Grammatical Errors Made by Saudi University Students Majoring in English

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Journal Title, Volume, Page: 
Journal of Applied Linguistics. No. 9(l),1994 pp.3-13. Belgium
Year of Publication: 
Fayez M. Aqel Taha
King Faisal University , Saudi Arabia
Current Affiliation: 
Department of English Language and Literature ,Faculty of humanities, An-Najah National University, Nablus, Palestine
Preferred Abstract (Original): 

Many researchers looked into the errors made by Arab students Learning English as a foreign language. Nasr, 1963, who made a comparative study of English and classical Arabic covering the levels of phonology, vocabulary and grammar, predicted the problems he thinks are likely to face Arab students learning English. He asserted that there were no linguistic problems for Arab students to learn English. Samhoury, 1966. who made a contrastive study of the grammars of Arabic and English compared written English and spoken Damascene Arabic. His analysis of Arabic is based on recorded conversation. two hundred scripts written by university students. He confined the reasons for his students' errors totally to interference from Arabic. without taking into account the possibility of tracing the errors. or rather some of them. to other sources such as teaching material. the teacher, and/or the methods used in teaching English in Syria. Emam. 1972, who examined some written composition of secondary school pupils and then classified the errors that had recurred. made a contrastive analysis of English and colloquial Egyptian Arabic to be able to predict the problematic areas. His study, covering the aspects of spelling, punctuation. nouns. verbs. prepositions. pronouns, adjectives. articles...etc.. showed that the mother tongue was not found to be a source of errors where there is a dissimilarity and vice versa. EI-Hibir. 1976. who tried to identify and diagnose the common grammatical and lexical errors in the written English of a group of Sudanese' secondary school students learning English in the Northern Sudan. recommended appropriate methods and techniques for teaching English so as to avoid the worst type of errors and to make a positive improvement in pupils' writing. The errors committed by other Arab learners have been also examined in a number of studies ( Meziani. 1973; Scott & Tucker. 1974; Ibrahim. 1978; Mattar, 1978; Kharma, 1981; Mukkattash, 1978, 1981; Shaheen, 1984; Abd-EI - Jawad; 1986; Kharma & Hajjaj, 1989; EI-hibir & A1taha, 1992, and Altaha, to appear).

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