The impact of translation on L2 learners’ metalinguistic competence

Parinaz Khayatan, Reza Biria

Abstract


This paper investigates the effect of translation courses and language proficiency on learners’ metalinguistic knowledge at Isfahan University, Iran. Tests of Metalinguistic knowledge, language proficiency and a background questionnaire were administered to learners of translation fields of study (as the experimental group) and the control group of English literature learners at Isfahan University, Iran. Each of translation and literature groups were further ranked into 4 groups by their language proficiency. It was found that learners’ metalinguistic ability and their language proficiency are not correlated. Multivariate analyses indicated that both groups did not show any awareness of certain properties of language as MLK. However, it was shown that Translation learners were better at language analytic section of the metalinguistic test. It is suggested that translation courses can increase the learners’ language analytic ability. The importance and the theoretical implications of the results are also counted for language teaching and testing.

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