Journal of Language Teaching and Research, Vol 3, No 5 (2012), 953-960, Sep 2012

Effects of Receptive and Productive Tasks on Iranian EFL Students' Learning of Verb-noun Collocations

Mehdi Falahi, Ahmad Moinzadeh


The current study is an attempt to investigate the effects of receptive (reading three glossed sentences) and productive (completing a cloze task) tasks on learning English verb-noun collocations in an Iranian English as a foreign language (EFL) learning context. To this end, ninety four EFL university learners were divided into two experimental (reading and cloze) groups and one control group. To determine the effects of the tasks, the participants in all three groups were given receptive and productive collocation pretests aiming at examining their existing knowledge of collocation and posttests to measure the learners' gained knowledge of collocation after being exposed to the treatments. The results of a Paired sample t-test revealed that both the reading and cloze groups had manifested significant enhancement in their knowledge of collocation after the treatments.



collocation; collocate; node; receptive task; productive task



[1] Aghbar, A.A., (1990). Fixed expressions in written texts: Implications for assessing writing sophistication. In: Paper presented at a Meeting of the English Association of Pennsylvania State System University, October 1990

[2] Aghbar, A.A., Tang, H., (1991). Partial credit scoring of cloze-type items. In: Paper Presented at 1991 Language Testing Research Colloquium, Educational Testing Service, Princeton, NJ, pp. 1–24.

[3] Arnaud, P.J.L., Savignon, S.S. (1997). Rare words, complex lexical units and the advanced learner. In: Coady, J., Huckin, T. (Eds.), Second Language Vocabulary Acquisition: A Rationale for Pedagogy. CUP, Cambridge, pp. 157–173.

[4] Al-Zahrani, M. S. (1998). Knowledge of English lexical collocations among male Saudi college students majoring in English at a Saudi university. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania.

[5] Elkhatib, A. S. A. (1984). A classification of the lexical problems of EFL/ESL students. New York, Report-Research/ Technical. (Eric Document Reproduction Service No. 246 691).

[6] Benson, M., Benson, E., & Ilson, R. (1986b). The BBI combinatory dictionary of English: A guide to word combination. Amsterdam: John Benjamin.

[7] Baker, M. (1992). In other words. London: Routledge.

[8] Biskup, D. (1992). L1 influence on learners' renderings of English collocations: A Polish/German empirical study. In P. J. L. Amaud & H. Bejoint (Eds.), Vocabulary and applied linguistics (pp. 85-93). Houndmills: Macmillian.

[9] Bahns, J. & Eldaw, M. (1993). Should we teach EFL students collocations? System,1(1) 101-114.

[10] Chan, T. P., & Liou, H. C. (2005). Effects of Web-based concordancing instruction on EFL students’ learning of verb–noun collocations. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 18, 231–251.

[11] Channell, L. (1981). Applying semantic theory to vocabulary teaching. English Language Teaching, 35, 115-122.

[12] Farghal, M. & Obiedat, H. (1995). Collocations: A neglected variable in EFL. 1BAL, 33 (4), 315-333.

[13] Fan, M.Y., 1991. A Study of the Company Kept by a Selection of English Delexical Verbs and the Implications for Teaching of English in Hong Kong. Ph.D. University of Durham, UK.

[14] Firth, J. (1957). Modes of meaning. In J. Firth (Ed.), Papers in linguistics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

[15] Granger, S. (1998). Prefabricated patterns in advanced EFL writing: Collocations and formulae. In A. P. Cowie. (Ed.), Phraseology: Theory, analysis, and applications (pp. 145-160). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

[16] Hassan Abadi, S. (1998). A lexio-grammatical study of collocations by Iranian EFL learners. Unpublished thesis, English Language Department, Shiraz Azad University: Iran.

[17] Hill, J. (2000). Revising priorities: From grammatical failure to collocational success. In M. Lewis (Ed.), Teaching collocation: Further development in the lexical approach (pp.47-69). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

[18] Howarth, P. (1998). Phraseology and second language proficiency. Applied Linguistics. IS (1), 24-44.

[19] Koosha, M., & Jafarpour, A. (2006). Data-driven learning and teaching collocation of prepositions. The case study of Iranian EFL adult learners. Asian EFL journal, 8(4), 197-209.

[20] Kaszubski, P. (2000). Selected aspects of lexicon, phraseology and style in the writing of Polish advanced learners of English: a contrastive, corpus-based approach. Retrieved from (10/05/2011)

[21] Lin, Y. P. (2002). The effects of collocation instruction on English vocabulary developments of senior high students in Taiwan. Unpublished Master’s thesis, National Kaohsiung Normal University, Taiwan.

[22] Lewis, M. (1993). The lexical approach. Hove, England: Language Teaching Publications

[23] Hammer, J. (1991). The practice of English language teaching. Second Edition. London: Longman.

[24] Lorenz, T.R. (1999). Adjective Intensification – Learners Versus Native Speakers. A Corpus Study of Argumentative Writing. Amsterdam and Atlanta, Rodopi.

[25] McCarthy, M.J. (1984). Anew look at vocabulary in EFL. Applied Linguistics, 5(1), 12-22.

[26] Nation, I.S.P (2001). Learning vocabulary in another language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

[27] Nesselhauf, N. (2003). The use of collocations by advanced learners of English and some implications for teaching. Applied Linguistics, 223. Retrieved February 14, 2011 from ProQuest Direct (ISSN No. 1426001).

[28] O'Dell, F. (1997). Incorporating vocabulary into the syllabus. In N, Schmitt, & M.McCarthy (Eds), Vocabulary: Description, Acquisition and Pedagogy (pp. 258-278). Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.

[29] Shei, C. C., (1999).A brief review of English verb-noun collocation [sic!]. Retrieved from (15/09/2011)

[30] Sinclair, J. (1991). Corpus concordance collocation. Hong Kong: Oxford University Press.

[31] Sun, Y. & Wang, L. (2003). Concordancers in the EFL classroom: cognitive approaches and collocation difficulty. Computer Assisted Learning, 16, 83-9.

[32] Tseng. F. P (2002). A study of the effects of collocation instruction on the collocational competence of senior high school students in Taiwan. Unpublished master’s thesis, National Taiwan Normal University, Taipei.

[33] Webb, S. (2005). Receptive and productive vocabulary learning: The effects of read¬ing and writing on word knowledge. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 27, 33–52.

[34] Webb, S. & Kagimoto, E. (2009). The effects of vocabulary learning on collocation and meaning. TESOL Quarterly, 43, 55-77.

[35] Woolard, G. (2000). Collocation- encourages learner independence. In M. Lewis (Ed.) Teaching collocation: Further development in the lexical approach (pp.28-46). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

[36] Wray, A. (2000). Formulaic sequences in second language teaching: Principle and practice. Applied Linguistics, 21, 463–489.

[37] Zhang. X. (1993). English collocations and their effect on the writing of native and non-native college freshmen. Unpublished doctoral dissertation.

Full Text: PDF

Journal of Language Teaching and Research (JLTR, ISSN 1798-4769)

Copyright @ 2006-2014 by ACADEMY PUBLISHER – All rights reserved.