Centre for Research in Applied Linguistics
  • Print

Vocabulary Research Group

The group meets weekly under the supervision of Prof. Norbert Schmitt , Dr. Ana Pellicer-Sanchez, and Dr. Mike Rodgers to discuss current readings and issues, and to present the students’ own research.

More information and links to publications are available from Norbert Schmitt's website.

Vocabulary Research Group


Publications since 2012

  • Uden, J., Schmitt, D., & Schmitt, N. (2014). Can learners make the jump from the highest graded readers to ungraded novels?: Four case studies. Reading in a Foreign Language, 26, 1, 1-28.
  • van Zeeland, H. & Schmitt, N. (2013). Incidental vocabulary acquisition through L2 listening: a dimensions approach. SYSTEM, 41, 609-624.
  • van Zeeland, H and Schmitt, N. (2013). Lexical coverage in L1 and L2 listening comprehension: The same or different from reading comprehension? Applied Linguistics, 34, 457-79.
  • Sonbul, S. and Schmitt, N. (2013). Explicit and implicit lexical knowledge: Acquisition of collocations under different input conditions. Language Learning, 63, 1: 121–159.
  • Alali, F. and Schmitt, N. (2012). Teaching formulaic sequences: The same or different from teaching single words? TESOL Journal 3, 2: 153-180.
  • Conklin, K. & Schmitt, N. (2012). The processing of formulaic language. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 32, 45–61.
  • Martinez, R. and Schmitt, N. (2012). A Phrasal Expressions List. Applied Linguistics 33, 3: 299-320.
  • Pellicer-Sánchez, A. and Schmitt, N. (2012). Scoring Yes-No vocabulary tests: Reaction time vs. nonword approaches. Language Testing 29, 4: 489-509.
  • Saigh, K. and Schmitt, N. (2012). Difficulties with vocabulary form: The case of Arabic ESL learners. System 40: 24-36.
  • Schmitt, N. and Schmitt, D. (2012: available in advanced view). A reassessment of frequency and vocabulary size in L2 vocabulary teaching. Language Teaching.


Publications before 2012

  • Martinez, R. and Murphy, V. (2011). The effect of frequency and idiomaticity on a test of reading comprehension. TESOL Quarterly 45(2): 267-290.
  • Pellicer-Sanchez, A. (2011). Book review: Optimizing a Lexical Approach to Instructed Second Language Acquisition, Frank Boers and Seth Lindstromberg. International Journal of Applied Linguistics 21(1): 121-127.
  • Schmitt, N. & Redwood, S. (2011). Learner Knowledge of Phrasal Verbs: A Corpus-Informed Study. In Meunier F., De Cock S., Gilquin G. and Paquot M. (Eds.), A Taste for Corpora. A tribute to Professor Sylviane Granger.
  • Siyanova-Chanturia, A., Conklin, K., and Schmitt, N. (2011). Adding more fuel to the fire: An eye-tracking study of idiom processing by native and nonnative speakers. Second Language Research 27(2): 1-22.
  • Wible, D., Liu, A.L.E. and Tsao, N.L. (2011). A browser-based approach to incidental individualization of vocabulary learning. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 27(6): 1365-2729.
  • Durrant, P. and Schmitt, N. (2010). Adult Learners' Retention of Collocations from Exposure. Second Language Research 26(2), 163-188.
  • Li J. and Schmitt, N. (2010). The Development of Collocation Use in Academic Texts by Advanced L2 Learners: A Multiple Case-Study Approach. In Wood, D. (ed.), Perspectives on Formulaic Language: Acquisition and Communication. Continuum.
  • Liu, A.L.E., Wible, D., Tsao, N.L. (2010). A Corpus-based Approach to Automatic Feedback for Learners' Miscollocations, in Frankenberg-Garcia, A., Flowerdew, L. and Aston, G. (eds.) New Trends in Corpora and Language Learning. London: Continuum
  • Martinez, R. (2010). Book review: Formulaic language, Vols. 1 and 2, Robert Corrigan, Edith Moravcsik, Hamid Ouali, Kathleen Wheatley, 2009. System, 38(1), 152-154.
  • Martinez, R. (2010). Book Review: Optimizing a Lexical Approach to Instructed Second Language Acquisition. System 38(2): 336-338.
  • Martinez, R. and Schmitt, N. (2010). Invited commentary: Vocabulary. Language Learning and Technology, 14(2), 26-19.
  • Pellicer-Sánchez, A. and Schmitt, N. (2010). Incidental Vocabulary Acquisition from an Authentic Novel: Do Things Fall Apart? Reading in a Foreign Language 22, 1: 31-55.
  • Schmitt, N., Ng, J.W.C., and Garras, J. (2010 - online pre-access). The Word Associates Format: Validation Evidence. Language Testing.
  • Sonbul, S. and Schmitt, N. (2010). Direct Teaching of Vocabulary After Reading: Is It Worth the Effort? English Language Teaching Journal 64(3), 253-260.
  • Al-Homoud, F. and Schmitt, N. (2009). Extensive Reading in a Challenging Environment: A Comparison of Extensive and Intensive Reading Approaches in Saudi Arabia. Language Teaching Research 13(4), 383-402.
  • Durrant, P. (2009). Investigating the viability of a collocation list for students of English for Academic Purposes. English for Specific Purposes, 28(3), 157-169. - Winner of Horowitz Prize for best article published in 'English for Specific Purposes' in 2009.
  • Durrant, P. and Schmitt, N. (2009). To What Extent Do Native and Nonnative Writers Make Use of Collocations? International Review of Applied Linguistics 47(2), 157-177.
  • Ishii, T. and Schmitt, N. (2009). Developing an Integrated Diagnostic Test of Vocabulary Size and Depth. RELC Journal 40(1), 5-22.
  • Li, J. and Schmitt, N. (2009). The Acquisition of Lexical Phrases in Academic Writing: A Longitudinal Case Study. Journal of Second Language Writing 18(2), 85-102.
  • Martinez, R. (2009). Book review: Contemporary corpus linguistics, Paul Baker, 2009. System, 37(4), 542-544.
  • Martinez, R. (2009). Book review: Formulaic language: Pushing the boundaries, Alison Wray, 2008. System, 37(3), 542-544.


