This study investigates the relationship between learning styles and second language vocabulary learning among young learners. The learning styles were operationalized in accordance with Nelson (1973), in which referential learning occurs when learners prefer to acquire a language through learning single words, whereas expressive learning happens when learners learn a language with entire phrases. After classifying students’ learning styles, the present study explored the relationship between learning style (referential vs. expressive) and task types (word vs. idiom) of vocabulary learning. Results indicated that while no interaction between single items was found, there was a significant interaction between referential learning and multi-word expressions (idioms) on vocabulary learning. The results suggest that the Korean students’ learning style was related to learning environments, including word-based lessons by school or institute in Korea.
Ⅱ. Literature Review