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Journal of Teaching Language Skills    [5 followers]  Follow    
  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
     ISSN (Online) 1020-8576
     Published by Shiraz University Homepage  [10 journals]
  • The Disourse of War in the Middle East: Analysis of Syria's Civil Crises
           in English Editorials ...
    • Abstract: This paper examines the relationships between language and ideology and how ideology is constructed and presented via different language choices in English editorials published in different socio-cultural contexts. Van Dijk’s (2000a) ideological square in terms of representation of the self and other was applied to the editorials. Through a comparative analysis of Iranian, Turkish and Saudi Arabian newspaper editorials with different ideologies, the study attempts to reveal how these ideologies are represented differently in the texts regarding civil crisis in Syria in 2012. It aims to show how writers, by using various strategies such as evil doing, humanitarianism, cause of crisis, and history as lesson manipulate the realizations of agency and power in the representation of action to produce particular meanings which are not always explicit for all readers. Data gathered for the analysis were 45 editorials from three newspapers of Tehran Times, Today Zaman, and Arab News during the first half of the year 2012 (15 from each). Careful selection of 6 editorials for qualitative analysis indicates that the three newspapers focus on different aspects of reality and, by using various language strategies, influence readers' understanding of the events.
      PubDate: Sat, 09 Nov 2013 20:30:00 +010
  • Exploring Language Learning Strategy Use: The Role of Multiple
           Intelligences, L2 Proficiency ...
    • Abstract: Multiple intelligences (MI), second/foreign (L2) proficiency and gender are postulated to contribute to language learning strategies (LLS). This study, first, examined whether there was any relationship between Iranian EFL learners’ LLS, on the one hand, and their MI, L2 proficiency, on the other hand. In so doing, it explored the relationship of the overall L2 strategy as well as individual strategy types with overall MI and individual intelligence types. Second, it explored the extent to which MI, L2 (i.e. English) proficiency, and gender would predict the EFL learners’ LLS. To these ends, 90 undergraduate EFL learners from several universities participated in this study. To collect the data, Strategy Inventory for Language Learning, Multiple Intelligences Developmental Assessment Scale, and a language proficiency test were used. Pearson product moment correlation and multiple regression analysis revealed a significantly positive relationship between the learners’ LLS and their MI and a weak relationship between L2 proficiency and LLS. Also, significant correlations were found between some strategy types and several individual intelligences with the highest correlation between intrapersonal intelligence and cognitive strategies, and the lowest one between naturalist intelligence and affective strategies. Besides, MI made a unique and positive contribution to L2 strategy use while proficiency and gender, though found as positive predictors, failed to make a significant contribution.
      PubDate: Sun, 03 Nov 2013 20:30:00 +010
  • Personality Development by means of Investment in L2 and its impact on EFL
           Proficiency: A ...
    • Abstract: Abstract Norton’s (1995) Investment Hypothesis in L2 learning that L2 learners who cherish and foresee a richer personality for themselves in their L2 context would thrive more diligently and consequently would both enrich their personality and achieve a higher proficiency in their new language was investigated in this study in the community of Iranian EFL students. The integration and mutual role between language and culture and their subsequent influence on the personality and EFL proficiency of 72 Iranian MA EFL students at Allameh Tabataba’i University were investigated. Personality features, confined to Multicultural Personality Traits (cultural empathy, open-mindedness, social initiative, emotional stability, and flexibility), were measured by using Multicultural Personality Questionnaire (MPQ) and an actual TOEFL was used to measure the participants’ EFL proficiency. Then the relationships between their MPTs and EFL proficiency were analyzed. It was found that when all participants were taken as EFL students, the correlation between their MPTs and EFL proficiency was not a high correlation, but when they were relatively classified into high, mid and low-proficiency groups, strong positive correlation between high-proficiency EFL students’ MPTs and their EFL proficiency was witnessed (r = .62), whereas the low-proficiency EFL students’ data indicated a very low correlation. The findings of this study confirmed the hypothesis that EFL students with a greater investment in their L2 as a means to develop an enriched personality had also achieved higher EFL proficiency.
