This paper aims to describe English language teaching as a foreign language in Saudi Arabia. It highlights the nature of the curriculum, teaching procedures and materials. The paper critically reviews the teaching methods, qualifications in addition to concepts related to culture and society.
English nowadays is becoming a second language in many countries over the world. This paper tries to provide a description of the concept English language teaching and learning. The paper reviews different methodologies of teaching English in the education system.
On The Comprehension of the Cause-Effect Relationship between Asperger Syndrome and Pragamatics Language Deterioration in a Bilingual Child with Social Communication Disorder: A Pilot Case Study (Published)
Asperger Syndrome (AS) is often associated with social, cognitive, motor, and language problems, but an estimated number of AS bilingual individuals with this syndrome; especially those with social communication disorders (SCD) typically receive the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Consequently, such inaccurate diagnosis has negative effects not only at the linguistic level, but also at the level of treatment method where AS is merely a subgroup of ASD just like higher-functioning autism (HFA) or pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified (PDD-NOS). Utilizing Peabody picture vocabulary test (PPVT-3) in Arabic and then in English to test an AS bilingual 12 year-old boy with SCD, the first aim of the current pilot case study was to investigate the cause-effect relationship between AS and pragmatics mechanism where these children, the researchers hypothesize, fail to crystallize implied meaning of the target language (L2), not the source language (L1), which will help identify what language and which of its aspect (s) is affected more. The study also compared two ASD diagnostic methods: Autism diagnostic observation schedule (ADOS) and Australian scale for Asperger’s syndrome (ASAS). The purpose was to specify which of these two assessment tools suits more AS individuals with SCD where, again, the researchers claim the former to be more accountable than the latter as it depends on the explanatory approach unlike the latter that follows the exploratory approach. The tests were administered in light of the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM–V) and international classification of diseases and related health problems (ICD). To ensure the reliability and validity of the study, the researchers analyzed all case’s monthly and yearly school exams of both English (Case’s L1) and Arabic (Case’s L2) language courses starting with the 1st grade and culminating with the 7th grade in addition to an intelligence quotient (IQ) test that has been given prior to the tests. In addition, series of interviews were held with the parent along with related individuals to the case. Of the two languages, outlined results show significant deterioration in meaning comprehension in both L1 and L2. Compared with ASAS, ADOS found to be more accountable as it provides specific authentic data of the social behavior, cognitive and motor functions and linguistic and communication abilities of AS bilinguals with SCD in standardized and well-documented contexts. Further research on multilingualism and other ASD subgroups using large number of population, different methods and additional clinical resources is needed to turn the study from individuality into commonality; therefore, replicate its findings and generalize its outcomes
The paper investigates the description of East/West cultural relations in Ama Ata Aidoo’s Dilemma of a Ghost. Close analysis of the text proves that the hegemony of the English language and Western structures still manifest themselves in the twenty first century. Indeed, English is a tool used by Neocolonialism, seemingly to bring speakers of the language from all over the world closer. Reading a text in English inherently involves drawing upon the heritage received from the native speakers of the language. The superiority of English language and literature may, then, be taken for granted and may be part of the subconscious. Hence, the hegemony of the English language further reaffirms the existence of the state of colonialism in spite of the withdrawal of foreign armed forces and foreign government officials from traditional British colonies and protectorates.
Multilingualism in Singapore: The Ethnolinguistic Vitality of Its Majority and Minority Languages (Published)
The purpose for this paper is to assess the ethnolinguistic vitality of language usage in the Republic of Singapore. For our purposes here, ethnolinguistic vitality refers to language sustainability, strength and vitality. Sustainability is the language’s ability to continue existing as a language. Strength refers to a language’s durability in terms of economics, culture, demographics and institutions. Vitality refers to the language’s ability to act as a collective entity; that is, to protect the language from external variables impacting upon it – it is a function of the shared perspective of all of those members of that particular language group (Meyerhoff, 2006, pp.107-108). In our investigation, we have used data taken from various sources: (Singapore Dept. of Statistics, 2000), Li et al. (1997, pp. 366), Liang (1999), Singaporean Census (2010), for the period (2000 to 2010). The data discussions showed that English possessed a wide range in economics and trade although it has combined with other aspects of life in Singapore. Furthermore, the Chinese has aroused to be used. English has interfered with Chinese that represents the majority community language; the Ethnolinguistic vitality has been moved from Chinese to English that has legalised the cultural, social, and symbolic capitals represented by English.
