You Reap What You Sow”- The Use of Idiomatic Language by EFL Teacher-Trainees in Developing Materials

Khan, Ozlem and Can, Nilufer (2012) You Reap What You Sow”- The Use of Idiomatic Language by EFL Teacher-Trainees in Developing Materials. In: 2nd International Conference on Foreign Language Teaching and Applied Linguistics (FLTAL’12), 4-6 May 2012, Sarajevo.

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Material evaluation and development courses in EFL teacher training programs carry an utmost importance for educating teachers to acquire the skill to evaluate, select and rewrite materials to cater for their students’ needs better. As Masuhara (1998:240) states “students come and go and so do materials but a large number of teachers tend to stay”. In EFL settings, in particular, non-native language teachers tend to over-rely on a single textbook, due to their self-perceived lack of Communicative Competence (CC) (Medgyes, 2001). As part of their CC, knowledge of idiomatic language is particularly considered in this study because avoiding the use of such language might make non-native teachers sound unnatural and unimaginative (Cooper, 1999). Thus, teachers might either reflect this kind of tone in the materials they develop or become more dependent on the available materials. Therefore, the aim of this study is to uncover to what extent EFL teacher-trainees use idiomatic expressions in writing materials. In doing so, the materials (i.e. unit preparation, supplementary worksheet preparation) prepared as part of the requirements of “Materials Evaluation and Development in ELT” course were examined by means of Content Analysis (McCarthy & O’Dell, 2002). During this process, idiomatic expressions ranging from idioms to proverbs were identified (Dobrovol’skij & Piirainen, 2005; Harnish, 1993) and verified using idiom and proverb dictionaries. The results were then analyzed both quantitatively and qualitatively. The data analysis showed that the teacher-trainees hardly used idiomatic expressions in their materials. As for some of the teacher trainees who made use of idiomatic expressions in their materials, they usually did not incorporate them in a way to enhance the development of CC. The overall findings emphasize the need to improve idiomatic competence for effective material development.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Depositing User: Mr. IT Center Editor
Date Deposited: 14 Jun 2012 10:46
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2012 10:46

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