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Article
Publication date: 28 November 2023

Yusri Yusri, R. Mantasiah and Muhammad Anwar

This study investigated the use of language impoliteness of primary school teachers in communicating with their students during the learning process.

Abstract

Purpose

This study investigated the use of language impoliteness of primary school teachers in communicating with their students during the learning process.

Design/methodology/approach

The methodology of this study used a mixed-method approach by involving 100 primary school teachers in the fifth and sixth grades. The researcher used the language politeness/impoliteness scale developed by Mantasiah et al. (2019) to measure teachers' language impoliteness. This scale was developed based on Brown and Levinson's theory who divided politeness maxims into six consisting of tact maxim, generosity maxim, approbation maxim, appreciation maxim, agreement maxim and sympathy maxim. The levels of teachers' language impoliteness were divided into five categories (5 = always, 4 = often, 3 = sometimes, 2 = rarely, 1 = never).

Findings

The finding shows that 28% of teachers were in the sometimes category and 33% of teachers were in the rarely category. The results signify that some teachers tend to speak impolitely with the students during the learning process. They considered that it was acceptable as they did not know the negative effects caused by their impolite language. Moreover, teachers were more likely to violate sympathy, tact and agreement maxims than other maxims.

Practical implications

The finding of this study can be applied generally at all levels of education, ranging from primary education to higher education, as a base to develop a program to improve the soft skills of teachers especially the way teachers communicate with their students in the learning process. By understanding language politeness theory, the awareness of teachers in communicating in the learning process can be improved, which can affect positively to the quality of learning process.

Originality/value

Numerous studies conducted on communication skills of teachers focused on using communication sciences approach. This study tried to use another approach to portray the communication skills of teachers based on language politeness uttered using linguistics approach. Moreover, previous studies preferred to conduct language politeness and impoliteness of teachers in senior high schools and lecturers in university, and there is still lack of studies focusing on language politeness of primary school teachers.

Details

Asian Education and Development Studies, vol. 13 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2046-3162

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