The free recall task has gained popularity among researchers in the field of second language reading research recently. Because of its prevalent use in L2 reading research, increased attention is being given to an examination of the use of the recall task as a measure of L2 reading comprehension. An examination of the existing literature revealed that studies employing the recall task to measure reading comprehension varied in the time allowed for recall. Whether the variation in the length of time spent in doing the recall influenced the quantity and quality of L2 readers’ recall, however, remained unexplored. Examining and understanding the effects of variation in the implementation of the recall task are important because theory building entails comparability of findings with various research designs. A total of 180 college students participated in this study. The subjects were randomly assigned to one of the conditions—time-unconstrained and time-constrained. The results showed that the length of time allowed for reading when doing the immediate written recall task significantly influences L2 readers’ recall performance. Participants in the unconstrained time condition, regardless of proficiency level, recalled significantly more information than participants in the constrained time condition.
Reading and Writing – Springer Journals
Published: May 7, 2010
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