This module focuses on the pivotal role of vocabulary in language acquisition, communication, and instruction. It first reviews the nature of vocabulary knowledge, the mental lexicon, and different contexts of vocabulary learning. It then explains how we acquire vocabulary and refine vocabulary knowledge over time. The primary emphasis is on how language instructors can promote evidence-based vocabulary instruction in the classroom. To this effect, the module highlights telling research on the effects of specific tasks (e.g. sentence writing and copying target words) and different ways of presenting target words (e.g. having multiple talkers instead of a single talker producing the target words). It also outlines an effective approach to teaching vocabulary, one that emphasizes multiple presentations of target vocabulary, specificity in the relationship between task type and learning outcomes, and the gradual build-up of language-specific vocabulary knowledge over time. A sample lesson based on this approach is also provided.
Modules in the Routledge E-Modules on Contemporary Language Teaching series are short, easily accessible introductions to a variety of issues that form the foundation of language-teacher knowledge and practice: the nature of language and communication, second language acquisition, interactive tasks, assessment, focus on form, vocabulary development, technology in language teaching, among many others.
Each module serves as a self-contained unit to be used on its own or as part of an introductory course on language teaching. Instructors may “mix and match” modules to create their own readings for a course on language teaching. The modules may serve as primary reading or as supplemental reading, with each module offering points of reflection, discussion questions, self-quizzes, and a reading list for those who wish to delve further into the topic.
To purchase the eBook versions of these modules and view module summaries, please visit the series companion website: www.routledgetextbooks.com/textbooks/9781315679594/