The relationship between short-term memory and listening comprehension ability of IELTS test takers at different language proficiency levels

2017 IJRSLL – Volume 6 Issue 3


Mahdavi Zafarghandi, Amir
University of Guilan, Iran (

Bahrpeyma, Mitra*
University of Guilan, Iran (


The present study aimed at investigating the relationship between Short Term Memory and Listening Comprehension ability of the IELTS test takers at three levels of language proficiency. According to scholars like Revlin (2013) and Cowan (2008), Short Term Memory is a part of human mind that can hold a limited amount of information for immediate use. The Short Term Memory span of the participants of this study was measured through Short Term Memory Span test, their proficiency level was estimated by Oxford Placement Test. Finally, a listening section of the IELTS test was carried out. Findings of this study suggest that, for the advanced level IELTS test takers, Short Term Memory plays a significant intervening role. The implication of the results recommends that working on the memory of test takers and increasing the capacity of their Short Term Memory is needed in preparing advanced level students to take IELTS exam.

Keywords: memory; short term memory; IELTS listening; proficiency level; listening comprehension



*Corresponding Author