Assistant Professor of TEFL, Department of English, Faculty of Humanities, Yasouj University, Yasouj, Iran.
MA Student of TEFL, Department of English, Faculty of Humanities, Yasouj University, Yasouj, Iran.
The main objective of the current English for Academic Purposes (EAP) programs in Iran is to fill the gap between the students’ general English competence and their ability to read discipline-specific texts. This study aims to investigate the target and present reading comprehension needs of EAP undergraduate students of Persian literature in Yasouj state university through a mixed method approach. A total of 30 undergraduate students who have passed ESP courses and 10 postgraduate students along with two content and two EAP instructors participated in the study which was designed on a mixed method approach using interviews and questionnaires. The results indicated that ‘skimming texts’, ‘using bilingual general dictionaries’, ‘scanning texts’, ‘knowledge of Persian literature terminologies’, ‘guessing meanings of words’, and ‘understanding main ideas’ were perceived as either ‘important’ or ‘very important’ to students’ success by all the participants. Moreover, the results suggested that General English Proficiency (GEP) level of the students, was generally low. The undergraduates held that they need more general English than highly specific academic English. Implications of this study can be used for improving EAP reading courses for Persian literature students.
Keywords: Persian literature, Reading comprehension, ESP, need analysis, mixed method approach