Document Type : Research Paper

Authors

1 Department of English Language,, Islamic Azad University, Shiraz Branch, Shiraz,, Iran.

2 Department of Foreign Languages and Linguistics, , Shiraz University , Shiraz, Iran.

3 Majan University College, Muscat, Oman.

4 Department of English Language, Islamic Azad University, Shiraz Branch, Shiraz, Iran.

10.22034/elt.2021.46449.2401

Abstract

This quantitative study aimed to investigate the combined effects of two types of strategic planning, namely collaborative and teacher-led planning conditions and task complexity on Iranian intermediate language learners' oral production in terms of complexity, accuracy, and fluency. To achieve this purpose, 90 EFL learners were selected through convenience sampling from a language institute in Shiraz, Iran, and randomly assigned to two control and four experimental groups. The study adopted a quasi-experimental design in the form of pretest, treatment, and posttest. In the first step, all participants took part in a speaking pretest in which they were required to narrate a story based on a series of picture description tasks. While the experimental groups underwent 10 treatment sessions of picture description task performance along with two planning types i.e., teacher-led and collaborative planning conditions, the control groups were not allowed to plan the task performance. In the last session, the language learners took a posttest whose results were compared with those of the pretest. The findings revealed that the language learners in the collaborative planning groups outperformed the other groups in terms of both fluency and complexity. Further, teacher-led groups did better than the other groups in terms of accuracy. This study carries crucial implications for EFL teachers, material developers, syllabus designers, and speaking skill examiners.

