Dr Frank Boers

Professor

Profile

My early research interests (in the 1990s) were in the areas of lexicology, metaphor studies, and comparative linguistics. This is reflected in articles I published in journals such as Metaphor and Symbol and chapters in edited volumes representing a school of thought in linguistics that was relatively novel at the time—Cognitive Linguistics. However, my more recent research interests stem from my extensive experience as a language teacher and teacher trainer and, since the 2000s, I have published mostly on matters of second/foreign language teaching. A recurring theme in my research concerns the effectiveness of pedagogic interventions for making words, expressions, and patterns memorable for language learners. This pedagogy-oriented work has appeared in journals such as Applied Linguistics, TESOL Quarterly, Language Teaching Research, Studies in Second Language Acquisition, The Modern Language Journal, System, Language Teaching, International Journal of Applied Linguistics, and Annual Review of Applied Linguistics. I have also authored, edited, and contributed to several books. My latest monograph is Evaluating second language vocabulary and grammar instruction: A synthesis of the research on teaching words, phrases, and patterns (published by Routledge in 2021). From 2014 to 2018, I served as editor of the journal Language Teaching Research (5-year impact factor in 2020: 3.118).

Google Scholar citations page: ‪Frank Boers‬ - ‪Google Scholar‬‬‬

Expertise Areas

Recent Publications

A selection of my publications in the field of Applied Linguistics

Additional work available at Google Scholar.

Articles in peer-reviewed journals

Majuddin, E., Siyanova-Chanturia, A., & Boers, F. (2021). Incidental acquisition of multiword expressions through audiovisual input: The role of repetition and typographic enhancement. Studies in Second Language Acquisition. Online First.

Lu, C., Boers, F., & Coxhead, A. (2021). Exploring learners’ understanding of technical vocabulary in Traditional Chinese Medicine. Studies in Second Language Learning and Teaching, 11, 71–101.

Boers, F., Bryfonski, L., Faez, F., & McKay, T. (2020). A call for cautious interpretation of meta-analytic reviews. Studies in Second Language Acquisition. Online First.

Elgort, I., Beliaeva, N, & Boers, F. (2020). Contextual word learning in the first and second language: Definition placement and interference error effects on declarative and non-declarative knowledge. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 42, 7–32.

Bui, T., Boers, F., & Coxhead, A. (2020). Extracting multiword expressions from texts with the aid of on-line resources: A classroom experiment. ITL International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 171, 221–252.

Strong, B., & Boers, F. (2019). Weighing up exercises on phrasal verbs: Retrieval versus trial-and-error practices. The Modern Language Journal, 103, 562–579.

Thomson, H., Boers, F., & Coxhead, A. (2019). Replication research in pedagogical approaches to spoken fluency and formulaic sequences: A call for replication of Wood (2009) and Boers, Eyckmans, Kappel, Stengers and Demecheleer (2006). Language Teaching, 52, 406–414.

Strong, B., & Boers, F. (2019). The error in trial and error: Exercises on phrasal verbs. TESOL Quarterly, 53, 289–319.

Nguyen, C-D., & Boers, F. (2019). The effect of content retelling on vocabulary uptake from a TED talk. TESOL Quarterly, 53, 5–29.

Gharibi, K. & Boers, F. (2019). Influential factors in lexical richness of young heritage speakers’ family language: Iranians in New Zealand. International Journal of Bilingualism, 23, 381–399.

Warren, P, Boers, F., Grimshaw, G., & Siyanova-Chanturia, A. (2018). The effect of gloss type of learners’ intake of new words during reading: Evidence from eye tracking. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 40, 883–906.

Hoang, H., & Boers, F. (2018). Gauging the association of EFL learners’ writing proficiency and their use of metaphorical language. System, 74, 1–8.

Mohd Jelani, N. A., & Boers, F. (2018). Examining incidental vocabulary acquisition from captioned video: Does test modality matter? ITL International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 169, 169–190.

Boers, F., & Webb, S. (2018). Teaching and learning collocation in adult second and foreign language learning. Language Teaching, 51, 77-89.

Boers, F., & Thai, C. (2017). Repeating a monologue under increasing time pressure: A replication of Thai and Boers (2016) Tesolanz Journal, 25, 1-10.

Boers, F., Warren, P., Grimshaw, G., & Siyanova-Chanturia, A. (2017). On the benefits of multimodal annotations for vocabulary uptake from reading. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 30, 709–725.

Boers, F., Warren, P., He, L., & Deconinck, J. (2017). Does adding pictures to glosses enhance vocabulary uptake from reading? System, 66, 113–129.

Boers, F., Demecheleer, M., He, L., Deconinck, J., Stengers, H., & Eyckmans, J. (2017). Typographic enhancement of multiword units in second language text. International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 27, 448–469.

Boers, F., Dang, C.T., & Strong, B. (2017). Comparing the effectiveness of phrase-focused exercises. A partial replication of Boers, Demecheleer, Coxhead, and Webb (2014). Language Teaching Research, 21, 362–280.

Gharibi, K. & Boers, F. (2017). Influential factors in incomplete acquisition and attrition of young heritage speakers’ vocabulary knowledge. Language Acquisition, 24, 52–69.

Deconinck, J., Boers, F., & Eyckmans, J.  (2017). “Does the form of this word fit its meaning?” The effect of learner-generated mapping elaborations on L2 word recall. Language Teaching Research, 21, 31–53 .

Hoang, H. & Boers, F. (2016). Re-telling a story in a second language: How well do adult learners mine an input text for multiword expressions? Studies in Second Language Learning and Teaching, 6: 513–535.

Thai, C. & Boers, F. (2016). Repeating a monologue under increasing time pressure: Effects on fluency, accuracy and complexity. TESOL Quarterly, 50, 369–393.

Eyckmans, J., Boers, F., & Lindstromberg, S. (2016). The impact of imposing processing strategies on L2 learners’ deliberate study of lexical phrases. System, 56, 127–139.

Stengers, H., Deconinck, J., Boers, F., & Eyckmans, J. (2016). Does copying idioms promote their retention? Computer Assisted Language Learning, 29, 289–301.

Stengers, H. & Boers, F. (2015). Exercises on collocations: A comparison of trial-and-error and exemplar-guided procedures. Journal of Spanish Language Teaching, 2, 152-164.

Boers, F. (2014). A reappraisal of the 4/3/2 activity. RELC Journal, 45, 221–235.

Boers, F., Eyckmans, J., & Lindstromberg, S. (2014). The effect of a discrimination task on recall of L2 collocations and compounds. International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 24, 357–369.

Deconinck, J., Boers, F., & Eyckmans, J. (2014). Looking for form-meaning motivation in new L2 words: A think-aloud study among proficient learners of English. English Text Construction 7, 249–280.

Boers, F., Lindstromberg, S., & Eyckmans, J. (2014). Is alliteration mnemonic without awareness raising? Language Awareness, 23, 291–303 .

Boers, F., Lindstromberg, S, & Webb, S. (2014). Further evidence of the comparative memorability of alliterative expressions in second language learning. RELC Journal, 45, 85–99 .

Boers, F., Lindstromberg, S., & Eyckmans, J. (2014). When does assonance make L2 lexical phrases memorable? The European Journal of Applied Linguistics and TEFL, 3, 93–107 .

Boers, F., Lindstromberg, S., & Eyckmans, J. (2014). Some explanations for the slow acquisition of L2 collocations. VIAL - Vigo International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 11, 41–62 .

Boers, F., Demecheleer, M., Coxhead, A., & Webb, S. (2014). Gauging the effects of exercises on verb-noun collocations. Language Teaching Research, 18: 54–74.

Godfroid, A., Boers, F., & Housen, A. (2013). An eye for words: Gauging the role of attention in L2 vocabulary acquisition by means of eye tracking. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 35, 483–517.

Boers, F. (2013). Cognitive Linguistic approaches to second language vocabulary: Assessment and integration. Language Teaching, 46: 208–224 .

Boers, F. & Lindstromberg, S. (2012). Experimental and intervention studies on formulaic sequences in a second language. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics 32, 83–110.

Boers, F., Lindstromberg, S., & Eyckmans, J. (2012). Are alliterative word combinations comparatively easy to remember for adult learners? RELC Journal, 43, 127−135.

Stengers, H., Boers, F., Housen, A., & Eyckmans, J. (2011). Formulaic sequences and L2 oral proficiency: Does the type of target language influence the association? International Review of Applied Linguistics, 49, 321–343.

Boers, F. (2011) Cognitive Semantic ways of teaching figurative phrases: An assessment. Review of Cognitive Linguistics, 9. 227–261 .

Deconinck, J., Boers, F., & Eyckmans, J. (2010). Helping learners engage with L2 words: the form-meaning fit. AILA Review, 23, 95–114.

Boers, F., Piquer Píriz, A. M., Stengers, H., & Eyckmans, J. (2009). Does pictorial elucidation foster recollection of figurative idioms? Language Teaching Research, 13, 367–388.

