Cross-linguistic Issues and Compatible Strategies for Teaching English
Dr Intakhab Alam Khan

Cross linguistic approach of teaching English as a foreign language occupies an essential place in a bilingual context. The present paper is an attempt towards exploring some crucially significant pedagogic issues that a pedagogue or an instructor is supposed to know in order to develop an understanding and evolve a compatible strategy to yield best possible results. It also explores the possibility of interference of L1 (Arabic) grammatical rules in the writing of L2 (English). This study investigates one of the most common issues namely the cross-linguistic influence of the L1 in learning L2 grammar, specifically those aspects which are likely to be the subject of negative transfer. A detailed analysis was made of the acquisition of certain grammatical items which mostly affect the skill of writing. Apart from the test, feedback of the respondents, written exercises were analysed in order to arrive at the findings and conclusions. Qualitative analysis shows the cross-linguistic influence of L1 (Arabic) in learning the grammatical items of English in general. This study is the outcome of the researcher's personal experience as an instructor working in KSA. It was found that the target students always had difficulties in learning the features of the target language as a possible outcome of negative transfer of learning. Most of the learners have the tendency to respond in Arabic. Most often they don't even understand the questions unless made easy. While trying to understand or answer, they usually are found using the translation from mother-tongue to the target language and the vice versa. The study aims to focus on the cross linguistic influence especially in the process of L2 writing. The paper suggests certain innovative strategies for the teaching of English in general and writing in particular. The recommendation of e-strategies deserves special mention.

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