Etymology, Contextual Pragmatic Clues, and Lexical Knowledge in L2 Idioms Learning

Document Type: Research Paper


1 Imam Khomeini International University

2 Islamic Azad University, Takestan


To investigate the effects of etymological elaboration, contextual pragmatic clues, and lexical knowledge on L2 idioms comprehension and production, 60 male intermediate level EFL students in three groups were selected. Each group was randomly assigned to one treatment condition. Group one participants were presented with the etymological explanation of idioms. In group two, the same idioms were presented in short, familiar contexts, and in the third group, the participants focused on the exact meaning of the constituent parts of each idiom. At the end of the experimental period, comprehension and production posttests of idioms were administered. Two one–way ANOVA procedures were used to analyze data. Results showed that the participants of the etymological elaboration group performed significantly better than the participants of the lexical knowledge group on idiom production. The differences between the means in all other comparisons were not statistically significant. These findings may have implications for teachers, learners, and syllabus designers.