Volume 7, Issue 1
  • ISSN 2405-5522
  • E-ISSN: 2405-5530



This study investigates the impact of a predeparture intervention on developing pragmatic knowledge in a study abroad context. The study included 66 university-level Japanese learners of English who participated in a four-month study abroad program in Canada. The intervention consisted of the implicit-inductive, explicit-deductive, and explicit-inductive methods of instruction on speech acts. Pragmatic development was measured by gain scores on a written a discourse completion test requiring realization of apologies. Results of the analysis of covariance, controlling for levels of English proficiency, revealed that the explicitly taught groups had significantly larger gains in pragmatic knowledge than the implicitly taught group, and that when comparing the deductive and inductive approaches in the explicit instruction, the two groups did not differ significantly. Follow-up interviews using extreme-case sampling revealed that the metacognitive strategies they had acquired at the predeparture stage contributed to the gains. Implications for maximizing pragmatic development during study abroad are discussed.

Available under the CC BY-NC 4.0 license.

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