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Volume 17 Number 1, Spring 2020, Pages 1-318   

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An Investigation of Iranian EFL Learners' Knowledge of English Lexical Collocations across Academic Levels

    Alireza Khoram & Seyed Ali Mirsalari

The present study attempts to have a deeper understanding of collocation knowledge of Iranian EFL learners and to find out whether there is a significant difference in the knowledge of lexical collocations among Iranian EFL learners at four academic levels. It also attempts to examine factors which might affect their performance on collocations. A total of 115 students majoring in English language at four academic levels participated in this study. They were given an 80-item multiple-choice test of English collocations. Descriptive statistics, one-way ANOVA, and post hoc test were used to analyze the data. The results of ANOVA revealed that there was variability in the collocational knowledge within and between the four academic levels. The results of post hoc test showed that there were statically significant differences in the mean scores of the four academic levels, with the exception of sophomores and juniors. These differences are more clearly seen if the freshmen and the seniors are compared. The thorough examination of data also indicated that factors such as interlingual, intralingual, cultural, and frequency of collocations are of influence on the students' knowledge of collocations. The findings might have immediate implications for EFL learners and teachers as well as material designers.

Keywords: English collocation, knowledge of collocations, academic level, Iranian EFL learners