Volume 1 Number 7 October 2015

Psycholinguistic Analysis of Topic Familiarity and Translation Task Effects on Incidental Vocabulary Learning: an Iranian Context

Authors: Danial Shirzadi ; Iman Abdi Tabari
Pages: 56-62
The major thrust of this research has been a psycholinguistic analysis of effectiveness of topic familiarity and two types of translation tasks (from L1 to L2 and L2 to L1) on retention of incidental vocabulary learning for a longer duration. The effects of translation tasks and topic familiarity have been studied individually .However, the relative effect of topic familiarity conditions and translation in two directions have not been attended to in longer period of time. In doing so, thirty intermediate EFL students were asked to translate a few texts in two directions with two conditions of topic (un)familiarity .Each text contains some unknown words .The students were tested on these unknown words and the responses were examined in immediate and delayed post tests. The delayed post test session held after 2 weeks. The results show that, unlike the revised hierarchical model (RHM), translation task directions did not have significant effect on incidental vocabulary learning while retention was more effective with topic familiar texts in the both tests .In addition, topic familiarity of the texts play an important part in the process of incidental vocabulary learning.  The article concludes with some suggestions for task designing and vocabulary teaching.