International Journal of Language & Linguistics

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

The Effect of the Keyword Method on Vocabulary Learning and Long-Term Retention
Ali Akbar Taheri, Dr. Mohammad Davoudi

The present study investigated the effect of the keyword method of vocabulary teaching on the learning and longterm retention of vocabulary in a normal EFL classroom context. Fifty elementary EFL students were selected and assigned into experimental and control groups. The experimental group received vocabulary instruction using mnemonic keyword method and the control group received conventional memorization-based instruction of the same vocabulary items. Each group took two post-tests, one test immediately after instruction and one test two weeks later. Paired and independent samples t-tests were run on the data and the results indicated that participants in the keyword group outperformed the memorization group significantly in both their learning and retention of the vocabulary items. The results of the study support the effectiveness of the establishment of mental links and images, through the use of mnemonic strategies, for the vocabulary learning and retention of elementary level EFL learners.

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