Browsing M.A. in Teaching English as a Foreign Language by Title
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Item Open AccessAspects of validity of a test of productive vocabulary: Lex30(Taylor & Francis, 2012) Walters, J.This study investigates aspects of validity of an alternative measure of productive vocabulary. Lex30, developed by Meara and Fitzpatrick, is a word association task that claims to give an indication of productive vocabulary knowledge. Previous studies of Lex30 have assessed test-retest reliability, performance against native speaker norms, concurrent validity, reliability of parallel forms, and ability to reflect improvements in vocabulary development. In addition, the issue of construct validity has been explored. The study described here replicates some of these investigations with a different population and extends the investigation of construct validity. By comparing the performance of second language (L2) learners at different proficiency levels, the ability of the test to distinguish between levels of proficiency is explored. Concurrent validity is explored by comparing L2 learners' performance on Lex30 with that of two other productive vocabulary tests. Finally, one aspect of construct validity is explored by assessing whether Lex30 measures productive vocabulary use or simply recall. The findings indicate that Lex30 is a reliable and valid measure of productive vocabulary knowledge, but whether it measures only recall, or whether it measures actual ability to use vocabulary meaningfully and appropriately, appears to depend on the proficiency level of the test taker. © 2012 Taylor & Francis Group. Item Open AccessAttitudes to English teachers' accents in the Arabian Gulf(Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 2014) Buckingham, L.While the spread of English as a lingua franca has led to calls for multidialectal competence, EFL learners often still consider inner circle native English speaker (NES) pronunciation as their learning goal, and may profess a preference for particular teachers based on their NES or non-native English speaker (NNES) status. This study investigates whether a teacher’s NES/ NNES status may affect Omani students’ level of confidence towards the teacher. Using an adapted matched-guise technique with almost 350 students, the study reveals a preference for speakers and accents students understand to be from the UK, although students also responded favourably to Arabic native speakers. Where the NES/NNES variable remained constant, no significant difference in student’s ratings of the teacher was found. Item Open AccessBuilding a career in English: users of English as an additional language in academia in the Arabian Gulf(Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc., 2014) Buckingham, L.This study investigates how a group of 30 multilingual academics, all users of English as an additional language (EAL) working at a private university in Oman, acquired discourse community membership in their disciplines through publishing in English, and the strategies they use to sustain the level of literacy needed to disseminate their research in refereed journals while working on the periphery. The participants, from the natural sciences, information technology, and economics, originate from countries in the surrounding region and, although many did not study in one of the traditional Anglophone countries, their academic literacy skills in English have been the cornerstones of their peripatetic academic careers. Participants describe their experience publishing from the periphery and perceptions of reviewer bias, and identify strategies used to overcome material shortcomings and linguistic challenges. The practice of language reuse to support the drafting of particular sections of an article is a recurring theme in many interviews. The article discusses the importance of conventional language in the sciences and the differing understandings of plagiarism among academics from the humanities and sciences. An implication from this study is the need for greater institutional support for the writing process in environments where most faculty members are EAL users. Item Open AccessA case study on the perceptions of professional development unit members at an EFL program(2019) Peker, Hilal; Özkaynak, O.; Arslan, Z.; Tunç, H.; Peker, HilalPrior research focusing on teacher training indicated that professional development is considered as a continuous process, and trainings are essential for teacher development. In this qualitative case study, researchers examined the perceptions of professional development unit (PDU) members regarding the training sessions they offered at a foundation university in Turkey. After ethical committee permissions were obtained, the data were collected through semi-structured interview questions besides note taking during the interviews. There were five PDU members as participants. Content analysis was utilized after all the notes and transcriptions were brought together. To carry out the content analysis, the researchers employed