Lindstromberg, S. & Boers, F. (2008). The mnemonic effect of noticing alliteration in lexical chunks. Applied Linguistics, 29, 200–222.

Lindstromberg, S. & Boers, F. (2008). Phonemic repetition and the learning of lexical chunks: The mnemonic power of assonance. System, 36, 423–36.

Boers, F., Eyckmans, J., & Stengers, H. (2007). Presenting figurative idioms with a touch of etymology: More than mere mnemonics? Language Teaching Research, 11, 43–62.

Eyckmans, J., Boers, F., & Stengers, H. (2007). Identifying chunks: Who can see the wood for the trees? Language Forum, 33, 85–100.

Boers, F, Eyckmans, J., Kappel, J., Stengers, H., & Demecheleer, M. (2006). Formulaic sequences and perceived oral proficiency: Putting a lexical approach to the test. Language Teaching Research, 10: 245–261.

Boers, F. & Lindstromberg, S. (2005). Finding ways to make phrase learning feasible: The mnemonic effect of alliteration. System, 33, 225–238.

Lindstromberg, S. & Boers, F. (2005). From movement to metaphor with manner-of-movement verbs. Applied Linguistics, 26, 241–261.

Boers, F., Demecheleer, M., & Eyckmans, J. (2004). Cultural variation as a variable in comprehending and remembering figurative idioms. European Journal of English Studies, 8, 375–388.

Boers, F. (2003). Applied linguistics perspectives on cross-cultural variation in conceptual metaphor. Metaphor and Symbol, 18, 231–238. 

Boers, F. & Demecheleer, M. (2001). Measuring the impact of cross-cultural differences on learners’ comprehension of imageable idioms. English Language Teaching, 55, 255–262.

Boers, F. (2001). Remembering figurative idioms by hypothesising about their origin. Prospect, 16, 35–43.

Boers, F. (2000). Metaphor awareness and vocabulary retention. Applied Linguistics, 21, 553–571.

Boers, F. (2000). Enhancing metaphoric awareness in specialised reading. English for Specific Purposes, 19, 137–147.

Boers, F. & Littlemore, J. (2000). Cognitive style variables in participants’ explanations of conceptual metaphors. Metaphor and Symbol, 15, 177–187.

Boers, F. & Demecheleer, M. (1998). A cognitive semantic approach to teaching prepositions. English Language Teaching, 53, 197–204.

Boers, F. (1997). No pain, no gain in a free-market rhetoric: A test for cognitive semantics? Metaphor and Symbol, 12, 231–241.

Monographs and edited volumes

Boers, F. (2021). Evaluating second language vocabulary and grammar instruction: A synthesis of the research on teaching words, phrases, and patterns. Routledge

Boers, F. (2010). Ben je zeker? Nieuwe en achterhaalde stellingen en praktijken in het vreemdetalenonderwijs. ACCO.

De Knop, S., Boers, F., & De Rycker. A. (Eds.) (2010). Fostering language teaching efficiency through cognitive linguistics. Mouton de Gruyter

Boers, F. & Lindstromberg, S. (2009). Optimizing a lexical approach to instructed second language acquisition. Basingstoke, UK: Palgrave Macmillan.

Boers, F. & Lindstromberg, S. (Eds.) (2008) Cognitive linguistic approaches to teaching vocabulary and phraseology. Mouton de Gruyter.

Lindstromberg, S. & Boers, F. (2008). Teaching Chunks of Language. Rum, Austria: Helbling Languages.

Boers, F., Darquennes, J., & Temmerman, R. (Eds.) (2007). Multilingualism and applied comparative linguistics, volume 1: Pedagogical perspectives. Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Boers, F. & Littlemore, J. (Eds.) (2003). Cross-cultural differences in conceptual metaphor: Applied linguistics perspectives. Special Issue of Metaphor and Symbol. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Boers, F. (1996). Spatial prepositions and metaphor: A cognitive semantic journey along the up-down and the front-back Dimensions. Gunter Narr Verlag.

Chapters in edited volumes

Lindstromberg, S., & Boers, F. (in press). Word classes in second language acquisition: Does part of speech influence the learnability of second language vocabulary? In E. Van Lier (Ed.), The Oxford handbook of word classes. Oxford University Press.

Munoz-Basols, J., & Boers, F. (in press). Competence for idiomatic language in L2 Spanish. In J. Barcroft (Ed.), Spanish vocabulary learning in meaning-oriented instruction. Routledge.

