The development of oral comprehension skills is rarely studied in second and foreign language teaching, let alone in learning contexts involving students with limited or interrupted formal education (SLIFE). Thus, we conducted a mixed-methods study attempting to measure the effect of implicit teaching of oral comprehension strategies with 37 SLIFE in Quebec City, a predominantly French-speaking city in Canada. Two experimental groups received implicit training in listening strategies, whereas a control group viewed the same documents without strategy training. Participants’ listening comprehension performance was measured quantitatively before the treatment, immediately after, and one week later with three different versions of an oral comprehension test targeting both explicit and implicit content of authentic audiovisual documents. Overall, data analysis showed a low success rate for all participants in the oral comprehension tests, with no significant effect of the experimental treatment. However, data from the intervention sessions revealed that the participants’ verbalisations of their comprehension varied qualitatively over time. The combination of these results is discussed in light of previous findings on low literate adults’ informal and formal language learning experiences.
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