The Impact of the Cultural Familiarity of Literary Texts on Learners' Attitudes towards Reading: A Case Study on the Perceptions of L2 English Teachers

Yıldıray Kurnaz*, Erdem Akbaş**
* Department of Foreign Languages, Bayburt Universiry, Merkez, Bayburt, Turkey.
** Department of English Language Teaching, Erciyes University, Turkey.
Periodicity:July - September'2022

Abstract

The authenticity and familiarity of the reading materials used in English as a Foreign Language (EFL) classes have received a great deal of attention for some time. The aim of the present study is to report on the qualitative analyses of secondary school EFL teachers' perceptions about the influence of cultural familiarity on reading skills development. With the qualitative nature of the data collection and analysis, a deeper insight is sought into EFL teachers' ideas about the issue with a special focus on the factors affecting their perceptions. The participants were three EFL teachers working in different secondary schools in Turkey. For data collection, in addition to completing prior semi-structured interview forms, the teachers completed posterior semi-structured interview forms after implementing two forms of the same text in both control and experimental groups of students. This also enabled the researchers to zoom in on any possible differences in the teachers' views before and after the implementation process. The results showed that the participant teachers' general perceptions about authenticity or familiarity were neither positive nor negative. Detailed analysis showed that both sides claimed to have some advantages and disadvantages even though cultural familiarity was observed to be favoured relatively slightly against authenticity. Also, each teacher, including the one favouring authenticity, stated that their students were relatively more enthusiastic about participating in activities related to the text familiar to their culture. The lack of sample diversity could be considered a limitation of the study as the number of participants were small and they were all working in the same province.

Keywords

Cultural Familiarity, Authenticity, EFL Reading, Reading Skills Development, Literary Texts on Learners.

How to Cite this Article?

Kurnaz, Y., and Akbaş, E. (2022). The Impact of the Cultural Familiarity of Literary Texts on Learners' Attitudes towards Reading: A Case Study on the Perceptions of L2 English Teachers. i-manager’s Journal on English Language Teaching, 12(3), 1-12.

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