Harnessing Text Structure Strategy for Reading Expository and Medical Texts among EFL College Students

Shu-hua Wu, Sulaiman Alrabah


This classroom-based study was conducted in Kuwait to investigate the impact of text structure strategy (TSS) instruction on the ways in which 54 English as a foreign language (EFL) college students approached expository and medical texts. Data collection involved two surveys, fieldnotes, class observations, and group interviews. A system of codes and categories was developed from the recurrent patterns and commonalities in the interview data and classroom observations. Two surveys were distributed in 2 intervals, 8 weeks apart, which focused on identifying text structure strategies such as introducing the concept of text structures, asking guided questions, identifying signaling words, and using graphic organizers, as well as the extent to which the participants applied text structure strategies to approach expository medical texts. Data analysis involved using the Microsoft Excel program to generate two tables and descriptive statistics including the means, standard deviations and percentages of the results of the two surveys. Findings indicated that the participants benefited from TSS instruction in strategies that involved group discussions rather than strategies that relied on individual class work. Moreover, a large percentage of the participants applied most of what they learned in analyzing expository texts into reading medical texts. Implications were drawn for EFL teachers to conduct action research studies on text structure strategy for EFL learners and to apply TSS instruction in class in group and pair work which are suitable for EFL leaners. Finally, EFL researchers were invited to conduct classroom-based studies of TSS instruction. 

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/ijhe.v9n5p36


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