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Vol. 13 No. 2 (2010)

Text messaging, pragmatic competence, and affective facilitation in the EFL context: A pilot study

October 15, 2012


Since text messaging is a widely popular method of communication among young people, the paper tries to investigate whether it might have some practical application in the EFL classroom. Kuwaiti EFL students asked to render a mixture of text messages written by their peers and native English speakers into Standard English produced a large number and variety of basic language errors. However, native English-speaking judges were unsuccessful in discriminating between the native and non-native English messages. In addition, the EFL text messages showed that the students were effectively able to achieve their pragmatic aims. Text messaging may therefore have some pedagogical use in terms of motivating the learner. This idea is supported by referring to studies in the literature on text messaging which suggest that the medium may not be as linguistically damaging as is commonly thought.