Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 14. Number 1 March 2023                                             Pp.428- 448

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Speech Acts of Apology and Request by Arab Postgraduates with Malaysian Supervisors

Mohammed Abulqasem Mohammed Elasfar
Language Academy, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities
University Technology Malaysia
Sebha University, Libya
Corresponding Author:

 Hema Roshney binti Mustafa
Language Academy, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities
University of Technology, Malaysia

 Mustafa Mubarak Pathan
 English Language Center, Dayanand College of Law, Latur, Maharashtra, India

Aliakbar Imani
Language Academy,  Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities
University of Technology, Malaysia,


Received:05/22/22022           Accepted:03/03/2023                     Published: 03/24/2023

This study investigates the pragmatic and linguistic competencies of Arab postgraduate students and native English-speaking postgraduate students in Malaysian universities, focusing on their speech act strategies for requests and apologies. Using qualitative methods such as Discourse Completion Tests and conversations, the study addresses three research questions related to pragmatic and linguistic forms, gender differences, and cultural norms in English-speaking settings. The participants consisted of 95 individuals, including an equal number of males and females from four universities in Malaysia during the academic year 2022-2023. Of the participants, 32 were of Arab origin, and 63 were native English speakers. The study found significant differences in response rates between the two groups and emphasized the importance of understanding cultural norms for effective communication. The findings suggest that learners from Arab countries must comprehend the differences between cultural norms and conventions in English-speaking environments to communicate efficiently. The study has implications for assisting Arab-speaking graduate students in improving their communication abilities and promoting cross-cultural understanding in academic settings in Malaysia.
Keywords: Apology, Arab Postgraduate Students, Malaysian Universities, Pragmatics, Request, Speech Act, Supervisors.

Cite as:   Elasfar, M. A. M., Mustafa, H. R., Pathan, M. M., & Imani, A. (2023). Speech Acts of Apology and Request by Arab Postgraduates with Malaysian Supervisors.  Arab World English Journal, 14 (1): 428- 448.


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Received: 05/22/22022  
Accepted: 03/03/2023
Published: 03/24/2023  

Mohammed Abulqasem Mohammed Elasfar, Sebha University Libya, He is currently a Ph.D.  candidate at Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities at University Technology Malaysia ( UTM). He is researching Apology and Request Strategies among Arab Postgraduates with their Supervisors. Assistant professor of English at the department of English language at Sebha university, Libya.. He has published three articles in various international journals. His research areas are ESL, Semantics, Pragmatics, Discourse Analysis and Language and Communication. ORCID ID 0000-0001-5777-9551.

 Dr.Hema Rosheny Mustafa obtained her Ph.D. in 2017 from Tasmania University, Australia. Her research investigated the use of facebook among parents of a child with Autism. Her other research interests include ESL, teacher education, and communication.She has 20 years of teaching English in secondary and tertiary education. She is currently heading the Myline unit which manages online learning in English portal that is subscribed by users in various countries including Malaysia and Bangladesh. ORCID ID 0000-0002-3938-0974.

 Dr. Mustafa Mubarak Pathan works as an assistant professor of English with Dayanand college of Law, Latur in India. His major areas of research interest include Pragmatics, Discourse Analysis,TEFL and ESP on which he has published more than 20 research papers in various international journals and attended more than 10 international conferences.

Dr. Aliakbar Imani, Ph.D, is a senior lecturer at Language Academy, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, University Technology Malaysia (UTM). His research interests are Critical Discourse Analysis, Health Communication, and Language and Communication in society. In particular, he investigates the role of metaphor in discourse. ORCID ID 0000-0002-2110-5659