a modified van Kaam method as defined by Moustakas (1994). Thematically analyzed data indicated three main findings: continuous professional development, good rapport, and motivation. These themes are discussed as reflected by the participants and implications are provided for future professional development series. Item Open AccessCommon ground for positioning: a discourse analysis on second language socialization(Hacettepe Universitesi, 2014) Ortaçtepe, Deniz; Ortaçtepe, DenizApplying Kecskes and Zhang's (2009) dynamic model of common ground in positioning theory (Davies & Harre, 1990), the present study aims to explore the second language (L2) socialization of Turkish students through the discursive processes as well as the skills they adopted in social interactions with the American speakers during a formal reception at an American university. The findings indicated that the Turkish students endorsed similar discursive processes not only to establish common ground as the American speakers', but also to position themselves in the speech context. This study highlights that engaging in real-life conversations with the target language speakers (Gumperz, 1996) encourages L2 learners/users (Cook, 1999) to embrace the discursive practices that are shared within a particular speech community. It also provides suggestions for future research embracing more longitudinal/ethnographic approahes to examine L2 socialization as well as teaching implications for instructional materials and contexts that reflect authentic social encounters. Item Open AccessConceptual socialization in EFL contexts: a case study on Turkish EFL learners’ request speech acts realization(Selçuk University, 2019) Şanal, Merve; Ortaçtepe, Deniz; Şanal, Merve; Ortaçtepe, DenizConceptual socialization refers to the process second/foreign language learners go through to transform their conceptual system so as “to fit the functional needs of the new language and culture” (Kecskes, 2002, p. 157). Therefore, the present study examined Turkish EFL learners’ conceptual socialization by analyzing the similarities and differences between native speakers of English and Turkish learners of English in their request speech acts realization. The data were collected from Turkish learners of English (focal group) and native speakers of English (baseline group) through role-plays and a written discourse completion task on requests both in Turkish and English. Participants’ responses were rated in terms of the level of formality, politeness, directness and appropriateness. The results indicated that although the Turkish EFL learners were higher level learners, they could not produce the required level of politeness, formality and appropriateness in their speech acts as much as the native speakers did. This study reveals that in EFL contexts, where there is lack of authentic social interaction and engagement with a community of practice, language learners’ conceptual socialization process is bound to their experiences of classroom instruction and L1 socialization. Item Open AccessThe effect of L1 on the production of L2 formulaic expressions(Turkish Association of Applied Linguistics, 2016) Pfeiffer, K.; Ortaçtepe, D.; Corlu, S.This study explores whether formulaic expressions congruent to the ones in an individual's native language (L1) have an effect on the production those expressions and their respective contexts in that individual's second language (L2). Fifteen EFL students were given a pre- and post-Discourse Completion Test and a Writing Prompt to assess their improvement in producing English idioms and their contexts after a workshop that focused on idioms of varying similarity to the participants' L1: Category I, word-for-word translations of the idiom used in L1; Category II, conceptually similar versions of the idiom used in L1; and Category III, idioms specific to the L2. The results of the study suggest that explicit instruction and comparison of any category of idioms can promote its production, but also that EFL learners are more comfortable working with Category II idioms. Item Open AccessThe effects of a professional development program on English as a foreign language teachers’ efficacy and classroom practice(Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc., 2015-12) Ortaçtepe, D.; Akyel, A. S.The purpose of the present study is twofold: (1) to investigate the relationship between the efficacy of teachers of English as a foreign language (EFL) and their self-reported practice of communicative language teaching (CLT) and (2) to examine the impact of an in-service teacher education program on teachers’ efficacy and self-reported and actual practice of CLT. Data came from a Teachers’ Background Questionnaire, English Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale (Chacon, 2005), Communicative Orientation of Language Teaching (COLT; Spada & Fronlich, 1995), and € the questionnaire version of COLT. Fifty Turkish EFL teachers working in eight schools responded to the questionnaires, and 20 of them were observed. The findings indicate that