An Evaluation of EFL Students’ Attitudes toward English Language Learning In Terms of Several Variables (Published)
The present study sheds light on the attitudes of Al-Balqa Applied University students towards learning English as a foreign language. The study also investigated the effect of the learners’ gender and field of study on the attitudes they hold. The random sample of 176 students consisted of 68 (38.6%) males and 108 (61.4%) females. 67 (38.1%) of the respondents were majoring in the scientific faculties, and 109 (61.9%) were enrolled in the different faculties of humanities. The descriptive and inferential statistics revealed that the sample students held positive attitudes towards learning English. Gender was found to be an effective variable since females proved to be more positive in their attitudes. No differences were assigned to the students’ academic field of study.
English Expressions in Ghana’s Parliament (Published)
This paper takes a look at the English language spoken on the floor of parliament by Ghanaian parliamentarians. It attempts to ascertain the English features of Ghanaian parliamentarians and whether the identified features can be described as Ghanaian English. The study was guided by the syntactic features given as typical of WAVE (Bokamba, 1991) and the grammatical description of African Englishes (Schmied, 1991) and a careful reading of the Hansard which is the daily official report of parliamentary proceeding. It is revealed that the English spoken by Ghanaian parliamentarians has identifiable Ghanaian features that can support the claim that their English is typically Ghanaian.
Which Preposition? An EFL Dilemma (Published)
EFL students face tremendous difficulties when translating from Arabic to English. One aspect of grammatical constructions that EFL students find difficult to translate is the translation of prepositions. This study aims at investigating the difficulties EFL students face when translating prepositions from Arabic into English. 105 students enrolled in undergraduate Translation courses in the English department, College of Basic Education were given a list of statements and short paragraphs and asked to translate them from Arabic into English. In addition, the students were asked to provide academic information to be statistically evaluated as independent variables. After data was collected and analyzed, it was found that students have considerable difficulty translating prepositions, some more than others.
Cohesion and Coherence Theory plays a significant role in the field of discourse analysis. Despite the fact that it occupies an important status in the Western linguistic literature, its linguistic roots in other cultures especially those in Arabic have not been paid enough attention. In Arabic, the classical linguistic renown study, namely Al-Nadhm Theory, proposed by Al-Jirjani seems to be an antecedent version,in a way or another, to the Western one. Thus, a scholar investigation of this claim is worth conducting to form a solid and clearer picture about cohesion and coherence as linguistic notions. This has prompted this paper to concern itself with the task of cross-theoretically contrasting the two theories so as to show the similarities and differences between them. Additionally, it attempts to find out some aspects of convergence between them. In association with the aforementioned aims, this study hypothesizes that the Western theory is a merely developed version of an antecedent version, namely the Arabic one. Though the two theories expose differences, they show similarities and share many linguistic areas where they meet. To achieve the aims of this study and test its hypotheses, it adopts a procedure which involves reviewing cohesion and coherence in the two theories in question, contrasting them, and, on the basis of the findings of the contrast, drawing some conclusions that accord with aims and hypotheses of this piece of research work. The conclusions are drawn to show whether the hypotheses of the study are verified or rejected.
An Analysis of the Use of Adverbs and Adverbial Clauses in the Sentences of Junior High School Pupils in the Ashanti Region of Ghana (Published)
The research shifts emphasis from the previously predominant area of analyzing the competence of Ghanaian school children in their use of the English Language by adopting the perspective of descriptive grammarians with much emphasis on process analysis. The study adopted qualitative and quantitative paradigm so as to adequately analyze the extent to which pupils in the Junior High School use adverbs and adverbial clauses in their sentences. In all, 100 pupils were selected using proportionate stratified sampling method. Essay texts and structured interview guide was used in gathering data from the sampled school pupils. After analysing using both qualitative and quantitative methods, the findings indicate that teachers and accessibility to language learning facilities play significant roles in second language acquisition.
