Skip to main content Accessibility help

Input-based tasks for beginner-level learners: An approximate replication and extension of Erlam & Ellis (2018)

  • Rosemary Erlam (a1) and Rod Ellis (a2)

Erlam & Ellis (2018) published, in Canadian Modern Language Review, an experimental study that investigated the effect of input-based tasks on the acquisition of vocabulary and markers of plurality by adolescent near-beginner learners of L2 (second language) French. The present paper reports an approximate replication of the original study with the aim of confirming or disconfirming the results.1 The research questions of both studies addressed the receptive acquisition of new vocabulary and the receptive and productive acquisition of markers of plurality resulting from instruction using input-based tasks. Both studies investigated near-beginner adolescent learners of French. The teacher, the students’ usual classroom teacher, was the same in both studies. In the replication study, a new, larger group of students were investigated, the length of the instruction was increased, involving the development of additional tasks, and productive as well as the receptive knowledge of the vocabulary items was assessed. The results of the replication study confirm and extend those of the original study. The teachers’ views about the role of input-based tasks with near-beginner learners remained constant in the two studies. The paper concludes with a discussion of the contribution that approximate replications can make to instructed second language acquisition research.

Hide All
Brown, J. D. (2012). Writing up a replication report. In Porte, G. (ed.), Replication research in applied linguistics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 173197.
Brown, R., Waring, R. & Donkaewbua, S. (2008). Incidental vocabulary acquisition from reading, reading-while-listening and listening to stories. Reading in a Foreign Language 20.2, 136163.
Cohen, J. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioural sciences. New York: Academic Press.
DeKeyser, R. (2000). The robustness of critical period effects in second language acquisition. Studies in Second Language Acquisition 22.2, 499533.
De la Fuente, M. (2006). Classroom L2 vocabulary acquisition: Investigating the role of pedagogical tasks and form-focused instruction. Language Teaching Research 10, 263295.
Elley, W. (1989). Vocabulary acquisition from listening to stories. Reading Research Quarterly 24, 174187.
Ellis, R. (2001). Non-reciprocal tasks, comprehension and second language acquisition. In Bygate, M., Skehan, P. & Swain, M. (eds.), Researching pedagogic tasks, second language learning, teaching and testing. Harlow: Pearson Education, 4974.
Ellis, R. (2003). Task-based language learning and teaching. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Ellis, R. & He, X. (1999). The roles of modified input and output in the incidental acquisition of word meanings. Studies in Second Language Acquisition 21.2, 285301.
Ellis, R. & Shintani, N. (2014). Exploring language pedagogy through second language acquisition research. London: Routledge.
Ellis, R., Tanaka, Y. & Yamazaki, A. (1994). Classroom interaction, comprehension and the acquisition of word meanings. Language Learning 44.3, 449491.
Erlam, R. (2006). Elicited imitation as a measure of L2 implicit knowledge: An empirical validation study. Applied Linguistics 27.3, 464491.
Erlam, R. & Ellis, R. (2018). Task-based language teaching for beginner-level learners of L2 French: An exploratory study. Canadian Modern Language Review 74.1, 126.
Flege, J. E. (1991). Perception and production: The relevance of phonetic input to L2 phonological learning. In Huebner, T. & Ferguson, C. A. (eds.), Crosscurrents in second language acquisition and linguistic theories. Philadelphia: John Benjamins, 249289.
Hulstijn, J. (2003). Incidental and intentional learning. In Doughty, C. & Long, M. (eds.), The handbook of second language acquisition. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishing, 349381.
Krashen, S. (1981). Second language acquisition and second language learning. Oxford: Pergamon.
Long, M. (2015). Second language acquisition and task-based language teaching. Malden, MA: Wiley Blackwell.
Loschky, L. & Bley-Vroman, R. (1993). Grammar and task-based methodology. In Crookes, G. & Gass, S. (eds.), Tasks and language learning: Integrating theory and practice. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters, 123167.
Mackey, A. (2012). Why (or why not), when, and how to replicate research. In Porte, G. (ed.), Replication in applied linguistics: A practical guide, 2146.
Marsden, E., Morgan-Short, K., Thompson, S. & Abugaber, D. (in press). Replication in second language research: Narrative and systematic reviews and recommendations for the field. Language Learning.
Nation, P. (2001). Learning vocabulary in another language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Plonsky, L. & Kim, Y. (2016). Task-based learner production: A substantive and methodological review. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics 36, 7397.
Plonsky, L. & Oswald, F. (2014). How Big is ‘Big’? Interpreting effect sizes in L2 research. Language Learning 64.4, 878912.
Polio, C. & Gass, S. (1997). Replication and reporting: A commentary. Studies in Second Language Acquisition 19, 499508.
Porte, G. (2012). Replication in applied linguistics: A practical guide. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Samuda, V. & Bygate, M. (2008). Tasks in second language learning. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.
Schmidt, R. (1994). Deconstructing consciousness in search of useful definitions for applied linguistics. AILA Review 11, 1126.
Schmidt, R. (2001). Attention. In Robinson, P. (ed.), Cognition and second language instruction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 332.
Shintani, N. (2016). Input-based tasks in foreign language instruction for young learners. Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Shintani, N. & Ellis, R. (2010). The incidental acquisition of English plural –s by Japanese children in comprehension-based lessons: A process-product study. Studies in Second Language Acquisition 32.4, 607637.
Shintani, N., Li, S. & Ellis, R. (2013). Comprehension-based versus production-based grammar instruction: A meta-analysis of comparative studies. Language Learning 63, 296329.
Skehan, P. (1998). A cognitive approach to language learning. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Swan, M. (2005). Legislating by hypothesis: The case of task-based instruction. Applied Linguistics 26, 376401.
den, Van Branden, K. (ed.) (2006). Task-based language education: From theory to practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
VanPatten, B. (1996). Input processing and grammar instruction in second language acquisition. Norwood, NJ: Ablex.
VanPatten, B. (2007). Input processing in adult second language acquisition. In VanPatten, B. & Williams, J. (eds.), Theories in second language acquisition: An introduction. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum, 115135.
Vidal, K. (2003). Academic listening: A source of vocabulary acquisition? Applied Linguistics 24.1, 5689.
Webb, S. (2016). Learning vocabulary through meaning-focused input: Replication of Elley (1989) and Lie & Nation (1985). Language Teaching 49.1, 129140.
Winitz, H. (1981). The comprehension approach to foreign language instruction. New York: Newbury House.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Language Teaching
  • ISSN: 0261-4448
  • EISSN: 1475-3049
  • URL: /core/journals/language-teaching
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed