Academic journal article International Education Studies

The Effect of Lexical Bundles on Iranian EFL Learners Linguistic Production Fluency

Academic journal article International Education Studies

The Effect of Lexical Bundles on Iranian EFL Learners Linguistic Production Fluency

Article excerpt


The present study attempted to investigate the effects of lexical bundles on Iranian EFL learners' paragraph writing production fluency. To achieve this purpose, an English language proficiency test was administered to 120 language learners studying TEFL at Islamic Azad University of Dehloran. Ultimately, 90 language learners were selected and randomly divided into two groups of control and experimental groups, based on their proficiency testscores.Both experimental and control groups worked on the same text- book content. The experimental group subjects were instructed on the lexical bundles use extracted from True to Life text- book, while the control group received placebo treatment during the course. The treatment took a whole academic semester. The results of the post-test showed that lexical bundles teaching methodology proved effective and influential in developing Iranian EFL language learners' paragraph writing fluency. So, Developing English language skills, here writing skill in general and paragraph writing in particular, also, needs appropriate methods of which lexical bundles teaching methodology can be named.Since, lexical bundles use during instructional courses, help language learners have an automatic and easy recall of them in the process of paragraph writing, lexical bundles teaching methodology should be applied to having a better understanding of the text- books materials and to develop language skills. Therefore, the study suggests that content developers should include lexical bundles teaching methodology and their uses in the teaching and learning processes. The findings of this study gave empirical support to this view. Hence, this is pedagogically central in the domain of language teaching and learning and should be taken into account in the design and production of suitable instructional materials and in the methodology of classroom teaching and students learning behavior. To sum up, these findings can have a number of implications for material designers, language teachers, and students who are engaged in the teaching of English language as a foreign language.

Keywords: lexical bundles, fluency, linguistic production fluency

1. Introduction

Biber, Johansson, leech, Conrad, and Finegan (1999) developed a recent class of word collocation. They called them lexical bundles and defined them as recurrent expressions. To some linguists such as (Nattinger and Decarrico1992; Yorio, 1979) lexical bundles are referred to as prefabricated language units. Based on their findings, prefabricated language units are easily memorized and retrieved when the situation demands. It helps both speakers and listeners focus on the language structure of the discourse not just focus on the individual words.An important component of fluent linguistic production is mastering the multi-word expressions referred to as clusters, chunks or bundles. These are extended collocations which appear more frequently than expected by chance, helping to shape meanings in specific contexts and contributing to our sense of coherence in a text. Bundles have begun to attract considerable attention to corpus studies in EAP (Biber, Johansson, Leech, Conrad, and Finegan, 1999).

Lexical bundles, coined by Biber, Johansson, Leech, Conrad, and Finegan (1999) are considered as a specific and relatively recent category of word combinations with a formulaic status (Biber and Barbieri, 2007).They defined lexical bundles as recurrent expressions, regardless of their idiomaticity, and their structural status. Frequency is the most salient and defining characteristic of bundles; in order for a word combination to count as a bundle, it must occur at least ten times in a corpus made of one million words with the additional requirement that this rate of occurrence be realized in at least five different texts to guard against idiosyncratic or repetitive uses (Biber, Johansson, Leech, Conrad, and Finegan, 1999).

Some corpus- based studies in spoken academic discourse and some investigations studied and proved some major features of lexical bundles and also developed structural and functional classifications of bundles. …

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