Types and Sources of Difficulties Kurdish EFL Students Encounter in English Number-related Idioms in Oral Communication

Paiman Zorab Aziz

Koya University

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Native speakers’ spontaneous use, recognition and comprehension of idioms without thinking of the figurative and metaphorical meaning is not a matter of surprise; whereas, it is natural that non-natives find them difficult to use, recognize and understand because they do not know what is the image an idiom is based on. Idioms are essential of English language proficiency to be used, recognized and comprehended when communicating in the English Language. English number-related idioms contain both the cardinal and ordinal numbers. Many English learners lack the competence to recognize, understand and use English number-related idioms adequately. The aim of the study was to explore the types of difficulties that Kurdish sophomores encounter in number-related idioms in speaking productions on one hand and sources of those difficulties on the other hand. The subjects were male and female English major university students from the department of English at Faculty of Education-Koya University. Two data collection instruments, a closed ended questionnaire to explore the types and sources of the difficulties they face and two sets of multiple-choice tests were employed to know their ability of idiom understanding and recognizing. Ten cardinal number-related idiomatic expressions from one to ten were subjected to the analyses which are at the beginning, middle and end of test items respectively. The results revealed that the participants had problems with using the number-related idioms and the departmental negligence of the aforementioned type of idiom in their oral communications.      

Keywords: Difficulty, number-related idiom, recognize, understand, use, EFL, Koya University, encounter, oral discourse

Doi: 10.23918/vesal2022a32