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ERIC Number: EJ957759
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0957-1736
Vocabulary Input from School Textbooks as a Potential Contributor to the Small Vocabulary Uptake Gained by English as a Foreign Language Learners in Saudi Arabia
Alsaif, Abdullah; Milton, James
Language Learning Journal, v40 n1 p21-33 2012
Research repeatedly reports very little vocabulary uptake by English as a foreign language (EFL) learners in public schools in Saudi Arabia. Factors such as the teaching methodology employed and learner motivation have been suggested to explain this but a further explanation, the vocabulary input these learners receive, remains uninvestigated. An examination of the textbooks in the EFL program in Saudi Arabian public schools suggests they provide around 2800 words from the most frequent 5000 words and an additional 1000 less frequent words over a period of seven years. Most of these words are introduced before the secondary stage which suggests little input and much repetition in the final years of school learning. There is little thematic variation, which suggests the textbooks are dull and will demotivate learners. Surprisingly, portions of the Ministry of Education's own target word-list are not presented at all. Poverty of input, therefore, helps explain the small volumes of vocabulary uptake. Among the words which are available for learning, three difficulty factors--word length, repetition and concreteness--might explain 63-80% of variance in vocabulary learnability although some caution is suggested since the sample of words investigated is very small. (Contains 2 figures and 6 tables.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Saudi Arabia