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This study intends to find out how the retention of new vocabulary items could be affected by the item type (collocations versus single words), association strength between collocates and the collocate-node relationship. 101 Chinese EFL learners encountered the new items in paired-associate format. Participants were assigned to three groups: learning two types of collocations with high association strength, learning two types of collocations with low association strength, and learning new itemsdoi:10.5539/elt.v13n2p86 fatcat:djrqijajsvhl5auwfirmczkvia