. An acceptability judgment experiment was conducted with
native Korean-speaking adults and children to test their knowledge of the
two constraints. The results indicate that, like adults, the children know the
two constraints, disallowing impossible orderings. The results also show a
ranking in the preference of the possible orderings. We suggest that semantic
compositionality (i.e., A and N together) can account for the preferred internal
orderings of Korean adjective-added classifier phrases.

Key words: word order, numeral classifier structure, Acquisition, Korean,semantic compositionality