An Empirical Research on the Noticing Function of Oral Output



Based on Swain’s Output Hypothesis, the paper reports an experimental study that investigated the noticing function of oral output and its effect on the acquisition of English past hypothetical conditional. Twenty sophomores majoring in economics participated in this study, with ten of them assigned to the experimental group and the other to the control group. The experimental group was engaged in picture description tasks, which tended to elicit their oral production. The control group was only required to do comprehension tasks (ie. picture sequencing task) with the same material. The data collected from the immediate posttest and the delayed posttest were analyzed by SPSS11.5. The results indicated that the experimental group made significant improvement in using the target form in both the immediate posttest and the delayed posttest. Moreover, in both of the posttests the experimental group performed significantly better than the control group in using the target form. These results lend support to Swain’s Output Hypothesis and have important pedagogical implications.


Output; Noticing; Foreign language teaching and learning

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