This study is a quantitative and qualitative investigation of the effects of awareness, or the
lack thereof, on 32 adult second or foreign language (L2) learners' subsequent intake and
written production of targeted Spanish morphological forms. Think-aloud protocol data, gathered
while learners completed a problem-solving task (a crossword puzzle) and postexposure
assessment tasks (a multiple-choice recognition task and a written production task), were used to
measure awareness or the lack thereof, and morphological learning was assessed by
learners' performances on the two postexposure tasks. From a theoretical perspective, no
dissociation between awareness and further processing of targeted forms was found in this study,
the results of which are compatible with the claim that awareness plays a crucial role in
subsequent processing of L2 data (e.g., Robinson, 1995; Schmidt, 1990, 1993, 1994, 1995).
From a methodological perspective, the data collection procedure clearly underscores the need
for studies that investigate the roles of attention and awareness in second language acquisition
(SLA) to gather as much data as possible from different sources that reveal participants'
internal processes. By attempting to ascertain what learners really attend to or are aware of, or
both, while exposed to or interacting with L2 data, such information can also address the
methodological issue of how representative learners' performances in experimental groups
really are in studies conducted under an attentional framework in SLA.