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ERIC Number: EJ812442
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Oct
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 47
ISSN: ISSN-0031-3831
The Intercultural Dimension in EFL-Teaching: A Study of Conceptions among Finland-Swedish Comprehensive School Teachers
Larzen-Ostermark, Eva
Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, v52 n5 p527-547 Oct 2008
The overall aim of this study is to deepen our knowledge about the attitudes of teachers at the upper level of the Finland-Swedish comprehensive school towards the treatment of culture in English foreign language (EFL) teaching. More specifically, the questions are how teachers interpret the concept "culture" in English foreign language teaching, how the cultural objectives are specified and what teachers do to attain these objectives. The study strives to reveal whether or not language teaching today can be described as intercultural in the sense that culture is taught with the aim of promoting intercultural understanding, tolerance and empathy. The empirical data consists of verbatim transcribed interviews with 13 Finland-Swedish teachers of English at grades 7-9. The findings are presented according to three orientations. Within the cognitive orientation, "culture" is perceived as factual knowledge and the teaching of culture is defined in terms of the transmission of facts. The action-related orientation sees "culture" as skills of a social and socio-linguistic nature and the teaching aims at preparing students for future intercultural encounters. Within the affective orientation, "culture" is seen as a bi-directional perspective. Students are encouraged to look at their own familiar culture from another perspective and learn to empathise with and show respect for otherness in general, not just concerning representatives of English-speaking countries. (Contains 4 figures and 6 notes.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 7; Grade 8; Grade 9
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Finland; Sweden