spaceCenter for Advanced Research on Language Acquisition (CARLA)
two women apologizing

Summary: Apologies

In this unit you have learned the ins and outs of how to apologize in Spanish. Just as a refresher, here is a summary of the basic points we have covered.

  • Apologies can be very complex and are typically more lengthy interactions. The person apologizing must repair the relationship with the hearer.
  • Numerous pragmatics strategies are necessary in Spanish when apologizing. These are usually used together. It is very rare to only have one apology strategy, unless the offense is at a low level. Some important apology strategies include: a preference for hearer-oriented strategies over speaker-oriented strategies, the inclusion of an explanation or acknowledgement of responsibility, requests for forgiveness, and offers of repair.
  • Social factors play a large role in strategy choice for apologizing. The severity of the offense (i.e., "How bad was it?") and gender play an especially important role.
  • Language variety is important to learning how to apologize appropriately in Spanish. In this case we examined Mexican Spanish as compared to Peninsular Spanish and different groups of speakers (Return Migrant Students and Non-migrant Students) in Puerto Rican Spanish.
  • CLICK HERE to see the resources used to create this module.

Reflect on this module and complete the activities that follow.

List two things you have learned about apologies in Spanish that you will apply to your use of the Spanish language.

List one question you would still like answered about apologies in Spanish or something that is not clear to you from this module.

Which of the learning and performance strategies do you think would be most helpful for you for apologizing in Spanish? Why? (CLICK HERE to review the strategies)


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