Wang, X., Boers, F., & Warren, P. (2020). Using literal underpinnings to help learners remember figurative idioms: Does the connection need to be crystal-clear? In A. Piquer-Piriz & R. Alejo-Gonzalez (Eds.), Metaphor in foreign language instruction (221–239). Mouton de Gruyter.

Boers, F. (2020). Factors affecting the learning of multiword items. In S. Webb (Ed.). The Routledge handbook of vocabulary studies. Routledge.

Mohd Jelani, N. A., & Boers, F. (2020). Examining incidental vocabulary acquisition from captioned video: Does test modality matter? In S. Webb (Ed.), Approaches to learning, testing and researching L2 vocabulary (pp. 196–189).

Piquer-Píriz, A-M, & Boers, F. (2019). La lingüística cognitiva y sus aplicaciones a la enseñanza de lenguas extranjeras. In I. Ibarretxe-Antuñano, T. Cadierno, & A. Castañeda Castro (Eds.), Lingüística cognitiva y español LE/L2. Routledge.

Pellicer-Sánchez. A., & Boers, F. (2018). Pedagogical approaches to the teaching and learning of formulaic language. In A. Siyanova-Chanturia & A. Pellicer- Sánchez (Eds.), Understanding formulaic language: A second language acquisition perspective (153-173). Routledge.

Boers, F. (2018). Learning phrases and chunks. In A. Burns & J. Richards (Eds.), The Cambridge guide to learning English as a second language (176–182) . CUP.

Boers, F. (2018). Incidental and intentional learning of grammar. In J. Liontas (Ed.), TESOL encyclopaedia of English language teaching. Wiley.

Boers, F. (2018). Exploring linguistic motivation. In J. Liontas (Ed.), TESOL encyclopaedia of English language teaching. Wiley.

Boers, F. & Strong, B. (2016). An evaluation of textbook exercises on collocations. In B. Tomlinson (Ed.) Second language acquisition research and materials development for language learning (pp. 139–152). Routledge.

Boers, F. (2015). Words in second language learning and teaching. In J. Taylor (Ed.), The Oxfordhandbook of the word (pp. 582–596). OUP.

Boers, F. & Webb, S. (2015). Gauging the semantic transparency of idioms: Do natives and learners see eye to eye? In R. Heredia & A. Cieslicka (Eds.), Bilingual figurative language processing (pp. 368–392). Cambridge University Press.

Boers, F. (2014). Idioms and phraseology. In J. Taylor & J. Littlemore (Eds.), The Bloomsbury companion to Cognitive Linguistics (pp. 185–201) . Bloomsbury.

Verspoor, M. & Boers, F. (2013). The cognitive linguistics of second language acquisition. In C. Chapelle (Ed.) Encyclopaedia of applied linguistics. Wiley.

Boers, F. (2013). Cognitive Semantic ways of teaching figurative phrases: An assessment. In F. Gonzalvez-Garcia, M. S. Pena Cervel, & L. Perez Hernandez (Eds.), Metaphor and metonymy revisited beyond the contemporary theory of metaphor (pp. 229–263). John Benjamins.

Boers, F., De Rycker, A., & De Knop, S. (2010). Fostering language teaching efficiency through Cognitive Linguistics: Introduction. In S. De Knop, F. Boers & A. De Rycker (Eds.), Fostering language teaching efficiency through Cognitive Linguistics (pp. 1–27). Mouton de Gruyter.

Stengers, H., Boers, F., Housen, A., & Eyckmans. J. (2010). Does chunking foster chunk uptake? In S. De Knop, F. Boers & A. De Rycker (Eds.), Fostering language teaching efficiency through Cognitive Linguistics (99–117). Mouton de Gruyter.

Boers, F., Deconinck, J., & Lindstromberg, S. (2010). Choosing motivated chunks for teaching. In S. De Knop, F. Boers & T. De Rycker (Eds.), Fostering language teaching efficiency through Cognitive Linguistics (pp. 239–256). Mouton de Gruyter.

Godfroid, A., Housen, A., & Boers, F. (2010). A procedure for testing the Noticing Hypothesis in the context of vocabulary acquisition. In M. Pütz & L. Sicola (Eds.) Cognitive processing and second language acquisition: Inside the learner’s mind (pp. 169–197). John Benjamins.

Boers, F. & Stengers, H. (2008). Adding sound to the picture: An exercise in motivating the lexical composition of metaphorical idioms in English, Spanish and Dutch. In L. Cameron, M. Zanotto, & M. Cavalcanti (Eds.), Confronting metaphor in use: An appliedlinguistic approach (pp. 63–78). John Benjamins.

