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ERIC Number: EJ867866
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Jun
Pages: 28
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 67
ISSN: ISSN-0039-8322
Privileging of Speech in EAP and Mainstream University Classrooms: A Critical Evaluation of Participation
Ellwood, Constance; Nakane, Ikuko
TESOL Quarterly: A Journal for Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages and of Standard English as a Second Dialect, v43 n2 p203-230 Jun 2009
Perceptions of Asian students as silent have been widely debated in the disciplines of applied linguistics and education. These debates have been largely concerned with the extent to which essentialised notions of Japanese culture are in operation and the consequences for teaching and learning. The silences of students and the expectations of their teachers for speech have been viewed as a clash of perceptions and understandings based on intercultural difference. The two studies presented here complexify this view. Drawing on data from interviews with Japanese students and their Australian teachers, we compare and contrast their perceptions of talk and silence in English for academic purposes classrooms and mainstream university seminars. We discuss a common expectation on the part of both parties for speech and a common frustration over an ongoing tendency to silence on the part of the Japanese students. We also show, in a comparison of the two groups, the students' varying attitudes toward oral participation. Our discussion implies the need for a re-examination of the devaluation of silence, with the aim of contributing to improved communication practices between teachers and students in intercultural classrooms. (Contains 1 table and 4 footnotes.)
Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc. 700 South Washington Street Suite 200, Alexandria, VA 22314. Tel: 888-547-3369; Tel: 703-836-0774; Fax: 703-836-7864; Fax: 703-836-6447; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia; Japan