Advertisement

Size as a Dimension of L2 Vocabulary Skill

  • Michael Harrington
Chapter
  • 363 Downloads

Abstract

This chapter examines vocabulary size as a dimension of second language (L2) vocabulary skill. The vocabulary size research literature is introduced and research methods used to study it are described. The use of frequency statistics to estimate vocabulary size is introduced and the relationship of vocabulary size measures to L2 performance is explained.

References

  1. Adelman, J. S., Brown, G. D. A., & Quesada, J. F. (2006). Contextual diversity, not word frequency, determines word-naming and reading times. Psychological Science, 17(9), 814–823.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Adolphs, S., & Schmitt, N. (2003). Lexical coverage of spoken discourse. Applied Linguistics, 24(4), 425–438.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Aitchison, J. (2012). Words in the mind: An introduction to the mental lexicon (4th ed.). Malden: Wiley.Google Scholar
  4. Andrews, S. (2008). Lexical expertise and reading skill. In B. H. Ross (Ed.), The psychology of learning and motivation: Advances in research and theory (Vol. 49, pp. 247–281). San Diego: Elsevier.Google Scholar
  5. Bauer, L., & Nation, I. S. P. (1993). Word families. International Journal of Lexicography, 6(4), 253–279.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Biber, D., Conrad, S., & Reppen, R. (1998). Corpus linguistics: Investigating language structure and use. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cobb, T. (2007). Computing the vocabulary demands of L2 reading. Language Learning & Technology, 11(3), 38–63.Google Scholar
  8. Crossely, S. A., Subtirelu, N., & Salsbury, T. (2013). Frequency effects or context effects in second language word learning. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 35(4), 727–755. doi: 10.1017/S0272263113000375.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Ellis, N. C. (2002). Frequency effects in language processing: A review with implications for theories of implicit and explicit language acquisition. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 24(2), 143–188.Google Scholar
  10. Harrington, M., & Carey, M. (2009). The online yes/no test as a placement tool. System, 37(4), 614–626. doi: 10.1016/j.system.2009.09.006.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Hazenberg, S., & Hulstijn, J. H. (1996). Defining a minimal receptive vocabulary for non-native university students: An empirical investigation. Applied Linguistics, 17(2), 145–163.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Hirsh, D., & Nation, P. (1992). What vocabulary size is needed to read unsimplified texts for pleasure? Reading in a Foreign Language, 8(2), 689–696.Google Scholar
  13. Hsueh-Chao, M. H., & Nation, I. S. P. (2000). Unknown vocabulary density and reading comprehension. Reading in a Foreign Language, 13(1), 403–430.Google Scholar
  14. Laufer, B. (1989). What percentage of text-lexis is essential for comprehension? In C. Lauren & M. Nordman (Eds.), Special language: From humans thinking to thinking, machines (pp. 316–323). Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.Google Scholar
  15. Laufer, B. (1992). How much lexis is necessary for reading comprehension? In P. J. L. Arnaud & H. Béjoint (Eds.), Vocabulary and applied linguistics (pp. 126–132). London: Macmillan. doi: 10.1007/978-1-349-12396-4_12.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Laufer, B. (2001). Quantitative evaluation of vocabulary: How it can be done and what it was good for. In C. Elder, K. Hill, A. Brown, N. Iwashita, L. Grove, T. Lumley, & T. MacNamara (Eds.), Experimenting with uncertainty: Essays in hounour of Alan Davies (pp. 241–250). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Laufer, B., & Ravenhorts-Kalovski, G. C. (2010). Lexical threshold revisited: Lexical text coverage, learners’ vocabulary size and reading comprehension. Reading in a Foreign Language, 22(1), 15–30.Google Scholar
  18. Leech, G., Rayson, P., & Wilson, A. (2001). Word frequencies in spoken and written English. London: Longman.Google Scholar
  19. Lightbown, P. M., & Spada, N. (2013). How languages are learned (4th ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  20. McCarthy, M. (1998). Spoken language and applied linguistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  21. Meara, P., & Buxton, B. (1987). An alternative to multiple choice vocabulary tests. Language Testing, 4(2), 142–145.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Meara, P., & Jones, G. (1988). Vocabulary size as placement indicator. In P. Grunwell (Ed.), Applied linguistics in society (pp. 80–87). London: CILT.Google Scholar
  23. Milton, J. (2009). Measuring second language vocabulary acquisition. Bristol: Multilingual Matters.Google Scholar
  24. Nagy, W. E., Anderson, R., Schommer, M., Scott, J. A., & Stallman, A. (1989). Morphological families in the internal lexicon. Reading Research Quarterly, 24(3), 263–282. doi: 10.2307/747770.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Nation, I. S. P. (2006). How large a vocabulary was needed for reading and listening? The Canadian Modern Language Review/La Revue Canadienne des Langues Vivantes, 63(1), 59–82.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Nation, I. S. P. (2013). Learning vocabulary in another language (2nd ed.). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  27. Paradis, M. (2009). Declarative and procedural determinants of second languages (Vol. 40). Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Qian, D. D. (1999). Assessing the roles of depth and breadth of vocabulary knowledge in reading comprehension. The Canadian Modern Language Review, 56(2), 282–307.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Read, J. (2004). Plumbing the depths: How should the construct of vocabulary knowledge be defined? In P. Bogaards & B. Laufer (Eds.), Vocabulary in a second language: Selection, acquisition, and testing (pp. 209–227). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Richards, J. C. (1976). The role of vocabulary teaching. TESOL Quarterly, 10, 77–89.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Richards, B. (1987). Type/token ratios: What do they really tell us? Journal of Child Language, 14(2), 201–209. doi: 10.1017/S0305000900012885.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Schmitt, N. (2010). Researching vocabulary. A vocabulary research manual. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Schmitt, N., & Zimmerman, C. B. (2002). Derivative word forms: What do learners know? TESOL Quarterly, 36(2), 145–171. doi: 10.2307/3588328.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Schmitt, N., Jiang, X., & Grabe, W. (2011). The percentage of words known in a text and reading comprehension. The Modern Language Journal, 95(1), 26–43. doi: 10.1111/j.1540-4781.2011.01146.x.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. van Zeeland, H., & Schmitt, N. (2013). Lexical coverage in L1 and L2 listening comprehension: The same or different from reading comprehension? Applied Linguistics, 34(4), 457–479.Google Scholar
  36. Vermeer, A. (2001). Breadth and depth of vocabulary in relation to L1/L2 acquisition and frequency of input. Applied PsychoLinguistics, 22(2), 217–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Webb, S., & Rodgers, M. P. H. (2009). The lexical coverage of movies. Applied Linguistics, 30(3), 407–427. doi: 10.1093/applin/amp010.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Wray, A. (2008). Formulaic language: Pushing the boundaries. Oxford: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael Harrington
    • 1
  1. 1.University of QueenslandBrisbaneAustralia

Personalised recommendations