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A Further Replication of “Is Form-Focused Vocabulary Instruction Worthwhile?” (Mason and Krashen, 2004)
Story Listening, a form of instruction that aims to provide optimal input for language acquisition (Krashen, 2020), involves the telling of traditional stories that the teacher makes comprehensible by drawing pictures on the board and providing quick L1 translations. Mason and Krashen (2004) discovered that learners acquired vocabulary more efficiently through Story Listening alone than by supplementing it with form-focused vocabulary instruction. XXXX (2019) reported a replication of this study with similar results. This paper reports a second, larger-scale replication. Twenty-nine English majors at a Japanese college received one of two treatments during one ninety-minute class period: the story-only group just listened to a story for around 25 minutes, while the story-plus-study group listened to the same story and subsequently engaged in explicit study of 30 test words which had occurred in the story text. This explicit study included quizzing using flashcards, using the test words to produce sentences orally and listening to definitions. Although the story-plus-study group outperformed the story-only group on an immediate post-test, they actually underperformed on a surprise delayed post-test five weeks later. Whereas in previous studies, learners in the story-plus-study groups were shown to acquire vocabulary less efficiently (although they gained more words overall on the delayed post-test), in this study the positive effect of the supplementary explicit instruction had disappeared five weeks later. The efficiency value for the story-only treatment was broadly similar to the original study and first replication, with values close to 0.2 words per minute.

Story Listening, vocabulary acquisition

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