Gender Differences in Iranian EFL Students’ Letter Writing

Somaye Hamdi asl, Azizollah Dabaghi


Studies regarding gender differences in EFL context have been done for many years. However, it seems that writing, which is a vital skill in academic issues, has gained much less attention in this area. In addition, not having enough knowledge of gender differences for teachers is one of the main barriers of language learning. The current study examines gender differences in Iranian EFL students’ letter writing in terms of 13 linguistic features mentioned in Mulac, Bradac, & Gibbons (2001). The results of this study showed significant differences toward the use of some linguistic features. Female participants tended to use more “I” references, references to quantity, references to emotions, uncertainty verbs, sentence initial adverbials and judgmental adjectives. In addition, the results showed than women tended to be wordier than men in terms of total number of words. Men, on the other hand, exceeded women on a number of linguistic dimensions including locatives, mean length sentence and dependent clauses. Moreover, elliptical sentences were not used by female participants at all and few male participants used them in their letters. Therefore, this study demonstrated gender differences in Iranian EFL students’ letter writing. These dissimilarities between genders in EFL can be contributed to many aspects such as educational instructions, teachers, and cultural differences. It also illustrated teachers’ perspectives of gender regarding students’ writing.



Gender, Writing, Linguistic Features

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