Minnesota and Wisconsin Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages
Pragmatics, or the ability to communicate using language, is increasingly recognized
as essential to language competence and production (Thomas, 1983; Bachman,
1990). Much research exists on pragmatic acquisition (Blum-Kulka, House, & Kasper,
1989; Cenoz, 2003; Kasper & Rose, 2001; Wildner-Basset, 1994). Researchers
currently advocate metapragmatic instruction which combines explicit instruction,
awareness-raising activities, and guided practice (Eslami-Rasekh, 2005; Kasper,
1997). Such instruction utilizes metalanguage and higher-level thinking with which
students from non-academic backgrounds may struggle. Previous research on the
effectiveness of metapragmatic instruction in request-making examined highly
academic participants literate in their first language (L1) as well as the second
language (L2). Additional research is needed to determine the effectiveness of
metapragmatics for lower-level learners and those in non-university settings.
This pilot study examines the effectiveness of metapragmatic instruction to teach
request-making to an intermediate Adult Basic Education (ABE)-ESL class of Somalis
and Mexicans. The study also examines students’ responses to the instruction.
Metapragmatic Requesting Instruction in an Adult Basic Education-ESL Classroom: A Pilot Study.
Minnesota and Wisconsin Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages.
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