مقالات

۱.

The Impact of Different Frequency Patterns on the Syntactic Production of a 6-year-old EFL Home Learner: A Case Study

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This longitudinal study investigated the impact of different Frequency Patterns (FP) on the syntactic production of a six-year-old EFL learner in a home context. Target syntactic constructions were presented using games and plays and were traced for their occurrence patterns in input and output. Following each instruction period, the constructions were measured through immediate and delayed oral tests for their effects on the oral production. Instructional and measurement sessions were audio-recorded and transcribed into instruction and measurement corpora. Based on their occurrence rates in input and output, target constructions were categorized into High Input/High Output (HIHO), Low Input/Low Output (LILO), High Input/Low Output (HILO), and Low Input/High Output (LIHO) frequency patterns. Friedman procedure revealed significant differences among the learner’s production scores of the constructions with varying FPs. Wilcoxon signed-rank test located significant differences between the constructions with LILO and HIHO and those with HILO and HIHO frequency patterns. The study found that HIHO frequency pattern, in comparison, was the most efficient in developing productive acquisition of syntactic constructions by an EFL young learner. That is to say, instructor's input coupled with learner's output in the form of prompted, reformulated or spontaneous language, played a key part in heightening syntactic production of English as a foreign language. The findings can cast more light on the constantly debated issue of Teacher Talk Time (TTT) and Student Talk Time (STT) and it can be concluded that there should be a balance between TTT and STT so as to yield optimal L2 production gains.
۲.

Willingness to Write in EFL Contexts

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This research was conducted to measure Persian EFL students’s degree of willingness to write in English. To reach the goal, semi-structured interviews were conducted, deriving inspiration from earlier works of McCrosky and Baer (1985), MacIntyre, Dornyei, Clement, and Noels (1998), and Yashima (2002) on willingness to communicate. The participants of the study were 29 individuals comprising 23 university students from different majors and 6 writing experts with academic statuses varying from BA holders in TEFL to university professors in applied linguistics. They were interviewed in two separate layers via employing the Delphi technique. Content analysis was conducted on the interviews and the components were extracted; the WTW questionnaire was then designed and developed for the first time and was validated via conducting factor analysis and was then administered to 257 university and IELTS students. The final version of the questionnaire included 38 items after having been factor analyzed. The results indicated that there are four factors underlying the construct of willingness to write, which are interlinguaprofession, cognition, involvement, and technology. The findings of the study can bring considerable benefits to EFL students to recognize the influential factors on their degree of willingness to write (WTW) and try to boost the facilitating factors to become more autonomous learners. Academic EFL/ESL writing teachers can enhance their students’ writing ability via embarking upon new strategies through which they can make learners more willing to write by promoting learners’ involvement and engagement in writing, as one of the findings of this study.
۳.

Investigating Noticing in Narrative Writing Tasks and its Effect on EFL Learners’ Writing Performance

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The practice of ‘writing to learn’ has been propounded as fast-tracking the dynamic process of noticing problems in L2 writing. However, a marked melioration in learners’ attempted output requires a form of corrective feedback, among which modeling has proven to bear vigorous input enhancement effects. The present study attempted to inspect what EFL learners notice throughout their own output and exposure to model texts and how this noticing acts upon their short-term and long-term writing performance. In a repeated measure quasi-experimental design, the performance of 43 Iranian EFL learners on narrative writing tasks was collected upon pre-test, post-test, and delayed post-test. The participants indicated their noticing of linguistic problems through note-taking during the writing task followed by the exposure to two model texts and two revisions of the original writing, immediately, and two months later. The type of linguistic features noticed was studied through qualitative analysis. Paired-samples t-tests were conducted to compare students' accuracy performance before and after noticing. The results indicated that learners’ grammatical accuracy was improved by noticing. As to the nature of incorporated features, learners' noticing played a prompting role in the effectiveness of models since learners retained those lexical and grammatical features compatible with their own noticing. It is argued that the participants' engagement in output activity has increased their awareness of the required linguistic features, facilitating their noticing of those features through exposure to positive feedback. The findings provide further evidence for the constructive role of output in language learning.
۴.

Comparing the Impact of Audio-Visual Input Enhancement on Collocation Learning in Traditional and Mobile Learning Contexts

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: This study investigated the impact of audio-visual input enhancement teaching techniques on improving English as Foreign Language (EFL) learnersˈ collocation learning as well as their accuracy concerning collocation use in narrative writing. In addition, it compared the impact and efficiency of audio-visual input enhancement in two learning contexts, namely traditional and mobile learning contexts. First, 120 homogenous intermediate EFL learners were randomly divided into four groups, two experimental and two comparison groups. Next, two pre-tests, a collocation and a paragraph writing test, were administered. The experimental groups received enhanced target collocations through input enhancement teaching techniques while in the comparison groups the “unenhanced” collocations were taught through conventional simple vocabulary teaching method. After the treatment sessions, the researcher administered two post-tests including a collocation and a paragraph writing. As the data analysis suggested, with regards to the first research purpose, audio-visual input enhancement positively affected EFL learners' collocation learning and enhanced their accuracy concerning collocation use in narrative writing. Regarding the second purpose of the study, the results revealed that, in comparison to traditional learning context, audio-visual input enhancement teaching techniques were significantly effective in mobile learning context in terms of collocation learning. The efficiency of audio-visual input enhancement teaching techniques was not significantly different between the experimental groups in the two learning contexts in terms of enhancing EFL learners’ accuracy concerning collocation use. The findings of this study can create awareness for second language teachers and learners about the critical and beneficial role of input enhancement and mobile assisted language learning in successful language acquisition and learning.
۵.

The Use of Self-Repair Strategies in Classroom Conversations: Does the Teacher’s Level of Reflection Make a Difference?

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To better understand the pattern of language use and classroom interactions, this sequential mixed-methods study investigated the teachers’ use of self-repair strategies based on their level of reflection. To this end, 33 Iranian EFL teachers were selected from various institutions in Tehran. Data for the quantitative phase were collected from the reflectivity questionnaire developed by Akbari, Behzadpour, and Dadvand (2010). Regarding the qualitative phase of the study, 70 hours of English instruction and classroom interactions of the 33 teachers were recorded and analyzed, using Fox and Jasperson’s (1995) classification of self-repair strategies. The quantitative analyses of the results, employing one-way Analysis of Variance (ANOVA), indicated that there was a significant difference between the reflective groups in terms of the total repair strategy use. Further, the results of Kruskal Wallis analysis revealed that there was a statistically significant difference between high and low reflective teachers in terms of the repair strategies types “H, J, K, and L”, which generally refer to the “Replacement, Repetition, and Addition of a lexical item”. The results of the qualitative analysis also showed that the most frequent self-repair strategy of high, mid, and low reflective teachers was strategy “A” or “repetition of a lexical item”.
۶.

Constructing Stories in a Foreign Language: Analysis of Iranian EFL Learners’ Lived Narratives Structure

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Most popular models of narratives and narrative analyses have been drawn on native stories, yet EFL learners’ narratives have not received due narrative analysis. The present study then aims at scrutinizing the structure of personal English stories as told by EFL learners. To this aim, three hundred narratives were collected through classroom discussions and interviews. Qualitative analysis methods were utilized to find how narratives were recounted. The results of data analyses indicated that EFL learners’ narratives consisted of 4 parts with the abstract and coda sections absent from them. Besides, there were other differences between the collected narratives and those told by English native speakers.

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