The Comparative Effect of Using Idioms in Conversation and Paragraph Writing on EFL Learners’ Idiom Learning

Document Type : Research Paper


Islamic Azad University, Central Tehran Branch


This study investigated the comparative effect of teaching idiomatic expressions through practicing them in conversation and paragraph writing on intermediate EFL learners’ idiom learning. The participants were sorted out of a population of 134 intermediate students in Zabansara Language School in Khorramabad based on their scores on a Preliminary English Test (PET) and an idiom test piloted in advance. The selected 84 participants were divided randomly into three groups: two experimental groups, namely, conversation and paragraph writing groups, and one control group. The two experimental groups received different treatments. In one class, idioms were taught and learners were asked to make a conversation practicing the new idioms, and in the other class, they were asked to write short paragraphs using the idioms. In the third class, the control group, the new idioms were presented and then practiced through different written exercises. At the end of the treatment period, the researchers administered an idiom posttest. The analysis of the collected data revealed that using new idioms in conversation and paragraph writing helped students learn idioms more efficiently than just practicing them through different written exercises. Moreover, the use of idioms in conversation proved to be more effective than using them in paragraph writing. The findings can have implications in preparing materials, teaching/learning foreign languages, and designing syllabus.


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