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The role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency in the use of grammatical collocations by Iranian EFL learners.

INTRODUCTION

1.1. Preliminaries:

Over the past few years vocabulary teaching has gained more interest from English teachers and theorists who argue that, without a wide range of vocabulary, grammar does not help learners much. Having a wide range of vocabulary per se is not adequate because a single word rarely stands alone. As one of the most important aims of language learners is being able to communicate in L2, the notion of learning vocabulary and word combinations in developing the learners' language proficiency is worthy of being considered more seriously.

In 1990s, interest in vocabulary teaching and learning increased. In this era the syntagmatic aspect of lexis, i.e. the ability of items to co-occur, known as collocation was taken into consideration. The significance of learning a language through words and word combinations was attended to by some researchers between the years 1990 to 1993, and after that many researchers have considered teaching and learning lexicon and word combinations as a proper way conducive to learning a second or foreign language. These researchers include Willis proposing the notion of lexical syllabus, Natinger and DeCarrico lexical phrases and language teaching, and Lewis the lexical approach.

Richards et al [21] state that "a lexical approach in language teaching refers to one derived from the belief that the building blocks of language learning and communication are not grammar, functions, notions, or some other units of planning and teaching but lexis, that is, words and word combinations."

The lexical view holds that not all the spoken sentences are newly created ones, but minorities of them are novel creations. The chunks or memorized patterns compose a large portion of stretches of speech.

1.2. The Origin of the word 'Collocation

The term 'collocation' was first introduced by Firth to define a combination of words associated with each other; for example, to take a photo. The term collocation has its origin in the Latin verb 'collocare' which means 'to set in order/ to arrange'.

1.3. Definition of Collocation:

According to Tajalli as cited in Shiravani [25], "different terms are employed by different writers to refer to the so- called coming- together-of word associations, lexical co-occurrence, recurrent combinations, and more frequently than all, collocations".

Therefore, collocation is observed between lexical items as arranged in texts. It is the meaning relation between individual lexical items and the one that habitually co-occurs with them in language.

McCarthy et al [15] define collocation as a natural combination of words; it refers to the way English words are closely associated with each other. For example do and homework go together.

Michael Lewis as cited in Martynska [17] defines collocation as a subcategory of multi-word items, made up of individual words which habitually co-occur and can be found free- fixed collocational continuum.

In Oxford Collocation Dictionary, collocation is defined as "the way words combine in a language to produce natural-sounding speech and writing. For example in English you say strong wind but heavy rain. It would not be normal to say * heavy wind or *strong rain ".

Benson et al [1] contend "in English, as in other languages, there are many fixed, identifiable, non- idiomatic phrases and constructions. Such groups of words are called recurrent combinations, fixed combinations, or collocations".

Mahmoud [16] defines collocations as two words belonging to two different categories to exclude binominals where the two words are from the same category, and connected implicitly by a conjunction (e.g. and, or) or a preposition such as "in" or "by" (e.g. sick and tired).

1.4. The Importance of Collocations:

Collocations are a complex but interesting area of study and learning. They are important because they can help learners build up chunks of language, teach learners to look for patterns of use, and can provide scaffolding for new pieces of language. Collocations help us to speak and write English in a more natural and accurate way. As collocations are often difficult to guess, students of English have to make a special effort to learn them.

On the importance of collocations it can be said that while attaching due significance to the inclusion of lexical items in EFL syllabus, highlighting the importance of collocations is a necessity. Laufer as cited in Faghih et al [7] contends that "knowing a word implies the knowledge of possible combinations into which a given item can enter. Such combinations are called collocations."

Gabrielatos [8] believes that "collocations are essential, indispensable elements with which our utterances are very largely made". He relates two points to the EFL learner regarding collocations. First, that collocational relations are an important part of the language to be mastered. Second, that collocation is an area that resists tuition and, therefore, requires special, systematic attention.

Stubbs as cited in Dehghan [5] contends that collocations are important for a number of applications: natural language generation (to make sure that the output sounds natural and mistakes like powerful tea or to take a decision are avoided), computational lexicography( to automatically identify the important collocations to be listed in a dictionary entry), parsing( so that reference can be given to parses with natural collocations), and corpus linguistics research (for instance, the study of social phenomena like the reinforcement of cultural stereotypes through language).

Ooi and Kim-Seoh as cited in Shiravani [25] contend that proponents of modern approaches have shifted away from traditional methods of vocabulary teaching. In modern approaches, vocabulary is considered as one of the most important aspects of foreign language learning. Based on the findings of recent studies on vocabulary learning, learners have a problem which is related to use rather than inadequate knowledge of word meaning.

1.5. Types of collocations:

Lewis as cited in Deveci [6] proposes the following categories for collocations:

1. Strong: A large number of collocations are strong or very strong. For example, we say rancid butter, but that does not mean that other things cannot be rancid.

2. Weak: There are words which co-occur with a greater than random frequency; for example, white wine or red wine.

3. Medium strength; There are words that go together with a greater frequency than weak collocations. Some examples are: hold a meeting, carry out a study.

DeCarrico as cited in Celce-Murcia under the title "syntactic collocation types" classifies collocations into two types; grammatical and lexical collocations. Grammatical collocations are those in which a noun, verb, or adjective frequently co-occurs with a grammatical item, usually a preposition. Examples are reason for, rely on, afraid of, by accident. Lexical collocations differ in that they do not contain grammatical words, but consist of combinations of full lexical items i.e. noun, verb, adjectives and adverbs. Examples are pay a visit and spend money.

According to Keshavarz et al within lexical approach, special attention is directed to collocations- the lexical relations on the syntagmatic or horizontal plane, as opposed to relations on the paradigmatic, or vertical plane. They also add that the criteria for categorizing different types of word formations basically include semantic transparency, degree of suitability, and degree of productivity.

1.5.1. Grammatical Collocations:

Benson et al [1] define a grammatical collocation as a phrase consisting of a dominant word (noun, adjective and adverb) and a preposition or grammatical structure such as infinitive or clause. They describe eight major types of grammatical collocations. These eight types are designated by G1, G2, etc.

G1. Noun + preposition (blockade against, admiration for)

G2. Noun+ (to+ infinitive) (a pleasure to do)

G3. Noun + that clause (an agreement that)

G4. Preposition + noun combinations (by accident, on approval)

G5. Adjective + preposition combinations (angry at everyone)

G6. Predicate adjective + (to+ infinitive) (It was necessary to work)

G7. Adjective + that clause (afraid that)

G8. Nineteen English verb patterns (A, B, C,..., S)

A. Verb+ to (Allowing the dative movement transformation) (he sent the book to him / he verb + sent him the book)

B. Transitive verb (not allowing the dative movement transformation) (they described the book to her / * they described her the book)

C. Transitive verb + For (allowing the dative movement transformation) (she bought a shirt for him / she bought him a shirt)

D. verb + specific preposition (adhere to, base on)

E. verb + (to + infinitive) (begin to, decide to)

F. Verb + infinitive without to (must, would rather)

G. Verb + Gerund (keep, enjoy)

H. Transitive verb + object + (to + infinitive) (we forced them to leave)

I. Transitive verb + D.O. + infinitive without to (she heard them leave)

J. Verb + object + Gerund (I caught them stealing apples)

k. Verb + possessive (pron. / noun) + Gerund (please excuse my being late)

L. Verb + noun clause (that) (they admitted that they were wrong)

M. Transitive verb + D.O. + to be + (adj) + (P.P.) (N) (we considered him to be a wise boy)

N. transitive verb +D.O. + Adj + (P.P.) + (N) + (pron) (she dyed her hair red)

O. Transitive verb + two objects (the teacher asked the pupil a question)

P. Intransitive verb, reflexive and transitive + Adverbial (Adv., P.P., NP, clause) (he carried himself)

Q. Verb + interrogative word (how, what, when)

R. It + Transitive verb + (to + infinitive) + (that clause) (it puzzled me that they never answered)

S. Intransitive verb + Predicate noun or adjective (he became an engineer)

1.5.2. Lexical Collocations:

Lexical collocations, in contrast to grammatical collocations, normally do not contain prepositions, infinitives, or clauses.

L1. Verb+ Noun [right arrow] make a decision

L2. Adjective+ Noun [right arrow] strong tea

L3. Noun+ Verb [right arrow] alarms go off

L4. Noun1+ of + Noun2 [right arrow] a bunch of keys

L5. Adverb+ Adjective [right arrow] quite safe

L6. Verb+ Adverb [right arrow] walk heavily

Many authorities in the field of foreign language teaching and learning consider the role of turning to the mother tongue as an aid to compensate for the lack of authentic use of a foreign language. Therefore, a key phenomenon which is of great significance in this study is the notion of "Language Transfer", and the role it plays in learning and using a foreign language. As one of the aims of this researcher is to examine the role of L1 transfer in using a foreign language, and particularly in using grammatical collocations, this phenomenon is taken into consideration.

