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Learning L2 collocations incidentally from reading

Pellicer-Sánchez, Ana


Ana Pellicer-Sánchez


Previous studies have shown that intentional learning through explicit instruction is effective for the acquisition of collocations in a second language (L2) (e.g. Peters, 2014, 2015), but relatively little is known about the effectiveness of incidental approaches for the acquisition of L2 collocations. The present study examined the incidental acquisition of collocational knowledge when learners encounter adjective-pseudoword collocations while reading. Forty-one L2 learners read a story containing six target collocations in a classroom setting. One week after the reading they were interviewed about their knowledge of the form, meaning and collocation of the target items (at recall and recognition levels). Participants were randomly assigned to one of two experimental groups, i.e. the 4-repetition group and the 8-repetition group. Results showed that collocational knowledge can be learnt incidentally from reading; that it is learnt at a similar rate to other lexical components such as form and meaning of individual words; and that the frequency manipulation in this study did not seem to have a significant effect on the acquisition of any of the aspects examined.


Pellicer-Sánchez, A. (in press). Learning L2 collocations incidentally from reading. Language Teaching Research,

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 26, 2015
Online Publication Date Dec 3, 2015
Deposit Date Aug 26, 2016
Publicly Available Date Aug 26, 2016
Journal Language Teaching Research
Print ISSN 1362-1688
Electronic ISSN 1477-0954
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Keywords collocations, incidental learning, multi-word units, reading, vocabulary
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Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address:


Pellicer-Sanchez_Learning L2 Collocations Incidentally From Reading.pdf (384 Kb)

Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address:

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