Keywords

Main Subjects

Abdollahzadeh, S., & Fard Kashani, A. (2012). The effect of task complexity on EFL learners’ narrative writing task performance. Journal of English Language Teaching and Learning3(8), 1-28.
Ahangari, S., & Abdi, M. (2011). The effect of pre-task planning on the accuracy and complexity of Iranian EFL learners’ oral performance. Procedia-Social and Behavioral Sciences29, 1950-1959.
Bulté, B. & Housen, A. (2012). Defining and operationalizing L2 complexity. In Housen A, Kuiken F, and Vedder I (eds) Dimensions of L2 performance and proficiency: Investigating complexity, accuracy, and fluency in SLA. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: Benjamins, 21–46.
Bygate, M. (2016). Domains and directions in the development of TBLT: A decade of plenaries from the international conference. Philadelphia: John Benjamins.
Cohen, J. W. (1988). Statistical power analysis for the behavioral sciences (2nd ). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
East, M. (2014). Encouraging innovation in a modern foreign language initial teacher education program: What do beginning teachers make of task-based language teaching? The Language Learning Journal, 42(3), 261–274.
 Elder, C. A., & Iwashita, N. (2005). Planning for test performance: Does it make a difference? In Rod Ellis (Ed.), Planning and task performance in a second language (pp. 219–238). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Ellis, R. (2003). Task-based language learning and teaching. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Ellis, R. (2005). Planning and task-based research: Theory and research. In R. Ellis (Ed.), Planning and task performance in a second language. John Benjamins.
 Ellis, R. (2008). The study of second language acquisition (2nd edition). Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Ellis, R. (2009). The differential effects of three types of task planning on fluency, complexity, and accuracy in L2 oral production. Applied linguistics, 30(4), 474-509.
Ellis, R., & Barkhuizen, G. (2005). Analyzing Learner Language. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Ellis, R. & Yuan, F. (2004). The effects of planning on fluency, complexity, and accuracy in second language narrative writing. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 26(1), 59-84.
Farrokhi, F., & Sattarpour, S. (2017). Different task complexity factors and cognitive individual differences: The effects on EFL writers’ performance. Applied Research on English Language6(3), 387-410.
Foster, P., & Skehan, P. (1996). The influence of planning and task type on second language performance. Studies in Second Language Acquisition18(3), 299-323.
Foster, P., & Skehan, P. (1999). The influence of source of planning and focus of planning on task-based performance. Language Teaching Research, 3, 215-247.
Geng, X., & Ferguson, G. (2013). Strategic planning in task-based language teaching: The effects of participatory structure and task type. System41(4), 982-993.
Gilabert, R. (2007). The simultaneous manipulation of task complexity along planning time and [+/-Here-and-Now]: Effects on L2 oral production. Investigating Tasks in Formal Language Learning20, 44-68.
Heidari-Shahreza, M. A., Dabaghi, A., & Kassaian, Z. (2011). The effects of manipulating task complexity on the occurrence of language-related episodes during learner-learner interaction. Porta Linguarum, 17, 173-188.
Housen, A., & Kuiken, F. (2009). Complexity, accuracy, and fluency in second language acquisition. Applied linguistics30(4), 461-473.
Housen, A., Kuiken, F., & Vedder, I. (2012), Complexity, accuracy and fluency: Definitions, measurement and research. In A. Housen, F. Kuiken, & I. Vedder (Eds.), Dimensions of L2 Performance and Proficiency (pp. 1-21). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Ishikawa, T. (2006). ‘The Effect of manipulating task complexity along the [+/– Here-and-Now] dimension on L2 written narrative discourse’. In M.P. García Mayo (ed.), Investigating tasks in formal language learning. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters, 136-156.
Kang, S. (2018). The effects of individual vs. collaborative pre-task planning on Korean middle school learners’ English oral task performance under different task complexity. Korean Journal of English Language and Linguistics, 18(3), 306-327.
Kim, S. Y. (2009). Questioning the stability of foreign language classroom anxiety and motivation across different classroom contexts. Foreign Language Annals42(1), 138-157.
Kormos, J. (2011). Speech production and the Cognition Hypothesis. In P.Robinson (Eds.), Second language task complexity: Researching the Cognition Hypothesis of language learning and performance (pp. 39-61). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Kuiken, F., & Vedder, I. (2011). Task complexity and linguistic performance in L2 writing and speaking. In Robinson, P. (Ed.), Second language task complexity: Researching the Cognition Hypothesis of language learning and performance, 91-104. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Lennon, P. (2000). The Lexical Element in Spoken Second Language Fluency. In H. Riggenbach (Eds.), Perspectives on Fluency (pp. 25-42). Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.
Lee, J. (2018). Task complexity, cognitive load, and l1 speech. Applied Linguistics40(3), 506-539.
Long, M. (2015). Second language acquisition and task-based language teaching. Malden, MA: Wiley- Blackwell.
Mehnert, U. (1998). The effects of different lengths of time for planning on second language performance. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 20, 83–108.
Michel, M. C. (2011). Effects of task complexity and interaction on L2 performance. In Robinson, P. (Ed.), Second language task complexity: Researching the Cognition Hypothesis of language learning and performance2, 141-173. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Moattarian, A., Tahririan, M., Alibabaee, A. (2019). Task Complexity Manipulation and EFL learners’ interactions in the process of collaborative pre-planning. Applied Research on English Language, 8(1), 51-78.
 Mohazabieh, S., Sahragard,  R., Rassaei, E.,  Zamanian., M  (2020). The potential combined effects of task complexity and planning types on Iranian EFL learners’ oral production performance. Applied Research on English Language9(4), 503-538.
Nasiri, M., & Atai, M. R. (2017). An investigation into the effects of joint planning on complexity, accuracy, and fluency across task complexity. Journal of English Language Teaching and Learning9(20), 49-74.
Nuevo, A. M. (2006). Task complexity and interaction: L2 learning opportunities and development (Doctoral dissertation), Georgetown University.
Robinson, P. (2001a). Task complexity, cognitive resources, and syllabus design: A triadic framework for examining task influences on SLA. In P. Robinson (Ed.), Cognition and second language instruction (pp. 287- 318). Cambridge: CUP.
Robinson, P. (2001b). Individual differences, cognitive abilities, aptitude complexes, and learning conditions in second language acquisition. Second Language Research, 17(4), 368-392.
Robinson, P. (2001c). Task complexity, task difficulty, and task production: Exploring interactions in a componential framework, Applied Linguistics, 22(1), 27-57.
Robinson, P. (2003). The cognition hypothesis, task design, and adult task-based language learning. Second Language Studies, 21(2), 45- 105.
Robinson, P. (2005). Cognitive complexity and task sequencing: Studies in a componential framework for second language task design. International Review of Applied Linguistics, 43, 1–32
Robinson, P. (2007). Task complexity, theory of mind, and intentional reasoning: Effects on L2 speech production, interaction, uptake, and perceptions of task difficulty. International Review of Applied Linguistics, 45, 237-257.
Robinson, P. (2010). Situating and distributing cognition across task demands: The SSARC model of pedagogic task sequencing. In Pütz, M. & Sicola, L. (Eds.), Cognitive processing in second language acquisition (pp. 243–268). Amsterdam, The Netherlands: Benjamins
Robinson, P. (2011). Second language task complexity, the cognition hypothesis, language learning, and performance. In P. Robinson (Ed.), Second language task complexity: Researching the cognition hypothesis of language learning and performance (pp. 3– 38). Philadelphia/Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Salimi, A. (2015). The effect of focus on form and task complexity on L2 learners' oral task performance. Advances in Language and Literary Studies, 6(6), 54-62.
Skehan, P. (1996). A framework for the implementation of task-based instruction. Applied Linguistics 17(1), 38–62.
Skehan, P., & Foster, P. (1997). Task type and task processing conditions as influences on foreign language performance. Language Teaching Research, 1(3), 185−211.
Skehan, P. (1998). A cognitive approach to language learning. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
 Skehan, P. (2001). Tasks and language performance assessment. In M. Bygate, P. Skehan, & M. Swain (Eds.), Researching pedagogic tasks: Second language learning, teaching, and testing (pp. 167–185). New York/London: Longman.
Skehan, P. (2014). The context for researching a processing perspective on task performance. In P. Skehan (Ed.), Processing perspectives on task performance (pp. 1–26). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Skehan, P., & Foster, P. (1997). Task type and task processing conditions as influences on foreign language performance. Language Teaching Research, 1(3), 185−211.
Skehan, P., & Foster, P. (1999). The influence of task structure and processing conditions on narrative retellings. Language Learning49(1), 93-120
Tavakoli, P., & Skehan, P. (2005). Strategic planning, task structure, and performance testing. In R. Ellis (Eds.), Planning and Task Performance in a Second Language (pp. 239-277). Amsterdam: John Benjamins.
Thompson, C. (2014). Guided planning, task complexity and second language oral development (Doctoral dissertation)), University of Central Lancashire).
Wang, Z., (2014). On-line time pressure manipulations: L2 speaking performance under five types of planning and repetition conditions. In Skehan, P. (Ed.), Processing perspectives on task performance (pp. 27-62). John Benjamins Publishing Company.
Wendel, J. (1997). Planning and second language narrative production. Unpublished Ph.D. Thesis, Temple University, Japan
Yuan, F., & Ellis, R. (2003). The effects of pre‐task planning and on‐line planning on fluency, complexity, and accuracy in L2 monologic oral production. Applied Linguistics24(1), 1-27.
Yuan, F., & Ellis, R. (2005). The effect of careful within-task planning on oral production and written task performance. In Ellis, R. (Ed.), Language learning & language teaching: planning and task performance in second language (pp. 167-192). Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Company.