after the in-service education program, the teachers not only improved their practice of CLT but also became more efficacious. The findings highlight the importance of awareness-raising activities for professional development programs as well as the need for multiple instruments to analyse the extent to which teachers’ self-reported beliefs and practices concur with their observed teaching practice. Item Open AccessEFL learners’ use of formulaic language in oral assessments: a study on fluency and proficiency(Hacettepe Üniversitesi Eğitim Fakültesi Dekanlığı, 2016) Üstünbaş, Ü.; Ortaçtepe, Deniz; Ortaçtepe, DenizDespite the recent, increasing interest in the research of formulaic language which constitutes a significant part of languages, there is little research on formulaic language use in registers such as classroom teaching and textbooks. Therefore, this article aims to investigate a) formulaic language use of EFL learners in multi-task oral proficiency exams consisting of an individual and a paired task, b) the task type in which these learners use more formulaic language, and c) whether the use of formulaic expressions is related to their fluency and overall proficiency scores. The data were gathered from the content analyses of video recordings of oral proficiency exam belonging to 190 EFL learners with different proficiency levels according to the description of CEFR and the course book used at School of Foreign Languages at a state university in Turkey. The findings indicate that EFL learners used formulaic language which they were exposed to through their course books in oral proficiency exams with different tasks; they used more formulaic language in the paired tasks in which they interact with another exam taker and their use was significantly related to their scores of fluency and language proficiency. Item Open AccessEFL teachers’ identity (re)construction as teachers of intercultural competence: a language socialization approach(Routledge, 2015) Ortaçtepe, D.Adapting Norton’s (2000) notion of investment as an analytical lens along with thematic analysis, this longitudinal/narrative inquiry explores how 2 EFL teachers’ language socialization in the United States resulted in an identity (re)construction as teachers of intercultural competence. Baris and Serkan’s language socialization in the United States was marked with 3 identity investments: as an experienced EFL teacher, as an L2 user, and as a burgeoning scholar. The findings highlighted that teacher identities are not unitary, fixed, or stable but dynamic, situated, multiple (e.g., Norton Peirce, 1995; Varghese, Morgan, Johnston, & Johnson, 2005), and even sometimes blurred (e.g., Ochs, 1993). Item Open AccessExamining the relationship between Latinos’ English proficiency, educational degree, language preferences, and their perceptions on the Americans(Selcuk University, 2020) Peker, Hilal; Peker, HilalUsing data from the 2018 National Survey of Latinos that was conducted by The Pew Hispanic Center/Kaiser Family Foundation, the researcher in the present study reports on the perceptions of Latinos on English and their educational degrees as well as their language preferences. This non-experimental quantitative study is considered one of the first ones focusing on Latinos’ language preferences conducted all over the United States. A highly randomly stratified 2,288 Latino adults (1,041 males and 1,091 females) who are 18 years old or older identified themselves as Latinos in this study. These participants were from 48 states in total. The results indicated that there was a positive relationship between the last degree attended and participants’ English proficiency; however, there was no association between participants’ preference of English over Spanish and their perceptions on the friendliness/closeness of American individuals. The implications and future direction are recommended at the end of the study based on these results. Item Open AccessAn exploratory study of visually impaired students’ perceptions of inclusive mathematics education(SAGE Publications Ltd, 2015) Bayram, G. İ.; Corlu, M. S.; Aydın, E.; Ortaçtepe, D.; Alapala, B.The Turkish Disability Act introduced inclusive education to Turkey as a solution to the problems experienced by students with disabilities, including visually impaired students. The main purpose of this study was to explore the challenges faced by visually impaired students learning high school mathematics in inclusive classrooms in Turkey. The data were qualitative, consisting of interviews conducted with three high school graduates; they were analysed using the constant comparison method. In the interviews, students described the effects of various teaching methods on their learning and evaluated the social aspect (broadly speaking) of inclusive education. The results show that while the social needs of visually impaired Turkish students were adequately met through inclusive education, their academic needs were not, which we speculate to be partly because of mathematics teachers’ negative attitudes towards inclusive