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Linking principles and pedagogy in teaching the pragmatics of English as a lingua franca
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Abstract

This presentation will explore pedagogical aspects of the pragmatics of English as a Lingua Franca (ELF). Although the question of whose norms should be used for ELF instruction, assessment, and curriculum/materials development often arises, there is no single method applicable to all instructional contexts (Bayyurt & Akcan, 2015; Gimenez et al., 2015; Jenkins, 2007; Marlina & Giri 2014). This is equally true of pragmatics instruction.

Based on the literature on ELF, English as an International Language, and World Englishes (e.g., Canagarajah et al., 2012; Hino & Oda, 2015; House, 2003, 2009; Kirkpatrick, 2015; Matsuda, 2012; Murray, 2012; Seidlhofer, 2009; Taguchi & Roever, 2017; Wen, 2012), I will propose and evaluate three pedagogical principles for teaching ELF pragmatics. One common thread running through this literature is to diversify the models of language use to which learners should be exposed. In addition to Inner Circle models, evidence-based ELF samples, spoken or written, can be presented and analyzed by learners in terms of how meaning is negotiated through discourse. Under this approach, what is conventionally viewed as interlanguage, learner deficiency, or L1 interference becomes an interactional resource; divergences from Inner-Circle models are re-constructed as features of legitimate World English varieties to be drawn upon in intercultural exchanges. Another pedagogical principle recommends preparing learners to become ethnographers who will observe and accommodate contextual, sociocultural, and linguistic cues involved in intercultural communication (e.g., Murray, 2012) while cautioning learners against essentializing cultures and interlocutors’ subjectivities. A third principle advocates teaching pragmatics with a focus on metapragmatic awareness and communication strategies (e.g., let-it-pass, making-it-normal, confirmation checks, clarification requests, meeting halfway, Björkman, 2014; Firth, 1996; McKay, 2005; Sharifian, 2012) based on authentic interactional data. Specific classroom implementation of these three principles and pros and cons of each principle will be offered as a springboard for discussion.

Summary

This presentation will explore pedagogical aspects of the pragmatics of ELF. Based on recent literature, pedagogical principles will be proposed and evaluated, in which what is conventionally characterized as learner deficiency or L1 interference becomes an interactional resource. Classroom implementation and pros and cons of these principles will be discussed.

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