An Investigation into 10th Grade EFL Textbook Tasks and to What Extent They Promote Critical and Meaningful Learning
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This thesis presents an analysis of three English as a Foreign Language (EFL) 10th grade textbooks and to what extent their tasks related to sustainable development promote critical and meaningful learning. The study has also analyzed what percentage of textbook tasks achieve Bloom’s taxonomy’s higher levels of cognitive processes that lead to critical and meaningful learning, as well as to what extent these tasks help pupils to achieve the aims of a critical literacy approach, namely taking action and promoting social justice. The investigation is motivated by the increasing importance of sustainable development education as well as the strong position textbooks and tasks hold in EFL teaching and learning. The current study has also tried to shed light on the need for an explicit awareness of knowledge taxonomy. In addition to this, the thesis has tried to convey the need to include a critical literacy aspect to education. The analyzed EFL textbooks, New Flight 3, Crossroads 10A, and Enter 10, are currently in use in 10th grade in Norway and designed to accommodate the curricula for the subject of English in grade 10. With the aim of investigating to what extent textbook tasks related to sustainable development promote critical and meaningful learning, Bloom’s taxonomy and critical literacy are used as analyzing tools, as well as theoretical background. The methodology applied to conduct the study is a mixed methods content analysis, where the quantitative research provides exact answers regarding the ratio of tasks, while the qualitative method provides in-depth analysis of the tasks. The findings reveal that Crossroads 10A and Enter 10 contain a relatively similar number of tasks that promote critical and meaningful learning, whereas the analysis indicates that New Flight 3 does not promote critical and meaningful learning to the same extent as the other two textbooks. Regarding a critical literacy aspect, the analyses reveal that only three tasks found in Crossroads 10A and Enter 10 help pupils, or have the potential of helping pupils, to achieve the goals of taking action and promoting social justice. According to the analysis, New Flight 3 does not contain any tasks which focus on this aspect of critical literacy. However, central to the discussion has been that regardless the quality of textbooks and other learning materials, critical and meaningful learning primarily rests in teachers’ knowledge, skills and awareness of approaches that promote critical and meaningful learning.
Master’s in Education with English Didactics Department of Language, Literature, Mathematics and Interpreting Submission Date: May 15th 2019