1.6. Language Transfer:

L1 Transfer is the effect of one language on the learning of another. Two types of transfer may occur. Negative transfer, also known as interference, is the use of a native--language pattern or rule which leads to an error or inappropriate form in the target language. For example, an Iranian English learner may produce the incorrect sentence "Mehdi believes to God" instead of "Mehdi believes in God". [27].

Positive transfer is transfer which makes learning easier, and may occur when both the native language and the target language have the same form. Brown [3] defines transfer as:

"a general term describing the carryover of previous performance or knowledge to subsequent learning. Positive transfer occurs when the prior knowledge benefits the learning task--that is when a previous item is correctly applied to the present subject matter. Negative transfer occurs when previous performance disturbs the performance of a second task. The latter can be referred to as interference, in which a previous item is incorrectly transferred or incorrectly associated with an item to be learned".

The comparison of differences in different languages, which is known technically as contrastive analysis, has long been a part of second language pedagogy, and in the twentieth century contrastive analyses have become more and more detailed. Such cross linguistic comparisons comprise a necessary basis for the study of transfer.

On the importance of the notion of transfer, Odlin [19] argues that there is a large and growing body of research that indicates that transfer is indeed a very important factor in second language acquisition.

As language transfer has been a central issue in applied linguistics, its importance in second language learning has been emphasized. Since the 1950s it has been considered as one of the most significant factors in second language learning as well as in approaches to second language teaching.

The concept of transfer which is the psychological cornerstone of the CAH (Contrastive Analysis Hypothesis) is of two kinds: Depending on the similarities and differences between the structures of the learner's NL( Native Language) and that of the TL(Target Language), when an old habit (i.e. that of the learner's NL) facilitates the formation of a new habit (i.e. a new element in the TL) 'Positive Transfer' is said to take place, and when the old habit impedes a new habit 'Negative Transfer' is believed to occur, and learning becomes difficult [14].

Yarmohammadi [27] contends that "under the influence of mother tongue the differences are transferred into the learners' language--i.e., interlanguage. Hence, interlanguage is created and certain deviant structures are expected to be generated".

The general assumption is that the deviant structures reflect the structure of the mother tongue. So Yarmohammadi [27] states that interference is the process of carrying over the speech habits of the native language into a foreign or second language, by which errors are generated.

1.7. language proficincy:

Richards et al [21] define language proficiency as a person's skill in using a language for a specific purpose. Whereas language achievement describes language ability as a result of learning, proficiency refers to the degree of skill with which a person can use a language, such as how well a person can read, write, speak, or understand language.

Laskin-Gasparro as cited in Chastain defines proficiency as "the ability to use language outside the classroom independently of the materials and activities of the course".

The mentioned "ability" is language competence which is considered by many leaders in the field of language education as communicative competence (the ability to use the language that is appropriate to the situation and to the listener). It implies that language learners would be able to produce sentences in a given language and know how to use them appropriately in a social situation. Giving instruction in the area of word combinations and collocations leads to natural input which brings the learners' competence to the point that they can comprehend and produce native like utterances.

1.8. Objectives of the study:

The present study seeks to find the sources of the grammatical collocational errors made by Iranian EFL learners. The researcher tries to answer the following research questions:

1. Which type or types of grammatical collocations is/are the most/least difficult one(s) for Iranian EFL learners?

2. Does L1 transfer have any effect on Iranian EFL learners' performance?

H0: Considering grammatical collocational knowledge, there is not a difference between the high and the low group of proficiency.

H0: Considering L1 transfer, there is not a difference between the high and the low group of proficiency.

3. Is the learners' overall proficiency systematically related to their susceptibility to collocational errors?

H0: There is not a correlation between the participants' proficiency and their knowledge of grammatical collocations.

H0: There is not a correlation between the participants' proficiency and the use of their L1 to answer the grammatical collocations test items.

4. Is the difference between the participants' use of different types of correct and incorrect grammatical collocations significant?

The null hypothesis for question 4 can be stated as follows: "The difference between the participants' use of different types of correct and incorrect grammatical collocations is not significant".

1.9. Significance of the study:

Being competent and proficient in the area of word combinations and collocations, is of great aid to English learners so that they can overcome the problems of vocabulary style and language use. It may improve their oral skills, listening comprehension, writing, and reading speed.

It is hoped that the findings of this research will help the material developers to provide some texts conducive to efficient learning of English as an L2, and language teachers to choose an effective method to teach grammatical collocations to the Iranian EFL learners. It may help learners to attend to the role and significance of collocations in language learning and use.

1.10. Scope of the study:

The present study focuses on grammatical collocations referring to their different categories, and to find out which type(s) are the most/least problematic for Iranian EFL learners. It will also attend to the role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency in the use of grammatical collocations by Iranian EFL learners.

2. Review of literature:

2.0. Introduction:

In this part the related studies done on grammatical and lexical collocations will be reviewed. It should be said that most of the studies carried out in Iran and abroad have been done mostly on lexical rather than grammatical collocations.

EFL learners probably make mistakes because they collocate English words on the basis of their native language. English learners may adopt certain strategies to produce collocations and thus create certain types of errors. The strategy used most commonly is transfer in which learners rely on L1 equivalents when they fail to find the desired lexical items in the L2.

2.1. Different Approaches towards Collocation:

2.1.1. Lexical Approach:

It is Firth who is widely regarded as the father of collocation and the developer of a lexical and the most traditional approach to this phenomenon. Advocates of the lexical approach are of the opinion that the meaning of a word is determined by the companies it keeps.

Michael Lewis as cited in Tehrani [26] argues that "as native speakers we do not focus on the grammar of our mother tongue, since we have little concept of our grammar, rather we take advantage of a huge store of prefabricated chunks". Following Lexical Approach second language teachers and learners should adopt the same approach so that they can teach and learn a second language. This is a technique that is in contrast to just giving language learners grammatical concepts and asking them to piece them together in a sentence. The mentioned chunks can be used as a foundation upon which language learners can build new utterances in a second language.

Lewis introduces the key elements of the Lexical Approach as following:

1. Language consists of grammaticalized lexis, not lexicalized grammar.

2. The grammar/ vocabulary dichotomy is invalid; much language consists of multi-word 'chunks'.

3. A central element of language teaching is raising students' awareness of, and developing their ability to chunk language successfully.

4. Collocation is integrated as an organizing principle within syllabuses.

5. It is the co-textual rather than the situational element of context which are of primary importance for language teaching. 6. Grammar as a receptive skill, involving the perception of similarities and differences, is prioritized.

The lexical approach reiterates the notion of enhancing L2 learners' proficiency with lexis, or words and word combinations. Lewis as cited in Tehrani [26] maintains "instead of words, we consciously try to think of collocations, and to present these in expressions. Rather than trying to break things into even smaller pieces, there is a conscious effort to see things in larger, more holistic ways".

2.1.2. The Semantic Approach:

Semantic Approach goes beyond the sheer observation of collocations. It tries to examine collocations from the semantic point of view. The main issue in semantic approach is to find out why words collocate with certain other words, for example, why we can say blonde hair but not blonde car.

2.1.3. The Structural Approach:

According to structural approach, collocation is determined by structure and occurs in patterns. In this approach the study of collocation should include grammar, which contrasts with the two previous approaches: the lexical and semantic ones. As lexis and grammar cannot be separated, two categories as lexical and grammatical collocations represent two distinctive but related aspects of one phenomenon.

2.2. Transfer Strategy:

Huang [11] is of the opinion that the transfer strategy may also reflect the learners' assumption that there is a one- to- one correspondence between their L1 and L2.

Granger as cited in Huang [11] noticed in her corpus of French essays that learners created collocations they considered to be acceptable such as 'ferociously menacing' and, 'shamelessly exploited'. Apparently these conventional word combinations were a result of learners' creative inventions.

Like many other aspects of EFL learning, collocational problems can be seen as revealing of interlanguage, and this happens when learners attempt to creatively express their thoughts by using their own words in L2.

According to Brown [2] "the study of speech and writing of learners is largely the study of the errors of learners. He also defines errors as a noticeable deviation from the adult grammar of native speakers, reflecting the interlanguage competence of the learners".

