Unpacking the Nexus between Teachers' Awareness of Pragmatics Instruction and Their Classroom Practices

Document Type: Original Article

Authors

1 Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran

2 Allameh Tabataba’i University, Tehran, Iran

10.22132/tel.2020.118261

Abstract

Developing learners' pragmatic competence is claimed to be influenced by teachers' awareness of pragmatic instruction. However, this awareness and the way teachers teach pragmatics in their classrooms have been rarely explored. Therefore, this study sought to investigate the extent of English as a foreign language (EFL) teachers' metapragmatic awareness and their instruction of pragmatic features. To achieve this goal, a 30-item questionnaire was adapted and administered to 300 EFL teachers and analyzed in terms of the four components of the questionnaire, including Language teachers, Language learners, Colleagues and institutes, and Coursebooks and exams. Moreover, the classes of 30 teachers were observed based on a 20-item observation checklist that was developed by the researchers and analyzed qualitatively. Results indicated that the teachers' awareness of pragmatics was relatively high only in one of the components of pragmatic awareness, namely language teachers. However, observation results indicated that they did not consistently teach pragmatic features in their classes. In addition, it was revealed that, except for the component of Language teachers, the differences between less and more experienced teachers' mean scores on the other components of pragmatic awareness questionnaire were not statistically significant. The low levels of awareness and corresponding practice could be attributed to the fact that meager attention is devoted to pragmatic instruction in teaching education programs.

Keywords