The Effect of Multiple Intelligence-Oriented Thematic Clustering on Advanced EFL Learners’ Vocabulary Learning

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

Department of English, Tabriz Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tabriz, Iran

10.22099/jtls.2020.38332.2877

Abstract

Burgeoning research in applied linguistics has underscored the interplay among individual, cognitive, and social variables that can delineate the ultimate attainment in various areas including vocabulary learning and the need to explore how innovative conflation of these dimensions may promote learning outcomes. The present quasi-experimental study examined the impact of Thematic Vocabulary Instruction (TVI) with and without Multiple Intelligence-oriented tasks on advanced EFL learners’ vocabulary learning and scrutinized probable differences among individual learners with varying intellectual propensities. Thus, a stratified homogeneous sample of 80 advanced EFL learners was selected and randomly assigned to four groups; the first and the second experimental groups (EG1 and EG2) received TVI with tasks compatible and incompatible with their dominant intelligence, respectively. The third experimental group (EG3) received TVI focused on coursebook exercises and the control group (CG) received non-thematic instruction based on textbook exercises. A parallel vocabulary test was administered to measure the participants’ vocabulary learning. The research data were analyzed via the Kruskal-Wallis and Mann-Whitney tests and revealed that the EG1 significantly outperformed the other groups and intrapersonally-intelligent learners significantly underperformed their peers in the EG1. The findings underscore the significance of taking individual differences into account and offer a number of pedagogical implications. 