2.3. Learners' difficulties with collocations:

Memorizing lists of words in isolation without using or seeing them in phrases is a kind of rote learning and leads to difficulties for learners. Such surface level knowledge inhibits meaningful learning and creates collocation related problems.

These problems are mentioned by Deveci [6] as following:

1. Interlingual problems; For example several thanks instead of many thanks.

2. Negative transfer from mother tongue; For example, become lovers instead offall in love.

3. General rules that do not work for all collocations; For example, overgeneralization of a phrasal verb like put off your coat instead of put on your coat.

4. Learning words through definitions or in isolation.

5. Failing to make sense of an idiom like 'It is raining cats and dogs'.

6. Failing to recognize and understand collocations as meaningful phrases while reading texts.

2.4. Collocations and related studies:

There have been various studies on English collocations, either grammatical or lexical, which can be of great contribution to the subject.

Keshavarz et al [13], after carrying out a study on the collocational competence and cloze test performance, state that there is a virtual lack of empirical research on the relationship between EFL learners' collocational knowledge and their performance on cloze tests. They came to the conclusion that the relatively high and positive correlations among the scores on the collocation tests, and the scores on the cloze tests suggest that learners' collocational competence and proficiency level are closely and positively associated. This is in line with recent research which suggests that proficient language users know a large number of collocation patterns.

Faghih and Sharafi [7] carried out a study on collocations in which the subjects of the study were over one hundred male and female EFL students at Alzahra University of Tehran- Iran and the Islamic Azad University of Torbate Heydarieh-Iran. The subjects' level of proficiency was determined by the Michigan Proficiency Test at first, and then an elicitation test including five categories of collocations was administered. The subjects were required to choose the correct answer from among the four given alternatives. The analysis of the data revealed that confusion of collocations is indeed evident in the performance of language learners and that the task of correctly identifying lexical collocations, as admitted by many researchers in this field seems to be very difficult. They also indicated that there is a positive correlation between the learners' overall proficiency in English and their knowledge of collocations. Finally they contended that the confusion of collocations gives support to the contrastive analysis and interlanguage studies; the first language effect is reflected in the results of the learners' performance.

Faghih et al [7] state that collocation confusion is indeed a common error in Iranian EFL learners' interlanguage; there is a positive correlation between learners' overall proficiency and their knowledge of collocations.

In a contrastive study of Iranian EFL learners' knowledge of collocations by M. Koosha and A. A. Jafarpour [6] published in Asian EFL Journal, the researchers after analyzing the Iranian EFL learners' collocational errors came to the point that Iranian EFL learners tended to carry over their L1 collocational patterns to their L2 production. This study focused on the teaching and learning collocation of prepositions, and the results reflected that first language interference in the production of collocation of prepositions was statistically significant. About 68.5 percent of errors were due to interference from L1.

Huang [11] carried out an investigation in which the subjects of study were 60 male and female medical science and technology students from a college in southern Taiwan. Before they entered this college, they had received at least six years of English instruction by the time they graduated from high school. The research instrument was a Simple Completion Test (SCT) that measured the subjects' knowledge in four types of lexical collocations. The test consisted of 40 items in the form of free response with ten items in each collocational category. As shown in the analysis of the error types produced, the L1 plays a crucial role in their production of English collocations. The prevalent "strategy of transfer" reflects learners' assumption that there is a one to one correspondence between L1 and L2.

According to Huang, Taiwanese students' deviant answers demonstrated their insufficient knowledge of English collocations, and concludes that EFL learners' errors in collocations can be attributed to negative first language transfer.

Mahmoud provides empirical data verifying the belief that learning collocations constitutes an area of difficulty in learning English as a foreign language. Errors indicate that EFL students rely on interlingual and intralingual strategies to facilitate learning. Such strategies help in case of perceived linguistic similarities, and lead to problems in case of differences. Mahmoud concluded that 83 percent of Arab students' errors were lexical, and 17 percent were grammatical. In all of the incorrect grammatical collocations, errors were cases of selection or addition of an incorrect preposition and most of them seemed to be due to negative interlingual transfer from Arabic.

The fact that post- intermediate and advanced students of EFL have a relatively large stock of vocabulary might have motivated interlingual transfer in the belief that it would be easy to find the EFL equivalents of the Arabic lexical items. His findings suggest the necessity of direct teaching of collocations, inclusion of bilingual glossaries in EFL course books, and designing bilingual collocation dictionaries.

Another piece of research on the teaching of collocations to Iranian English learners was carried out by Morshali on intermediate and advanced male and female English learners at the Iran Language Institute (ILI) in Shiraz- Iran. In this investigation the subjects received a multiple choice test of English word collocations for their productive knowledge of English collocations to be assessed. Besides, to study the effect of their proficiency level on collocation use, and to examine whether formal and explicit instruction plays any role in the mastery of English collocations, this investigation was carried out. Among the results of her investigation are:

1. There exists no significant relationship between the level of language proficiency and that of the knowledge of English collocations.

2. The number of collocational errors committed by the Iranian EFL learners underlines the need for formal teaching of collocations.

In a study of the acquisition of English Lexico-Grammatical Collocations by Iranian EFL learners by Hassanabadi [9], the processes of acquiring different collocations by Iranian EFL learners were investigated. The subjects comprised a sample of 80 Iranian EFL learners at Shiraz University. They received a test of 40 multiple- choice items. The researcher was after finding which type(s) of collocations, lexical or grammatical, and which subparts in each type were more problematic for Iranian EFL learners. Hassanabadi [9] came to the following conclusions:

1. Lexical collocations are easier to acquire than grammatical ones.

2. Among different subcategories of grammatical collocations under the focus of attention, Participle Adjective + preposition is the easiest to acquire and Preposition + Noun is the most difficult one.

3. The degree of L1-L2 difference or similarity influences the acquisition of certain types of collocations.

4. The degree of exposure to a certain type of collocation influences the acquisition of that kind of collocation.

5. Those collocations which are more frequent in everyday speech, are easier to acquire than others.

Shiravani [25] in his study on "the nature of lexical collocational errors made by Iranian EFL learners" posed two questions as:

1. Are there any types of lexical collocational errors which are the most/least common for Iranian EFL learners?

2. Is the difference between the participants' use of correct or incorrect lexical collocations significant or not? The subjects of the study were 50 M.A. TEFL students at Islamic Azad University of Shiraz-Iran, and the materials of the study were fifty free writing essays and compositions produced by the subjects. Firstly the lexical collocations were identified and then listed and categorized based on Benson's [1] Lexical Collocational classification. To check the correctness of lexical collocations, in addition to Benson et aVs [1] BBI Dictionary of English Word Combinations, Oxford Collocations Dictionary was also used. The results of the study reflected the facts that:

1. Adjective+ Noun combination is more problematic for the Iranian EFL learners. About 64 percent of incorrect answers were in this category.

2. The subjects' use of correct and incorrect Adverb+ Adjective combinations was not significant. So the use of this category of lexical collocations is not really problematic for the Iranian English learners. As conclusion, he contends that most of the lexical collocational errors found in the study were transfer from Persian. For instance,

*part of butter, (block of butter), *the manager of the police (the chief of the police), * lower the stress (reduce the stress), etc.

In this study, the researcher tries to find a positive correlation between the EFL learners' overall proficiency that is in keeping with the views of some researchers like Keshavarz [13] and Faghih et al [7]. These views are contrary to the view of Morshali [18] saying "there exists no significant relationship between the level of language proficiency and that of the knowledge of English collocations".

The second point under investigation is the significant role played by language transfer or first language interference in using English by EFL learners. In line with this view, the researcher tries to consider the beliefs of researchers like Koosha and Jafarpour [12] Mahmoud [16], Huang [11], Sadighi and Fahandezh [23], Bahns, etc.

3. Methodology:

3.0. Introduction:

This chapter deals with the methodology of the study. Firstly the participants of the study are introduced. Then, the instruments will be introduced and some examples of them will be given. Finally, the data collection procedures will be discussed.

Participants of the study:

The participants of this study were 65 undergraduate Persian speaking senior students at the Islamic Azad University in Shiraz. The students majored in TEFL and English Translation. The participants' ages ranged from 22 to 30. The reason why such students were selected was the fact that this investigation needed proficient participants with a good knowledge of collocations in English.

