English Learners’ Attitudes toward English as an International Language: A Qualitative Inquiry

Muhammad Rahimi*, Maryam Pakzadian **
*School of Foreign Languages, Qilu University of Technology (Shandong Academy of Sciences), Jinan, China.
**Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran.
Periodicity:October - December'2019
DOI : https://doi.org/10.26634/jelt.9.4.16107

Abstract

This article reports on a qualitative study that investigated English learners' attitudes toward English as an International Language (EIL). Four major findings were identified in the current study. First, majority of the participants thought that English belongs to all its users, regardless of being its native speakers or not. Second, lack of knowledge of Outer Circle varieties led the students to stick to the two major Inner Circle varieties of English—American and British Englishes as standard norms. Third, majority of participants embraced localisation of English and considered it as a manifestation of local cultures. Furthermore, the learners admitted that their local government has attached great value to learning English, but they were concerned about the utilitarian view of education, since majority of the learners focus merely on obtaining high scores on English exams. Fourth, the learners expressed their dissatisfaction with the imbalanced contemporary English teaching and stated that developing communication competence should be the main goal of English instruction. Therefore, the authors suggest that effective measures be taken at policy making, materials development and pedagogy levels to promote the legitimacy of all varieties of English and meet the needs of today's English learners.

Keywords

Attitudes, EIL, English Learners' Attitudes, Standard English, World Englishes.

How to Cite this Article?

Rahimi, M., & Pakzadian, M. (2019). English Learners' Attitudes toward English as an International Language: A Qualitative Inquiry. i-manager’s Journal on English Language Teaching, 9(4), 28-40. https://doi.org/10.26634/jelt.9.4.16107

