Teaching Reading with a Critical Attitude: Using Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) to Raise EFL University Students’ Critical Language Awareness (CLA)

Zeinab Koupaee Dar, Mohammad Reza Shams, Ali Rahimi

Abstract


This study was planned to investigate the importance of raising students’ critical thinking through explicit teaching of some techniques of critical discourse analysis (CDA). This study aimed to detect any change in the English BA students’ abilities in revealing the hidden layers of meaning implied in the texts. There was an attempt in this study to investigate any change both in students’ views toward learning English language and in their critical language awareness (CLA) before and after teaching critical reading (CR) through CDA techniques. To this end, three paired news articles were provided from different online news sources. Each pair of the first two pairs of news articles dealt with the same subject. Two articles of each pair were selected from two different news sources; online editions of Press TV and BBC. These news sources usually have different perspectives on different issues. The third pair of news reports which had similar subjects was selected from the English newspaper of New York Times. The participants were 60 BA English students studying in University of Kashan. They studied in the fifth and seventh terms. Before teaching CDA techniques, students were asked to analyze these articles critically. After teaching these techniques, they analyzed the same texts for the second time. Then they responded to a questionnaire to reveal any change in their attitudes toward English language learning or any increase in their motivation to learn it. After the examination of students’ analyses and the investigation of their answers given to the questionnaire, it was revealed that CLA of about 90٪ of students increased. Their motivation also increased in learning English language after becoming familiar with the field of CDA.

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International Journal of Criminology and Sociological Theory | ISSN : 1916-2782