فهرست مطالب

  • Volume:4 Issue:1, 2012
  • تاریخ انتشار: 1391/07/20
  • تعداد عناوین: 8
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  • HamidAllami MaryamMontazeri Pages 1-38
    This paper reports on the findings of a study designed to investigate the cultural and social complexities governing the compliment responses among the Persian native speakers. 200 Persian respondents took a 24-item Discourse Completion Task (DCT) while 15 native field workers were also set responsible for collecting the examples of complimenting exchanges they either observed or participated in. The results suggested a significant effect for the treated intervening social variables of age, gender, educational background, social distance, and relative power as well as compliment topics in determining the type of compliment response. The responses were further suggestive of the contextual effects of the three systems of hierarchical, solidarity and deferential as well as a newly coined system as kinship system.
    Keywords: Speech Acts, Compliment Responses, Sociocutural Variables, Politeness, Discourse Completion Tasks
  • Mohammad Nabi Karimi, Mohammad Bagher Shabani Pages 39-58
    A significant share of classroom interaction occurs between teachers and language learners. Therefore, the individual characteristics of teachers could play facilitative or impeding roles thus encouraging or discouraging learners from getting engaged in interaction and meaning negotiation attempts when interacting with their teachers. Surprisingly however, this area has attracted scant attention. Therefore, this study aimed at exploring students’ perceptions of their teachers’ socio-communicative style and nonverbal immediacy in relation to their engagement in classroom teacher-learner interaction and frequency of meaning negotiation attempts in their interactions. To this aim, 72 students were randomly assigned to six classes of 12 taught by six teachers. Richmond, McCroskey and Johnson’s (2003) nonverbal immediacy scale and McCroskey and Richmond’s (1996) socio-communicative style scale were administered to students to tap into their perceptions of these two qualities of their teachers. Then the total amount of time the students were engaged in active interaction with the teachers and the number of meaning negotiation attempts employed by them were computed. The results of Correlations and Regression Analyses revealed significant relationships between teacher nonverbal immediacy, the two dimensions of socio-communicative style (Assertiveness and Responsiveness) and the students’ willingness to engage in interaction and meaning negotiation with their teachers.
    Keywords: Meaning Negotiation, Classroom Interaction, Nonverbal Immediacy, Socio, Communicative Style
  • MonaKhabiri,  ZahraMasoumpanah Pages 59-80
    This study investigated the comparative effect of teaching idiomatic expressions through practicing them in conversation and paragraph writing on intermediate EFL learners’ idiom learning. The participants were sorted out of a population of 134 intermediate students in Zabansara Language School in Khorramabad based on their scores on a Preliminary English Test (PET) and an idiom test piloted in advance. The selected 84 participants were divided randomly into three groups: two experimental groups, namely, conversation and paragraph writing groups, and one control group. The two experimental groups received different treatments. In one class, idioms were taught and learners were asked to make a conversation practicing the new idioms, and in the other class, they were asked to write short paragraphs using the idioms. In the third class, the control group, the new idioms were presented and then practiced through different written exercises. At the end of the treatment period, the researchers administered an idiom posttest. The analysis of the collected data revealed that using new idioms in conversation and paragraph writing helped students learn idioms more efficiently than just practicing them through different written exercises. Moreover, the use of idioms in conversation proved to be more effective than using them in paragraph writing. The findings can have implications in preparing materials, teaching/learning foreign languages, and designing syllabus.
    Keywords: Conversation, Paragraph Writing, EFL Learners, Idiom Learning
  • Git Mousapour Negari, Zahra Nabavizadeh Pages 81-106
    A growing body of research has indicated that students of ESL/EFL are reticent and unwilling to be engaged in oral activities in English lessons. Communicative language ability includes speaking ability, so vocabulary knowledge plays an integral role in speaking a language. However, there have been few studies examining the degree to which vocabulary knowledge affects speaking ability. The present study aimed to explore the degree of reticence in Iranian EFL learners and to find out the roles that productive vocabulary knowledge and gender may play in their reticence. To accomplish this, 56 male and female English language learners participated in the study. Unwillingness-to-Communicate Scale and Vocabulary-Size Test of Controlled Productive Ability were used. To analyze the data, descriptive statistics, Pearson Product-moment Correlation and an independent t-test were used. Results of the study revealed a relatively low level of reticence among Iranian EFL learners. However, it seems that learners mostly avoid communication rather than have a negative attitude toward class participation. In addition, it was found that the learners’ vocabulary knowledge had a significant relationship with their reticence; while, no significant difference was found between Iranian male and female learners in terms of reticence.