      PubDate: Sun, 03 Nov 2013 20:30:00 +010
  • Metadiscourse Markers in the Discussion/Conclusion Section of Persian and
           English Master's Theses
    • Abstract: Metadiscourse markers help writers make coherent and reader- friendly texts, thus of considerable importance in academic writing. The main aim of this study was to investigate how interactive and interactional metadiscourse markers are used by Iranian EFL learners. An inquiry was carried out to investigate cross-cultural similarities and differences in the use of metadiscourse markers in the Discussion and Conclusion sections of the master theses of three categories: native English speakers, native Persian speakers, and non-native English speakers. Following Hyland's (2005) metadiscourse taxonomy, a corpus of sixty master theses was investigated to search for metadiscourse markers. The results showed that native English writers used more interactive and interactional metadiscourse markers than native Persian and EFL learners which might stem from the insufficient awareness of EFL learners of the role of the metadiscourse markers, intercultural differences, and the fact that they do not usually receive explicit instruction on these devices in Persian academic context.
      PubDate: Sun, 03 Nov 2013 20:30:00 +010
  • Bilinguality vs. Monolinguality among Kalhuri Kurdish Speakers: Gender,
           Social Class and ...
    • Abstract: Bilinguality vs. Monolinguality among Kalhuri Kurdish Speakers: Gender, Social Class and English Language Achievement Abstract Today in multilingual contexts, many parents prefer to rear their children in the dominant language rather than in their mother tongue. This phenomenon is widespread among native speakers of Kalhuri dialect of the Kurdish language in the multilingual context of Iran, too. Nevertheless, some studies have evidenced the privilege of bilinguals in learning an additional language though some others have provided counterevidence in this regard. The present study chiefly intended to see if there was any difference between Kalhuri Kurdish learners who had been reared monolingually (using Persian) and the ones who had been reared bilingually (using both Kalhuri and Persian) in terms of their achievement in English. In addition, it aimed at exploring the relationship between gender and socioeconomic status and bilinguality vs. monolinguality. To achieve these purposes, data were gathered from 200 bilingual and 200 monolingual Kurd students living in the city of Kermanshah whose parents' native language was the Kalhuri dialect of Kurdish. Results of data analyses indicated that though gender had no relationship with bilinguality and monolinguality, most students from low socioeconomic class were reared bilingually. Moreover, the students reared bilingually outperformed their monolingual counterparts in terms of achievement in English.
      PubDate: Sun, 03 Nov 2013 20:30:00 +010
  • Genre analysis of peer reviewers’ comments on manuscripts by
           non-native authors: the case of ...
    • Abstract: The invisible hands of peer reviewers play a determining role in the eventual fate of submissions to international English-medium journals. This study builds on the assumption that non-native researchers and prospective academic authors may find the whole strive for publication, and more specifically, the tough review process, less threatening if they are aware of journal reviewers’ expectations and requirements. Such awareness may be fostered by addressing the characteristics of review genre and the most frequent comments made by the reviewers. To address such typical features, a corpus of reviewers’ reports on 32 manuscripts submitted by Iranian researchers in three fields of Engineering, Medicine, and Social Sciences was analyzed. The results of the analysis revealed that review reports followed a certain format and structure and most of the comments made by reviewers were on the content-based defects such as procedural infelicities, poor study design or ignoring the literature. Language-use comments, including lexico-grammatical problems, lack of clarity, spelling mistakes, and verbosity, ranked second in terms of frequency but since content failure often overlaps language-related issues they appeared to be as important. These findings may be of help for graduate students and novice authors who need to develop and improve skills for academic writing as well as EAP practitioners who devote effort to furnish materials to aid researchers in writing publications in English. Keywords: peer review process, reviewers’ reports, comment, content comment, language-use comment
      PubDate: Mon, 15 Jul 2013 19:30:00 +010
  • The Impact of Metacognitive Instruction on EFL Learners’ Listening
           Comprehension and Oral ...
