Form-focused instruction and the measurement of implicit and explicit L2 knowledge

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This chapter discusses the importance of designing valid tests of second language (L2) learning in order to investigate the effects of form-focused instruction (FFI). It argues that such tests must provide measures of both implicit and explicit L2 knowledge. Various methods for designing such tests are considered – the methods used in psychological studies of implicit/explicit knowledge, the methods used in neuropsychological studies, and the methods that have been used in FFI studies. Psychometric studies (Ellis, 2005; Bowles, 2011; Zhang, 2013) that have investigated attempts to design tests that distinguish the two types of knowledge are then reviewed. The chapter concludes by proposing a set of general principles that can guide the measurement of learning in FFI studies.


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