Loes Oldenkamp The trouble with inflection for adult learners of Dutch A study of the L1 - L2 interplay of morphosyntactic and phonetic - phonological factors Children seem to acquire their mother tongue usually without special effort , though this cannot be said of adults acquiring a new language . More particularly , adult L2 learners have difficulties in the realisation of ( ad ) nominal and verbal inflection . The question as to why adult L2 learners of Dutch have these difficulties is the topic of this book . Traditionally , morphosyntactic explanations have been given to clarify the difficulties L2 learners have in acquiring L2 inflectional morphology . Here , it is claimed that morphosyntactic accounts alone cannot explain all problems L2 learners have in acquiring inflectional morphology . Phonetic - phonological constraints should be taken into account as well . To investigate this claim , a corpus study was done and two processing experiments were conducted to test lower - educated Turkish , Moroccan Arabic and Mandarin Chinese learners of Dutch on their command of Dutch inflectional morphology . The use of both production and perception data , the systematic incorporation of different L1 backgrounds and L2 proficiency levels and the large number of participants included make the design of this study truly unique . This study is of interest to scholars working in the field of L2 acquisition , inflectional morphology , phonology , and morphosyntax as well as to educators working with L2 learners . It shows that the acquisition of inflectional morphology in a second language comprises more than applying a grammatical rule . Accurate perception and production of the phonemes serving as morphemes are of crucial importance as well .