visual text and graphics.
1.1.1. Knowing a Word
Lexical learning represents a corner stone in foreign language education. Vocabulary is indispensable to both oral and written communication and often regarded as a major source of problems by foreign language learners. For EFL adult learners, effective vocabulary use is a real challenge when they are engaged in language production as they need to bring into focus their active vocabulary. Lexical recognition may also be a real threat when they are indulged in comprehension processes as it exposes their not only active but also passive vocabulary and puts it to the test (Bossers, 1992; Coady, 1993, 1997; and Grabe
&Stoller, 1997).Words are the tools we use to think, to express ideas and feelings, and to learn about the world. Because words are the very foundation of learning, improving students’ vocabulary knowledge has become an educational priority. Student word knowledge is strongly linked to academic accomplishment, because a rich vocabulary is essential to successful reading comprehension. Furthermore, the verbal sections of the high-stake standardized tests used in most states to gauge student performance are basically tests of vocabulary and reading comprehension (Johnson & Johnson, 2004). Laraba (2007:136) concludes that “foreign language vocabulary learning is determined by the similarities that may exist, at different levels, between the first language and the second or foreign language learnt. Nation (1990: 31) proposes the following list of the different kinds of knowledge that a person must master in order to know a word:
The meaning(s) of the word
The written form of the word
The spoken form of the word
The grammatical behavioral of the word
The collocations of the word
The register of the word
The associations of the word
The frequency of the word
From the above mentioned, the researchers conclude that knowing a word includes student ability to recognize the meaning, memorize the word, and use it appropriately in different situation .
1.1.2. Definitions of vocabulary
One of the general components which have to be mastered well by students in learning English is vocabulary. If the students lack of vocabulary, they will have difficulties in using English. To know what is vocabulary the writer would like to present several definitions. Up till now, there has not been only one but a wide variety of definitions of vocabulary. In order to find the best and easiest-to- understand definition is such an unfeasible task. Each linguist or scholar, in his specialized field, with his own set of criteria has found out for his own a way to define vocabulary. However, in the most popular way, Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary Online has applied a meaning for vocabulary as “all the words which exist in a particular language or subject.” This definition covers vocabulary’s meaning on the whole. Nevertheless, it does not show vocabulary in a deep understanding. More precisely, Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English (1995) presents six meanings of the word “Vocabulary” as follow:
1. All the words that someone knows, learns or uses.
2. The words that are typically used when talking about a particular subject.
3. All the words in a particular language.
4. The word failure/ compromises, etc. is not in somebody’s vocabulary used to say that someone never thinks of accepting failures, etc
5. A list of words with explanations of their meaning in a book for learning foreign languages
1.1.3. Second Language Vocabulary
Second language learners realize that their limited repertoire of vocabulary knowledge greatly affect their ability to convey their intended meaning in communications using the target language (Read, 2004). Moreover, Gass and Selinker (2008) found that lexical errors were the most common errors committed by second language learners based on the large corpora of errors. It seemed that vocabulary learning was vital to success in second language learning. English language, like any other language, has different areas that students should study, such as vocabulary, grammar, spelling, listening and reading. In the past, vocabulary teaching and learning were often given little priority in second language programs, but recently there has been a renewed interest in the nature of vocabulary and its role in learning and teaching (Richard&Renandya, 2002:255). Decarrico (2001) states that words should not be learnt separately or by memorization without understanding. Moreover, “learning new words is a cumulative process, with words enriched and established as they are met again”, From the researcher’s EFL/ESL teaching experience, vocabulary teaching in class was less focused on than teaching English grammatical rules, as a part of the school syllabus. The grammar translation method plays a prominent role in the English classroom. In terms of knowing a word, vocabulary teaching in the classroom was simply restricted to give learners a long list of English words together with Arabic translations. Thus, the learners basically learned two things: the English or L2 word form and the Arabic translation. Extra information about new words (e.g. English definitions, synonyms antonyms, etc.) was optional, depending on whether or not each individual teacher provided the extra information. The learners were normally asked to learn/memorize words on their own. Fox (1987, cited in Tassana-ngam, 2004:17) clarifies that “Students had been learning foreign languages by a grammar translation method which flooded them with new vocabulary items and grammatical structure, but did not allow time to assimilate them much.”It can be said perhaps that learners had little interest or enjoyment when learning and acquiring vocabulary. Allen &Valette (1977:149) indicate that words are generally taught in context .Thornbury (2002, 22) focuses on the teacher role of encouraging an enthusiasm for vocabulary acquisition, and provides learners with strategies for self-directed learning.