education. Item Open AccessExploring the perceptions of pre-service english teachers on vocabulary learning strategies in a foreign language teaching context(Untested Ideas Research Center, 2018) İstifçi, İ.; Peker, Hilal; Peker, HilalThe purpose of this study was to investigate vocabulary learning strategies (VLSs) of pre-service English language teachers in a foreign language teaching context. The data were collected during Fall 2016 semester from 34 second-year and 54 third-year undergraduate students studying English Language Teaching (ELT) at the College of Education of a state university in Turkey. The instrument used to collect the data was a 5-point Likert-Scale survey adapted by Riankamol (2008) from the Taxonomy of Vocabulary Learning Strategies developed by Schmitt (1997). The main purpose of the study was to identify mostly preferred VLS categories (Cognitive, Memory, Metacognitive, Determination and Social) by second and third year pre-service teachers in ELT programs and to examine if there are any differences between the second and third year pre-service teachers in terms of the specific VLSs they use. Further, semi-structured interviews were also conducted with 20 students to triangulate the quantitative data with the qualitative data on pre-service teachers’ beliefs and attitudes about VLSs. The results indicated some similarities and differences between the two groups of students. Implications highlight the importance of teaching VLSs to pre-service English teachers. Item Open AccessFormulaic language and conceptual socialization: the route to becoming nativelike in L2(Elsevier, 2013-10) Ortaçtepe, D.The present study addressed the question whether formulaic expressions indicate nativelike selection in the target language by examining seven Turkish students’ use of formulaic expressions during their first year in the United States. Fourteen external raters who spoke English as their first language rated the Turkish (focal group) and American students’ (control group) DCT responses in terms of nativelike language use. The results indicated that the American students not only received higher nativelikeness ratings but also produced more formulaic expressions than the Turkish students. This finding confirms that freely generated utterances based on grammatical units and lexis forecast non-membership to the speech community (Skehan, 1998) while the use of formulaic expressions is an indicator of nativelike selection. The results also revealed that gaining competency over formulaic expressions for second language learners is not a linear process but open to creativity. Item Open Access‘Fresh variants and formulations frozen’: structural features of commercial signs in Oman(John Wiley and Sons, 2014-07-15) Buckingham, L.This study analyses structural features of English on commercial signs on shop frontages throughout Oman. The study identifies frequently used structural features which appear to be undergoing a process of nativization (Schneider 2003) within the context of this text type. These include word class flexibility, the extensive use of the gerund at the end of noun phrases and the use of multiple verbs to itemize discrete activities. In some cases, features appear to serve the functions of economizing, or heightening the prominence or degree of explicitness of content; in other cases, structural features revealed the influence of Arabic. Limited evidence was also found for features previously identified in other lingua franca contexts such as the genitive structure with inanimate nouns and plural uncountable nouns. Item Open AccessA function-first approach to identifying formulaic language in academic writing(2011) Durrant, P.; Mathews-Aydınlı, J.There is currently much interest in creating pedagogically-oriented descriptions of formulaic language. Research in this area has typically taken what we call a 'form-first' approach, in which formulas are identified as the most frequent recurrent forms in a relevant corpus. While this research continues to yield valuable results, the present paper argues that much can also be gained by taking a 'function-first' approach, in which a corpus is first annotated for communicative functions and formulas are then identified as the recurrent patterns associated with each function. We demonstrate this approach through a comparative analysis of introductions to student essays and research articles. Focusing on one particularly common communicative function, the analysis demonstrates that (1) this function is more common in student essays than in articles; (2) both the choice to use the function and the choice of linguistic forms that realize the function vary across subject areas in research articles, but not in student essays; (3) research articles tend to be more formulaic in expressing the function than student essays; and (4) some parts of the forms used are highly formulaic, while others are more open. The key formulas are described and suggestions made regarding their pedagogical presentation. Item Open AccessGender differences in item format and skill