ESL Term:

Input Hypothesis

ESL/EFL Glossary: A Guide to applied linguistics terminology.


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input hypothesis:  According to Stephen Krashen the only way we can acquire language is by receiving comprehensible input. That is, we have to receive input that is just beyond our competence but not beyond our understanding. However, this hypothesis was later modified so that comprehensible input was a necessary but not sufficient condition for acquisition.  Learners have to also have the right environment and circumstances to allow comprehensible input to work. A learner's affective filter has to be low; they have to be free of stress and motivated.