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Intercultural competence in the eyes of stateschool EFL teachers in Turkey and a suggested in-service training module

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2019
Gedik Bal, Nur
Intertwinement of cultures is at an utmost level thanks to globalization, migration, trade advances in transportation, and the information communication technology. One way to equip learners with both cultural and linguistic skills to have successful communication with people in diverse settings is to enhance their intercultural competence (IC). Teachers’ cognition and their practices have a critical role in the development of learners’ IC in an EFL setting. Therefore, this interpretative phenomenological study aimed to reveal EFL teachers’ perceptions of IC, explore their teaching practices in relation to IC and develop a training program/module in view of the teachers’ perceived needs in the development of their learners’ IC. In view of these purposes, in-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted with the EFL teachers. Besides, in order to reach interview participants and get deeper insight into their background and working context a survey was carried out prior to interviews. As data analysis instrument, MAXQDA was exploited and interpretative phenomenological analysis was conducted. The results indicated teachers’ definition of IC was compatible with the suggested literature and their experiences and suggestions regarding how to develop IC of learners had the potential to provide insight for language educators. Teachers’ recommendations for the possible training program were also meticulously analyzed and a training module for in-service EFL teachers was designed based on these. This qualitative study might contribute to the relevant literature in Turkish context in terms of revealing praxis of EFL teachers and suggesting a tentative in-service training module based on Turkish EFL teachers’ needs.