Volume 169, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0019-0829
  • E-ISSN: 1783-1490
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes


We investigated the effect of English-Hebrew loanwords on English vocabulary test scores when the number of loanwords in the test is random and when it is representative of their proportion in the vocabulary lists from which the test items were taken. 303 EFL learners, speakers of Hebrew as L1, at three L2 proficiency levels, received tests with no loanwords, with a representative number of loanwords and with a random number of loanwords in four modalities: word form recall, word meaning recall, word form recognition, word meaning recognition. Though different effects were found for different modalities and different language proficiencies, the score increases from the representative loanword test version to the random loanword version were low and the effect sizes of the differences were very low. We suggest that the inclusion of loanwords in vocabulary tests may not inflate the true vocabulary knowledge score.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Aviad-Levitzky, T. , Laufer, B. , & Goldstein, Z.
    (In preparation). A new test of computer adaptive test of size and strength (CATSS): A validation study.
    [Google Scholar]
  2. Cobb, T.
    (2000) One size fits all? Francophone learners and English vocabulary tests. Canadian Modern Language Review, 57, 295–324. doi: 10.3138/cmlr.57.2.295
    https://doi.org/10.3138/cmlr.57.2.295 [Google Scholar]
  3. Cobb. T. Lextutor
    Cobb. T. Lextutor. Retrieved from lextutor.ca/vp/ ‘ongoing unpublished development work’
  4. Coxhead, A.
    (2000), A New Academic Word List. TESOL Quarterly, 34(2) 213–238. doi: 10.2307/3587951
    https://doi.org/10.2307/3587951 [Google Scholar]
  5. Daulton, F. E.
    (2008) Japan’s built-in lexicon of English-based loanwords. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Elgort, I.
    (2013) Effects of L1 definitions and cognate status of test items on the Vocabulary Size Test. Language Testing, 30(2) 253–272. doi: 10.1177/0265532212459028
    https://doi.org/10.1177/0265532212459028 [Google Scholar]
  7. Jordan, E.
    (2012) Cognates in vocabulary size testing – A distorting influence?Language Testing in Asia, 2(3), 5–17. doi: 10.1186/2229‑0442‑2‑3‑5
    https://doi.org/10.1186/2229-0442-2-3-5 [Google Scholar]
  8. Laufer, B. , & Nation, P.
    (1999) A vocabulary-size test of controlled productive ability. Language Testing, 16(1), 33–51. doi: 10.1177/026553229901600103
    https://doi.org/10.1177/026553229901600103 [Google Scholar]
  9. Laufer, B. , & Goldstein, Z.
    (2004) Testing vocabulary knowledge: Size, strength, and computer adaptiveness. Language Learning, 54, 469–52. doi: 10.1111/j.0023‑8333.2004.00260.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.0023-8333.2004.00260.x [Google Scholar]
  10. Laufer, B. , Elder, C. , Hill, K. , & Congdon, P.
    (2004) Size and strength: Do we need both to measure vocabulary knowledge?Language Testing, 21, 202–226. doi: 10.1191/0265532204lt277oa
    https://doi.org/10.1191/0265532204lt277oa [Google Scholar]
  11. Laufer, B. , & McLean, S.
    (2016) Loanwords and vocabulary size test scores: A case of different estimates for different L1 learners. Language Assessment Quarterly, 13(3), 202–2177. doi: 10.1080/15434303.2016.1210611
    https://doi.org/10.1080/15434303.2016.1210611 [Google Scholar]
  12. McLean, S. , Hogg, N. , & Kramer, B.
    (2014) Estimations of Japanese university learners’ English vocabulary sizes using the vocabulary size test. Vocabulary Learning and Instruction, 3(2), 47–55. doi: 10.7820/vli.v03.2.mclean.et.al
    https://doi.org/10.7820/vli.v03.2.mclean.et.al [Google Scholar]
  13. McLean, S. , Kramer, B. , & Beglar, D.
    (2015) The creation and validation of a listening vocabulary levels test. Language Teaching Research, 19(6), 741–760. doi: 10.1177/1362168814567889
    https://doi.org/10.1177/1362168814567889 [Google Scholar]
  14. McLean, S. , & Kramer, B.
    (2016) The development of a Japanese bilingual version of the New Vocabulary Levels Test. VERB, 5(1), 2–5.
    [Google Scholar]
  15. Nation, I. S. P.
    (1983) Testing and teaching vocabulary. Guidelines, 5, 12–25.
    [Google Scholar]
  16. Nation, I. S. P. , & Beglar, D.
    (2007) A vocabulary size test. The Language Teacher, 31, 9–13
    [Google Scholar]
  17. Schmitt, N. , Schmitt, D. & Clapham, C.
    (2001) Developing and exploring the behaviour of two new versions of the Vocabulary Levels Test. Language Testing, 18(1), 55–88. doi: 10.1191/026553201668475857
    https://doi.org/10.1191/026553201668475857 [Google Scholar]
  18. Webb, S. , Sasao, Y. , & Ballance, O.
    (2017) The updated Vocabulary Levels Test: Developing and validating two new forms of the VLT. ITL – International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 168(1), 34–70. Available on www.edu.uwo.ca/faculty-profiles/docs/other/webb/NVLT-VERSION-B.pdf.
    [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error