A Journal of Teaching English Language and Literature

ISSN Print : 2229-6557, Online: 2394-9244

Effects of L1 Lexicalization on Vocabulary Recall in Incidental Vocabulary Acquisition

P. Sunama Patro

Abstract

Lexicalization refers to the process of assigning words to concepts existing in a language; and languages differ in the way they lexicalize target language concepts, thus, creating the possibility of some target language concepts not being lexicalized in the L1 lacking direct equivalents. The interplay and interdependency of the two domains, L1 lexical knowledge and L2 lexical knowledge, has been the mainstay of many research studies on bilingual lexicon, and researchers argue that a target word is processed via the L1 system during which a learner attempts to establish parallels with the existing related L1 knowledge. The study followed an experimental design to investigate how effectively ninety L2 Odia speakers of Class XI recall the selected six aspects of the eight target words, both lexicalized and non-lexicalized, from reading of a text followed by the administration of an immediate recall test. The comparison of learners’ scores using a paired samples t-test on both the category of words on each sub-test representing one of the six aspects revealed that the learners could not recall the semantic aspects of the non-lexicalized words effectively compared to their counterparts. This has serious implications for vocabulary instruction programmes in teaching-learning contexts where teachers and learners both need to attend to this pragmatic aspect involved in non-lexicalized words.

Keywords: Lexicalization, recall, bilingual lexicon, lexical knowledge, semantic aspects

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