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Abstract

University English as a foreign language (EFL) programs in expanding circle communities often pressure instructors and students to use globally published EFL textbooks for reasons more socio-political than pedagogical. While some critical studies underscore multimodal discourse to be an under-appreciated source of dominant social narratives in EFL textbooks, few have investigated their live negotiation in classrooms. To address the challenges negotiating potentially harmful social narratives in EFL textbooks, the present study proposes a two-step model for achieving a zone of prioritized curricularivity (ZPC). The model informs reflexive teaching practice in EFL instruction because it necessitates an understanding of a) the curricular commonplaces of a particular EFL program and b) the power and ideologies in the multimodal discourse of their textbooks, to mitigate perceived social injustices in the textbook lessons as they are negotiated “in situ.” Demonstrated in vignettes, featuring two EFL courses at Chung-Buk National University in Cheong Ju city, Korea, two instructors used the ZPC framework to inform their reconstruction of multimodal discourses in their EFL textbooks to inculcate student involvement and participation. A novel, multimodal interactional analysis of video recordings looked at proxemics, gaze, spoken language, head movement, auditory emphasis, and gesture and discovered that each instructor recontextualized, neutralized, or skipped much of the multimodal discourse in the lessons. The findings suggest that a ZPC is achieved when the efforts by instructors to recontextualize textbook lessons in situ is met with positive feedback from students in the classroom – noted as heightened attentiveness, happy or cheerful participation, and enthusiastic discussion. The implications suggest a ZPC can help instructors and students and in EFL programs in any expanding circle culture because it can simultaneously improve student learning/acquisition in the classroom, diminish dominant, culturally marginalizing textbook content, while raising the value of student investment in EFL learning.

Abstract

The aim of this paper is to shed light on promoting teaching and learning the French language and culture through the Olympiad, initiated by a group of practitioners in a community of practice. What makes this Olympiad rather unique is its main focus on cultural knowledge combining it with linguistic aspects. The Olympiad takes place in four different categories taking into account students’ age and prior experience in learning French (e.g. first or second foreign language). In addition, the regional round is organised in Moodle enabling more participants to take part and the national one in situ, at the University of Tallinn. Since the first Olympiad in 2014, the number of competitors has increased and both, private and municipality funded (public) schools participate. The paper provides a detailed overview of the olympiad process: how it was initiated and how it is annually run as well as a description of challenges faced by the organisers.

Abstract

Teaching foreign languages has adopted various approaches over the history. The last decades of dominance of the Communicative language teaching brought the tendency to insist on the target language use in the classroom in order to allow the immersion into the language. The European Union, however, started to support linguistic diversity more than two decades ago and it has left an imprint on the way foreign language teaching is approached today. Inclusion of plurilingualism in traditional school context requires the readiness of language teachers to use other languages as well as encourage learners to use their prior language experience. The present study presents the results of a questionnaire survey among student teachers measuring their attitudes and readiness to implement more than one additional language in their practice. The participants of the study (n = 118) are all future teachers of English language at both undergraduate and graduate level. The results of the survey indicate a generally positive attitude towards plurilingualism and at the same time ability of the students to rely on more than one language while teaching. The results, however, raise quite a few questions and imperatives for the content of teacher training programmes as well as for the organisation of language education in general.

Abstract

The shift in the status of English as a lingua franca has challenged native-speaker culture in English language teaching and learning. That is why it is not enough to expose language learners through monoculture language teaching. Rather being communicatively competent, learners may require inter-cultural understanding. Therefore, the aim of this research is to investigate the representation of cultures through different senses in Oxford Progressive English (OPE), Level-10 (Rachel Redford, 2016). As OPE caters the needs of Pakistani language learners, it is hypothesized that learners’ source culture prevails more than other two cultures (i.e. international, and target). To confirm this hypothesis, a detailed content analysis of cultural senses (prevailed in OPE) is carried out through Adaskou, Britten and Fahsi (1990). The results show that the frequency of reading texts in OPE is highly imbued with learners’ target culture that is followed by the international culture, and least by learners’ source culture. Moreover, culturally neutral texts lack in inter-cultural understanding, and appear to be disseminated to marginalize L2 learners from target and international cultures.

Abstract

Life satisfaction, dimensions of internalized cultural values and self-efficacy related to emigration intentions for a long-term stay abroad of university students in five European countries.

Aim: To explore the associations between emigration intentions of university students form five European countries in relation to several intrapersonal and emigration self-efficacy. The second aim is to explore the mediating role of self-efficacy in relation to internalized cultural values and emigration intentions.

