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Beyond raw frequency: Incidental vocabulary acquisition in extensive reading

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Title:Beyond raw frequency: Incidental vocabulary acquisition in extensive reading
Authors:Kweon, Soo-Ok
Kim, Hae-Ri
Keywords:Extensive reading
L2 reading
incidental vocabulary acquisition
literature-based approach
Date Issued:Oct 2008
Publisher:University of Hawaii National Foreign Language Resource Center
Center for Language & Technology
Abstract:Second language vocabulary can be learned incidentally while the learner is engaged in extensive reading or reading for meaning, inferring the meaning of unknown words (Huckin & Coady, 1999; Hulstijn, 1992; Krashen, 1993; Pigada & Schmitt, 2006). 12 Korean learners of English read authentic literary texts and were tested on their knowledge of vocabulary before reading (pretest), immediately after reading (Posttest 1), and 1 month after Posttest 1 (Posttest 2). The results showed a significant word gain between the pretest and Posttest 1 and that most gained words were retained at Posttest 2. Of the 3 different word classes that were used, nouns were a little easier to retain than verbs and adjectives. More frequent words were more easily learned than less frequent words across all 3 word classes. However, words of lower frequency were better learned than words of higher frequency when the meanings of the lower frequency words were crucial for meaning comprehension.
Appears in Collections: Volume 20, No. 2 Special Issue: Reading and Vocabulary

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