Instruments:

A TOEFL test taken from Barron's TOEFL was administered to the participants to measure their proficiency level in English. Then a multiple-choice recognition test of English grammatical collocations comprising 49 items was administered to the participants. The test consisted of seven types of English grammatical collocations which were assumed to cause problems for Iranian EFL learners. The composing items of the test were picked up from the examples taken from the BBI Dictionary of English Word Combinations. Each item was so constructed that in addition to the correct choice, there was another alternative that seemed to be the proper answer based on the effect of the testees' mother tongue, Persian. The context of each item provided the testees with enough information to choose the proper answer. Seven examples of the seven types of English grammatical collocations are as follows:

1. Noun + Preposition

There have been a number of public protests ... the new tax.

a. against b. at c. to d. about

2. Adjective + Preposition

Her dissertation was replete ... footnotes and statistics.

a. by b. with c. to d. of

3. Preposition + Noun

He has lived ... affluence so far.

a. by b. in c. with d. on

4. Noun + (to+ infinitive)

They made a ... to settle the dispute.

a. flow b. movement c. move d. quest

5. Noun + That clause

Nobody could refute her ... that the driver was drunk.

a. qualification b. testimony c. attention d. witness

6. Adjective + (to+ infinitive)

It is ... to use so much fuel.

a. apposed b. extravagant c. uncertain d. wasteful

7. Adjective + That clause

He was ... that he was caught cheating.

a. shy b. embarrassed c. miserable d. keen

As there was no standard test of grammatical collocations, to make the test valid and reliable, different drafts of the test were provided and corrected under the supervision of the faculty members of the Department of Foreign Languages and Linguistics at Shiraz University. To apply the views of these professors, the last draft of the test was administered as a pilot test to the TEFL and Translation students of Islamic Azad University of Shiraz. After getting feedback from the pilot test, some of the items which were answered correctly and those which were answered incorrectly in most of the cases, were ignored and the test was reduced to the last 49 items. The 49- item test was administered to the senior (graduating) students of TEFL and Translation.

Data collection Procedure:

After studying the result of the TOEFL proficiency test given to the participants, the participants were divided into three high, intermediate, and low groups based on their scores from the given proficiency test. The two high and low groups were used as the high proficiency and low proficiency groups. The participants' correct answers to the grammatical collocations test were listed as their collocation knowledge scores. As one of the main aim of this study was to investigate the role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency, the items were so constructed that the testees might confront two of the given alternatives (the correct choice and the one that seemed to be correct in Persian) to choose from. Therefore, the answers chosen from the alternatives which seemed to be correct were listed as L1 transfer scores.

3.4. Data Analysis:

The data collected by the researcher included the scores of two low and high proficiency groups each including 22 participants. The participants' collocation knowledge or correct answers to the grammatical collocations test, and the L1 transfer scores were also listed. The results of the correct and incorrect answers to the seven types of grammatical collocations were presented in a table of hierarchy from the least difficult to the most difficult ones. The statistical techniques used in this research were descriptive and inferential statistics. To answer the first question posed in the objectives of the study descriptive statistics was used to measure the number and percentage of the correct and incorrect answers to the seven types of grammatical collocations in order to give a hierarchy of difficulty. The Chi-Square technique was also used to reject or accept the null hypothesis stated in question four posed in the objectives of the study. To study the role of L1 Transfer and L2 Proficiency in the use of grammatical collocations, and to study the correlation between the participants' language proficiency and their knowledge of grammatical collocations and L1 transfer, inferential statistics including t-test and correlation was used.

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

4.0. Analysis of the Data and Results:

The present study was carried out to find out the role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency in the use of grammatical collocations by senior students of Islamic Azad University at Shiraz. After the 49-item test of seven types of grammatical collocations was given to 65 senior students majoring in TEFL and Translation, the results were collected and studied carefully. The answers were a set of 3185 instances of grammatical collocations. They were listed and categorized according to Benson's [1] classification of grammatical collocations in table 4.2.

The results of the analysis and comparison of the data from a total of 455 instances of correct and incorrect grammatical collocations in each group show that in the first type of "Noun + Preposition" collocations, there were 232(50.98%) correct and 223(49.02%) incorrect items. The second type was "Adjective + Preposition" with 241(52.96%) correct and 214(47.04%) incorrect instances. The third type, "Preposition+ Noun", had 240(52.57%) correct and 215(47.25%) incorrect cases. The fourth type, "Noun + (to + infinitive)", comprised 191(41.97%) correct and 264(58.03%) incorrect items. The fifth type was "Noun + That clause" which included 239(52.52%) correct and 216(47.48%) incorrect instances. The sixth type, "Adjective + (to + infinitive)", had 182(40%) correct and 273(60%) incorrect instances. "Adjective + That clause" was the seventh type that included 213(46.81%) correct and 242(53.19%) incorrect cases. Based on the results the following hierarchy of difficulty for the seven types of grammatical collocations starting from the easiest to the most difficult one is presented here.

4.1. Discussion and Results:

In this part the results of the acquired data are analyzed to answer the research questions of the study. The first question posed was: "Which type or types of grammatical collocations is/are the most/least difficult one(s) for Iranian EFL learners"?

To answer this question the data from table 4.6 were studied and it was found that the type "Adjective + (to +infinitive)" was the most difficult type with 60% incorrect responses, and after that the type "Noun + (to +infinitive)" with 58.03% incorrect responses ran the second place. The least difficult types were proved to be "Adjective + Preposition" with 47.25%, and "Preposition + Noun" with 47.04% incorrect answers.

The second research question was posed to find the role of L1 transfer on the Iranian EFL learners' use of grammatical collocations. By studying the subjects' answers to the seven types of these collocations, it was found that in some cases especially in the case of prepositions, the subjects turned to their mother tongue, Persian to compensate for their inability in using English prepositions. This was to a great extent in the case of prepositions. For example, in the category "Noun + Preposition" they chose of instead of in for the decrease ... profits, or in the type "Adjective + preposition", to answer the combination effective against, they used for instead of against. Another example was in the type "Preposition + Noun" where instead of on approval, they chose the preposition by to answer that item of the test. As it was found in this study and the different pieces of research carried out in this regard by researchers like Mahmoud [16], Koosha and Jafarpour and Sadighi and Fahandezh [23], the role of L1 transfer is of great significance, and should not be ignored in teaching English. EFL learners' problems in this field can be reduced by explicit teaching through contrastive studies between different languages. The third question was seeking "the relation between the learners' overall proficiency and their susceptibility to collocational errors".

To answer this question inferential statistics including independent samples t-test between the high and low groups of proficiency and the participants' knowledge of grammatical collocations, and L1 transfer was run. The first null hypothesis stated that:

"Considering grammatical collocational knowledge, there is not a difference between the high and the low group of proficiency".

As the scores of the participants were divided into two high and low groups based on their proficiency test, to compare these two independent groups with their collocational knowledge, the independent t-test was run. Before presenting the result of the t-test, a Levene's test was used to see if the variances of the collocational knowledge in the two high and low groups of proficiency were equal or not. The result of the test is given in table 4.8.

Results showed that the P- Value or the level of significance in the first assumption when the variances were assumed equal, is 0.831 (Sig. = 0.831). As Sig. was greater than 0.05 (0.05 is the significance of the test), (0.831 > 0.05), the first assumption was accepted, and the results of the t- test were given based on the equality of the variances of the groups. The results of the t- test showed that on the one hand the levels of significance were -16.544 and 0.000, and on the other hand the levels of significance of t was 0.000 and that of the test was 0.05. Therefore, as 0.000 < 0.05, it was concluded that the scores of grammatical collocations knowledge in the two high and low groups of proficiency had a great difference. As table 4.9 shows, the means of the scores of grammatical collocations knowledge for the two low and high groups are 16.3636 and 29.7273 respectively. This shows that the high group of proficiency has a greater mean of scores than the low group of proficiency. Therefore, the participants with a high proficiency level had a higher positive performance in using grammatical collocations.

Fig. 4.2: Line Bar of Table 4.9.

Another null hypothesis was that "considering L1 Transfer, there is not a difference between the high and the low group of proficiency". As the scores of the participants were divided into two high and low groups based on their proficiency test, to compare two independent groups with their L1 Transfer performance, the independent t-test was run.

Before presenting the result of the t-test, a Levene's test was used to see if the variances of the L1 Transfer performance in the two high and low groups of proficiency were equal or not. The result of the test is given in table 4.10.

