TEACHING PRAGMATICS IN THE EFL CLASSROOM: CHALLENGES, LACUNAS, AND SUGGESTIONS
Within the last few decades, interlanguage pragmatics research has risen to its due prominence under the influence of Hymes and the subsequent models of Communicative Competence (CC). Among different components of CC, a large number of L2 studies have attended to the construct pragmatic competence, which deals with both pragmalinguistic knowledge and sociopragmatic knowledge. As such, interlanguage pragmatics research is interested in the pragmatic competence and pragmatic performance of L2 learners; however, teaching pragmatics to Non-native Speakers (NNSs), especially EFL learners, is a thorny issue. As a result, pragmatic competence has been noticeably absent from ELT curricula, despite the fact that it has an assured place in different models of CC. The reasons for this neglect lie behind the obstacles to teaching and learning pragmatics in the ESL/EFL classroom settings. Thus, drawing on the published literature, this very paper primarily aims at discussing challenges and lacunas in teaching and learning pragmatics within the confines of EFL classrooms. Subsequent to this, the paper enlists suggestions to overcome these obstacles. To this end, the paper focuses on four broad areas: the EFL context, ELT materials and resources available to L2 learners in the EFL context, teacher education, and assessment of pragmatic knowledge.
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