Journal of Psycholinguistic Research

, Volume 47, Issue 4, pp 841–858 | Cite as

Effects of Corrective Feedback on EFL Learners’ Acquisition of Third-Person Singular Form and the Mediating Role of Cognitive Style

  • Xinyue Guo
  • Yingli YangEmail author


The present study investigated the effectiveness of recasts and prompts on the acquisition of the English third-person singular form and the mediating role of cognitive style on the effects of feedback. One hundred and seventy-five college students from four intact classes were assigned to four groups: form-focused instruction with recast (FFI-recast), FFI with prompt (FFI-prompt), FFI, and control. The group embedded figures test (Witkin et al. in Rev Educ Res 47:1–64, 1977) was adopted to test learners’ cognitive style (field dependence/independence). The results show that the FFI-prompt group outperformed the FFI-recast group and the control group on the immediate post-test; the FFI-prompt group also achieved significantly higher scores than the other groups on the delayed post-test in the written test. However, no significant difference was found among groups in the text-completion test. Regression analyses reveal that in the text-completion test, field dependence/independence mediates the effect of recasts on the immediate post-test.


Recasts Prompts Cognitive style Form-focused instruction 



This study is jointly funded by a research grant for young scholars from China National Natural Science Foundation (31400896), program for Young Excellent Talents (17YQ09), UIBE, and supported by Program for Innovative Research Team in UIBE.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

We declare that we have no conflict of interest with any other people or organizations.

Ethical Approval

We declare that our study complies with the ethical standards of the journal.

Informed Consent

All procedures followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation (institutional and national) and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as revised in 2000 (5). Informed consent was obtained from all patients for being included in the study.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Basic CoursesSuzhou Vocational Health CollegeSuzhouPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.School of International StudiesUniversity of International Business and EconomicsBeijingPeople’s Republic of China

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