Negotiating meaning in the EFL context

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Abstract

Language learning is a very complex process. It usually takes place inside classrooms and learners might not have the opportunity to sufficiently practice it in real life contexts. Since the main purpose of language learning is communication, most language teachers and researchers have asserted that learners should engage in meaningful interaction and negotiation of meaning through communicative language tasks to improve their communicative competence (Branden, 2000; Morell, 2004; Yuan and Wang, 2006). This paper aims to thoroughly examine the concept of negotiation of meaning and to address its relationship to learners' communicative competence. It examines both theory and research and argues that negotiation of meaning is essential in foreign language classrooms as it provides learners with the opportunity to produce language in a non-threatening atmosphere (Yuan and Wang, 2006) and helps them generate comprehensible input and output (Pica, 1985, Pica et al, 1989). Through negotiation of meaning, learners are pushed to produce language and to make their points clear to achieve comprehensibility. Thus, the paper lends support to the concept of negotiation of meaning and its use in EFL classrooms.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)183-196
Number of pages14
JournalPertanika Journal of Social Science and Humanities
Volume19
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2011

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Keywords

  • Acquisition
  • Communication
  • Language
  • Learning
  • Negotiation of meaning

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)
  • Business, Management and Accounting(all)
  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)
  • Social Sciences(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Computer Science(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)

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