Linguistics and EFL Teaching Theories : The ‘Best’ Method
Keywords:linguistic, efl, best method
This paper will address several issues or topics which are interrelated: (a) the comprehensive review of the developments or the evolutions of linguistic theories from the rather distant past, the past and the present, and the projected trends, (b) which of the
linguistic theories have been adopted by the EFL teachers and the reasons and the reasons for adopting those theories, (c) the contributions and the dominant linguistic theories which have applied, including translation studies, to the process of teaching and learning as a foreign language, successful or not, and why, (d) whether the EFL teachers (applied linguists) could
or could not catch up and cope with the developments of linguistic theories and the implications and consequences of failing, (e) the processes by which first, second and foreign languages and cultures are acquired, viewed from various theories, including
biolinguistics/neurolinguistic, and (f) whether there is such a thing as the ‘best’ method. The last part of this paper will look particularly at the impact of foreign language learning on (a) the quality of the language (sustainable, reduced or loss) and cultural
achievements (sustainable or losing cultural identity) and (b) whether learning a foreign language, for example English, will reinforce our own cultural identity, both locally and nationally; thus learning a foreign culture which is built in the foreign language can help
preserve our own cultural heritage, not necessarily sacrificing our own culture. Judging from the position above we could expect that the Indonesian people who are mostly bilingual and multilingual could learn English without necessarily having allegiance to
the foreign culture. Instead, learning English is expected to strengthen our being multilingual in which we become a group of global community with a distinct identity such as Singaporean English, Malaysian English, Australian English, Papua New Guinea English and
so on. The challenge is now how to design or redesign the existing curriculum and the teaching material which suit our purposes to achieve the communicative competence in the widest sense.
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