Definition of Error Analysis

 Definition of Error Analysis

Error analysis is a  methodology for dealing with which can be observed, analyzed, and classified to uncover and reveal the incidence, nature, causes, and consequences of unsuccessful language learning for the learners. As stated by James (1987: 7) that error analysis is a methodology for dealing with data rather than a theory of acquisition. The data can be obtained by conducting a test  with the students  as the respondents.

Meanwhile Brown (1980: 166) says that error analysis is a fact that learners do make errors and that these errors can be  observed, analyzed, and classified something of the system  operating within the learners. The purpose is to uncover some problem faced by the students.

Error analysis is a type of linguistic analysis that focuses on the errors learners make.  It  consists  of  a  comparison  between  the  errors  made  in  the  target language (TL) and that TL itself. Pit Corder is the ‘Father’ of Error Analysis. It was in his article entitled ‘The significance of Learner Errors’ (1967) that Error Analysis  took  a  new  turn.  Errors  used  to  be  ‘flaws’  that  needed  to  be eradicated. Systematically analysing errors made by language learners makes it possible to determine areas that need reinforcement in teaching (Corder, 1967).

Error Analysis is closely related to the study of error treatment in language learning and teaching. Today, the study of errors is important in teaching methodology (Corder, 1967). According to Weireesh in Darus & Subramaniam, (2009), Error Analysis was an important aid in learning process. The making of errors was used as a device to identify and explain difficulties faced by learners. He proceeded to say that Error Analysis served as a reliable observation to design a remedial teaching method Candling in Darus & Subramaniam, (2009) considered Error Analysis as “the monitoring and analysis of learner’s language”. He associated an error to a deviation. Candling added that errors made by second language learners are potentially important for the understanding of the processes of SLA.


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