Enhancing Metaphoric Competence through the Cognitive Approach

Document Type : Research Paper


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Studies in cognitive linguistics have highlighted the importance of metaphors for language teaching. Metaphoric competence, as an important aspect of intelligence, can contribute to the learning of languages. Most textbooks in ESL/EFL avoid the issue of figurative language and concentrate only on the denotative aspects of language. This article reports a study conducted at the Islamic Azad University, Maybod Branch. The hypothesis of this study was that it is possible to teach metaphoric concepts by activating students’ cognition. Sixty junior students of English translation were divided to two groups of 30, each after a placement test. The experimental group was given a treatment including supplementary materials and scaffolding strategies, while the control group was not given any treatment. Data collected from the post-test and from a delayed follow-up post-test were statistically analyzed. The results of these analyses revealed that it is possible to enhance students’ metaphoric competence through a cognitive approach in a classroom setting.