Keywords


Al-Balhan, E. M. (2006). Multiple intelligence styles in relation to improved academic performance in Kuwaiti middle school reading. Digest of Middle East Studies, 15(1), 18-34.
Al-Jabri, S. (2005). The effects of semantic and thematic clustering on learning English vocabulary by Saudi students. Unpublished doctoral dissertation. Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania.
Anderson, V. (1998). Using multiple intelligences to improve retention in foreign language vocabulary study. Master's Action Research Project, St. Xavier University and IRI/Skylight, Chicago, Illinois.
Armstrong, T. (2000). Multiple intelligences in the classroom (2nd ed.). Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Alexandria, Virginia USA.
Armstrong, T. (2002). Multiple intelligences in the classroom. (3rd edition). Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Alexandria, Virginia USA.
Bachman, L. F, & Palmer, A. S. (1996). Language testing in practice: Designing and developing useful language tests. Oxford: OUP.
Bray, B., & McClaskey, K. (2017). How to personalize learning: A practical guide for getting started and going deeper. London: SAGE.
Brewer, W. F., & Nakamura, G. V. (1984). The nature and functions of schemas. In R. S., Wyer, & T. K., Srull (Eds.), Handbook of social cognition (vol. 1). (p. 119-160). Hinsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
Channell, J. (1981). Applying semantic theory to vocabulary teaching. ELT Journal, 35 (2), 115- 22.
Cohen, J. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ed.). Hillsdale, New Jersey.
Doff, A. (1988). Teach English. A training course for teachers. Cambridge: CUP.
Ellis, R. (2003). Task-based language learning and teaching. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Ellis, R. (2015). Understanding second language acquisition. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Fardad, Z., Koosha, M., & Shafiee, S. (2015). Relationship between EFL learners’ multiple intelligence scores, gender, and their vocabulary knowledge. Research Journal of Recent Sciences, 4(12), 29-36.
Finkbeiner, M., & Nicol, J.L. (2003). Semantic category effects in L2 word learning. Applied Psycholinguistics 24 (3), 369-383.
Gardner, H. (1999). Intelligence reframed: Multiple intelligences for the 21st century. New York: Basic Books.
Gohlinghorst, N., & Wessels, B. (2001). Enhancing student achievement in social studies   through the use of multiple intelligences. Washington, DC: Office of Educational Research and Improvement. (ERIC Document Reproduction Service No. ED456087).
Grant, P. & Basye, D. (2014). Personalized Learning: A guide for engaging students with technology. Wahington DC: ISTE. 
Hamidi, A., & Seifoori, Z. (2014). The impact of MI-oriented tasks on the accuracy of Iranian intermediate EFL learners’ speaking. International Journal on Studies in English Language and Literature (IJSELL), 2 (11), 112-118.
Hanh, L. T.T, & Tien, T. B. (2017). Multiple intelligences-based homework and EFL Students’ vocabulary learning. International Journal of English Linguistics published by Canadian Center of Science and Education, 7(6), 73-77.
Hashemi, R. H., & Gowdasiaei, F. (2005). An attribute-treatment interaction study: lexical-set versus semantically-unrelated vocabulary instruction. Regional Language Centre Journal, 36 (3), 341–361.
Javanmard, Y. (2012) On the relationship between multiple intelligences and their performance on vocabulary tests among Iranian EFL learners, Global Journal of Human Social Science Linguistics and Education, 12(12), 60-73.
Jouzdani, M, & Biria, R. (2016). The relationship between interpersonal and intra-personal intelligences and vocabulary learning strategies used by EFL learners. International Journal of English and Education 5(1), 119-138.
Kolb, D.A. (1984). Experiential learning: Experience as the source of learning and development. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Kolb, A., & Kolb, D. (2005). Learning styles and learning spaces: Enhancing experiential learning in higher education. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 4(2), 193–212.
Lantolf, J. (2000). Second language learning as a mediated process. Language Teaching, 33, 79-96.
Lantolf, J. (2003). Intrapersonal communication and internalization in the second language classroom. In A. Kozulin, V. S. Ageev, S. Miller, & B. Gindis, (eds.): Vygotsky’s theory of education in cultural context.    Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Lantolf, J. & Thorne, S. (2007). Sociocultural theory and second language learning. In B.  VanPatten & J. Williams. (Eds.), Theories in second language acquisition (pp. 201-224). Mahwah, N.J.: Lawrence EarlbaumAssociates.
Lave, J., & Wenger, E. (1991). Situated learning: Legitimate peripheral participation. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
Maftoon, P, & Sharifi Haratmeh, M. (2012). The relative effectiveness of input and output-oriented tasks with different involvement loads on the receptive and productive vocabulary knowledge of Iranian EFL learners. The Journal of Teaching Language Skills (JTLS), 4 (2), 27-52.
McCarthy, M. J. (1990). Vocabulary. Hong Kong: Oxford University Press.
McKenzie, W. (1999). Multiple intelligences inventory. Retrieved from http://surfaquarium.com/MI/MIinvent.
Mitchell, R., & Myles, F. (2004). Second Language Learning Theories (2nd ed.). London: Hodder Arnold.
Nation, I. S. P. (2001). Vocabulary. In D. Nunan (Ed.), Practical English language teaching (pp. 129-152). New York: McGraw-Hill.
Nation, I.S.P., & Newton, J. (2009). Teaching ESL/EFL listening and speaking. Routledge, Taylor & Francis.
Panahi, A. (2012). From the psychology of intelligence to the pedagogy of multiple intelligences: Impact of spatial intelligence-based instruction on the vocabulary performance of EFL learners. The Iranian EFL Journal, 8(2), 128-142.
Rostam Shirazi, Sh., Talebinezhad, M. R., & Shafiee, S. (2015). Semantic versus thematic lexical teaching methods and vocabulary acquisition of Iranian EFL learners. International Journal of Language Learning and Applied Linguistics World (IJLLALW), 8 (3), 1-17.
Razmjoo, S. A. (2008). On the relationship between multiple intelligences and language    proficiency. The Reading Matrix, 8(2), 155-174.
Razmjoo, S. A., Sahragard, R., & Sadri, M. (2009). On the relationship between Multiple Intelligences, vocabulary learning knowledge and vocabulary learning strategies among      the Iranian EFL learners. The Iranian EFL Journal Quarterly, 3, 82-110.
Roohani, A. & Rabiei, S. (2013). Exploring language learning strategy use: the role of multiple intelligences, L2 proficiency and gender. The Journal of Teaching Language Skills (JTLS), 5 (3), 41-64.
Rosenthal, M. (1998). The impact of teaching Gardner’s theory of multiple intelligences on student self-esteem. Doctoral Dissertation, St. Louis University, Missouri. (UMI No. 9911985).
Šafranj, J. (2018). Spatial-visual intelligence in teaching students of engineering. Research in Pedagogy, 8 (1), 71-83.
Sarani, A, & Farzaneh Sahebi, L. (2012). The impact of task-based approach on vocabulary learning in ESP Courses. English Language Teaching 5(10), 118-128.
Sarioğlu, M. & Yıldırım, Ö. (2018). The effects of clustering new words in semantic, thematic or unrelated sets in teaching vocabulary to EFL learners. Abant İzzet Baysal Üniversitesi Eğitim Fakültesi Dergisi, 18(2), 1064-1085.
Savojbolaghchilar, S., & Ahour, T. (2017). The impact of semantic clustering on Iranian EFL advanced learners’ vocabulary retention. Proceedings of the First International Conference on Language Focus, 9, 209-222.
Schmidt, R. (1992). Psychological mechanisms underlying second language fluency. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 14, 357-385.
Shakouri, N., Sheikhy Behdani, R., & Teimourtash, M. (2017). On the relationship between linguistic intelligence and recalling lexical items in SLA. International Journal of Research Studies in Education, 6 (4), 29-36.
Soleimani, H., Moinnzadeh, A., Kassaian, Z., & Ketabi, S. (2012). The effect of instruction based on multiple intelligence theory on the attitude and learning of general English. English Language Teaching, 5 (9) 45-53, Published by Canadian Center of Science and Education.
Stafford-Yilmaz, L., & Zwier, L. J. (2005). 400 must-have words for the TOEFL. New York: McGraw-Hill.
Swain. M. (1995). Three functions of output in second language learning. In G. Cook, H. Widdowson & B. Seidelhofer (Eds.), Principle and practice in applied linguistics: Studies in honor of H.G. Widdowson (pp.125-144). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
Swan, M. (2005). Legislation by hypothesis: The case of task-based instruction. Applied Linguistics 26(3), 376– 401.
Tinkham, T. (1997). The effects of semantic and thematic clustering on the learning of second language vocabulary. Second language research, 13(2), 138-163.
Underwood, B. J. (1957). Interference and forgetting. Psychological Review, 64(1), 49-60.
Vygotsky, L. S. (1978). Mind in society: The development of higher psychological processes. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.
Wesche, M., & Paribakht, T.S. (1996). Assessing second language vocabulary knowledge: Depth versus breadth. Canadian Modern Language Review, 53, 1-28.
Wharton, S., & Race, P. (1999). 500 Tips for TESOL. London: Kogan Page.
Wiseman, D. K. (1997). Identification of multiple intelligences for high school students in theoretical and applied science courses. Ph.D. dissertation, The University of Nebraska—Lincoln, United States—Nebraska. Retrieved from Dissertations & Theses: Full Text. (Publication No. AAT 9730283).
Zeraatpishe, M., Seifoori, Z., & Hadidi Tamjid, N. (forthcoming). The Impact of MI-oriented writing tasks on the accuracy, fluency and organization of ELT major university students’ writing. A paper submitted for publication to the Journal of English Language Pedagogy and Practice.
Zargosh, M, Karbalaei, A., & Afraz, Sh (2013). The effect of thematic clustering on enhancing monolingual and bilingual EFL learners’ vocabulary acquisition. European Journal of Natural and Social Sciences 2(2), 109-121. Special Issue on Teaching and Learning.