Vocabulary Instruction Strategies Employed by Cambodian EFL High School Teachers in Takeo Province

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Despite the importance of vocabulary instruction to the long-term success of students learning, it is unclear as to whether teachers use best practices in their teaching of vocabulary. The purpose of this study is to investigate the vocabulary instruction strategies adopted by Cambodian EFL high school English teachers in Takeo Province.  It is also three main aims were (1) to obtain a better understanding of the teachers’ perceptions of what strategies are effective in presenting unknown vocabulary and consolidating words in memory as well as the reasons for their beliefs, (2) to explore the differences of vocabulary instruction strategies, and (3) examine their problems faced in vocabulary instruction strategies used. A total of 102 grade 6 Thai EFL primary school teachers participated in the study, four of whom were interviewed, selected by using the Table of Krejcie & Morgan, stratified random sampling, and simple random sampling, respectively. The research instruments for the data collection included: (1) vocabulary instruction strategies questionnaire; (2) video-taped lessons; and (3) semi-structured interviews. The statistics for data analysis included percentage, mean, standard deviation, independent samples t-test, and One-way ANOVA. The significant difference was set at the level of .05.

The findings were as follows:

  1. The vocabulary instruction strategies employed by Cambodian EFL high school teachers in Takeo Province as a whole were at “moderate” levels. When considering at each aspect, it was found that direct vocabulary instruction strategies (DVIS), and consolidating vocabulary instruction strategies (CVIS) were at “high” levels; whereas, the indirect vocabulary instruction strategies (IVIS) was at “moderate” level. The ranking from the highest to the lowest mean scores were CVIS, DVIS, and IVIS, respectively.
  2. The comparison of the vocabulary instruction strategies employed by Cambodian EFL high school teachers in Takeo Province in terms of gender, teaching experience, and educational background were not different. When considering in major, it was revealed that direct vocabulary instruction strategies, and consolidating vocabulary instruction strategies were statistically significant difference at .05 levels; whereas, the indirect vocabulary instruction strategies were not different.
  3. The video-taped lessons and interviews with teachers about the problems faced in vocabulary instruction strategies categorized into three separate subcategories were: (1) DVIS: they liked to use pictures, real objects, and L1 to explain new words. They also liked to teach students to study pronunciation and spelling of a word and teach vocabulary by verbal repetition; (2) IVIS: they frequently used by getting students to learn vocabulary through interacting with native speakers or English teachers as well as through presentations and discussions; and (3) CVIS: they asked students to study the pronunciation, spelling, and meaning of a word regularly. Implications for theory, practice, and future research are discussed.


This research is conducted by Prak  Sanon in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirement for the Degree of Master of Education in Educational Administration and Leadership at Master of Education program, Royal University of Phnom Penh.


For more information or access this research, please go to get a permission from Faulty of Education at Royal University of Phnom Penh or directly contact by the author, Prak  Sanon, via emal: praksanon@yahoo.com


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