Revisiting the Explicit Learning of Vocabulary of Chinese EFL Learners

  •  Chen Wang    
  •  Jingjing Yang    


This study intends to find out how the retention of new vocabulary items could be affected by the item type (collocations versus single words), association strength between collocates and the collocate-node relationship. 101 Chinese EFL learners encountered the new items in paired-associate format. Participants were assigned to three groups: learning two types of collocations with high association strength, learning two types of collocations with low association strength, and learning new items in single words. The results show that learning new items in collocations yielded better retention of receptive and productive knowledge of meaning than in single words. Collocations with greater association strength also led to better retention of meaning. Different item types and associate strength has little effect on the retention of form.

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