    • Abstract: The aim of the current study was to examine the effect of metacognitive instruction on EFL learners’ metacognitive awareness of listening strategies, listening comprehension, and oral language proficiency. Fifty students of two upper-intermediate English courses participated in the study and were sampled as the experimental and control groups. For sixteen weeks the experimental group participated in metacognitive instruction of listening with the aim of promoting their metacognitive awareness of listening strategies while listening to oral texts. Meanwhile, the control group received listening instruction without any focus on strategies. The result revealed that, while controlling for students’ entry-level metacognitive awareness and English listening and speaking proficiency, the instruction heightened the experimental group’s metacognitive awareness significantly at the end of the experiment. Although a difference between the listening ability of the experimental and control groups was found, this difference did not reach the level of statistical significance. As hypothesized, a significant difference between the experimental and control groups’ speaking ability was found in favor of the experimental group.
      PubDate: Sun, 14 Jul 2013 19:30:00 +010
  • The Effect of English Vowel-Recognition Training on Beginner and Advanced
           Iranian ESL Learners
    • Abstract: This study was an attempt to investigate the effect of vowel-recognition training on beginner and advanced Iranian ESL learners. A total of 36 adult Iranian ESL learners (18 advanced and 18 beginners) who were students of various majors at Memorial University (MUN) were recruited for the study. Advanced participants had the experience of living in Canada for at least three years while beginners had lived in Canada less than six months. The study commenced with a pre-test to verify the participants’ awareness of English vowel sounds. Predictably, advanced participants were superior to beginners in terms of English vowel awareness. After the pre-test administration, participants of both groups underwent a five-week vowel-recognition training course (focusing on all English vowel sounds). At the end of the vowel-recognition training program, the 80-item multiple choice test which had been once used as the pre-test was conducted again. The findings revealed that both beginner and advanced participants’ performances were improved on the second administration of vowel-identification test due to the intensive vowel-recognition training program. It is also revealed that formal instruction of English vowels had raised beginners’ English phonetic knowledge to that of advanced learners. Moreover, it is shown that phonology of participants’ first language (i.e., Farsi) did have an influence on the acquisition of second language phonological features.
      PubDate: Sun, 14 Jul 2013 19:30:00 +010
  • Interfaces of Macro and Microstructure in Academic Writing: The Case of
           Research Article Abstracts
    • Abstract: Although flourishing research has been devoted to research on article abstracts, more studies are needed to unpack the relationship between rhetorical moves and their associated linguistic and rhetorical features (e.g., metadiscourse). To underpin this relationship, the current study analyzed a total of 60 research article abstracts written in English by two cultural groups in three disciplines . The first stage identified the rhetorical structure of the abstracts based on Hyland’s (2000) move pattern. Then, the metadiscourse features prototypical of each move were determined, following Hyland’s (2005a) interpersonal model. We found diverse move patterns in both cultural groups. In the Anglo-American group, the abstracts tend to be more compatible with Hyland’s (2000) move structure, whereas the Iranians prefer to omit some of those moves. The results also revealed that there was a close relationship between the communicative function of moves and metadiscourse choices per move. This finding suggests that meadiscourse features can be manipulated effectively to fulfill the communicative intentions of moves. This study has rewarding pedagogical implications for ESP/EAP context, especially in writing courses. Key words: Move structure; metadiscourse; abstract; rhetorical feature
      PubDate: Sun, 14 Jul 2013 19:30:00 +010
  • The Effect of Four Different Types of Involvement Indices on Vocabulary
           Learning and Retention ...