Results showed that the P- Value or levels of significance in the first assumption when the variances were assumed equal, is 0.149 (Sig. = 0.149). As Sig. was greater than 0.05 (0.05 is the significance of the test), (0.149 > 0.05), the results of the t- test showed that on the one hand the levels of significance were 8.612 and 0.000, and on the other hand the level of significance of t was 0.000, and the level of significance of the test was 0.05. So, as 0.000 < 0.05, it was concluded that the scores of L1 Transfer in the two high and low groups of proficiency had a great difference. As table 4.11 shows, the means of the scores of L1 Transfer for the two low and high groups are 17.9545 and 10.4545 respectively. This shows that the low group of proficiency has a greater mean of scores than the high group of proficiency. Therefore, the participants with a high proficiency level have a higher performance in avoiding L1 Transfer.

As the following table shows the mean of the scores of L1 transfer for the two low and high groups of proficiency were 17.9545 and 10.4545 respectively. This shows that the high group of proficiency has a lower mean of L1 Transfer than the low group. Therefore, considering the mean of the scores of L1 Transfer, there is a difference between the high and low groups of proficiency.

To find the correlation between the participants' L2 proficiency and their knowledge of grammatical collocations on the one hand, and their L1 transfer performance on the other hand two null hypotheses were stated.

The first null hypothesis stated that there was not a correlation between the participants' proficiency and their knowledge of grammatical collocations. To reject or accept this null hypothesis, Pearson correlation coefficient was used. Pearson correlation coefficient and its P- Value or Sig. were 0.650 and 0.000 respectively. According to the table 4.12 Pearson Sig. (0.000) is lower than the significance of the test (0.05), (0.000 < 0.05). Here the number of the participants was 65. Therefore, the null hypothesis was rejected, and the conclusion was that there was a positive linear correlation between the participants' proficiency and their knowledge of grammatical collocations.

The second null hypothesis stated that "there was not a correlation between the participants' proficiency and the use of their L1 to answer the grammatical collocations test items. To reject or accept this null hypothesis, Pearson correlation coefficient was used. Pearson coefficient correlation and its P- Value or Sig. were -0.603 and 0.000 respectively. According to the table 4.13, Pearson Sig. (0.000) is lower than the Sig. of the test (0.05), (0.000 < 0.05). Here the number of the participants was 65. Therefore, the null hypothesis was rejected, and the conclusion was that there was a negative linear correlation between the participants' proficiency and their L1 Transfer performance.

As the above statistics showed, the learners' overall proficiency is systematically related to their susceptibility to collocational errors. Those participants with high proficiency scores had a better performance in answering the collocation test items. Regarding the L1 transfer, those participants who were in the low group of proficiency made more use of their mother tongue to answer the grammatical collocation test items. These findings are against the findings of the study carried out by Morshali.

The fourth question was to find "if the difference between participants' use of different types of correct and incorrect grammatical collocations is significant". The null hypothesis for this question was stated as follows: "The difference between the participants' use of different types of correct and incorrect grammatical collocations is not significant".

Answering this question necessitated the use of Chi- Square ([chi square]) test. [chi square] is the Greek symbol used in the test. According to Hatch & Farhady [10] the [chi square] test gives us a way to test whether the differences between the obtained and the expected frequencies are large enough to allow us to reject the null hypothesis. The formula for this computation is:

[chi square] = [summation][(Observed - Expected).sup.2]/E

[chi square] = [summation][(Observed - Expected).sup.2]/E = 1631

d.f. = 6

[alpha] = 12.59

Probability level = 0.05

According to Hatch& Farhady (1981: 167), degree of freedom for table 4.14 is 6 (d.f. = the number of groups--1). The probability level for rejecting null hypothesis is 0.05. The critical value for [chi square] is 12.59 ([alpha] = 12.59 ). [chi square] is more than a (i.e. 16.31 > 12.59). Therefore, the null hypothesis is rejected.

5. Conclusions and Pedagogical Implications:

5.0. Introduction:

This chapter provides the readers with an overview of the previous chapters. This will then be followed by conclusions and pedagogical implications as well as suggestions for further research.

5.1. Overview of the Preceding Chapters:

This study investigated the role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency in the use of grammatical collocations by Iranian EFL learners. The main purposes of the study were to find out which type or types of grammatical collocations is/are the least/most problematic one(s) for the Iranian EFL learners. Other questions like the role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency in the use of grammatical collocations were discussed as well. Sixty-five B.A. Persian speaking senior students majoring in TEFL and English Translation studying at Islamic Azad university of Shiraz participated in a test of seven types of grammatical collocations which comprised 49 multiple-choice items. Each type of grammatical collocations had seven items. All the correct and incorrect answers were listed and categorized according to Benson et aVs [1] classification of grammatical collocations. The data were represented by number and percentage of correct and incorrect answers to the seven types of grammatical collocations, and some tables and figures were used to show the data. The role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency in the use of grammatical collocations was studied through inferential statistics.

5.2. Conclusions:

The findings of this study reflected the facts that:

1. "Adjective + (to + infinitive)" was the most problematic type with 60% incorrect answers, and after that, "Noun + (to + infinitive)" with 58.03% incorrect answers ran the second place. The least difficult types were "Noun + preposition" with 47.04%, and "Adjective + preposition" with 47.25% incorrect answers.

2. The role of L2 proficiency in comparison to L1 transfer was also studied through inferential statistics, and the findings revealed that the participants with a high level of L2 proficiency had noticeably less problems in answering the given grammatical collocations test items. It was proved that there was a negative correlation between the two high and low groups of participants' L2 proficiency and their L1 transfer performance.

3. The overall proficiency of EFL learners is systematically related to the learners' susceptibility to grammatical collocational errors. This point is contrary to that of Morshali[18].

4. To find the answer to the question "if the difference between participants' use of different types of correct and incorrect grammatical collocations is significant", the Chi-Square([chi square]) test was used and the null hypothesis was rejected.

5.3. Pedagogical Implications:

The findings of the present study help the language researchers, EFL teachers and learners, translators and material developers consider the role of L1 transfer, L2 proficiency as well as collocations, in this case grammatical collocations more attentively. If these word combinations are taught through contrastive studies, the learners are involved in the processes of learning them in contrast to their mother tongue. Both language teachers and learners should be aware of the importance of learning collocations in mastering a foreign language. Classifying collocations and teaching them explicitly through tasks and contextualized exercises in text books can be of great aid to EFL learners.

5.4. Suggestions for Further Research:

This piece of research focused on the role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency in the use of grammatical collocations by Iranian EFL learners. Further research could be carried out on the role of L1 transfer and L2 proficiency in the use of English lexical collocations. Other research programs could concentrate on the role of L2 proficiency in the use of English idioms. Another area in which researchers can investigate the effect and usefulness of teaching and learning English collocations, is the English books published for the high schools and universities of Iran to see to what extent these texts have provided our students with these collocations.

APPENDICES:

A Test of Grammatical Collocations:

1. There had been a number of public protests ... the new tax.

(a) against (b) at (c) to (d) about

2. If I give you the camera, can you take a photograph ... me?

(a) from (b) to (c) at (d) of

3. The reason ... this meeting is to discuss the merger.

(a) of (b) for (c) to (d) on

4. The decrease ... profits is due to the bad market.

(a) of (b) at (c) to (d) in

5. I Think your attitude ... your sister is very bad indeed.

(a) about (b) at (c) on (d) toward

6. I wrote to Jim last week, but I still haven't received a reply ... my letter.

(a) of (b) to (c) at (d) on

7- Money isn't the solution ... every problem.

