INSTITUTE OF EDUCATIONAL SCIENCES
M.A. PROGRAM IN ENGLISH LANGUAGE EDUCATION
M.A. Thesis Defense
University Preparatory School Students’ Awareness about Grammar and Pragmatics
Date & Time: Thursday, February 28th, 2019, 14.30
Place: Faculty of Education, Law Building Room 217
All interested are cordially invited.
Pragmatic awareness is one of the most significant elements of foreign language learning as well as the grammatical awareness. Since speech acts tend to occur in natural conversations, they are essential parts of foreign language ability. This study aims to investigate the pragmatic and grammatical awareness level of 50 high intermediate preparatory school students in an English medium university from different departments who have not received any formal pragmatic instructions before.
The data were collected through a Discourse Completion Task (DTC) including 20 written academic and non-academic scenarios consisting of speech acts which aims to demonstrate whether preparatory school students are able to determine the pragmatic and grammatical failures. Based on participants’ answers in Discourse Completion Task, four focus groups were formed to understand their perception on the grammatical and pragmatic awareness.
Both qualitative and quantitative data were coded to compare the participants’ awareness level and to investigate the underlying reasons. The results of the DCT analysis displayed that participants’ pragmatic awareness level is higher than their grammatical awareness level even though they have not received any explicit instructions on pragmatic competence. The analysis of the focus group interviews suggested that the underlying reason behind this result is participants’ attitudes towards grammatical knowledge. They do not think grammatical knowledge is the most indispensible part of foreign language competence. Thus, their awareness level in grammatical knowledge is lower compared to pragmatic awareness.
Key words: Pragmatics, Pragmatic awareness, Grammatical awareness, Speech acts