Sample and procedure: The sample consisted of 1223 students (females N=812, 66.4%, males N=411, 33.6%. M=21.95, SD=3.62) from five European countries. The data collection was completed via an online questionnaire (University of Antwerp, Belgium, Sofia University, Bulgaria, University of Miskolc, Hungary, Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, Lithuania, Pavol Jozef Šafárik University in Košice, Slovak Republic). The local ethics committee in every country approved the study

Statistical analysis: Statistical analysis was performed in SPSS 21. Differences in intrapersonal were analysed by ANOVA with a Scheffe Post hoc test. Binary logistic regression with the method enter controlling for country and age was used as a method of analysis. Mediational analyses were explored by using Hayes PROCESS tool.

Findings: The regression model explained between 29-38 percent of the variance. Those students with higher self–efficacy also with higher horizontal individualism were more likely to have emigration intentions compared to those with lower self-efficacy and HI, and those with lower satisfaction and vertical collectivism were more likely to have long-term emigration intentions compared to those with higher satisfaction and VC. Self-efficacy was found to mediate the relationship between horizontal dimensions of internalized cultural values and emigration intentions.

Abstract

This theoretical study analyses interpretation of quality in pre-school education with regard to the position of the children’s parents. This text is supported by research papers, mostly from the last two decades, and is based on three main sub-topics. The importance and benefits of systematic pre-school education for the child and the economic development of society is initially discussed. High-quality pre-school education for children gives them a strong start in their educational career and investment into effective education during the pre-school age provides a social and economic return to the whole of society. The following section defines the term quality and its interpretation in relation to education. Quality is interpreted through structure and process, the multi-dimensionality of quality and the objectiveness and subjectiveness of the interpretation of the quality of pre-school education are reflected. The interesting but undervalued position of parents, the perspectives of which are elaborated on in subsequent passages, appear in these concepts. This paper comes to two main conclusions. The first is that the quality of education is a multi-dimensional, variable and difficult to define concept. The second is that, although the status of parents in relation to pre-school education is strong, it is not adequately taken into consideration during definition of quality. When evaluating quality the perspective of the parents is only utilised to a limited degree, because it usually has different semantics to evaluation by experts.

Abstract

Teacher beliefs play an important role in addressing the issue of teacher training. Teaching philosophy has long been a question of great interest in a wide range of fields in teacher education. There is a growing body of literature that recognises the importance of what teacher trainees or teachers in general think, believe and do in teaching. Studies over the past two decades have provided important information on the possible factors that may impact the formation of teacher beliefs. The paper attempts to explore the relationship between previous school experience and the formation of teacher beliefs among teacher trainees who can provide viewpoints of a teacher and a student at the same time. Moreover, the paper examines teaching methods and techniques that the trainees apply in their teaching as a result of what they believe in as teachers. Data were obtained from semi-structured interviews conducted with pre-service teacher trainees as a part of feedback sessions during teaching practice. By employing qualitative approach, the research contributes to a deeper understanding of the formation and manifestation of teacher beliefs in teaching.

Abstract

The current emphasis on questioning techniques has inspired many EFL teachers to explore the impact of applying different pedagogical teaching strategies on the enhancement of thinking skills. Therefore, the present study aims to investigate the influence of using higher order questioning technique on the listening comprehension achievement and critical thinking ability of Iranian intermediate EFL learners. To reach this end, 40 participants in 4 intact classes in Kish Air Language institute in Mashhad were selected and divided in two groups to be assigned into experimental and control group. The experimental group received higher order questions based on Bloom’s Taxonomy classification for 12 sessions. A pretest and a posttest of English listening comprehension test of TOEFL (TOEFL PBT) and California Critical Thinking Skill Test (CCTST) were administrated in both groups. 2 Independent sample t-tests were utilized to examine the data. Sample t-tests were run to compare the experimental and the control group means on the pretest and posttest of listening comprehension and critical thinking tests. The results surmised that there was a statistically significant difference between the pretest and posttest scores regarding listening comprehension and critical thinking in the experimental group. The results imply that using higher order questions as an instructional technique can enhance learners’ listening comprehension achievement and critical thinking ability.

Abstract

In the U.S. colleges and universities, language courses and cultural studies courses are usually under separate departments and programs. This separation represents the heart of liberal arts education, where students can explore a variety of disciplines. However, a comparative nature of cross-cultural analyses may cause generalized and stereotypical views toward the target country. This present study will introduce the practice of CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning) and examine the value of studying the literature in the original language, so that the students will improve linguistic skills, gain knowledge on Japanese literary characteristics, and build on their intercultural competence skills.