1.1.4. Definition of the technical terms: Verbal and Visual Techniques
You will be given three texts; two written and one visual
The visual text could be an advertisement, poster, web page or magazine cover. There are other possibilities.
With visual techniques you will have to know the difference between VISUAL Language Features/techniques and VERBAL Language Features/techniques.
VISUAL techniques have to do with what the words look like on the page. e.g. font, size, colour, placement.
VERBAL techniques have to do with what the words actually say.
This list may help you: Verbal language features:
Colloquial language
incomplete sentences
Short sentences
minor sentences
imperatives (commands)
Emotive language
onomatopoeia, simile, metaphor, personification
rhetorical questions
Personal pronoun (especially ‘You/ you’re/ you are in and advertisement)
Superlatives (e.g. the best/the most biggest, tallest, prettiest, tastiest, strongest)
Scientific language
Use of a particular language (e.g. Maori) to target a particular audience.
rhyme Visual language features:
Lettering: includes font, size and colour
Dominant image (or images) -avoid using ‘pictures’ – photograph is better.
Reverse print (white print on coloured background)
Info graphics
Background (e.g. images, fuzzy, colour)
Layout (placement of elements on the page -includes ‘balance’.
Superimposed images
White space (also called ‘empty space’)
Images: consider gender, ethnicity, consumer group (teenager, middle-aged. elderly, parents etc)
Use of contrast
Rule of thirds (no more than three main colours/fonts/sections)
Movement lines
Colour- different colours have connotations e.g. pink/femininity, green/nature and cleanliness, black/evil and danger
However, considering the important of of vocabulary learning this study aimed at investigating the effect of two visual and verbal techniques on vocabulary achievement. More information regarding the present study will be provided in the following sections.
1.1.5. Significance in language learning
The result of this research will be useful for both teachers and students. All of the teachers have concluded that there are benefits from the use of visual and technical materials for learning for learners with different ages. Likewise, Koren (1996) points out that the learning of foreign words by using such a trend can be easier and memorable than the words learned in the traditional ways. Because of this matter, many teachers in the English language classrooms may use this to increase the vocabulary and speaking skills of the learners. Visual elements such as pictures can be important and suitable solutions for many problems. There are many researches on learning vocabularies by pictures or example, Underwood (1989), as cited in Chun &Plass (1996) has concluded that an important rule for learning is visual memory. For learners, memorizing words by use of visual and verbal objects is more effective than memorizing them with only the text.
1.1.6. Statement of the Problem
English language is an international language and is being used widely in businesses, academic, and other aspects of life. Research efforts have been going on to investigate ways to improve learning languages including learning English as a foreign language. In Iran, English language education is considered especially important for experts of the other fields. The problem is that students who have received several years of formal English instruction frequently face difficulties to use or remember the words of language, whether in the spoken or written form. You may see someone who has studied 18 to 20 terms in an institute but he/she is unable to express himself/herself in English. The gravity of the situation comes to eyes when, if not many, some technical subjects are not satisfactorily learned until the students study relevant text books and useful materials in English. Most students have problems when they are asked to learn the new words in a single lesson. Some of them who have found the job very difficult will quit the job at the very beginning, and some try to memorize a word list. None of us can forget the tough job of memorizing word lists during the school days. Learning vocabulary in isolation, in a non-meaningful and technical way is useless. So,vocabulary learning is an important matter for learning of foreign language. Most times it is not easy to remember some vocabularies. And because of this matter researchers are seeking for ways to increase student’s learning vocabularies. So, almost all teachers and students have the same opinion with better vocabulary instructions. According French Allen (1983) if teachers use visual and verbal materials, students learning vocabulary will be better than the time when they use other materials. And the writer in the present study researched this study to understand whether this trend is advantageous to students’ learning and improving vocabulary. And also according Nelson et al (1976) the use of visual and verbal materials such as pictures is effective way and it has good results.In summary, this study aimed to investigate the impact of visual and verbal techniques on vocabulary achievement of Iranian high school students in order toimprovestudents’ learning vocabulary skills, stimulate interest for second language learners to increase their level of vocabulary, provide an interesting way for learning vocabulary, and make learners more proficient, andencourage learners for learning vocabulary.
1.1.7. Research questions
This study aims to answer the following questions:

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