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Call for Collaborators: Effects of Attention to form on 2nd lang. comprehension
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A multi-sire replication study

9/11/2015 to 12/1/2015
When: 9/11/2015
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We are inviting international collaborators to participate in a multi-site replication. The procedures and materials are registered with the Open Science Framework. Please see for more details and to participate.

Effects of attention to form on second language comprehension: A multi-site replication study


1) There is a paucity of high quality replication in the field of second language learning research. Very large scale replication initiatives are happening in psychology, using open access platforms to make the research process more transparent. The current project adopts similar procedures to assess its feasibility in our field. 2) These replications will improve our understanding of whether consciously attending to the form of language (morphosyntax or the lexicon) interferes with comprehension - a critical issue for both pedagogy and theory - and we test whether the modality of the input affects the findings. We hope that collaborators will join the team to investigate the role of the first language, by using participants with an L1 other than English.


We are investigating the effects of attending to form whilst hearing or reading. The studies will replicate and extend the line of research inspired by VanPatten (1990), including Greenslade, Bouden, and Sanz (1999), Leow, Hsieh, and Moreno (2008), Morgan-Short, Heil, Botero-Moriarty, and Ebert (2012), and Wong (2001). There are two versions of the study: one in the oral modality (listening) and one in the written (reading). About 70 low-mid intermediate learners of Spanish are required for each version. All materials and procedures have been finalized and are ready to distribute to collaborators via the Open Science Framework. Each version takes about 40 minutes to administer: a passage to comprehend, some comprehension questions, and a proficiency test. Sites may choose to administer one or both versions of the study.


The project is being led by Emma Marsden (University of York) and Kara Morgan-Short (University of Illinois at Chicago). It is funded by a Language Learning small grant. Other project partners include Professor Ron Leow (Georgetown University) and Professor Roumyana Slabakova (University of Southampton, UK). Collaborations are welcome from any bona fide researcher who has access to the required number of participants, hardware and appropriate software (the specific software used is negotiable). Collaborators must agree to use registered materials and procedures, as posted to the Open Science Framework. In particular, we encourage involvement from those with access to participants who do not have English as their first language, e.g., a language that is not inflectionally rich.


Preferably data will be collected in the FALL term, by end December 2015. However, all data collection should be complete by the end April 2016.


Please see for more details and to participate.

For queries, please email the PIs: and


Greenslade, T. A., Bouden, L., & Sanz, C. (1999). Attending to form and content in processing L2 reading texts. Spanish Applied Linguistics, 3, 65-90.

Leow, R. P., Hsieh, H., & Moreno, N. (2008). Attention to form and meaning revisited. Language Learning, 58, 665-695.

Morgan-Short, K., & Bowden, H. W. (2006). Processing instruction and meaningful output-based instruction: Effects on second language development. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 28, 31-65.

VanPatten, B. (1990). Attending to form and content in the input: An experiment in consciousness. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 12, 287-301.

Wong , W. (2001). Modality and attention to meaning and form in the input. Studies in
Second Language Acquisition, 23, 345-368.

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