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ERIC Number: EJ1145275
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017-Jun
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2133
Balancing Direction and Independence in Second Language Vocabulary Learning: A Gesture Pilot Study
Mathison, Lake
Hispania, v100 n2 p289-301 Jun 2017
This pilot study looks at the effect of learning second language vocabulary with gesture. Specifically, this current study asks whether researcher-instructed or student-constructed gestures are more effective. Depth of processing theories (Craik and Lockhart 1972) as well as more recent educational frameworks like ICAP ("Interactive," "Constructive," "Active," "Passive") (Chi and Wiley 2014) would suggest that personal construction of a gesture may further deepen processing and increase cognitive engagement, strengthening the effect of the technique itself. Beginning Spanish students (n = 19) were assigned to one of the following groups: instructed gestures, constructed gestures, or control (no gesture). Scores of the one-week posttest highlight the higher recall of constructed over instructed or no gesture, in line with the predictions of the ICAP framework. Conclusions are limited due to the sample size, but pedagogically, these results suggest a balance between independent and directed vocabulary learning, where students are guided to use techniques that enrich their mental representations, but are simultaneously given the freedom and responsibility to construct their own examples.
American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese, Inc. 900 Ladd Road, Walled Lake, MI 48390. Tel: 248-960-2180; Fax: 248-960-9570; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A