area: some evidence from an EFL acheievement test(Journal of Language Taeching and Learning, 2014) Engin, A.; Ortaçtepe, D.The present study investigated the extent to which male and female language learners’ scores on achievement tests vary according to item format and skill areas. The statistical analysis of data from one achievement test administered to 303 pre-intermediate level students indicated that males and females’ scores showed differences in both item format and skill areas. While females outperformed males significantly with ‘find the correct form’ and ‘paragraph writing’ questions, males did not show any superiority in any item format. Females also outperformed males in three skill areas; ‘writing’ ‘grammar’ and ‘vocabulary’ while males scored higher only in ‘listening’. Possible reasons behind these differences between males and females’ scores can benefit future researchers, language teachers, and administrators in terms of theoretical and practical perspectives. Item Open AccessHow good is your test?(Oxford University Press, 2009) Küçük, F.; Walters, J.This article reports on a study of the validity and reliability of tests administered in an EFL university setting. The study addresses the question of how well face validity reflects more objective measures of the quality of a test, such as predictive validity and reliability. According to some researchers, face validity, defined as the surface credibility or public acceptability of a test, has no theoretical basis since it is based on the subjective perceptions of stakeholders such as teachers and students. However, due to lack of time or resources, or due to a perceived lack of competence, practitioners tend to rely on the ‘appeal’ of language tests, rather than seek empirical evidence. This article describes several ways of evaluating achievement tests, comparing their results in order to shed light on what measures can and should be taken to ensure that achievement tests accomplish their purposes. Item Open AccessThe identity (re)construction of nonnative English teachers stepping into native Turkish teachers’ shoes(Routledge, 2016) Mutlu, S.; Ortaçtepe, D.The present study explored the identity (re)construction of five nonnative English teachers who went to the USA on a prestigious scholarship for one year to teach their native language, Turkish. In that sense, it investigated how this shift from being a nonnative English teacher to a native Turkish teacher influenced their self-image, self-efficacy, and beliefs about teaching/learning. The data were collected mainly through three different instruments: a personal data questionnaire, ongoing controlled journals along with follow-up questions, and interviews. All the qualitative data were first analyzed according to Boyatzis’ [(1998). Transforming qualitative information: Thematic analysis and code development. Sage) thematic analysis, and then the emerging themes were related to three sensitizing concepts, which were (a) self-image, (b) self-efficacy, and (c) beliefs about teaching and learning. The findings revealed that (a) the participating teachers in this study had high(er) self-efficacy but low(er) self-image when teaching English compared to Turkish because of their idealization of native speaker norms; (b) their multiple identities were interacting with each other, and shifting from being a native to a nonnative, and a language teacher to a language user; and (c) their beliefs about teaching and learning coming from their core identity as an English language teacher worked as a catalyst in this process. Item Open AccessInstruction and exposure: how do they contribute to second language acquisition?(Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, Inc., 1998) Shresta, T. B.Adults have access to two distinct approaches to develop their second language competence. These are instruction and exposure (Krashen 1982). Both approaches contribute to second language acquisition in their unique ways. This article describes how they contributed to the development of oral proficiency in English as a second language in mutually ex-clusive learning situations in Nepal. There were 58 randomly selected subjects in the study, who came from two distinct groups. The first group was composed of people who had learned English mainly through formal classroom instruction with grammar-based approaches. The second group was composed of people who had learned English mainly through informal contact with English-speaking people. English speech samples were collected through personal interviews and presentations based on visual materials. These oral responses were judged holistically by five independent judges. They were also analyzed by means of grammar and fluency-related errors. Data were analyzed using t-tests and correlation procedures. The main finding was that both instruction and exposure contributed to second language acquisition in their own unique ways. The former seemed to promote accuracy and the latter fluency. For communication purposes, however, fluency seemed to be more critical than accuracy.