Since the era of globalisation, the use of English in international communication has been the focus of considerable research in the emerging research paradigm of ELF, which has seen second language (L2) speakers become the vast majority. Real-life ELF communication places greater emphasis on communicative functions (than language forms) that ensure mutual understanding, and the use of communicative strategies (CSs) plays an important role in this process. This study seeks to investigate the interactional speech patterns of Hong Kong L2 learners from an ELF perspective, the ultimate purpose of which is to bridge the gap between CSs used by local students and ELF users in international contexts. Specifically, a learner corpus was established by recording the communicative patterns of senior secondary students of over 300 students in a semi-authentic (academic) group interaction task (a total of about 20 hours). These students were from six secondary schools and had different English proficiency levels. Discourse analysis was conducted to identify, categorise and quantify their use of CSs by adopting Björkman’s (2014) taxonomy based on natural ELF interactions. The analysed CSs were subsequently compared to those in previous ELF studies. Our findings suggest that students with a relatively a lower academic ability tended to rely on some pre-taught formulaic expressions during the group discussion, while academically more capable students demonstrated some degrees of mutual support that is crucial for ELF communication. By adapting Björkman’s taxonomy, the paper proposes a pedagogical framework for the teaching of ELF-oriented CSs for students with different English proficiencies.
|Title of host publication||The 11th International Conference of English as a Lingua Franca|
|Publication status||Published - Jul 2018|