(a) for (b) of (c) to (d) at

8. Shiraz is famous ... its monuments and literary figures.

(a) of (b) for (c) by (d) on

9. Her dissertation was replete ... footnotes and statistics.

(a) by (b) with (c) to (d) of

10. We are all excited ... going on holiday next week.

(a) against (b) at (c) about (d) of

11. I have been trying to learn Spanish but I'm not very satisfied ... ...my progress.

(a) of (b) with (c) to (d) by

12. We enjoyed our holiday, but we were a bit disappointed .... the hotel.

(a) from (b) with (c) to (d) on

13. It was very nice ... you to do my shopping for me. Thank you very much.

(a) on (b) with (c) to (d) of

14. This medication is effective ... the common cold.

(a) against (b) for (c) at (d) to

15. We discovered it ... accident.

(a) by (b) with (c) on (d) in

16. We bought it ... approval.

(a) with (b) by (c) on (d) in

17. They work ... conformity with each other.

(a) with (b) within (c) in (d) by

18. We could not solve the problem.......question.

(a) by (b) to (c) of (d) in

19. Our lives were ... danger.

(a) in (b) to (c) on (d) at

20. He has lived ... affluence so far.

(a) by (b) in (c) with (d) on

21. Those working in mines are ... risk.

(a) in (b) by (c) on (d) at

22. It was a ... to learn of her death.

(a) sacrifice (b) shock (c) sabotage (d) hazard

23. It would be ... to try to climb that mountain.

(a) repentance (b) indecision (c) killing (d) suicide

24. He didn't even have the ... to call.

(a) query (b) generosity (c) decency (d) respect

25. They didn't have enough ... to cope with the job.

(a) occupation (b) discipline (c) measurement (d) increase

26. It was a(n) ... to have that team as our opponent .

(a) advantage (b) profit (c) entry (d) enlargement

27. It was pure ... to watch the dance.

(a) amusement (b) hallucination (c) negligence (d) entertainment

28. They made a ... to settle the dispute.

(a) flow (b) movement (c) move (d) quest

29. It is a valid ... that competition increases productivity .

(a) maxim (b) necessity (c) mistake (d) mentality

30. It is a ... that she was not killed.

(a) warrant (b) yield (c) miracle (d) magic

31. They came to a(n) ... that all troops should be withdrawn.

(a) acceptance (b) agreement (c) conformity (d) obedience

32. They disputed my ... that taxes should be raised.

(a) planning (b) view (c) flexibility (d) issue

33. Events confirmed our ... that she had been treated unfairly.

(a) perception (b)proposition (c) deception (d) detection

34. Nobody could refute her ... that the driver was drunk .

(a) qualification (b) testimony (c) attention (d) witness

35. She has a ... that drinking milk prevents cold.

(a) theory (b) think (c) jealousy (d) courage

36. It would be ... to add anything to their remarks.

(a) extravagant (b) bored (c) superfluous (d) witty

37. It was ... of you to say such things behind her back.

(a) insusceptible (b) deceitful (c) regrettable (d) payable

38. It is ... to cite only certain sources.

(a) mystifying (b) misleading (c) demanding (d) becoming

39. It is ... to see such clean streets .

(a) exaggerated (b) remarkable (c) outstanding (d) respectful

40. We are ... to leave here.

(a) insistent (b) fearful (c) prepared (d) justified

41. It is ... to play with fire.

(a) risky (b) miraculous (c) fearful (d) negligent

42. It is ... to use so much fuel.

(a) opposed (b) extravagant (c) uncertain (d) wasteful

43. We were ... that he would find out the result of the test before it was announced.

(a) acquainted (b) tiresome (c) afraid (d) hesitant

44. She was ... that she would succeed .

(a) confident (b) reliant (c) reasonable (d) qualified

45. We are ... that you will not be able to attend.

(a) keen (b) hopeless (c) disappointed (d) legitimate

46. He was ... that he was caught cheating.

(a) shy (b) embarrassed (c) miserable (d) keen

47. Please make ... that there will be enough light and heat.

(a) fashionable (b) sure (c) economical (d) safe

48. It is ... that we can all meet tomorrow.

(a) fortunate (b) frank (c) cheerful (d) nervous

49. It is ... that she still believes such nonsense.

(a) perturbing (b) outstanding (c) confusing (d) corresponding

The Key to the Test of Grammatical Collocations.

Items   Answers

1       a
2       d
3       b
4       d
5       d
6       b
7       a
8       b
9       b
10      c
11      b
12      b
13      d
14      a
15      a
16      c
17      c
18      d
19      a
20      b
21      d
22      b
23      d
24      c
25      b
26      a
27      d
28      c
29      a
30      c
31      b
32      b
33      a
34      b
35      a
36      c
37      b
38      b
39      c
40      c
41      a
42      d
43      c
44      a
45      c
46      b
47      b
48      a
49      a


A List of the Problematic Cases of Prepositions Resulting From L1 Transfer in the Use of Grammatical Collocations .

Noun + Preposition:

1. If I give you the camera, can you take a photograph *from me?

2. The reason *of this meeting is to discuss the merger.

3. The decrease *of profits is due to the bad market.

4. I wrote to Jim last week, but I still haven't received a reply *on my letter.

5- Money isn't the solution *of every problem.

Preposition + Noun:

1. We discovered it *with accident.

2. We bought it *by approval.

3. They work *with conformity with each other.

4. We could not solve the problem *to question.

5. Our lives were *on danger.

6. Those working in mines are *in risk.

Adjective + Preposition:

1. Her dissertation was replete *of footnotes and statistics.

2. We are all excited *at going on holiday next week.

3. We enjoyed our holiday, but we were a bit disappointed *from the hotel.

4. It was very nice *to you to do my shopping for me. Thank you very much.

5. This medication is effective *for the common cold.

The List of the Correct Forms of the Prepositions Resulting From L1 Transfer in the Use of Grammatical Collocations.

Noun + Preposition:

1. If I give you the camera, can you take a photograph of me?

2. The reason for this meeting is to discuss the merger.

3. The decrease in profits is due to the bad market.

4. I wrote to Jim last week, but I still haven't received a reply to my letter.

5. Money isn't the solution for every problem.

Preposition + Noun:

1. We discovered it by accident.

2. We bought it on approval.

3. They work in conformity with each other.

4. We could not solve the problem in question.

5. Our lives were in danger.

6. Those working in mines are at risk.

Adjective + Preposition:

1. Her dissertation was replete with footnotes and statistics.

2. We are all excited about going on holiday next week.

3. We enjoyed our holiday, but we were a bit disappointed with the hotel.

4. It was very nice of you to do my shopping for me. Thank you very much.

5. This medication is effective against the common cold.

Toefl Proficiecy Test:

Structure and written expressions:

Choose the one word or phrase that best completes the sentence:

1. One of the most effective vegetable protein substitutes is the soybean--used to manufacture imitation meat products.

(A) which can be (B) it can be (C) who can be (D) can be

2. -1,000 species of finch have been identified.

(A) As many as (B) As many (C) As much as (D) Much as

3. The greater the demand, --the price.

(A) higher (B) high (C) the higher (D) the high

4. The Continental United States is--that there are four time zones.

(A) much big (B) too big (C) so big (D) very big

5. Benjamin West contributed a great deal to American art: --.

(A) painting, teaching, and lecturing

(B) painting, as a teacher and lecturer

(C) painting, teaching, and as a lecturer

(D) painting, a teacher, and a lecturer

6. Most insurance agents would rather you--anything about collecting claims until they investigate the situation.

(A) do (B) not do (C) don't (D) did not

7. Upon hatching, --.

(A) young ducks know how to swim

(B) swimming is known by young ducks

(C) the knowledge of swimming is in young ducks

(D) how to swim is known in young ducks

8. The observation deck at the World Trade Center--in New York.

(A) is highest than any other one (B) is higher than any other one

(C) is highest than any other one (D) is higher that any other one

9. A seventeen-year-old is not--to vote in an election.

(A) old enough (B) as old enough

(C) enough old (D) enough old as

10. -- is necessary for the development of strong bones and teeth.

(A) It is calcium (B) That calcium

(C) Calcium (D) Although calcium

11. -- withstands testing, we may not conclude that it is true, but we may retain it.

(A) If a hypothesis (B) That a hypothesis

(C) A hypothesis (D) Hypothesis

12. Only after food has been dried and canned --.

(A) that it should be stored for later consumption

(B) should be stored for later consumption

(C) should it be stored for later consumption

(D) it should be stored for later consumption

13. Not until a monkey is several years old--to exhibit signs of independence from its mother.

(A) it begins (B) does it begin (C) and begin (D) beginning

14. Almost everyone fails--on the first try.

(A) in passing the driver's test (B) to pass the driver's test

C. to have passed the driver's test (D) pass the driver's test

15. Since Elizabeth Barret Browning's first never approved of--Robert Browning, the couple eloped to

Italy, where they lived and wrote.

(A) her to marry (B) her marrying

(C) she marrying (D) she to marry

Written Expressions:

Identify the one underlined word or phrase that must be changed in order for the sentence to be correct.(A,B,C, or D)

16. The information officer at the bank told his customers that there was several different kinds of checking accounts available.

17. The first electric lamp had two carbon rods from which vapor serves to conduct the current across the gap.

18. The Department of Fine Arts and Architecture has been criticized for not having much required courses scheduled for this semester.

19. A thunderhead, dense clouds that rise high in the sky in huge columns, produce hail, rain, or snow.

20. Although no country has exactly the same folk music like that of any other, it is significant that similar songs exist Among widely separated people.

21. Despite of the Taft- Hartley Act which forbids unfair union practices, some unions such as the air traffic controllers have voted to strike even though this action might endanger the national security.