Language as a structure of meaning giving and reality creation is composed of words, phrases and sentences. Humans’ communications are based on these features to describe an event, explain one’s emotions, needs, interests and fears etc. Language is used to resolve or escalate dispute. People from different culture and social units perceive the world through the lens provided by their distinctive languages. Meaning that language provides repertoire of words that name the categories into which the language users have divided their world. In fact, definitions of words are linguistically, culturally and contextually bound. This is because words carry meanings that make sense to members of a shared social environment. Dispute resolution relies heavily on words (language). However, there is an underlying assumption in Nigeria that all these words should be in English – the second language. The researcher posits that if English is to be a conflict resolution tool in Nigeria. It must accommodate the diversity of culture and language usage. The paper therefore explores the challenges of English language in intercultural conflict resolution, and emphasizes the need to consider the different uses of the language in national and transnational conflict resolution.
Nomadic Education in Nigeria: Using English to Foster Communal Peace and Enhance the Education of the Herdsmen (Published)
The importance of nomadic education cannot be over-emphasized. The neglect of any segment of the population as experience has shown in the Niger Delta Region of the country is a potential time bomb. If they contribute significantly to the nation’s economy, only time can fuel discontent and ignite their agitation. Education is the birth right of any Nigerian child and this right has been enshrined in the nation’s constitution. This paper address the importance of the nomadic education in the country, their contributions to the nation’s economy, the importance of English language in the promotion of mutual understanding, reduction of communal clashes between nomads and their host communities and the enhancement of the National Policy on Nomadic Education.
Impediments to Integrating Language Skills in Young Learners’ EFL Classes: Whys and a Way Out via Mini-Sagas (Published)
It is deeply believed that integrating language skills in English as a foreign language classes can contribute a great deal to the success of the teaching-learning process. But, such a pedagogical strategy at times poses a daunting challenge for a high percentage of non-native teachers, namely those teaching primary school sixth graders. In this setting, relying on a questionnaire that was administered to twenty primary school teachers teaching English to grade-six pupils, this paper aims at laying emphasis on exploring the reasons behind the difficulties those teachers encounter in integrating the four language skills in English as a foreign language classes. The results of the questionnaire have shown that there are a number of objective reasons that lie at the root of the issue, in particular the absence of training sessions, the nature of the syllabus, and the fact that English seems to be viewed and taught merely as a school subject of secondary importance. The paper, therefore, puts forward how those teachers can defy the impediments to using the integrated approach to teaching the language. Pedagogically speaking, it gives an insight into how teachers can get round the issue theoretically through mini-sagas and via a practical example lesson including explanatory notes. The study has revealed that sensitizing those teachers to the benefits of the integrative approach to teaching English, and using mini-sagas effectually as a starting point for the use of such an approach can help them get familiar with it through other diverse pedagogical procedures according to the learning activities intended to be performed and the learning objectives planned to be achieved, which can contribute to the success of the teaching-learning process.
Iconicity vs. Arbitrariness of Sound Symbolism Phenomenon through a Contrastive Analysis Framework (Published)
This paper reports on the comparison and contrast drawn between sound symbols of Persian, English, and Spanish In order to embody the form-meaning relationship from a universal point of view. 140 sound symbols chosen from Persian onomatopoeic dictionary (1996) and their English and Spanish counterparts were first categorized according to Hinton et al.’s (1994) typology. Using Contrastive Analysis Hypothesis the phonemes were described and contrasted in three languages afterwards. Prediction was made consequently. Together the findings suggest that no absolute arbitrariness or iconicity could be considered for sound symbols. As a matter of fact there are different sound symbols categories and each is of a special degree of iconicity/arbitrariness. It is inferred that a continuum can best demonstrate the order and degree of iconicity for sound symbols.
Improving Language Proficiency and General Knowledge: A Case for Free Voluntary Reading. (Published)
Free voluntary reading is just as its name states. It is free reading; free in the sense that students chooses what material they want to read, choose to read or not to read and to report in class on the reading they have done or not. It is purely reading with no strings attached. This is a strategy voiced by Stephen Krashen and quite a good number of language educators have decided it is worth a short. Research reports support the assertion that those who read more do better in a wide variety of tests. They become better users of language and have a wider horizon of life. They are also reported to have a greater general knowledge. It is in view of these that this paper recommends FVR as a probable solution to the lamentably poor standard of English in schools and the general poor academic outcomes.
