We are currently experiencing an explosion in the amount of SLA research dealing with pedagogical issues related to second language (L2) vocabulary learning and teaching. The results of recent studies on L2 vocabulary provide us with many fruitful suggestions for L2 pedagogy. It, however, seems fair to say that the majority of this research focuses on determining the most effective vocabulary teaching methods. On the other hand, model-driven studies for the obtained data have received far less attention. Also, little is known about why one method is superior to another, or how L2 words are integrated in the process of L2 vocabulary acquisition. Overall, few researchers use theories or models proposed in related fields (psychology, bilingual studies) to explain the reasons for their findings.
This is partly due to the fact that theories or models in L2 vocabulary have only recently come into their own and still have a long way to go. What is needed is model-building, which can help generate new research questions and offer a conceptual framework for integrating numerous existing research findings in a coherent way.
To gain further information about this issue, the paper presents an overview of the past literature on the theories and models in psychology and bilingual research, providing some suggestions for future advancements in the field of L2 vocabulary acquisition research.