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ERIC Number: ED401752
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996
Pages: 29
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Communicative Devices Used by EFL Students in E-Mail Writing.
Liaw, Meei-Ling
A study investigated the communication strategies used by students of English as a Foreign Language (EFL) in electronic mail interactions with native speakers of English. Subjects were 22 university students in Taiwan paired with a like number of pre-service EFL teacher trainees in the United States. The discourse of 87 e-mail entries by the Taiwanese students was analyzed over a period of a year, focusing on communicative strategies (avoidance/reduction, achievement/compensatory, time-gaining/stalling devices) and interactive speech acts (questions and answers, statements and imperatives, discourse management). The mean entry length was 13 sentences. It was found that the EFL students used most of the communication strategies commonly found in oral communication, including approximation, literal translation, foreignizing, asking for help, using all-purpose words, using fillers, circumlocution, word coinage, and nonlinguistic means. The students showed active participation in the correspondence by using a variety of interactive speech acts. An additional device noticed was purposeful choice of discussion topics of common interest. Use of time-gaining devices was an unanticipated finding. Findings were borne out in students' essays about the experience. Contains 30 references. (MSE)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Taiwan