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Acquiring nonverbal competence in English language contexts: the case of Thai learners of English viewing American and Australian films

Damnet, Anamai and Borland, Helen (2007) Acquiring nonverbal competence in English language contexts: the case of Thai learners of English viewing American and Australian films. Journal of Asian Pacific communication, 17 (1). pp. 127-148. ISSN 0957-6851

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Abstract

In the Asia Pacific region acquiring communicative competence in intercultural interactions in English is an increasingly important goal for adult English language learners. One aspect of communicative competence that has been little researched to date is competence in interpreting the nonverbal channels of communication that accompany speakers’ verbal messages. For Thai learners of English the differences between Thai and English native speakers in many features of nonverbal communicative behaviour can lead to misunderstanding and miscommunication. In this study the understanding of English native speakers’ nonverbal communication and attitudes to such communication is investigated with a group (n = 73) of Thai university students. Using experimental classroom-based research the effectiveness of two teaching approaches using American and Australian films have been evaluated. One of these approaches involves explicit teaching about nonverbal communication used by English native speakers, whereas the other approach does not teach about nonverbal communication, but exposes the students to nonverbal codes whilst explicitly teaching the linguistic features of interactions in the chosen films. Results of pre and post teaching intervention assessments support the importance of explicit teaching for Thai background English learners’ enhanced appreciation of the nonverbal communication of English native speakers

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: ResPubID: 14391, English language, culture conflict, intercultural communication, cross-cultural differences, intercultural interactions in English
Subjects: Faculty/School/Research Centre/Department > School of Communication and the Arts
FOR Classification > 1608 Sociology
SEO Classification > 9405 Work and Institutional Development
Depositing User: VUIR
Date Deposited: 07 Dec 2009 22:46
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2011 05:18
URI: http://vuir.vu.edu.au/id/eprint/2165
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Citations in Scopus: 0 - View on Scopus

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