شهرام افراز

شهرام افراز

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۱.

The Most Common Challenges Facing Iranian English Majors in the Translation Process from English into Persian

تعداد بازدید : ۰ تعداد دانلود : ۵
The main priority for university translation educators is to improve the quality and outcomes of translation courses. To achieve such a goal, the instructors are required to integrate learners' needs, identified with the help of a needs survey, into syllabus content. Accordingly, the present study was conducted to identify the Iranian English majors' difficulties in translating English texts since once a problem is identified, exploring the best pedagogical solutions would follow. The aim was accomplished through qualitative descriptive research conducted at Islamic Azad University, Shiraz Branch tracing the errors committed by the English majors in their exam papers in academic years 2016-2019. Following the model proposed by Miremadi (2008), the syntactic and lexical problems were identified in the exam papers collected during six semesters. Moreover, three more categories were added to the list as the data analysis moved forward: culture problems, stylistic problems, and miscellaneous errors with detailed subdivisions. What appeared to be worthy of attention in the results was the students' weakness in text and sentence segmentation to find the function of the components to approach textual meaning, resulting from the students' poor English language proficiency. The results also revealed the students' poor topical knowledge as well as the lack of knowledge of translation techniques and strategies.
۲.

Validation of a Preliminary Model of Cultural Identity for Iranian Advanced EFL Learners: A Structural Equation Modeling Approach

تعداد بازدید : ۰ تعداد دانلود : ۲
This study was an endeavor to develop a model of cultural identity among Iranian advanced EFL learners. To achieve this end, a multiphase design was implemented. Initially, it was attempted to investigate different factors of cultural identity to propose and validate a model. Thus, 20 EFL learners studying in Safir English language institute in Tehran were interviewed about their views of their cultural identity in the qualitative phase. After extracting four factors of cultural identity including: “religion, culture, nationality, and language”, a questionnaire was constructed which reflected these factors. Then, in the quantitative phase, the 30-item questionnaire went through an exploratory factor analysis for the sake of validity and after its validity and reliability were corroborated through a pilot study with 183 learners, it was distributed among 384 EFL learners. In addition, Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) analysis was run through LISREL 8.8. to confirm that the final proposed model enjoyed validity for future research. To do so, a confirmatory factor analysis was run and the model of cultural identity was developed. Eventually, the possible relationship between 384 EFL learners’ cultural identity and their English language achievement scores was examined and the results of this phase indicated that there was a significant and positive relationship between learners’ cultural identity and their English language achievement scores. The findings of this study can enhance awareness among English teachers, materials developers, and syllabus designers to equip themselves with the updated techniques to handle the possible challenges that may occur in EFL learning contexts.
۳.

On the Development of a Model of Cultural Identity and Language Achievement among Iranian Advanced EFL Learners

تعداد بازدید : ۰ تعداد دانلود : ۲
Culture is an inseparable part of a language. In other words, mastering a language and being able to communicate through it inevitably entails integrating with the culture of the speakers of that language which is the reflection of people's identity. The aim of the present study was designing a model of Iranian cultural identity. Initially, to select a homogeneous sample of learners at the advanced level, 300 language learners at the advanced level took TOEFL and 180 learners were chosen as the participants of the study. The cultural identity model was designed by the use of interviews and literature review to come up with main components of cultural identity. Afterwards, participants were interviewed about their identity and four components comprising Iranian cultural identity were identified. The results of the factors analysis showed that raw data converged to a pattern with four components which fit the hypothesized model of cultural identity. Then, the cultural identity questionnaire was given to participants. The results of statistical analyses indicated that there was a significant negative relationship between cultural identity and language achievement of the participants.
۴.

A Qualitative Lnquiry into Perceptions and Practices of High and Low EFL Achievers towards the Limitations and Benefits of Code-Switching

تعداد بازدید : ۳۴ تعداد دانلود : ۱۹
In English as a Foreign Language (EFL) and bilingual language classrooms, code-switching is widespread among teacher-student and student-student interactions; however, there seem to be few or no studies tracking the perceptions and practices of EFL learners toward code-switching. Therefore, the aim of this study was to identify the perceptions and practices of high and low achievers toward teacher code-switching with focus on the possible limitations and benefits that it might have in language classrooms. For this purpose, the researchers used a qualitative design in the form of grounded theory. Accordingly, 11 high and 13 low achievers were interviewed individually and in focus groups. Further, the elicited responses were transcribed and codified using Straus and Corbin’s (1998) constant comparative method. In addition, for the purpose of validation, real observations of 10 university classes in different English courses were made.  The findings revealed 4 major themes and 26 categories for high and low achievers. Consequently, the findings implicated that code-switching was an advantageous tool at the disposal of English teachers.

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