Sara Vali

A Comparative Study of English Textbooks in five Countries Regarding Intercultural Communicative Competence at Secondary School level

Nowadays, the need for including societal context and acquainting the EFL learners with the target culture has been stressed. Along with this issue, regarding globalization, intercultural aspects of language learning become important in the field of ELT. Considering these, this work will investigate the following issues in five countries of Germany, France, Netherlands, Sweden, and Iran:

1) Which competences are more emphasized in English textbooks of these

five countries: linguistic or intercultural ones?

2) How do these English textbooks pay attention to the concept of

Intercultural Communicative Competence (ICC)?

3) How are the cultural elements of the target culture(s) presented in

these textbooks?

4) Which aspects of the target culture(s)—big C and small c—are more

stressed in these books?

5) Do EFL teachers have any problems in terms of intercultural matters in

these textbooks? If yes, what do the teachers do to solve the

intercultural problems and misinterpretations in these textbooks?

6) How do these textbooks help the learners to grasp the differences and

similarities between the target culture(s) and the students’ native


7) Do these textbooks help EFL learners to become interculturally

competent to act in a globalized world?

To answer these questions, a mixed method research design will be used. An intact group of EFL learners and teachers at the secondary school level will be selected. The instruments consist of checklists, questionnaires, and structured interviews. The results of the research can be useful in developing materials for EFL learners and can help the teachers find good strategies in presenting a new culture to their students.


Gefördert durch ein Kurzzeitstipendium des DAAD (April bis September 2013).

Gefördert durch ein Stipendium für die Abschlussphase der Dissertation der GGS.