The Effect of Glosses on Incidental Vocabulary Learning of Iranian EFL learners

Abbas Moradan, Maryam Vafaei


Reading passages contain many new words. Looking up every word in the dictionary and finding the exact meaning can be a difficult job for learners and may hinder the process of reading. Providing glosses can help learners deal with this issue. The objective of the present study is to make enquiries about the effect of glosses on incidental vocabulary learning. To this end, 45 Iranian EFL learners were selected from 70 according to their performance on KET test. Then they were divided into three groups of 15 randomly. Ten reading texts were selected and unfamiliar vocabularies were glossed in three ways: pictorial, textual and pictorial-textual glosses. Participants were required to read the texts under one of the three conditions. After the completion of ten sessions of treatment, participants were given a vocabulary post-test to measure vocabulary learning. The outcome of the study indicated that the group that received the combination of pictorial and textual glosses outperformed the other two groups. The findings can be of great importance for language teachers and material developers.



Incidental vocabulary learning, Gloss, Pictorial gloss, Textual gloss, Pictorial and textual gloss

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