Vol. 157 (2009) ► pp.45–74
The Effect of Extensive Instruction on Learning the Passive Voice in Intermediate ESL
This study investigates the effect of extensive form-focused instruction on a complex point of grammar, the passive voice in English. Subjects were 40 Sinophone ESL students in Grade 8 to 11, ranging in age from 13 to 17 (mean = 14.8). After a battery of pre-tests, subjects underwent an instructional phase of 7.5 hours during which they received explicit instruction on the forms and functions of the passive voice, enhanced input, implicit and negative feedback, and did a variety of exercises, from highly structured to guided writing. Post-tests were administered three weeks after the end of the instruction phase. Results showed that treatment had a significant effect on subjects\u2019 learning of the passive voice, and that the subjects were able to transfer their explicit knowledge to a communicative writing task.