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Booth, P. (2010)
Publisher: Malaysian Journal of ELT Research
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: linguistics
One of the ways in which non-native speakers differ from native speakers is that the former tend to be more unpredictable in their use of vocabulary. This study explores how the learning style of second language learners may be associated with this variability. The participants are first year university students of engineering. Vocabulary from their report writing is analysed for the amount of lexical recycling which occurs in their texts. This is done by using a measure of lexical diversity which calculates a mathematical curve fitting procedure to model the fall of the type-token ratio in order to give a value, parameter D. Learning style is based on Skehan�s (1998) memory-analysis framework. The participants are tested for associative memory of unfamiliar words and grammatical sensitivity of an unknown language. The results suggest that L2 learners who show extreme lexical diversity (either high recycling or low recycling of vocabulary), are related to low grammatical awareness and high associative memory. The implication for teaching and learning is that although non-native speakers of English may use technical vocabulary in a quantitatively similar manner to native speakers, some may need to notice the complexity and coherence in L2.
  • The results below are discovered through our pilot algorithms. Let us know how we are doing!

    • Bell, H. (2009). The messy little details: a longitudinal case study of the emerging lexicon. In T. Fitzpatrick & A. Barfield (Eds.), Lexical processing in second language learners (pp. 111-127), Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
    • Cobb, T. (2002) Web VocabProfile/BNC-20 Retrieved September 18, 2009, from: http://www.lextutor.ca/vp/
    • Craik, F. I. M. & Lockhart, R. S. (1972). Levels of processing: A framework for memory research. Journal of Verbal Learning and Verbal Behaviour, 11, 671-684.
    • Laufer, B. & Nation, P. (1995). Vocabulary size and use: lexical richness in L2 written production. Applied Linguistics, 16 (3), 307-322.
    • Malvern, D., Richards, B., Chipere, N., & Durán, P. (2004). Lexical diversity and language development. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
    • Mandler, G. (1980). Recognizing: the judgment of previous occurrence. Psychological Review. 87(3), 252-271.
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