Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Production of Apologies by Colombian Learners of English A Study of Pragmatic Acquisition in an EFL Context
by Solano Cahuana, Iris Laudith, M.A.T., Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville, 2015, 90; 1591086
Abstract (Summary)

There have been multiple research studies focused on cross-cultural and interlanguage pragmatics in general, as well as specific studies analyzing the production of apologies from different native languages and from English learning contexts. However, the research related to Hispanic learning contexts of English as a Foreign Language (EFL) is more limited. In Colombia, only two pragmatic studies have been conducted about the production of speech acts and both of them focused on the pragmatics of Spanish as mother tongue.

This project analyzes the pragmatic competence development of Colombian EFL learners in a pedagogical environment where English pragmatics is not reinforced, comparing the selection of apology strategies used by EFL learners in role play situations in order to determine the variation between proficiency levels. Finally, retrospective verbal reports from the EFL learners and perception forms of American native speakers of English were collected in order to assess cross-cultural perceptions regarding the intelligibility, appropriateness, and politeness of the apologies.

The results of the study show that even without explicit pragmatic education or immersion opportunities in the target culture, these Colombian EFL learners have acquired some pragmatic competence in English. However, their general selection of apology strategies do not approximate either English or Spanish. Also, their discourse reflects the Colombian patterns of social behavior and preserve many features of Spanish pragmatics, which reinforces the idea of a transitional stage of inter-language pragmatic development.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: LaFond, Larry
Commitee: Dogancay-Aktuna, Seran, Hardman, Joel
School: Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville
Department: English Language & Literature
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: MAI 54/05M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: English as a Second Language, Latin American Studies
Keywords: Colombia, EFL, Pragmatic development, Second language acquisition
Publication Number: 1591086
ISBN: 978-1-321-81555-9
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