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An analysis of speech act behavior in senior high school English textbooks in Taiwan
Lai, Sih Yu
Yu, Ming Chung
Lai, Sih Yu
Speech act theory
|Issue Date:||2017-08-10 10:17:05 (UTC+8)|
When it comes to foreign language teaching, teaching materials, without doubt, have been of vital importance. Textbooks, for teachers, serve as the major teaching resources. They are identified as important guidelines for students as well. Therefore, textbook evaluation has naturally received attention. Through textbook evaluation, for one thing, teachers can gain a proper understanding of textbooks, then making good use of them. For another thing, it enables textbook editors and publishers to examine and improve on textbooks. Although there have been many studies regarding textbook evaluation, few of them have been done on speech act behavior in senior high school English textbooks in Taiwan.
The main goal of the current study is to analyze how the three speech acts, compliments, refusals, and requests, are presented in the conversation sections of the three series of the senior high school English textbooks, published by San Min, Lung Teng, and Far East. First of all, the frequency of compliments, refusals, and requests in the three series of the textbooks was examined. The next part was to look at how the three speech acts were presented in these textbooks and whether they showed American preference. Lastly, cross-cultural comparisons and contrasts in the textbooks and their corresponding teachers’ manuals were scrutinized.
The results revealed that the three series of the textbooks examined presented the three speech acts in different proportion. Additionally, they were not completely presented in American ways. More importantly, there were few cross-cultural explanations found in the textbooks and their corresponding teachers’ manuals.
The findings of the present study can work as reference for teachers and researchers interested in the teaching and learning of speech act behavior. They may motivate textbook editors and writers as well as teachers to place great emphasis on how to teach speech acts well. Last but not least, textbook compilers can compensate for the limitations of the conversation sections of senior high school textbooks in Taiwan in future materials development.
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