Collocational Use: A Contrastive Analysis of Strategies Used by Iranian EFL Learners

Davoudi, Mohammad; Behshad, Azam
December 2015
Theory & Practice in Language Studies;Dec2015, Vol. 5 Issue 12, p2646
Academic Journal
Despite the role of collocations in many aspects of second language learning, its significance has been neglected by the contrastive analysts in ELT. The current study aimed at investigating learners' use of collocations by analyzing their written performance. It was conducted using 102 male and female EFL learners majoring in English Translation and English Language and Literature at Hakim Sabzevari University in Iran. The researchers analyzed the data to determine the sources of collocational errors, and the strategy types utilized by learners in order to overcome their collocational deficiencies. The percentage of errors resulting from lack or inadequate familiarity of the students with collocations was 75%. The results of the study showed that most of the students' errors in writing did not originate from their insufficient knowledge of the grammar but from their inability with regard to the combination of language units. Moreover, the findings revealed that learners made use of four strategy types including transfer, synonym, repetition and paraphrase to overcome their collocational problems, with transfer strategy ranking as the most frequently used strategy followed by the use of synonym. The implications and applications of the study are discussed.


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