International Journal of Research in English Education

The Effect of Use of Native-accent and Non-native Accent Materials on the Iranian EFL Learners’ Listening Comprehension: An EIL Perspective

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The present study sought to investigate the differential effect of using native-accent and non-native accent materials on the Iranian English as a Foreign Language (EFL) learners’ listening comprehension. To this purpose, 60 primary EFL Iranian learners participated in the study. The participants were randomly divided into a control group (N=30) and an experimental group (N=30). First, a Quick Placement Test which consisted of vocabulary, grammar, and reading items was administered in order to ensure the homogeneity of participants. As the intervention of the study, the control group was provided with the listening materials accompanied by the use of their native-accent audio files, whereas the experimental group was exposed to the same listening tasks and materials which were pronounced by the non-native teacher. The experimental intervention lasted for six forty-minute sessions. To collect the data, the listening component of Pearson Test of English General (PTE General) was used as the pre-test and the post-test to measure listening comprehension of the participants. The results indicated that using non-native accent listening materials was more effective than using native-accent materials in enhancing listening comprehension of the EFL learners. These findings were discussed in the light of English as an International Language (EIL) debate and the theory of inter-language speech intelligibility benefit.