References

[1]. Aliakbari, M., & Monfared, M. (2014). Iranian students' beliefs and motivations towards English. Social and Behavioral Sciences, 98(6), 200-206. https://doi.org/ 10.1016/j.sbspro.2014.03.407
[2]. Alsagoff, L., McKay, S. L., Hu, G., & Renandya, W. (Eds.) (2012). Principles and Practices for Teaching English as an International Language. New York: Routledge.
[3]. Bayard, D., Weatherall, A., Gallois, C., & Pittam, J. (2001). Pax Americana? Accent attitudinal evaluations in New Zealand, Australia and America. Journal of Sociolinguistics, 5(1), 22-49. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467- 9481.00136
[4]. Berg, B. L. (2004). Qualitative Research Methods for the Social Sciences (5th Ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.
[5]. Block, D. (2004). Globalisation and language teaching. ELT Journal, 58(1), 75-77. https://doi.org/10.1002/ 9781444324068.ch12
[6]. Brown, H. D. (2007). Principles of Language Learning and Teaching (5th Ed.). White Plains, NY: Pearson Education.
[7]. Brutt-Griffler, J., & Samimy, K. (2002). Transcending the nativeness paradigm. World Englishes, 20(1), 99-106. https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-971X.00199
[8]. Byram, M. (1998). Cultural identities in multilingual classrooms. In J. Cenoz & F. Genesee (Eds.), Beyond Bilingualism (pp. 96-116). Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.
[9]. Canagarajah, A. S. (1999). Resisting Linguistic Imperialism in English Teaching. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.
[10]. Canagarajah, S. (2005). Reclaiming the Local in Language Policy and Practice. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.
[11]. Canagarajah, S. (2006). Changing communicative needs, revised assessment objectives: Testing English as an international language. Language Assessment Quarterly, 3(3), 229-242. https://doi.org/10.1207/s1543431 1laq0303_1
[12]. Canagarajah, S. & Said, S. B. (2011). Linguistic imperialism. In J. Simpson (Ed.), The Routledge Handbook of Applied Linguistics. Abingdon: Routledge.
[13]. Dailey, R. M., Giles, H., & Jansma, L. (2005). Language attitudes in an Anglo-Hispanic context: The role of the linguistic landscape. Language and Communication, 25, 27-38. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.langcom.2004.04.004
[14]. Davari, H., & Aghagolzadeh, F. (2015). To teach or not to teach? Still an open question for the Iranian education system. In C. Kennedy (Ed.), English Language Teaching in the Islamic Republic of Iran: Innovations, Trends and Challenges (pp.13-22). UK: British Council.
[15]. Dörnyei, Z. (2008). Research Methods in Applied Linguistics. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
[16]. Giddens, A. (2000). Runaway World. London: Routledge.
[17]. Holliday, A. (2005). The struggle to Teach English as an International Language. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
[18]. Jenkins, J. (2006). Current perspectives on teaching world Englishes and English as a lingua franca. TESOL Quarterly, 40(1), 157-181. https://doi.org/10.2307/ 40264515
[19]. Jenkins, J. (2012). English as a lingua franca from the classroom to the classroom. ELT Journal, 66(4), 486-494. https://doi.org/10.1093/elt/ccs040
[20]. Jenkins, J. (2015). Global Englishes: A Resource Book rd for Students (3 Ed.). Abingdon: Routledge.
[21]. Kachi, R. (2004). Factors predicting native and nonnative listeners' evaluative reactions to Japanese English (Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation), Ohio State University.
[22]. Kachru, B. B. (1981). The pragmatics of non-Native varieties of English. In Larry E. Smith (Ed.), English for Cross- Cultural Communication. London: Macmillan.
[23]. Kachru, B. B. (1985). Standards, codification and sociolinguistic realism: The English language in the outer circle. In R. Quirk & H. G. Widdowson (Eds.), English in the World: Teaching and Learning the Language and Literatures (pp.11-30). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
[24]. Kirkpatrick, A. (2011). English as an Asian lingua franca and the multilingual model of ELT. Language Teaching, 44(2), 212-224. https://doi.org/10.1017/ S0261444810000145
[25]. Kirkpatrick, A. (2015). World Englishes and local cultures. In F. Sharifian (Ed.), The Routledge and Book of Language and Culture (pp. 460-470). London: Routledge.
[26]. Kumaravadivelu, B. (2012). Individual identity, cultural globalisation and teaching English as an international language: The case for an epistemic break. In L. Alsagoff, W. Renandya, G. Hu & S. L. Mckay (Eds.), Teaching English as an International Language: Principles and practices (pp. 9- 27). New York: Routledge.
[27]. Lai, H. Y. (2008). Learning English as an International Language or Not? A study of Taiwanese Students' Motivation and Perceptions (Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation), Warwick University, Coventry, UK.
[28]. Lee, J. S., & Hsieh, J. C. (2018). University students' perceptions of English as an international language (EIL) in Taiwan and South Korea. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development. https://doi.org/10.1080/ 01434632.2018.1438448
[29]. Liou, Y. S. (2010). Who wants EIL? Attitudes towards English as a lingua franca in the world: A comparison between college teachers and students in Taiwan. College English: Issues and Trends, 3. Taipei, Taiwan: Chengchi University.
[30]. Matsuda, A. (2003). The ownership of English in Japanese secondary schools. World Englishes, 22(4), 483- 496. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-971X.2003.00314.x
[31]. Matsuda, A. (2017). Preparing Teachers to Teach English as an International Language. Bristol: Multilingual Matters.
[32]. McKay, S. L. (2002). Teaching English as an International Language: Rethinking Goals and Approaches. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
[33]. McKay, S. L. (2003). Toward appropriate EIL pedagogy: Reexamining common ELT assumptions. International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 13(1), 1-22. https://doi.org/10.1111/1473-4192.00035.
[34]. McKay, S. L., & Brown, J.D. (2016). Teaching and Assessing EIL in Local Contexts Around the World. New York: Routledge.
[35]. Meilin, C., & Xiaoqiong, H. (2015). China English at home and in the world. English Today, 21(3), 27-38. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0266078406004081
[36]. Pan, L., & Block, D. (2011). English as a global language in China: An investigation into learners' and teachers' language beliefs. System, 39(3), 391-402. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2011.07.011
[37]. Parmegiani, A. (2014). The (dis)ownership of English: Language and identity construction among Zulu students at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism, 17(6), 683-694. https://doi.org/10.1080/13670050.2014.953775
[38]. Pennycook, A. (1998). English and the Discourses of Colonialism. London: Routledge.
[39]. Phan, H. L. (2005). Toward a critical notion of appropriation of English as an international language. Asian EFL Journal, 7(3), 34-46.
[40]. Phan, H. L. (2009). English as an international language: International students and identity formation. Journal of Language and Intercultural Communication, 9 (3), 201-214. https://doi.org/10.1080/147084-70902748855.
[41]. Phillipson, R. (1992). Linguistic Imperialism. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
[42]. Rezaei, S., Khosravisadeh, P., & Mottaghi, Z. (2018). Attitudes toward world Englishes among Iranian English language learners. Asian Englishes, 1-18. https://doi.org/ 10.1080/13488678.2018.1440367.
[43]. Richards, J., & Sadeghi, K. (2015). The idea of English in Iran: An example from Urmia. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development, 37 (4), 419-434, https://doi.org/10.1080/ 01434632.2015.1080714
[44]. Sharifian, F. (2009). English as an international language: Perspective and Pedagogical Issues. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.
[45]. Sharifian, F. (2010). Glocalisation of English in world Englishes: An emerging variety among Persian speakers of English. In T. Omoniyi & M. Saxena (Eds.), Contending with Globalisation in World Englishes. Clevedon, UK: Multilingual Matters.
[46]. Smith, L. (1976). English as an international auxiliary language. RELC Journal, 7(2), 38-43. https://doi.org/ 10.1177/003368827600700205
[47]. Takeshita, Y. (2010). East Asian Englishes. In A. Kirkpatrick (Ed.), The Routledge Handbook of World Englishes (pp. 265-281). Abingdon: Routledge.
[48]. Tanaka, F. (2010). A survey-based study of Japanese university student attitudes toward EIL and implications for the future of English education in Japan. Asian Englishes, 13(1), 48-71. https://doi.org/10.1080/13488678. 2010.10801272
[49]. Tokumoto, M., & Shibata, M. (2011). Asian varieties of English: Attitudes towards pronunciation. World Englishes, 30(3), 392-408. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-971X.2011. 01710.x
[50]. Widdowson, H. G. (1998). The ownership of English. TESOL Quarterly, 28(2), 377-388. https://doi.org/ 10.2307/3587438
[51]. Zhang, Q. (2013). The attitudes of Hong Kong students towards Hong Kong English and Mandarin accented English. English Today, 29, 9-16. https://doi.org/10.1017/ S0266078413000096

Purchase Instant Access

Single Article

North Americas,UK,
Middle East,Europe
India Rest of world
USD EUR INR USD-ROW
Pdf 35 35 200 20
Online 35 35 200 15
Pdf & Online 35 35 400 25

If you have access to this article please login to view the article or kindly login to purchase the article
Options for accessing this content:
  • If you would like institutional access to this content, please recommend the title to your librarian.
    Library Recommendation Form
  • If you already have i-manager's user account: Login above and proceed to purchase the article.
  • New Users: Please register, then proceed to purchase the article.