The Effect of Using WhatsApp on Iranian EFL Learners’ Vocabulary Learning

Arash Hashemifardnia, Ehsan Namaziandost, Fariba Rahimi Esfahani


This study investigated the effects of using WhatsApp on Iranian EFL learners’ vocabulary learning. To fulfil this objective, 50 Iranian female participants were selected among 80 students from Adiban English language institute, Baghmalek, Khuzestan, Iran. They were at the intermediate level of English proficiency based on the results of Oxford Quick Placement Test (OQPT). The selected participants were then randomly divided into two equal groups; one experimental group and one control group. Afterwards, the researcher gauged their proficiency level of English vocabulary knowledge by a vocabulary pre-test. Then, the English words were instructed to the experimental group through WhatsApp; they used WhatsApp in order to practice the selected words outside of the L2 classroom. In fact, the researcher formed a group in WhatsApp and through the channel he sent the words to the participants in the experimental group. On the other hand, the control group received the word instruction through the traditional method. In the control group, the participants took part in in-door classes and the words were taught to them by the researcher in a face to face fashion. The whole instruction lasted 8 sessions. In the first two sessions the OQPT and the pre-test were administered respectively; in 5 sessions the treatment was applied, and in the last session the post-test was given to the participants of both experimental and control groups to determine the impacts of WhatsApp on the students’ vocabulary learning. The results of paired samples and an independent samples t-tests indicate that there was a significant difference between the post-tests of the experimental and the control groups. The findings reveal that the experimental group significantly outperformed the control group (p < .05) on the post-test.


Technology, WhatsApp, Vocabulary learning

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