2011919989798 | Second Language Acquisition | English As A Second Or Foreign Language

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  Politeness Strategies Used in English Requests and Refusals by Chinese College EFL Learners  byZhu XiaoningUnder the Supervision of Professor Wen QiufangProfessor Chen XinrenSubmitted in Partial Fulfilment of the Requirementsfor the Degree of Master of ArtsEnglish DepartmentSchool of Foreign Studies Nanjing UniversityMarch 2004I hereby declare that this submission is my own work and that, to the best of my i  knowledge and belief, it contains no material previously published or written by another  person or material which has to a substantial extent been accepted for the award of anyother degree or diploma at any university or other institute of higher learning, exceptwhere due acknowledgement has been made in the text.Signature: _______  Name: Zhu XiaoningDate: March, 31, 2004 ii  Acknowledgements I would like to take this opportunity to express my heartfelt thanks to all those whohave contributed, directly and indirectly, to the completion of this thesis.My greatest thanks should first be extended to my supervisors, Professor ChenXinren, who has helped me all the way through the design, development and revision of the thesis and Professor Wen Qiufang, who read my drafts patiently time and again andoffered valuable advice either on proposal designing and thesis revision. It is due totheir sincere encouragement, insightful suggestion and patient guidance that this thesiscan finally assume its shape.I am also indebted to Professor Yue Meiyun, Professor Ding Yanren and Professor Wu Keming, who have acquainted me with the theories in linguistics, appliedlinguistics and teaching pedagogy from which I have benefited a lot.Thanks also go to Miss Zhu Yeqiu, Miss Wang Yu, Miss Zhou Dandan, and Mr.Bao Gui, the Ph.D. students in the English Department at Nanjing University and to allmy classmates who have helped me in choosing the research topic and designingresearch proposal during the one-year seminar.I am also grateful to my colleagues at Yangzhou University, Miss Dai Caihong,Miss Li Xiaomei, Miss Qi Yan and Mr. Wang Jinquan, for their support in helping mecollect data, and to all the students who have participated in the study and offered their  patient cooperation.Finally, I want to give special thanks to my family for their love and support allthese years and to my fiancé, Mr. Zhao Qiang for his good temper and warmencouragement at any time.Z.X.N. iii  ABSTRACTPoliteness Strategies Used in English Requests and Refusals by ChineseCollege EFL learners ByZhu XiaoningThis thesis reports a study on how Chinese college EFL learners used politenessstrategies in performing two face-threatening speech acts, request and refusal. Itinvestigated what politeness strategies were used and examined the effect of contextualvariables and language proficiency on strategy choice. The subjects were 63 Englishmajors from Yangzhou University who were divided into two groups: freshmen and juniors. Data were collected mainly via a written DCT developed by a preliminarystudy and retrospective interviews carried out with five subjects chosen from eachgroup. The politeness strategies used in 377 tokens of request and 377 tokens of refusalelicited were then analyzed in terms of directness level, internal modification andexternal modification. The findings are summarized as follows:1.Learners preferred indirectness and made use of a wide range of supportive moves both in requests and refusals. The use of internal modifications was infrequent andlacked complexity and variety. On the whole, learners preferred negative politenessin strategy use.2.Contextual variables, notably the degree of imposition and relative social status, hadsome effect on learners’ strategy choice. Yet learners’ performance did not fully iv
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