EFL Teachers' and Students' Perceptions of Dictionary Use and Preferences

Eid Alhaisoni


The present study provides insights into the perception of EFL teachers (Native and Non-native) and students of dictionary use. Participants were 99 (56 NS and 43 NNS) EFL teachers and 3993 (1815 male and 2178 female) students and were invited to respond to a questionnaires. 40 students participated in a follow-up interview. The results indicate that students overwhelmingly prefer bilingual dictionary to another type of dictionaries. Moreover, the students reported using online dictionaries and Google translator significantly more than print dictionaries. The study also revealed that meaning was reported to be the most lexical information sought by the subjects of the current study. Furthermore, the findings showed that most of the students refer to their dictionaries for word meaning and spelling but pay little attention to other aspects such as pronunciation, illustrated examples, and collocations. The findings revealed that EFL teachers held different perceptions on the role of the dictionary in their learning and teaching experiences. The results of the study suggest that the EFL teachers should incorporate ongoing training about dictionary use in the teaching-learning process and make the students aware of the extensive vocabulary input available in the standard dictionaries. Exposure to the parts of speech and collocation in dictionary entries can be useful for improving productive language abilities.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5296/ijl.v8i6.10267

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