Factors Affecting English Vocabulary Skill of Undergraduates At Prince of Songkla University, Pattani Campus

  •  Thantawan Kruekaew    
  •  Phattrawan Tongkumchum    
  •  Chamnein Choonpradub    


This study aimed to examine factors affecting the English vocabulary recognition of undergraduate students in Thailand. The sampled subjects comprised 785 undergraduates from 6 faculties enrolled in the second semester of the 2005 academic year at Prince of Songkla University, Pattani Campus. The data were collected using a questionnaire based on 10 common English words, each of which the respondents were asked to match to one of five similar words including four distracters and one correct synonym. Respondents were also invited without coercion to give their student registration number, enabling demographic and enrolment details to be matched to their answers. Over 97% of those surveyed gave their number, and took 5 minutes on average to complete the test, giving a mean score of 5.4 correct answers (standard deviation 2.5). Multiple regression analysis of the results showed that the students’ scores were related to their level of seniority, faculty of enrolment, and major field of study, but bore no relation to their gender, religion, or type of high school attended. The students who performed by far the best were a group of 113 majoring in Language (English, French, Malayu, Arabic or Thai) in the Faculty of Humanities. Students who had obtained an A or B grade in a compulsory one-semester English unit also did better on the test. Although the test requires further extensive evaluation with respect to its internal and external validity, compared to alternatives it has the advantage of simplicity and ease of administration.

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