The purpose of this study is to investigate the function of working memory (WM) in processing the short passages auditorily presented to the Chinese advanced learners of Japanese language, with the order of context manipulated. In the experiment, we manipulated the students’ WM capacity as an independent variable. An articulatory suppression task was used to detect how articulatory rehearsal of phonological loop behaves during listening comprehension. Free-recall and recognition tests were used to check the WM level and semantic processing of context. The results show that participants with large WM capacity had better performance in the free-recall test. The participants with small WM capacity were interfered with by the articulation suppression under the condition of disordered context. The results suggest that learners with large WM capacity tend to memorize the speech information by transferring propositions to their long-term memory. In the case of the learners with small WM capacity, their articulation rehearsal decreased when processing diffi cult speech information.