The Effect of PATH-Image Schema on Yemeni High School Students for Learning Prepositions

In cognitive linguistics, image schemas were introduced as mental generalizations from embodied experiences capturing notions such as Containment, Support and Source-Path-Goal movement. These spatiotemporal relationships can be found in human cognition as information skeletons for analogical reasoning, as a grounding factor for abstract language, and as conceptual building blocks for concepts as well as events.

Both teachers and students neglect the importance of prepositions. Many students only acquire some prepositions, but they cannot apply them in speaking or writing. A large number of foreign language learners face some difficulties in mastering prepositions. In this paper, it will be shown how a lot of dictionaries fail their target audience in describing and explaining the semantics of prepositions. Lakoff assumes that it is easier to learn, remember and use a lexical item if one knows how the meaning of a preposition is motivated. The purpose of this study is to investigate the effects of learning prepositions based on image schema theory which appear to be a key component in these processes in human cognition.

Keywords: prepositions, cognitive image schemas, Source-PATH-Goal.