    • Abstract: The purpose of the present study was to provide empirical support for the construct of the involvement load hypothesis (ILH ) in an EFL context. To fulfill the purpose of the study, 4 intact groups consisting of 126 intermediate-level students participated in this experiment. In order to ensure that the participants were at the same level of English language proficiency, the Nelson test was administered prior to the treatment. Moreover, the participants were pretested on the knowledge of the target items through the Vocabulary Knowledge Scale (VKS). During the 7 treatment sessions, the 4 groups were treated with different tasks (reading, fill-in-the-blanks, sentence-writing, and composition-writing) varying in the involvement index according to the ILH. The VKS was administered twice (immediate and delayed posttests) to measure the gain degree at receptive and productive levels. The results indicated the validity of the hypothesis in receptive and productive learning and receptive retention. In productive retention, however, partial support for the hypothesis was provided. In addition, vocabulary gain in partially known, receptive, and productive categories could lend support to the effectiveness of each treatment over time.
      PubDate: Sun, 02 Jun 2013 19:30:00 +010
  • Modified output in task-based EFL classes across gender
    • Abstract: AbstractThe current study examined the modification devices (MDs) used by non-native speakers (NNSs) learning EFL during dyadic task-based interactions. Three meaning-oriented tasks, namely picture-description, spot-the-difference, and opinion-exchange, were used to elicit data from 24(12 male and 12 female, forming 4 male-male, 4 female-female, and 4 male-female dyads) Iranian EFL learners with intermediate language proficiency. All interactions were video-taped and transcribed. For the sake of systematicity, only the first 150 sentences of transcribed data were analyzed to assess the relationship among interlocutor type and the usage of different types of modification devices. The findings revealed that ‘confirmation check’ was the device mostly used by both genders. The results also demonstrated that ‘clarification check’ was the most frequently used strategy for negotiation among the students. Data from this study propose that these modification devices facilitate comprehension of input and output and enhance the negotiation for both meaning and form. Further results and implications are discussed in the paper.
      PubDate: Sun, 02 Jun 2013 19:30:00 +010
  • Discursive motivation construction: A case of two Iranian EFL learners
    • Abstract: Investigating the discursive construction of EFL learners’ motivation is a relatively new area of inquiry. Hence, there is a dearth of research into how foreign language learners’ discourse mediates their motivation construction. This study attempted to examine the discursive construction of two (one male and one female) Iranian EFL learners’ motivation in Shiraz University, Iran by examining their interpersonal relationships in the university where they attend, their future self-guides, and their personal struggles in, and alignment with social norms and requirements.. Employing Fairclough’s (2003) critical discourse analysis framework, the study revealed that EFL learners’ motivation is not single-dimensional and static; rather, it is complex, multi-dimensional and dynamic which is discursively constructed in the constant interaction between the individual and the social context. Findings also indicated that the discursive construction of EFL motivation involves the simultaneous interaction of multiple levels of learners’ interpersonal relationships, their ideal selves, and factors in local and broader social, cultural and political milieus.
      PubDate: Sun, 26 May 2013 19:30:00 +010
  • A Corpus-Based Study of the Lexical Make-up of Applied Linguistics Article
    • Abstract: This paper reports results from a corpus-based study that explored the frequency of words in the abstracts of applied linguistics journal articles. The abstracts of major articles in leading applied linguists journals, published since 2005 up to November 2001 were analyzed using software modules from the Compleat Lexical Tutor. The output includes a list of the most frequent content words, lists of frequent words and abbreviations not found in the British National Corpus. The study also weighed applied linguistics abstracts against the General Service List and the Academic Word List and identified words in these abstracts which are shared by the GSL or AWL or are unique to one set. The report separately lists words from the GSL and AWL which are proportionally more frequent in these abstracts than in general written texts, and hence may be reasonably regarded as playing key textual roles in applied linguistics abstracts and, by extension, discourse.
      PubDate: Sun, 26 May 2013 19:30:00 +010
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