The issue of language use has already been assumed to be an important predicting factor for language attrition. Intuitively, it makes perfect sense that second or foreign language learners who make little use of a language experience more attrition than ones who use the language more frequently. Therefore, the availability or the lack of opportunities to use the language could influence the amount of language attrition, let alone an essential variable like vocabulary knowledge. Such language use factors must be considered in any model concerned with explaining FL attrition, and the primary purpose of the present study is to provide evidence about this. It attempts to examine a population of college acquired English among college leavers who vary in the extent to which they have been able to maintain contact with the target language over time. The findings demonstrated that participants rated many of their patterns of contact with English and vocabulary in particular somewhat lower after the end of formal instruction. Furthermore, the most powerful predictor appears to be the use of the internet which is strongly linked to better retention of productive vocabulary test over time.
This paper examines the lexis structure and other linguistic features that coalesce to convey the intended message in Achebe’s Arrow of God. It highlights Achebe’s adaptive use of the English language to capture peculiar cultural ideals in the Igbo traditional society. The study analyses the corpus of the novel. Arrow of God and portrays the vocabulary, syntax and expressions that depict the socio-cultural Igbo norms and setting. The analysis explores how Achebe employs lexical and syntactic formations to realize the central message of conflict in Arrow of God. Linguistics styles such as proverbs, transliteration, focalization, lexical borrowings, sentential code-mixing, imageries are discovered. It is these unique that make the novel a master piece in the Nigeria context.
Theatrical Translation: Problems in Translating ‘The Sandbox’ From Standard English into Central Kurdish. (Published)
Translating is a problematic process, and the problems rooted in different aspects, different types of translation might acquire various obstacles, including literary translation and theatrical translation. Amongst other types of translation, the translation of theater has specific problems, as it deals with text and spoken message. Besides, translating from a developed language like English into a minor language of Kurdish may face some other problems. This article, sheds light on the relationship between translation and theater and the problems faced in translating the theater of ‘the sandbox’ from English into Kurdish, and the how the problems of translation solved through different translational strategies.
Evaluating Teachers’ Professional Development for ICT Use: Towards Innovative Classroom Practices (Published)
This paper describes an evaluation study designed to investigate the impact of an ICT-Instructional digital innovation in teaching Mathematics, English and Integrated Science subjects from the teacher capacity building professional development programme to classroom implementation at senior high school levels in Ghana. Interviews and survey data were used for data collection following a week professional development programme on the instructional digital learning training. The study demonstrated that the teachers increased in ICT proficiencies but this was limited to their own professional development and not so much of classroom implementation of ICT which results when transfer of learning takes place from training to practice. The study reported that teachers faced a complex mix of factors that when combined, contributed to challenges in transferring the ideas gained in the training programme to the classroom situation. It was evident from the findings that more systematic efforts are needed at the school levels and at the level of stakeholders who implement in-service teachers’ professional development programmes to move the goal of transforming teaching and learning through ICT-based innovations. Based on the outcomes, the study discussed recommendations to help smoothen the transition from teacher professional development programmes to actual classroom implementations in Ghanaian senior high schools and such similar contexts.
The Difficulties of Learning English As Perceived By a Group of International Students: A Case Study (Published)
This study investigated the challenges of learning English encountered by a group of international students while learning in an intensive English program at a large Midwestern American university. One tenet underpinning this study is that social learning plays a crucial role in L2 learning because it enables learners to be actively engaged in the language learning process. Twenty students (9 graduate and 11 undergraduate), were chosen randomly from the intensive English program to take part in this study. Their ages ranged between 19-26 years, and they came from different countries, including Saudi Arabia, China, Pakistan, India, Jordan, Ghana, Nigeria and Algeria. The study used information gathered by means of the qualitative research method of interviewing. The findings of the study showed that social interaction is one of the major difficulties confronting international students learning English. Difficulties in terms of oral production, comprehension, pronunciation and using the correct lexicon.