On Situating the Stance of Estrogen in the Acquisition and Recall of L2 Lexical Items: A Biological Look

Document Type: Research Paper


1 Department of English, Islamic Azad University, Roudbar Branch, Iran

2 Department of English, Science and Research Branch, Tehran, Iran


The present study examined whether the advantage of females on L2 vocabulary recall and acquisition is partly as a result of estrogen secretion or not. In this regard, through volunteer and convenience sampling 15 intermediate EFL female participants aged between 23-31 were selected from the subject pool of 55 participants. The participants were studying at Iranian Language Center located in Bandar-e Anzali, Iran. To ensure the homogeneity among the participants, Babel English Placement test was used. In the course of study, the participants were taught two series of 42 lexical items in each phase of menstrual cycles (i.e., follicular and luteal). The treatment period was held six sessions at each phase. Each session took 30 minutes. To compare the performance of the participants, immediately after the sixth session, a piloted teacher-made vocabulary recall test was administered at each phase. Finally, the mean scores of participants' performance in the two phases were contrasted through a paired samples t test. The results indicated that there was a statistically significant difference between the participants' recall scores in the follicular and luteal phases. Moreover, to investigate the impact of estrogen secretion on participants' L2 vocabulary acquisition, two months after the treatment, the participants took a piloted teacher-made vocabulary acquisition test at each phase of menstrual cycle. The results of paired samples t test indicated a significant difference between the participants' vocabulary acquisition scores in the two phases.


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