Conference presentations

'Formulaic Language Comes in Different Flavors: Implications for the Acquisition, Assessment, and Pedagogy of Formulaic Sequences', Colloquium at AAAL (2014, Portland, Oregon)

The Vocabulary Research group held a colloquium related to formulaic language at AAAL 2014 in Portland. Summaries of the talks are available here:

Programme of the colloquium

Adolphs & Knight - Capturing Formulaic Sequences ‘In the Wild’

Garnier - Phrasal Verbs are Lexemes with their own Polysemy, Connotation, and Collocations

Macis - Word Partners or Phrasemes?  Two Distinct Types of Collocation

Rodgers - There is so much Formulaic Language: How can it be taught?

Schmitt -  The Acquisition of Formulaic Language: The Type of Formulaic Sequence Makes a Difference

Vilkaite & Gyllstad - Formulaic Language: How can it be Assessed?

  • Schmitt, N. & Read, J. Presentation at the Language Testing Research Colloquium LTRC (2014, Amsterdam).
  • Vilkaite, L. Presentation on 'Formulaic Language is Not All the Same: Comparing the Frequency of Idioms, Collocations, Lexical Bundles and Phrasal Verbs' at the IVACS conference (2014, Newcastle).
  • Schmitt, N. Presentation on 'Size and Depth of Vocabulary' at the Vocab@Vic conference (2013, Wellington, NZ).
  • Schmitt, N. Presentation on Formulaic Language at the 3rd International Conference on Foreign Language Teaching and Applied Linguistics (2013, Sarajevo).
  • Capel, A. and Martinez, R. EPP Wordlists: Validation and future developments. Research presented for the English Profile Seminar, Cambridge, UK, February 4, 2010.
  • Liu, A.L.E. Multi-word discourse markers in use: the patterns in spoken and written corpora, Paper presented at the 31st ICAME conference, May 2010, Giessen University, Germany.Liu, A.L.E. Seeking Psycholinguistic evidence in learners' pragmatic awareness. A case of multi-word discourse markers. Paper presented at BAAL 2010, Aberdeen.
  • Liu, A.L.E. Use of multi-word discourse markers in the EFL writing: evidence from the Bulgarian, Chinese, Japanese and Russian subcorpora of the International Corpus of Learner English, Paper presented at the 5th IVACS conference, June 2010, University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom.
  • Liu, A.L.E.,Tsao, N.L. and Wible, D. Casting lexical anchors: an exploration of multiword concessives in BNC and two learner corpora. Poster presentation at the 9th Teaching and Language Corpora (TaLC 9), Czech Republic, July 1-3, 2010.
  • Martinez, R. Development of a list of multiword expressions for language teaching and testing. Paper presented at the The Fifth Inter-Varietal Applied Corpus Studies (IVACS) Conference, Edinburgh, UK, June 19, 2010.
  • Martinez, R. Evidence of lack of processing of multiword lexical items in reading tests. Paper presented at the Language Testing Research Colloquium (LTRC 2010), Cambridge, UK, April 14, 2010.
  • Martinez, R. Fluency: the big role of little words. Paper presented at Pearson TDC Privelege, Salvador, Sao Paulo, Curitiba, and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 8-14 September 2010.
  • Martinez, R. Islands of Reliability. Plenary speech delivered at Pearson Education 'Amazing Minds' event in Sao Paulo, Brazil, 5 September 2010.
  • Martinez, R. The effect of frequency and idiomaticity in L2 reading comprehension. Paper presented at the Formulaic Language Research Network (FLaRN) Conference, University of Paderborn, Germany, March 24, 2010 .
