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ERIC Number: EJ1052103
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 24
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 40
ISSN: ISSN-0826-435X
An Exploratory Study into Trade-Off Effects of Complexity, Accuracy, and Fluency on Young Learners' Oral Task Repetition
Sample, Evelyn; Michel, Marije
TESL Canada Journal, v31 spec iss 8 p23-46 2014
Studying task repetition for adult and young foreign language learners of English (EFL) has received growing interest in recent literature within the task-based approach (Bygate, 2009; Hawkes, 2012; Mackey, Kanganas, & Oliver, 2007; Pinter, 2007b). Earlier work suggests that second language (L2) learners benefit from repeating the same or a slightly different task. Task repetition has been shown to enhance fluency and may also add to complexity or accuracy of production. However, few investigations have taken a closer look at the underlying relationships between the three dimensions of task performance: complexity, accuracy, and fluency (CAF). Using Skehan's (2009) trade-off hypothesis as an explanatory framework, our study aims to fill this gap by investigating interactions among CAF measures. We report on the repeated performances on an oral spot-the-difference task by six 9-year-old EFL learners. Mirroring earlier work, our data reveal significant increases of fluency through task repetition. Correlational analyses show that initial performances that benefit in one dimension come at the expense of another; by the third performance, however, trade-off effects disappear. Further qualitative explanations support our interpretation that with growing task-familiarity students are able to focus their attention on all three CAF dimensions simultaneously.
TESL Canada Federation. 408-4370 Dominion Street, Burnaby, BC V5G 4L7, Canada. Tel: 604-298-0312; Fax: 604-298-0372; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Hong Kong