Issue InformationVol 3 Issue 1
Dr. Bora Demir
pp. i - vi | DOI: 10.29329/irelt.2021.449
Original ArticlesTurkish High School Students’ Perceptions of Culture Learning in Foreign Language Classrooms
Aysegul Arhan Pakna & Ayhan Kahraman
pp. 1 - 10 | DOI: 10.29329/irelt.2021.449.1
Language and culture are thought to be interrelated by many researchers. Some find it valuable to integrate cultural elements into language teaching whereas others oppose the idea claiming that English is a lingua franca. There has been much research regarding the opinions of teachers or university students on this debate. However, learners excluding university students have not been fully explored up to date. The aim of this research was to investigate Turkish high school students’ perceptions of the place and role of culture learning in foreign language classrooms. Data were collected from 126 high school students through a questionnaire. In addition, interviews were conducted with 10 voluntary participants. For data analysis, descriptive statistics were conducted via SPSS, and the interview was analysed thematically. According to the results, the participants have positive perceptions of culture learning in language classrooms. Most of them are aware of the inseparable relationship between culture and language. They think cultural elements should be incorporated in language teaching. The findings were triangulated with the data obtained from the interviews. Interviewees agreed on the idea that culture should be taught along with the language. Rather than focusing on only the ideas of decision-makers, learners’ opinions should be investigated more in designing curriculum, as they are the subjects of learning.
Keywords: culture, culture learning, high school students, students’ perceptions, foreign language
The Effect of Portfolio on Foreign Language Speaking Skills of 60-72-Month-Old Preschool Children
Mehmet Gökce & Murat Bartan
pp. 11 - 20 | DOI: 10.29329/irelt.2021.449.2
From the past to the present, people have used language as a tool for understanding. They conveyed their feelings, wishes, and expectations to other people through language. This ability to transmit has facilitated the lives of people and, therefore, everyone. The desire of the communities to interact and communicate with other societies revealed foreign language learning behaviour. Today, all countries have set a goal of learning at least one foreign language in their education programs. In this context, it is increasingly vital to start foreign language education at an early age. This study was conducted to examine the effect of portfolio use on foreign language speaking skills of children attending preschool education. One group pre-test and post-test design without a control group, which is one of the pre-experimental designs without a control group, was used in the research. The study sample consisted of 25 children (14 boys and 11 girls) attending preschool education in a private school affiliated to the Directorate of National Education in Kütahya in the 2016-2017 academic year. In the collection of data, the portfolio developed and applied by the researcher was used. The Wilcoxon signed rankings test was performed in the data analysis to determine the difference between each section’s pre-test and post-test scores. According to the study results, it was concluded that using a portfolio had a positive effect on children’s speaking skills of this age. As a result of this effect, it was found that there was a significant increase in speaking skills both in the target foreign language and in their family language.
Keywords: Preschool, child, foreign language, portfolio.
Supporting the Well-being of EFL Learners: A Study at IZTECH Preparatory School
pp. 21 - 31 | DOI: 10.29329/irelt.2021.449.3
Student wellbeing is of increased importance for language learning. A great number of research has shown that school-based well-being practices can contribute to academic and non-academic attainment (Dixon et al., 2020; Driscoll et al., 2012). In this framework, this study aims at investigating the well-being of university preparatory school students in Turkey. With a mixed-methods design, the study utilizes a 15-items PERMA questionnaire as the quantitative data collection instrument followed by focus group interviews with questions developed from the survey results to get a deeper understanding of students’ perspectives on the concept of well-being. Findings show that EFL students are at a medium level of well-being, and there are four benchmarks that affect their-wellbeing.
Keywords: student well-being, EFL students, EFL classrooms, positive psychology, preparatory school
A Comparison of Distance and Face-to-Face Learning Regarding Anxiety Factors Among 5th Grade EFL Students: A Case Study
Seda Gökce & Ayhan Kahraman
pp. 32 - 44 | DOI: 10.29329/irelt.2021.449.4
In the general sense, anxiety is a feeling that causes trouble in mind. Accordingly, language learning anxiety can be listed as one of the factors affecting learners negatively in and out of the educational settings due to the Covid-19 pandemic. For this reason, being aware of students’ learning conditions that affect their anxiety level is significant for language teachers to set clear expectations about the learning outcomes of the school subjects. Regarding young learners in Turkey, the distance education context is a highly new way to be pursued in the scope of experience. Considering this information, the current study aims to profile and compare individual language anxiety levels of 5th-grade students in face-to-face learning and distance learning. Research is valuable since distance learning is a new concept for young learners in Turkey, resulting from the pandemic, and very few researchers have focused on young learners in Turkey. The study was conducted in a state school in Kütahya. Participants were 5th-grade students from three different sections of the school. In the study, the Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale (FLCAS) and its modified distance learning version were used. The results of the two tests were compared. While some factors do not show a significant difference, some aspects of fear of communication increase in the target foreign language. However, some items related to fear of making mistakes have noticeably reduced in distance learning.
Keywords: distance learning, foreign language anxiety, face-to-face learning, young learners
An ESP Approach to a Metadiscursive Analysis of Political Science’s Corpus
Shi̇va Sabbagh Shabestari̇ & Reza Abdi̇
pp. 45 - 57 | DOI: 10.29329/irelt.2021.449.5
Discursive study of corpus has been one of the keys to comprehend and employ accurate and authentic language. Metadiscourse is a rather tangible dimension of discourse to English learners. This study investigates the political science’s corpus in terms of interactional metadiscursive markers based on Hyland’s (2005) model of metadiscourse. For this aim, inaugural speeches and official oaths of office related to seven English speaking countries were collected and analyzed. The statistical and analytical results suggest that despite a few similarities in some cases, the general employment of metadiscursive markers differs significantly across cultures. This study can help ESP learners of Politics and related majors become more conscious of metadiscourse and improve practical awareness of its use. It also can better prepare them to achieve a higher level of understanding in the target language situation. Although this study can provide a general view towards the discursive nature of political discourse for ESP students, the results imply that a mere generalization and ignoring the salient distinctions should be avoided for an accurate comprehension of political discourse
Keywords: Inaugural speech, metadiscourse, oath of office, political science, political speech