    Keywords: Reticence, Productive vocabulary knowledge, EFL Learners, Gender
  • Mohammad Javad Rezai Pages 107-134
    Articles in general and definite articles in particular can create problems even long after all other aspects of English have been mastered. The present article investigated the learnability problems related to the acquisition of count-mass distinction of English nominals by Persian L2 learners. The theoretical underpinning of the study is the interpretability hypothesis (Tsimpli & Dimitrakopoulou, 2007) arguing that the features which are semantically interpretable can be acquired. To this end, 50 learners constituted the participants of the study and completed a forced-choice elicitation task requiring the use of articles. The results of the study substantiated the interpretability hypothesis. Nonetheless, the advanced L2ers showed a conservative behavior in the mass context. They significantly opted for a/an in wide scope indefinite non-referential de/re context. The findings reveal that article suppliance creates more learnability problems in the plural and indefinite mass contexts compared to the count singular ones.
    Keywords: Definite, Indefinite Article, Count, Mass Nouns, Acquisition, Persian
  • Mohammad Salehi, Alireza Tayebi Pages 135-168
    Validation is an important enterprise especially when a test is a high stakes one. Demographic variables like gender and field of study can affect test results and interpretations. Differential Item Functioning (DIF) is a way to make sure that a test does not favor one group of test takers over the others. This study investigated DIF in terms of gender in the reading comprehension subtest (35 items) of a high stakes test using a three-step logistic regression procedure (Zumbo, 1999). The participants of the study were 3,398 test takers, both males and females, who took the test in question (the UTEPT) as a partial requirement for entering a PhD program at the University of Tehran. To show whether the 35 items of the reading comprehension part exhibited DIF or not, logistic regression using a three step procedure (Zumbo, 1999) was employed. Three sets of criteria of Cohen’s (1988), Zumbo’s (1999), and Jodin and Girel’s (2001) were selected. It was revealed that, though the 35 items show “small” effect sizes according to Cohen’s classification, they do not display DIF based on the other two criteria. Therefore, it can be concluded that the reading comprehension subtest of the UTEPT favors neither males nor females.
    Keywords: Validity, Test validation, Test fairness, Differential Item Functioning (DIF), Logistic Regression (LR), Item response Theory (IRT)
  • Zia Tajeddi, Mohammad Momenian Pages 169-192
    The process of globalization entails the acquisition of a construct, cultural intelligence, with which EFL students can function appropriately in intercultural situations. This study was, first, intended to find the relationship between cultural intelligence and the use of expressions of gratitude by Iranian EFL learners. Second, it sought to determine whether there were any significant differences between low and high culturally intelligent EFL learners in the way they used expressions of gratitude in English. To this end, 118 intermediate learners were selected through convenient sampling, with their proficiency level being controlled. A discourse completion test (DCT) for the expressions of gratitude and a cultural intelligence scale were given to the participants of the study. Learners’ DCT responses were rated on a five-point Likert scale and then analyzed. Statistical tests including Pearson Correlation Coefficient and t-test were used to investigate the research questions. The results of the analysis revealed that there was not a significant relationship, either positive or negative, between cultural intelligence and use of expressions of gratitude. Furthermore, no difference was found between the two groups, high and low culturally intelligent, in the way they used English expressions of gratitude. These findings have implications for the instruction of pragmatic competence.
    Keywords: Cultural Intelligence, Expressions of Gratitude, Intercultural Competence, EFL Learners
  • MansoorTavakoli,  Shilan Shafiei Pages 193-211
    The present study seeks to investigate the potentiality of the translation task as a testing method for measuring reading comprehension. To achieve this objective, two types of translation tests, open-ended and multiple-choice tests, and two types of reading comprehension tests, multiple-choice reading comprehension and open-ended cloze tests were developed in this study. The reliability of the tests was computed in order to estimate which translation test was more reliable and valid. Correlation coefficients were run in order to investigate whether translation tests worked as reliable and valid measures of reading comprehension, and to examine the relationship between proficiency in reading comprehension and proficiency in translation. The results indicate that the open-ended translation test is more reliable and valid than the multiple-choice one; translation has a high potentiality to work as a reliable and valid tool to assess reading comprehension; and there exists a high positive correlation between the participants’ proficiency in reading comprehension and their proficiency in translation. The findings of this study might have pedagogical implications for instructors. They may be justified to highlight the role of translation tests and benefit from them in their reading comprehension classes.
    Keywords: Translation Test, Assessment, Reading Comprehension, Reliability, Validity