The role of epistemic curiosity in developing EFL learners’ grammar and pronunciation skills
The study examines the impact of epistemic curiosity on students' grammar and pronunciation skills in an EFL context in Iraq. Conducted over 12 weeks in 2021-2022 Academic Year, the research involved fifty students from TISHK International University, chosen using cluster sampling. The students were divided into control and experimental groups, with the latter encouraged to explore their interests online as part of their learning process. Data collection utilized a mixed-methods approach, including two exams, a questionnaire, and an interview. SPSS 26 and NVivo were used for quantitative and qualitative data analysis, respectively. The results, determined through independent samples t-test, indicated a significant improvement in grammar and pronunciation marks for students in the experimental group. Additionally, they exhibited more positive attitudes towards inquiry-based learning compared to their control group counterparts. These findings contribute to the understanding of the role of epistemic curiosity in enhancing language learning outcomes and offer valuable insights for implementing inquiry-based strategies in EFL classrooms. The study uncovers a crucial gap in the literature, shedding light on the benefits of fostering curiosity-driven learning approaches in English language education in Iraq.
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