The Effects of Deductive and Guided Inductive Instructional Approaches on the Learning of Grammar in the Elementary Foreign Language College Classroom


  • Carrie E. Haight,

    1. Emory University
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      Carrie E. Haight (MA, University of Pittsburgh) is a graduate student and Instructor in French and Educational Studies at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.

  • Carol Herron,

    1. Emory University
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      Carol Herron (PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison) is Professor of French, Director of the Doctoral Program in French and Educational Studies, and Director of the Language Center at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.

  • Steven P. Cole

    1. Research Design Associates
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      Steven P. Cole (PhD, Emory University) is Director of Research at Research Design Associates, Inc., in Atlanta, Georgia, and New York City, and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Psychology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia.


This study investigates the effectiveness of deductive and guided inductive approaches for teaching grammar in College French classrooms. Forty-seven second-semester French students were taught eight grammatical structures: four with a deductive instructional approach and four with a guided inductive instructional approach. A quasiexperimental within-subjects design featuring pre- and posttests and eight immediate posttreatment quizzes assessed the long- and short-term gains in grammatical knowledge for each condition. Results indicated a significant difference between participants' mean immediate test scores favoring the guided inductive approach. Findings of this study also indicated a strong trend in favor of guided induction on the long-term learning of grammatical structures. The results of this study support using a guided inductive instructional approach to teach grammar in the beginning-level foreign language classroom.