World Englishes: How Differently Canadian English Native Speakers and Iranian EFL Learners Make Yes/no Question Variants

Akbar Afghari, Laya Heidari Darani


This paper investigates the commonalities among linguistic structures despite differences in different varieties of English. It, further, probes the proximity of yes/no question variants produced by Canadian English native speakers and those produced by Iranian intermediate EFL learners. The functions of such question variants are also probed in this study. Making use of an Edinburgh Map Task, 60 Canadians and Iranians performed the task and made English yes/no question variants considering the context and functions of the questions. Based on the results, both groups utilized the same type of yes/no question variants with the same functions. However, with respect to quantity, Canadians made more variants while the context was similar. Another difference noticed was the most frequent variant: Iranians’ frequent variant coincided with the informal context, the Canadians’, yet, did not. These findings revealed that both Canadians and Iranians from two different circles syntactically and pragmatically behaved similarly.

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International Journal of English Linguistics   ISSN 1923-869X (Print)   ISSN 1923-8703 (Online)   E-mail:

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