In this first article of my PhD dissertation, we examined the differences between two L1 groups (Finnish and Swedish) at two school levels in their L2 English fluency (n = 40). A control group consisted of ten native speakers of English. The quantitative analysis was complemented with a qualitative examination of six subjects’ productions to explore also individual differences in fluency.
Overall, the results demonstrated that the Swedish-speaking subjects outperformed Finnish-speaking subjects at upper secondary school level, while the differences between the L1 groups were minor at university level. The results further suggest that a quantitative examination is suitable for speed and silent pause measures, which differentiated the groups clearly. However, differences in the use of filled pauses and repair phenomena could only be revealed with a qualitative analysis. A quantitative analysis should therefore be complemented with a qualitative examination to form a comprehensive picture of L2 fluency, including individual resources for achieving fluent speech.