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Pragmatic Meaning and EFL Learners’ Text-understanding Ability

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Author(s): Sorayya Behroozizad | Hossein Bakhtiyarzadeh

Journal: English Language and Literature Studies
ISSN 1925-4768

Volume: 2;
Issue: 1;
Date: 2012;
Original page

ABSTRACT
Reading comprehension occupies a very vital position as one of the skills in learning English as a foreign language. The ability to comprehend any reading text requires interpreting text through making accurate connection between the linguistic representations or meaning of words and sentences and their pragmatic outcomes. Thus, one of the challenging burdens of EFL learners is to capture the intended meaning of any reading text. This paper aims at introducing the significance of pragmatic meaning in reading L2 texts as an alternative to foster EFL learners’ text-understanding ability. In this regard, the researchers employed 4o students in the field of ELT to read two kinds of texts; namely semantically-oriented and pragmatically-oriented texts and answer the related questions. Findings of the study indicated that the majority of students were capable of answering the questions in simplified texts due to their familiarity with the passage when processing the reading material and the ease of the passage. However, only a small number of students was successful in answering the questions of original passages. Based on the results of the study, some guidelines  are suggested to make students familiar with pragmatic  meaning. In  addition, this research enables the students (particularly less- gifted ones) to attend to pragmatic meaning in text-understanding, which in fact helps them to overcome the problem of text- understanding to a considerable extent.
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