Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 14. Number 4 December 2023                           Pp.66-79

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Production of Advice Speech Act by Non-Native Speakers of English: The Case of Kurdish
EFL Learners

Sami Hussein Hakeem Barzani
English Language Teaching Department
Faculty of Education, Tishk International University
Erbil, Kurdistan Region, Iraq


Received:08/14/2023                     Accepted: 11/29/2023                Published: 12/15/2023


Speech act studies are commonly used in Second Language Acquisition research to assess second language learners’ pragmatic skills. Contrary to other speech acts, the speech act of offering advice has not been sufficiently studied and has not been a topic of cross-cultural or cross-linguistic research either, particularly among Kurdish EFL learners. The study aimed to conduct a comparative analysis of the advice speech act as expressed by Kurdish EFL learners and native English speakers. Thus, the study looked at the proficiency of Kurdish EFL users in selecting appropriate pragmatic expressions during the act of providing advice and discernible differences between male and female learners regarding the degree of (in)directness while advice is offered. Hence, the study included 82 undergraduate students from various universities in the Iraqi Kurdistan Region, particularly in Erbil. This group consisted of 42 females and 40 males, all majoring in English Language Teaching. Additionally, 30 native English speakers also took part in the research. Data collection was conducted through a 12-item discourse completion test, and the collected data were subsequently subjected to analysis using SPSS. The results unveiled a significant difference between Kurdish EFL learners and native speakers. It figured out that Kurdish EFL learners are not quite aware of the social power and social distance of interlocutors while giving advice. Additionally, it was indicated that female learners are more indirect in offering advice than their male counterparts. Moreover, the findings also unearthed a visible indication of first language pragmatic transfer, though it was not a variable of the study.
Keywords: cross-cultural communication, offering advice, pragmatic competence, speech acts, Kurdish EFL learners

Cite as: Barzani, S, H.H. (2023). Production of Advice Speech Act by Non-Native Speakers of English: The Case of Kurdish EFL Learners. Arab World English Journal, 14 (4) 66-79.


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Received: 08/14/2023 
Accepted: 11/29/2023
Published: 12/15/2023  

Dr. Sami Hussein Hakeem Barzani is a lecturer at Tishk International University, Faculty of Education, English Language Teaching Department. He obtained his Ph.D. (ELT) from Cyprus International University, TRNC, Turkey. His research interests include pragmatics, second language acquisition, error analysis, intercultural communication, sociolinguistics, and teaching English through literature. ORCID: