Reading: The Impact of Online Monolingual and Bilingual Dictionaries on Vocabulary Learning

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The Impact of Online Monolingual and Bilingual Dictionaries on Vocabulary Learning

Authors:

K. Wijesuriya ,

SLIIT, Malabe, LK
About K.
School of Natural Science, Faculty of Humanities and Sciences
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S. Dissanayake

SLIIT, Malabe, LK
About S.
School of Natural Science, Faculty of Humanities and Sciences
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Abstract

The studies on the comparison of online monolingual dictionary (OMD) and online bilingual dictionary (OBD) for English on undergraduate level have not been carried out. The objective of this study is therefore to identify the impact of online monolingual and online bilingual dictionary use in vocabulary acquisition and retention among undergraduates. Forty Engineering undergraduates in their first term at CEFR (Common European Framework of Reference) B1 level in proficiency were selected after having a pretest and this sample of students knew none of the intended vocabulary to be tested. The students were randomly allocated into two groups: Online Monolingual Dictionary (OMD) and Online Bilingual Dictionary (OBD) groups. Both groups were exposed to an unknown set of ten academic words using an online monolingual dictionary and an online bilingual dictionary (English-Sinhala/ English-Tamil) respectively. They were instructed to find the meanings of the target words using the respective dictionary. The same vocabulary tests, immediate test and posttest were then administered in both groups to check the effectiveness of the treatments. While the results of these two tests demonstrated that both groups were able to acquire and retain vocabulary under each online dictionary use, the independent sample t-test confirmed that mean scores of the immediate test and posttest were significantly higher (p < 0.05) in the OMD group than the corresponding values in the OBD group, irrespective of whether the variances between two groups were equal or not. The results confirmed that online monolingual dictionary use is significantly effective over online bilingual dictionary use in vocabulary acquisition and retention. Online monolingual dictionaries are thus recommended as a more successful tool to be used by English as a Second language (ESL) learners to improve vocabulary of the undergraduates.

How to Cite: Wijesuriya, K. and Dissanayake, S., 2020. The Impact of Online Monolingual and Bilingual Dictionaries on Vocabulary Learning. SLIIT Journal of Humanities and Sciences, 1(1), pp.62–69. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sjhs.v1i1.30
Published on 01 Dec 2020.
Peer Reviewed

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