A Study of Native English Speakers’ Usage of the English Present Tense and Their Metalinguistic Knowledge on Locations in Time and Aspects

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Anshakan Eiamtong-in
Sudaporn Luksaneeyanawin


This study aims to analyze the usage of the English Present Tense among native English speakers and their metalinguistic knowledge governing the selection of the tense forms. There were 3 research instruments employed in the study: 1) a background questionnaire; 2) a gap-filling test of the English Present Tense; and 3) an open-ended metalinguistic elicitation questionnaire. There were 10 well-educated native English speakers with a bachelor’s degree or higher, participating in the study. Their nationalities are British, American, and Australian. The results of the study revealed that the participants mostly used the Present Simple in accordance with the expected theories, followed by the Present Progressive, the Present Perfect, and the Present Perfect Progressive, respectively. The participants’ metalinguistic knowledge demonstrated diverse perceptions of the situations presented in the test instrument. The study provides evidence for the existence of L1 metalinguistic knowledge and offers a deeper understanding of how each tense form expressed the locations in time and aspects, influencing the language users’ perceptions of the situations. Furthermore, the study proposes a novel approach to teaching English tenses, suggesting that English teachers should emphasize factors that impact the selection of tense forms beyond grammatical markers like temporal adverbials and conjunctions. These factors include aspectual perceptions, text genres, and situational contexts.

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Eiamtong-in, A., & Luksaneeyanawin, S. (2023). A Study of Native English Speakers’ Usage of the English Present Tense and Their Metalinguistic Knowledge on Locations in Time and Aspects. Manutsat Paritat: Journal of Humanities, 45(2), 110–136. Retrieved from https://so06.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/mpjh/article/view/267930
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