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Ontario-Canadian Perspectives of Pragmatic Competence Amanda Careena Fernandes.

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Presentation on theme: "Ontario-Canadian Perspectives of Pragmatic Competence Amanda Careena Fernandes."— Presentation transcript:

1 Ontario-Canadian Perspectives of Pragmatic Competence Amanda Careena Fernandes

2 Indispensible for learning a new language (Bachman, 1990) When poorly developed, it leads to communication problems in the target language (Huang et al., 2013) Concerns the study of meaning that is communicated by a speaker beyond what is directly being communicated (Yule, 1996; Levinson, 1983; Ishihara, 2010) “Pragmatics is the study of how more gets communicated than is said.” (Yule,1996, p. 3) Pragmatic Competence Pragmatic Competence

3 Research Questions The purpose of this study is to examine current Ontario-Canadian teachers’ perceptions of the use and assessment of pragmatic competence instruction 1.Do French as a Second Language teachers impart importance to the use of pragmatic competence instruction? 2.What are French as a Second Language teachers' current opinions about the use of pragmatic instruction in the French as a Second Language classroom? 3.Which assessment strategies do French as a Second Language teachers believe best assess the impact of pragmatic competence instruction on students' understanding of a non-native language?

4 Study Framework Realist ethnographic qualitative approach Based on the interpretative framework of social constructivism Utilized interviews Data were gathered for this study through the completion of interviews with three Ontario-Canadian French as a Second Language teachers

5 Data Analyses 1 st cycle Descriptive coding (Saldaña, 2012) 2 nd cycle Pattern coding (Saldaña, 2012) 3 rd cycle Theme identification 4 th Cycle Responses to the research questions

6 1 st Cycle Analysis

7 2 nd Cycle

8 3 rd Cycle

9 4 th Cycle PC is important PC is important for situational and social interactions There is a lack of general knowledge about PC Research Question #1 Imparted Importance PC is challenging to teach and assess PC is a highly social aspect of language acquisition PC concerns "real-life" and spontaneous situations Research Question #2 Current Opinions PC assessment should be authentic (i.e. spontaneous and in situ) PC assessment should include a social aspect There is a lack of knowledge of how to assess PC Research Question #3 Assessment Strategies

10 Research Question 1. Do French as a Second Language teachers impart importance to the use of pragmatic competence instruction? Participants believe pragmatic competence is important There is a lack of knowledge as to what pragmatic competence truly is This general lack of understanding may impact the participants' opinions about its importance

11 Research Question 2. What are French as a Second Language teachers' current opinions about the use of pragmatic instruction in the FSL classroom? It is seen as being challenging to teach and assess Teachers are not being truly comfortable or aware of the use and importance of pragmatic competence instruction Pragmatic competence instruction is seen as being difficult and a challenge Participants identified that it concerns "real-life" situations which are spontaneous

12 Research Question 3. Which assessment strategies do French as a Second Language teachers believe best assess the impact of pragmatic competence instruction on students' understanding of a non- native language? Pragmatic competence assessment should be authentic in that it is spontaneous and in situ It is identified as being a highly social aspect of language There is a lack of knowledge concerning how to best assess pragmatic competence

13 Conclusions Pragmatic competence instruction is important to second-language learning and teaching. Participants currently do not truly understand what pragmatic competence instruction is and how it can be practiced or assessed. Participants all agree that pragmatic competence is a highly social aspect of language learning. It is best taught and assessed through social interactions that aim to be "real-life" and authentic in nature.

14 References Bachman, L. (1990). Fundamental considerations in language testing. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Huang, J., Sheeran, T., Zhao, B., & Xiong, Y. (2013). Faculty perceptions of assessing Chinese college students' pragmatic competence: The hidden face of communication. Language and Communication Quarterly, 2(1), Ishihara, N. (2010). Instructional pragmatics: Bridging teaching, research, and teacher education. Language and Linguistics Compass, 4(10), Levinson, S. C. (1983). Pragmatics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Saldaña, J. (2012). The coding manual for qualitative researchers. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE. Van Maanen, J. (1988). Tales of the field: On writing ethnography. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.


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