22. Never before has so many people in the United States been interested in soccer.

23. Operant conditioning involves rewarding or punishing certain behave to reinforce or extinguish its occurrence.

24. Not one in one hundred children exposed to the disease are likely to develop symptoms of it.

25. There is an unresolved controversy as to whom is the real author of the Elizabethan plays commonly credited to William Shakespeare.

26. A catalyst agent such as platinum may be used so the chemical reaction advances more rapidly.

27. From space, astronauts are able to clearly see the outline of the whole earth.

28. When a patient's blood pressure is much higher than it should be, a doctor usually insists that he will not smoke.

29. Excavations in several mounds and villages on the east bank of the Euphrates River have revealed the city of Nebuchadnezzar, an ancient community that had been laying under later reconstructions of the city of Babylon.

30. It was the invent of the hand-held electronic calculator that provided the original technology for the present generation of small but powerful computers.

Reading Comprehension:

Answer all the questions about the information in the passage on the basis of what is stated or implied in the passage.

Although speech is the most advanced form of communication, there are many ways of communicating without using speech. Signs, symbols, and gestures may be found in every known literature. The basic function of a signal is to impinge upon the environment in such a way that it attracts attention, as, for example, the dots and dashes of a telegraph circuit. Coded to refer to speech, the potential for communication is very great. Less adaptable to the codification of words, signs also contain meaning in and of themselves. A stop sign or a barber pole conveys meaning quickly and conveniently. Symbols are more difficult to describe than either signals or signs because of their intricate relationship with the receiver's cultural perceptions. In some cultures, applauding

in a theater provides performers with an auditory symbol of approval. Gestures such as waving and handshaking also communicate certain cultural messages.

Although signals, signs, symbols, and gestures are very useful, they do have a major disadvantage. They usually do not allow ideas to be shared without the sender being directly adjacent to the receiver. As a result, means of communication intended to be used for long distances and extended periods are based upon speech. Radio, television, and the telephone are only a few.

31. Which of the following would be the best title for the passage?

(A) Signs and Signals (B) Gestures

(C) Communication (D) Speech

32. What does the author say about speech?

(A) It is the only true form of communication.

(B) It is dependent upon the advances made by inventors.

(C) It is necessary for communication to occur

(D) It is the most advanced form of communication

33. According to the passage, what is a signal?

(A) The most difficult form of communication to describe

(B) A form of communication which may be used across long distances

(C) A form of communication which interrupts the environment

(D) The form of communication most related to cultural perceptions

34. The phrase "impinge on" in line 3 is closest in meaning to

(A) intrude B) improve (C) vary (D) prohibit

35. The word it in line 4 refers to

(A) function (B) signal (C) environment (D) way

36. The word "potential" in line 5 could best be replaced by

(A) range (B) advantage (C) organization (D) possibility

37. The word "intricate" in line 8 could best be replaced by which of the following?

(A) inefficient (B) complicated (C) historical (D) uncertain

38. Applauding was cited as an example of

(A) a signal (B) a sign (C) a symbol (D) a gesture

39. Why were the telephone, radio, and T.V invented?

(A) People were unable to understand signs, symbols, and signals.

(B) People wanted to communicate across long distances.

(C) People believed that signs, signals, and symbols were obsolete.

(D) People wanted new forms of entertainments

40. It may be concluded from this passage that

(A) signals, signs, symbols, and gestures are forms of communication.

(B) symbols are very easy to define and interpret.

(C) only some cultures have signals, signs, and symbols.

(D) waving and handshaking are not related to culture.

The Key to the TOEFL Proficiency Test.

Items   Answers

1       a
2       a
3       c
4       c
5       a
6       b
7       a
8       b
9       a
10      c
11      a
12      c
13      b
14      b
15      b
16      d
17      c
18      c
19      d
20      b
21      a
22      a
23      a
24      b
25      b
26      b
27      c
28      d
29      c
30      c
31      c
32      d
33      c
34      a
35      b
36      d
37      b
38      c
39      b
40      a

The Data of the Study.

      proficienc   prof, category    grammat.     LITransfe
                                    collocation

1          31.00             high         29.00       11.00
2          26.00             high         25.00       10.00
3          13.00              low         15.00       14.00
4          26.00             high         25.00        8.00
5          18.00              low         19.00       12.00
6          15.00              low         14.00       17.00
7          24.00             high         26.00       14.00
8          12.00              low         13.00       17.00
9          29.00             high         32.00        9.00
10         13.00              low         18.00       18.00
11         12.00              low         16.00       19.00
12          8.00              low         11.00       22.00
13         12.00              low         14.00       21.00
14         13.00              low         14.00       20.00
15         13.00              low         16.00       15.00
16         17.00              low         17.00       15.00
17         15.00              low         14.00       14.00
18         10.00              low         15.00       18.00
19         17.00              low         18.00       17.00
20         31.00             high         32.00        9.00
21         36.00             high         35.00        9.00
22         32-00             high         31.00        8.00
23         32.00             high         32.00       13.00
24         29.00             high         30.00       14.00
25         26.00             high         29.00        9.00
26         18.00              low         19.00       18.00
27         27.00             high         29.00       10.00
28         18.00              low         18.00       19.00
29         26.00              low         18.00       21.00
30         30.00             high         31.00       10.00
31         30.00             high         29.00       10.00
32         26.00             high         26.00       10.00
33         18.00              low         20.00       15.00
34         28.00             high         33.00        9.00
35         16-00              low         20.00       16.00
36         28.00             high         29.00        9.00
37         27.00             high         26.00       11.00
38         10.00              low         14.00       27.00
39         16.00              low         19.00       21.00
40            17              low         18.00       19.00
41         31.00             high         31.00       10.00
42         28.00             high         29.00        9.00
43         29.00             high         31.00       18.00
44         36.00             high         34.00       10.00


ARTICLE INFO

Article history:

Received 25 November 2014

Received in revised form 2 December 2014

Accepted 12 December 2014

Available online 27 December 2014

REFERENCES

[1] Benson, M., 1997. BBIDictionary of English word combinations. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.

[2] Brown, H.D., 1993. Principles of Language Learning and Teaching. Englewood Cliff. N. J.: Prentice Hall, Regents.

[3] Brown, H.D., 2000. Principles of Language Learning and Teaching. 4th ed. Longman Inc.

[4] Celce- Murcia, M., 2001. Teaching English as a Second or Foreign language. 3rd ed. Heinle & Heinle.

[5] Dehghan, D., 2008. Is there a relationship between context-based collocational vocabulary teaching through extensive reading and improvement of the writing skills of intermediate Iranian EFL learners. Unpublished M.A. Thesis. Shiraz Islamic Azad University.

[6] Deveci , Tanju, 2005. Why and How to Teach Collocations? Forum Journal, 42-2. US.

[7] Faghih, E., H. Salami, 2005. The impact of collocations on Iranian EFL learners' interlanguage. Journal of Humanities, 16-58. University of Alzahra Publications.

[8] Gabrielatos, C., 1994. Collocations : Pedagogical implications, and their treatment in pedogodical materials. Unpublished essay, research center for English and applied linguistics, University of Cambridge.

[9] Hassan Abadi, S., 2000. A Study of the acquisition of English lexico--Grammatical by Iranian EFL learners. Unpublished M.A. Thesis. Shiraz Islamic Azad University.

[10] Hatch, E., H. Farhady, 1981. Research and Statistics. Rahnama Publications.

[11] Huang, Li-Szu, 2001. Knowledge of English collocations: An Analysis of Taiwanese EFL Learners. Texas foreign language education conference, 6-1.

[12] Jafarpour, A.A., M. Kkoosha, 2006. Data- driven learning and teaching collocation of preposition: the case of Iranian EFL adult learners. Asian EFL Journal, 8.

[13] Keshavarz, M.H., H. Salimi, 2007. Collocational competence and cloze test performance: a study of Iranian EFL Learners. International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 17: 1.

[14] Keshavarz, M.H., 2004. Contrastive Analysis and error Analysis. Ninth ed. Tehran, Rahnama Publications.

[15] McCarthy, M., F. O ' Dell, 2005. English Collocations in Use. Cambridge University Press.

[16] Mahmoud, A., 2005. Collocation errors made by Arab learners of English. Asian EFL Journal, Article2.

[17] Martynska, M., 2004. Do English language learners know collocations? Investigationes linguistica, Vol.XI, Poznan.

[18] Morshali, F., 1995. A Cross- Sectional Study of the Acquisition of English Collocations by Iranian EFL Learners. Unpublished M.A. Thesis. Shiraz Islamic Azad University.

[19] Odlin, T., 1989. Language Transfer, Cross Linguistic Influence in Language Learning. Cambridge University Press.

