An Exploratory Study into Vocabulary Learning Strategies Used by Saudi EFL learners

Mohammad Hamad Al-Khresheh, Shatha F Al-Ruwaili


One of the utmost difficult aspects of language learning is vocabulary. Vocabulary learning has been of prime importance for over two decades. A wide vocabulary is essential for effective and useful communication. Therefore, understanding the strategies that language learners use to learn vocabulary is a matter of great importance. This study was carried out on a group of 219 Saudi learners of English so as to determine two things: first, what their uttermost preferable vocabulary learning strategies are, and second, whether there is a statistically significant disparity in the use of these vocabulary strategies due to gender. To these ends, a vocabulary learning strategies questionnaire devised by Schmitt (1997) and revised by Omaar (2016) that consisted of 42 items was utilised. The data from this questionnaire were analyzed with descriptive statistics, including standard deviations and means. Statistical analysis of the data collected showed high reliability (r-0.97, P<0.001). The findings pointed out that memory strategies were reported as most preferable by the subjects of study, subsequently determination, social, and metacognitive strategies. Cognitive strategies were reported to be the least preferable. The only statistically significant disparity due to gender was in the use of memory strategies, where P < 0.05; no other statistically significant disparities were found based on gender in the other types of strategies. Based on these findings, a list of pedagogical implications was suggested and several recommendations for further research were put forward.

Anahtar Kelimeler

English teaching, EFL, Saudi students, Vocabulary learning, Learning Strategies

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