Boers F & Lindstromberg, S. (2008). How cognitive linguistics can foster effective vocabulary teaching. In F. Boers, F. & S. Lindstromberg (Eds.), Cognitive Linguistic approaches to teaching vocabulary and phraseology (pp. 1–61). Mouton de Gruyter.

Boers, F., Lindstromberg, S., Littlemore, J., Stengers, H., & Eyckmans, J. (2008). Variables in the mnemonic effectiveness of pictorial elucidation. In F. Boers & S. Lindstromberg (Eds.), Cognitive Linguistic approaches to teaching vocabulary and phraseology (pp. 189–116). Mouton de Gruyter.

Boers, F. & Lindstromberg, S. (2008). Structural elaboration by the sound (and feel) of it. In F. Boers, & S. Lindstromberg (Eds.), Cognitive Linguistic approaches to teaching vocabulary and phraseology (pp. 329–353. Mouton de Gruyter.

Boers, F. & Stengers, H. (2008). A quantitative comparison of the English and Spanish repertoires of figurative idioms. In F. Boers, & S. Lindstromberg (Eds.), Cognitive Linguistic approaches to teaching vocabulary and phraseology (pp. 355–373). Mouton de Gruyter.

Boers, F. & Lindstromberg, S. (2008). From empirical findings to pedagogical practice. In F. Boers & S. Lindstromberg (Eds.), Cognitive Linguistic approaches to teaching vocabulary and phraseology (pp. 375–393). Mouton de Gruyter.

Eyckmans J., Van de Velde H., Van Hout R., & Boers F. (2007) Learners’ response behaviour in Yes/No Vocabulary Tests. In H. Daller, J. Milton, & J. Treffers-Daller (Eds.), Modelling and assessing vocabulary knowledge (pp. 59–76). Cambridge University Press.

Boers, F. & Lindstromberg, S. (2006). Cognitive Linguistic approaches to second or foreign language instruction: Rationale, proposals and evaluation. In G. Kristaensen, R. Dirven, M. Achard, & F. Ruiz-Mendoza (Eds.), Cognitive Linguistics: Current applications and future perspectives (pp. 305–358). Mouton de Gruyter.

Boers, F., Eyckmans, J., & Stengers, H. (2006). Motivating multiword units: Rationale, mnemonic benefits, and cognitive style variables. In S. H. Foster-Cohen, M. M. Krajnovic, & J. M. Djigunovic (Eds.), EUROSLA Yearbook 6 (pp. 169–190). John Benjamins.

Boers, F., Demecheleer, M, & Eyckmans, J. (2004). Etymological elaboration as a strategy for learning figurative idioms. In P. Bogaards & B. Laufer. (Eds.), Vocabulary in a second language: Selection, acquisition and testing (pp. 53–78). John Benjamins.

Boers, F. (2004) Expanding learners’ vocabulary through metaphor awareness: What expansion, what learners, what vocabulary? In S. Niemeier & M. Achard (Eds.), Cognitive Linguistics, second language acquisition, and foreign language teaching (pp. 211–234). Mouton de Gruyter.

Temmerman, M. & Boers, F. (2002). Over megafonen die roddeltjes opblazen: metafoorbewustzijn in journalistieke opiniestukken. In R. Haest, et al. (Eds.), Communicatief bekeken. Liber amicorum Stijn Verrept (pp. 165–173). Mechelen: Kluwer.

Boers, F. (1999). When a bodily source domain becomes prominent: The joy of counting metaphors in the socio-economic domain. In R. W. Gibbs & G. J. Steen (Eds.), Metaphor in Cognitive Linguistics (pp. 47–56). John Benjamins.

Boers, F. (1998). Conceptual metaphor and cognitive style differences: Is everybody right? In J. van der Auwera, et al. (Eds.), English as a human language (to honour Louis Goossens) (pp. 32–39). Lincom.

Boers, F. & Demecheleer, M. (1997). A few metaphorical models in (western) economic discourse. In: W. A. Liebert, G. Redeker, & L. Waugh (Eds.), Discourse and perspective in Cognitive Linguistics (pp. 115–129). John Benjamins.

Teaching and Supervision

I supervise M.A. and PhD research projects on diverse topics, as long as they have clear relevance for second/foreign language learning and teaching.

My ‘recent publications’ page gives an impression of the sort of topics that have attracted my interest in the past, but I am always willing to consider venturing into new areas.