[20] Rahimi, A., 2005. The Role of Systematic Exposure to Lexical Collocations in Learning English Vocabulary by Iranian Students. Unpublished M.A. Thesis. Shiraz Islamic Azad University.

[21] Richards, J.C., J. Platt, H. Platt, 1992. Dictionary of Language Teaching and Applied Linguistics. 2nd ed. Longman, UK.

[22] Richards, Jack, C. Rodgers, S. Theodor, 2001. Approaches and Methods in language teaching. 2nd ed. Cambridge University Press.

[23] Sadighi, F., J. Fahndezh Sa'di, 1999. Transfer strategy and the production of English idioms in a foreign language setting. Journal of social science & humanities of Shiraz University. 14-2, (Ser. 28).

[24] Sharpe, Pamela, J., 1994. Barron's TOEFL. 8th ed. Barron's Educational Series, Inc.

[25] Shiravani, A., 2007. The Nature of Lexical Collocational Errors Made by Iranian EFL Learners. Unpublished M.A. Thesis. Shiraz Islamic Azad University.

[26] Tehrani, H., 2007. The Effect of Teaching Translation of English Chunks in Context on Speaking Ability of Iranian learners of English. Unpublished M.A. Thesis. Shiraz Islamic Azad University.

[27] Yarmohammadi, L., 2002. A Contrastive Analysis of Persian and English. Payame Noor University Press.

(1) Jafar Izadpanah, (2) Seyyed Ali Kazemi and (3) Mohammad Taher Tabeshnezhad

(1) Department of ELT, Dehdasht Branch, Islamic Azad University, Dehdasht, Iran

(2) Department of ELT, Yasuj Branch, Islamic Azad University, Yasuj, Iran

(3) Department of ELT, Dehdasht Branch, Islamic Azad University, Dehdasht, Iran

Corresponding Author: Jafar Izadpanah, Department of ELT, Dehdasht Branch, Islamic Azad University, Dehdasht, Iran E-mail: jafarezadpanah@Gmail.com

Table 4.1: the number of correct and incorrect answers by 65 subjects
to the test items.

ITEMS   Correct   Incorrect

1         55         10
2         39         26
3         24         41
4         21         44
5         43         22
6         29         36
7         21         44
8         48         17
9         29         36
10        42         23
11        51         14
12        24         41
13        35         31
14        13         52
15        38         27
16        20         45
17        31         34
18        33         32
19        41         24
20        29         36
21        48         17
22        55         10
23        30         35
24        10         55
25        46         19
26        26         39
27        14         51
28        10         55
29        12         53
30        42         23
31        51         14
32        28         37
33        30         35
34        22         43
35        54         11
36        11         54
37        26         39
38        20         45
39        17         48
40        30         35
41        44         21
42        34         31
43        27         38
44        37         28
45        31         34
46        38         27
47        50         15
48        25         40
49         5         60

Table 4.2: Seven Types of Grammatical Collocations and the Number Of
Correct And Incorrect Answers To Them.

Grammatical collocation types   Correct   Incorrect

Noun + Preposition                232        223
Adjective + Preposition           241        214
Preposition + Noun                240        215
Noun + (to+ infinitive)           191        264
Noun + that clause                239        216
Adjective+(to + infinitive)       182        273
Adjective + that clause           213        242
Total                            1538       1647

Table 4.3: Number and Percentage of Correct and Incorrect Grammatical
Collocations.

Grammatical     No    Percentage
collocations

Correct        1538     48.28
Incorrect      1647     51.72
Total          3185      100

Table 4.4: Different Types and Percentages of Correct Grammatical
Collocations.

Correct grammatical collocations    No.    Percentage

Noun + Preposition                  232      15.08
Adjective + Preposition             241      15.66
Preposition + Noun                  240      15.60
Noun + (to+ infinitive)             191      12.41
Noun + that clause                  239      15.53
Adjective+(to + infinitive)         182      11.83
Adjective + that clause             213      13.84
Total                              1538       100

Table 4.5: Different Types and Percentages of Incorrect Grammatical
Collocations.

Incorrect grammatical collocations   No.    Percentage

Noun + Preposition                   223      13.53
Adjective + Preposition              214      12.99
Preposition + Noun                   215      13.05
Noun + (to+ infinitive)              264      16.02
Noun + that clause                   216      13.11
Adjective+(to + infinitive)          273      16.57
Adjective + that clause              242      14.69
Total                                1647      100

Table 4.6: Number and Percentage of Correct and Incorrect Types of
Grammatical Collocations.

                                 Correct      Incorrect       Total

                             No.      %     No.      %     No.     %

1        Adjective +         241    52.96   214    47.04   455    100
          Preposition
2     Preposition + Noun     240    52.75   215    47.25   455    100
3     Noun + That clause     239    52.52   216    47.48   455    100
4     Noun + Preposition     232    50.98   223    49.02   455    100
5    Adjective+that clause   213    46.81   242    53.19   455    100
6         Noun + (to         191    41.97   264    58.03   455    100
         +infinitive)
7         Adjective+         182     40     273     60     455    100
        (to+infinitive)
             Total           1538   48.28   1647   51.72   3185   100

Table 4.7: Hierarchy of Difficulty.

                                      %Correct

1        Adjective + preposition       52.96
2          Preposition + Noun          52.75
3          Noun + That clause          52.52
4          Noun + preposition          50.98
5        Adjective + That Clause       46.81
6       Noun + (to + infinitive)       41.97
7     Adjective + (to + infinitive)    40.00

Table 4.8: Independent Samples Test.

                                   Levene's Test
                                  for Equality of
                                     Variances

                                   F       Sig.

Grammatic.     Equal variances    .046     .831
Collocations        assumed
               Equal variances
                 not assumed

                                       t-test for Equality of Means

                                    t        df      Sig. (2-tailed)

Grammatic.     Equal variances   -16.544     42           .000
Collocations        assumed
               Equal variances   -16.544   41.433         .000
                 not assumed

Table 4.9: Group Statistics.

              Proficiency    N     Mean       Std.        Std.
                Category                    Deviation   Error Mean

Grammat.          Low        22   16.3636    2.51747      .53673
collocation       High       22   29.7273    2.83149      .60367

Table 4.10: Independent Samples Test.

                                  Levene's Test
                                  for Equality
                                  of Variances

                                  F       Sig.

L1 .trasfer   Equal variances   2.163     .149
                assumed
              Equal variances
                not assumed

                                     t-test for Equality of Means

                                  t       Df      Sig. (2-tailed)

L1 .trasfer   Equal variances   8.612     42           .000
                assumed
              Equal variances   8.612   37.884         .000
                not assumed

Table 4.11: Group Statistics.

               Prof.     N     Mean       Std.        Std.
              Category                  Deviation   Error Mean

L1.Transfer     Low      22   17.9545    3.33063      .71009
                High     22   10.4545    2.36497      .50421

Table 4.12: Correlation of Proficiency and knowledge of Grammatical
Collocations.
                                    grammat.collocations

Proficiency   Pearson Correlation          .650 **
              Sig. (2-tailed)               .000
                    N                         65

**. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2-tailed).

Table 4.13: Correlations of Proficiency and L1 Transfer.

                                    L1 Transfer

Proficiency   Pearson Correlation     -.603**
                Sig. (2-tailed)        .000
                       N                65

Table 4.14: The % 2 for Table 4.6.

Row   Column   Observed   Expected    O-E     [(O-E).sup.2]

1       1        232       219.71    12.29       151.04
1       2        223       235.28    -12.28      150.79
2       1        241       219.71    21.29       453.26
2       2        214       235.28    -21.28      452.83
3       1        240       219.71    20.29       411.68
3       2        215       235.28    -20.28      411.27
4       1        191       219.71    -28.71      824.26
4       2        264       235.28    28.72       824.83
5       1        239       219.71    19.29       372.10
5       2        216       235.28    -19.28      371.71
6       1        182       219.71    -37.71      1422.04
6       2        273       235.28    37.72       1422.79
7       1        213       219.71    -6.71        45.02
7       2        242       235.28     6.72        45.15

Row   [(O-E).sup.2]/E

1          0.68
1          0.64
2          2.06
2          1.92
3          1.87
3          1.74
4          3.75
4          3.50
5          1.69
5          1.57
6          6.47
6          6.04
7          0.20
7          0.19
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Author:Izadpanah, Jafar; Kazemi, Seyyed Ali; Tabeshnezhad, Mohammad Taher
Publication:Advances in Environmental Biology
Article Type:Report
Date:Nov 1, 2014
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