n Journal for Language Teaching = Ijenali Yekufundzisa Lulwimi = Tydskrif vir Taalonderrig - The relationship between productive knowledge of collocations and academic literacy in tertiary level students

Volume 48, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0259-9570



This research explores tertiary level L2 students' mastery of the collocations pertaining to the Academic Word List (AWL) and the extent to which their knowledge of collocations grows alongside their academic literacy. A collocation test modelled on Laufer and Nation (1999), with target words selected from Coxhead's (2000) AWL was administered to students from the North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus. Results indicate that these collocations pose problems for L2 students. This finding supports and complements Nesselhauf's (2005) and Laufer and Waldman's (2011) findings that collocations are challenging for L2 students, even at advanced levels. Furthermore, scores in the collocation test correlate significantly with the Test of Academic Literacy Levels (TALL), indicating that knowledge of collocations corresponds to students' academic literacy. The pedagogical consequences these results have for the widespread attempt to improve tertiary level students' use of collocations in writing are discussed.

Hierdie navorsing ondersoek die mate waartoe L2-studente op tersiêre vlak die kollokasies wat gelys word in die Akademiese Woordelys (AWL) bemeester en tot watter mate hulle kennis van kollokasies verbeter namate hulle akademiese geletterdheid verbeter. 'n Kollokasietoets gebaseer op die van Laufer en Nation (1999) met teikenwoorde wat geselekteer is uit Coxhead (2000) se AWL is aan studente van die Noordwes-Universiteit, Potchefstroom Kampus gegee. Die resultate toon dat kollokasies probleme veroorsaak vir L2-studente. Hierdie bevindinge is ondersteunend en aanvullend tot Nesselhauf (2005) en Laufer en Waldman (2011) se bevindinge dat kollokasies 'n uitdaging stel aan L2 studente, selfs aan dié op 'n gevorderde vlak. Verder kom die puntetellings van die kollokasietoetse sterk ooreen met die puntetellings wat studente behaal vir toetse wat akademiese geletterdheid evalueer (TAG). Hierdie resultaat dui aan dat kennis van kollokasies korreleer met studente se akademiese geletterdheid. Die artikel sluit af met 'n bespreking van die pedagogiese implikasies wat die resultate inhou vir die wydverspreide poging om studente op tersiêre vlak se gebruik van kollokasies in skryfwerk te verbeter.

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