An Investigation of Vocabulary Learning Strategies by Iranian EFL Students in Different Proficiency Levels

Samaneh Jafari, Reza Kafipour


This study aims to find out the various strategies used in learning vocabularies among Iranian EFL learners in three different proficiency levels (beginner, intermediate and advanced) in Zanjan province. The vocabulary learning strategies which have been used in this research include determination, social, memory, cognitive, and meta-cognitive which follow Schmitt’s taxonomy. 110 students were randomly selected from two language institutes in Zanjan. Schmitt’s (1997) Vocabulary Learning Strategies’ questionnaire was administered to the learners with three proficiency levels. Then, descriptive statistics and Anova were utilized to analyze the data. Descriptive statistics revealed that the participants of the study regardless of their proficiency levels were generally medium strategy users who used all these strategies moderately except for the determination strategies that were used in high level. In addition, basic learners used all different types of strategies more frequently than intermediate and advanced learners. By comparing two other proficiency levels, advanced learners used determination strategies and meta-cognitive strategies more frequently than intermediate learners, while social, memory and cognitive strategies were used more frequently by Intermediates. In order to perceive if the results were statistically significant, Anova for between group mean differences was conducted. It revealed the fact that there is no significant difference among learners with different proficiency levels in application of determination and meta-cognitive strategies while the learners with lower proficiency level used social, memory and cognitive strategies more frequently, that is, these three strategies were used more frequently by basic, intermediate and advanced learners respectively.



Vocabulary learning strategies, Language learning strategies, Vocabulary learning strategy questionnaire

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