'That looks scary!' - Post AS level students' perceptions of difficulty in authentic non-fiction French texts

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'That looks scary!' - Post AS level students' perceptions of difficulty in authentic non-fiction French texts

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dc.contributor.author Maun, Ian en_GB
dc.date.accessioned 2009-12-11T15:08:30Z en_GB
dc.date.accessioned 2011-01-25T16:54:28Z en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2013-03-21T11:57:57Z
dc.date.issued 2009-04-28 en_GB
dc.description.abstract This study seeks to determine whether grammatical and presentational features of authentic non-fiction French texts are in any way related to the level of difficulty of texts as perceived by students who have taken Advanced Subsidiary Level (AS). The notions of text and genre are examined, as are the processes of reading in the first language (L1) and in the foreign language (L2). The question of ‘readability, and that of ‘authenticity’ in L2 are also examined. In order to ascertain students’ reactions to different text-types, 150 texts from French sources were gathered and classified. 100-word samples of each text were analysed for various linguistic features. Statistical tests on these were carried out, as well as statistical tests on the visual elements and layout of the whole texts. Further linguistic analysis was carried out within the text-type groups in order to ascertain their grammatical features. 31 students from local tertiary institutions were interviewed, and their perceptions on a sample of the texts were sought. This included the grading of texts for difficulty on a 1-5 Likert scale. The results of the interviews were triangulated with the statistical and linguistic analyses. A relationship was found between text-type and level of perceived difficulty. In the light of these results, the distinction between genre and text-type was examined, and a way was found of linking these into a textual taxonomy, which has close relations with the grammatical and presentational features which characterise the various text-types. In the light of these results, the question of the ‘topic approach’ to the teaching of French is examined, and a way found by which text-types that are perceived to be simpler are studied before those which are perceived to be more difficult. This approach advocates a more logical continuum of grammatical presentation than has hitherto been witnessed in course books for French at this level, while retaining the semantic integrity inherent in the ‘topic approach’. en_GB
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10036/87818 en_GB
dc.language.iso null en_GB
dc.publisher University of Exeter en_GB
dc.subject French en_GB
dc.subject text-type en_GB
dc.subject genre en_GB
dc.subject difficulty en_GB
dc.title 'That looks scary!' - Post AS level students' perceptions of difficulty in authentic non-fiction French texts en_GB
dc.type Thesis or dissertation en_GB
dc.date.available 2009-12-11T15:08:30Z en_GB
dc.date.available 2011-01-25T16:54:28Z en_US
dc.date.available 2013-03-21T11:57:57Z
dc.contributor.advisor Myhill, Professor D.; Neather, Dr. E.J. en_GB
dc.publisher.department Graduate School of Education en_GB
dc.type.degreetitle PhD in Education en_GB
dc.type.qualificationlevel Doctoral en_GB
dc.type.qualificationname PhD en_GB


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