English As A Foreign Language In Saudi Arabia

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English as a Foreign Language in Saudi Arabia

English as a Foreign Language in Saudi Arabia


Language is a means of communication and every individual learns language or two languages to communicate from early childhood. Language is very important because it serves as a means for people to exchange their ideas, thoughts and feelings with each other. Without language, life would have been impossible for human beings as their ability to think and talk makes human beings different from and superior to all other creatures on earth.

Once a person learns a language, he/she becomes a member of a linguistic community. Since language helps a person to express their love, sadness, anger, and happiness, it has become a component of every culture in this world. For this reason, people from across the globe develop a deep-rooted love and emotional bonding for their mother tongues.

The clearest example of this phenomenon is the acquisition of English Language, which has become a necessity for people across the globe in order to communicate with each other. This is because the English Language has become an international language and Lingua Franca, which means a language, which serves as a vehicular language, or a working language. Lingua Franca helps people with different mother tongues to communicate with each other.

Though, the English Language enjoys a very significant status in the world being the international language of communication, the importance of another language can never be undermined or underestimated as every language hold a great value within itself and speakers of every language have a profound love for their native languages which renders a greater significance to any given language.


Most people acquire their first language smoothly and excel at it, however when it comes to learning a second language, especially English which has become almost mandatory for people in every country to learn it in order to stay abreast of the happenings in the world. When non-English speakers learn the English Language, the interference of a native language takes place.

The importance of applied linguistics in general and English language teaching in particular are perceived by almost all pedagogues and educationist. In the modern educational setting, the English teacher is supposed to know linguistics or applied English linguistics in order to prove himself as an effective English language teacher. In most pedagogic situations in Saudi Arabia, the teacher of English is bound to make error/contrastive analysis between LI (Arabic) and L2 (English) so that he can evolve a compatible strategy for each sub-aspect of the language: sound, grammar, spelling, meaning etc.

English and Arabic are two different languages. Their alphabets, sounds, vowel patterns, pronunciation, capitalization style, articles, even the writing style are different. English is written from left to right whereas Arabic moves from right to left. Moreover, the cultural background of the speakers of both the languages is poles apart. Since language is a living and complicated phenomenon its hegemonic effect is most often related to the interests of the local ...
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