Pragmatic content in EFL textbooks: an investigation into Vietnamese national teaching materials

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    Abstract

    Recent research studies in ESL/EFL contexts worldwide have shown a gap between the findings of pragmatics research and how the English language is actually taught and learnt in EFL classrooms, as well as a paucity of pragmatic information provided in ESL/EFL textbooks. Utilizing content analysis, this study explores the provision of pragmatic content in the current national EFL textbook series, which was first published in 2012 and has been used nationwide for Vietnamese upper-secondary school students since the school year 2018-2019. These materials include the aim of facilitating the development of students’ communicative competence in English in their overall objectives, which, as we will argue in this paper, implies that pragmatic competence is also a goal. However, results from this study show that this series includes quite a low level of explicit information about pragmatics, which is present in only 5.5% of pages in the student books and does not appear at all in the teacher manuals. In addition, the explicit presentation of different elements potentially contributing to the learning of pragmatics was found to be quite infrequent. These findings suggest that there is a need for supplementing these EFL textbooks with additional materials and activities, for considering pragmatics as part of the textbook design process, and for enhancing teachers’ ability to incorporate pragmatics in their classroom practices.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number3
    Pages (from-to)1-28
    Number of pages28
    JournalTESL-EJ
    Volume24
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020

    Keywords

    • pragmatics
    • pragmatic content
    • Vietnamese EFL textbooks
    • textbook evaluation

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