Iranian EFL Teachers and Learners Perspective on Potentiality of Top Notch Series for Intercultural Competence Development

Document Type: Original Article

Authors

Bu Ali Sina University, Iran

Abstract

The current study aimed at investigating the nature of EFL teachers and learners’ perspectives on the intercultural competence potentiality of an EFL textbook, i.e. Top Notch Series, which is used extensively in Iranian institutional EFL context. To this end, forty EFL teachers and eighty-eight advanced EFL learners from private language institutes of Kermanshah, Kurdistan and Hamadan provinces took a researcher-made textbook evaluation questionnaire including thirty eight 5-point Likert scale items. The questionnaire was designed to assess the text in terms of four factors of cultural awareness, cultural knowledge and attitude, intercultural skills, and cross-cultural understanding. The face and content validity of the questionnaire was verified by the experts in the field. In addition, using Cronbach’s Alpha coefficient, the reliability of the questionnaire was estimated to be α=0.87 in this study. The results of Frequency analyses indicated that both EFL teachers and learners were satisfied with the overall intercultural competence potentiality of the textbook. However, MANOVA analyses revealed that EFL teachers and learners’ perspectives on the text’s potential for creating cultural awareness, cultural knowledge and attitude, intercultural skills, and cross-cultural understanding were significantly different. The EFL learners believed that the textbook covers the aforementioned factors well enough, whereas, the teachers believed that it falls short of sufficient attention to the factors. Furthermore, the results suggested that cross-cultural understanding receives scant attention in Top Notch series. Findings of the this study can be specially illuminating for all of the stakeholders of Lingua Franca pedagogy who pursue the development of intercultural competence through language education, in general, and language teaching materials, in particular. 

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