International Journal of Language & Linguistics

ISSN 2374-8850 (Print), 2374-8869 (Online) DOI: 10.30845/ijll

An Investigation into Vocabulary Language Learning Strategies through Cognitive Theory: Implications for Kurdish Universities
Talib Omer

Using the relevant strategy is central to the acquisition, maintenance and retrieval of words in long-term memory. Recalling vocabulary is vital for second language learners, hence mastery of a vocabulary learning strategy is necessary for L2 learners. They need to know which strategy works well for recalling the meanings of new words when using them spontaneously. Cognitive strategies can be defined as maintaining forms and meanings of words in the long-term memory; therefore, they are essential for L2 students to learn in dependently, because students need to retain and recall their knowledge continuously. According to Schmitt and Schmitt, learners need to include the new knowledge into the old, in order to remember meanings easily. They argue that ‘‘the best way to remember new words is to incorporate them into language that is already known’’ (Schmitt &Schmitt,1995,p.133).The major issues among Kurdish university students include a lack in recalling the forms and meanings of new words within academic settings(Lavasani & Faryadres, 2011). The researcher will investigate the learners’ opinions using a quantitative questionnaire in determining the most used strategies for recalling new words and remembering their meanings. The findings of this study show that L2 learners are aware of using cognitive strategies and they use them differently. The results show that the participants highly appreciate the strategy of using dictionaries and guessing the meanings of new words from their contexts to retrieve new words for use in their academic life.The aim of this paper is to investigate which strategies under cognitive theory are the most used by successful second language learners. This paper argues that advanced learners need to use a variety of strategies, including the knowledge of words and utilizing dictionaries in an appropriate way, to benefit them in remembering meanings and forms in the long-term memory rather than short-term. The questionnaire items are variable. However, some participants left some questions unanswered, for example items 3 and 4, which led to a poorer validity of the results for these items. This paper comprises a literature review, followed by a section regarding the research methods, which include sampling, questionnaire, pilot results and discussions. The section preceding the conclusion discusses the implications for Kurdish university students.

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