A Closer Look at Learning Strategies, L2 Proficiency, and Gender

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Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc. (TESOL) A Closer Look at Learning Strategies, L2 Proficiency, and Gender Author(s): John M. Green and Rebecca Oxford Source: TESOL Quarterly, Vol. 29, No. 2 (Summer, 1995), pp. 261-297 Published by: Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc. (TESOL) Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3587625 Accessed: 03/07/2010 01:44 Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of JSTOR 's Terms and Conditions of Use, available at http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp. JSTOR 's Terms and Conditions of Use provides, in part, that unless you have obtained prior permission, you may not download an entire issue of a journal or multiple copies of…show more content…
The largescale quantitative study reported here presents a more detailed picture than that of most previous studies by systematicallyexamining variation in the use of individual strategies as well as overall strategy use and strategy categories, and by looking for patterns of variation by gender at the same time as by proficiency level. RESEARCH REVIEW Importance of Strategies in Language Learning Language learning strategies are specific actions or techniques that students use, often intentionally, to improve their progress in developing L2 skills. Strategies encompass a wide range of behaviors that can help the development of language competence in many ways (Oxford, 1990; Rigney, 1978). Lists of characteristicsof good language learners refer to a variety of learning strategies, such as taking advantage of practice opportunities, willingly and accurately guessing, handling emotional issues in language learning, consciously developing the L2 as a meaning system and a structure system, and monitoring one 's own speech (Naiman, Frohlich, & Todesco, 1975; Naiman, Frohlich, Stern, & Todesco, 1978; Rubin, 1975; Stern, 1983). Effective L2 learners are aware of the strategies they use and why they use them, according to diary research (Lavine & Oxford, in press) and think-aloud studies (Abraham & Vann, 1987; O 'Malley& Chamot, 1990). Such learners manage to tailor their strategies to

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