Elt as a Tool to Bridge Cross-Cultural Gaps

OZTURK, Omer Serdar (2013) Elt as a Tool to Bridge Cross-Cultural Gaps. 3rd International Conference on Foreign Language Teaching and Applied Linguistics.

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Official URL: http://fltal.ibu.edu.ba/


Key words: inter-cultural gap, cultural awareness, cross-cultural barriers, ELT and culture, sociolinguistics ABSTRACT This paper is a part of an ongoing research, namely “AN ANALYSIS OF THE EFL LEARNERS IN A MULTICULTURAL ELT ENVIRONMENT: THE CASE OF A PRIVATE SCHOOL IN MACEDONIA”. In this part of the study I tried to answer the question, “Can we use ELT to bridge cross-cultural gaps?” My premises are; -Language and culture are reciprocally inextricable. Language is the biggest conveyor of culture. Learning a language is learning that culture. This can be evidenced that members of similar cultures learn each other’s language more easily than members of remote cultures. -English has long been a lingua franca in many parts of the world. The status English language gained today makes it unavoidable in school curricula worldwide. -Our virtually shrinking world faces problems among its various ethnic groups. Misconceptions, prejudices, or stereotypes are prevalent in today’s multicultural world. -One aspect of school education is to help solve the problems of society. Following this thought sequence I asked the research question: Can ELT be used to facilitate its learners to overcome cultural barriers? Can we use ELT to bridge cross-cultural gaps? To explore the question, in the beginning of the academic year 2012-2013, I first added an extra line into the aims section of my annual plan as; “to develop better cross cultural understanding among students.” To achieve this, I planned to use various cross-cultural materials in my classes. Our course-book “Solutions” has been a great help as it has a lot of direct culture related topics. As the implementation of the plan, we studied culture, its aspects and elements like music, food, clothes, reactions and gestures in various instances. As a final stage I conducted a questionnaire to test the change in their perception of the “other.” The analysis of the questionnaire gave encouraging results. Students developed more acceptance towards other cultures.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PA Classical philology
P Language and Literature > PC Romance languages
P Language and Literature > PE English
P Language and Literature > PI Oriental languages and literatures
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
P Language and Literature > PR English literature
P Language and Literature > PS American literature
Divisions: Education Faculty > English Language and Literature Department
Depositing User: Mr. Serdar Ozgoze
Date Deposited: 29 May 2013 13:10
Last Modified: 29 May 2013 13:10
URI: http://eprints.ibu.edu.ba/id/eprint/1918

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