  • Martinez, R. Validating the English Profile Wordlists: How do learners use phrases? Paper accepted for presentation at the English Profile Seminar, Colegio de Doctores y Licenciados, Madrid, Spain, 22-12 October 2010.
  • Pellicer-Sánchez, A. 'Acquiring automaticity of lexical access in the FL classroom', BAAL Language Learning and Teaching SIG 6th Annual Conference, 8-9 July 2010, King's College London, UK.
  • Pellicer-Sánchez, A. 'Assessing students' lexcial knowledge using reaction times (RTs)'. EUROSLA 20, 1-4 September 2010, University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Italy.
  • Pellicer-Sánchez, A. 'Effective Vocabulary Teaching'. (invited talk) Annual General Meeting, Language Center, June 2010, University of Nottingham, UK.
  • Pellicer-Sánchez, A. 'Implicit and explicit approaches to vocabulary learning: Acquiring declarative knowledge and automaticity of lexical access'. BAAL 42, 9-11 September 2010, University of Aberdeen, UK.
  • Schmitt, N. & Pellicer-Sánchez, A. ' Vocabulary size and Nation 2006'. BAAL 42, Vocabulary Studies Colloquium, 9-11 September 2010, University of Aberdeen, UK.
  • Liu, A.L.E. Wible, D. and Tsao, N.L. New Corpus Tools for Investigating the Acquisition of Formulaic Chunks in L2. Paper delivered at The Fifth Corpus Linguistics Conference, University of Liverpool, UK, July 21-23, 2009.
  • Liu, A.L.E., Wible, D. and Tsao, N.L. Automated Suggestions for Miscollocations, The NAACLWorkshop on Innovative Use of NLP for Building Educational Applications, Boulder, Colorado, May 31-June 5, 2009.
  • Martinez, R. A Phrasal Expressions List for Language Testing. Poster presentation for the Language Testing Forum (LTF), University of Bedfordshire, UK, November 22, 2009.
  • Martinez, R. Teaching chunks of language. A teacher training seminar presented for the OISE Group, Oxford, UK, May 27, 2009.
  • Pellicer-Sánchez, A. Automatic scoring of vocabulary test: Does it work? Poster presentation for the Language Testing Forum (LTF), University of Bedfordshire, UK, November 22, 2009.
  • Tsao, N.L., Wible, D.and Liu, A.L.E. A Browser-based Corpus-Driven Error Correction Tool for Individualized Second Language Learning. Paper delivered at The Fifth Corpus Linguistics Conference, University of Liverpool, UK, July 21-23, 2009.


In press

  • Schmitt, N. (in press). Size and depth of vocabulary knowledge: What the research shows. Language Learning.


Under review

  • Pellicer-Sánchez, A. (under review). Developing Lexical Automaticity: The Effects of Incidental and Explicit Teaching Approaches.


In preparation

  • Martinez, R. (under commission). Researching Collocations in Another Language, Andy Barsfield and Henrik Gyllstad (Eds). International Journal of Applied Linguistics
  • Van Zeeland, H. and Schmitt, N. (in preparation). Lexical coverage and L2 listening comprehension: How much does vocabulary knowledge contribute to understanding spoken language?

Public Engagement

Language Testing Forum 2013

The Language Testing Forum 2013 was held in Nottingham on November 15 - 17, 2013. It was co-hosted by the University of Nottingham and Nottingham Trent University. The conference organizers were Norbert Schmitt and Diane Schmitt. The theme for the featured sessions of LTF 2013 was "Language Testing: Past, Present, and Future". More information and files can be found on the Language Testing Forum 2013 Homepage


Back to top

Centre for Research in Applied Linguistics

The University of Nottingham

telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 5900
fax: +44 (0) 115 951 5924