Department of English, Science and Research branch, Islamic Azad University, Yazd, Iran (email@example.com)
Department of English, Meybod branch, Islamic Azad University, Meybod, Iran (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Adopting the appropriate textbook is a controversial task for second/foreign language teachers. In Iranian EFL situation where the teachers are not usually textbook providers but just consumers of other people¢s material, there might be a need to evaluate the available EFL textbooks and investigate their contribution to general English courses. This paper aims at evaluating Top Notch fundamentals in terms of their impact on Iranian learners’ communicative and pragmatic competence. It is based on a comparison between Top Notch and Introductory Interchange (third edition) (Intro Interchange afterwards) to evaluate the extent of their applicability for schools and institutes¢ communicative EFL courses. A checklist consisting of 38 items is also provided and distributed among seven raters who had the experience of teaching Top Notch Fundamentals and Intro Interchange. The results of the completed checklists are added to the related sections. This step by step comparison has revealed that both textbooks are almost the same in most parts. In fact, it must be notified that while they are appropriate to be applied for communicative English courses and provide the learners with enough authentic input and opportunity to promote four major skills, they suffer from several drawbacks. Finally it is concluded that Top Notch is only appropriate to be practiced in general English courses in foreign language institutes; however, Interchange as a dominating EFL textbook regardless of all its deficiencies, is flexible enough to be used, as it has been successfully for years, in both foreign language institutes and schools in Iran.
Keywords: evaluation; EFL; checklist; top notch; CLT; interchange