A comparative Study between the Algerian New Prospects and the Tunisian Skills for Life: English Language Textbooks of the Last Year Secondary Education
university Mouloud Mammeri of Tizi-Ouzou
The present work aims at comparing and contrasting two English language books designed for the Tunisian and Algerian students of the last year of secondary education-Skills for life and New Prospects- and the syllabuses on which they are based. Its major aim is to highlight the similarities and differences that exist between these two textbooks and the syllabuses they flesh out in relation with the CBA, an approach adopted in both countries. This objective is to be attained by analysing the language, social and technological skills and language aspects (grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation), then checking whether they are in conformity with the CBA principles. The study’s issue of the study is identified through six questions: Do the two textbooks reflect CBA assumptions and principles? Do the two syllabuses reflect and implement the CBA? Are there any similarities between the two textbooks’ content and procedures? Are there any similarities between the two syllabuses regarding design and content? Are the materials of both textbooks organized in a similar way? Do both countries aim at achieving similar terminal objectives at the end of the school year in question in particular and in secondary education in general? The analysis and comparison of the results has ended up in the following conclusions: The content of both textbooks is similar and conform to the CBA. The language skills are emphasised in both textbooks, though with a different presentation. The intercultural and socio-linguistic perspective lacks importance in both textbooks, though both syllabuses emphasise this aspect of language teaching. The approach adopted in both textbooks to teach the socio-linguistic dimension is not in conformity with CBA since there is no contrastive analysis between the culture of the students and that of English speaking countries, which does not comply with one of the major tenets of the CBA. Both textbooks and syllabuses give prominence to the writing skill regarding the fact that the school level in question ends with a national written examination based on written responses (baccalauréat) exam. Both syllabuses rely on task-based which is among the features of a CBA syllabus (the use of tasks). The Algerian syllabus unlike the Tunisian syllabus is project-based. Both of them aim at reaching similar objectives at teaching English secondary education terminal classes. Both of them are articulated around similar linguistic, methodological, and socio-cultural objectives. In both syllabuses the language skills, intercultural competence and technological skills are termed as strategies and the language aspects as functions and patterns to be mastered by the students. In general, the study indicates that the English language textbooks and syllabuses of both Tunisia and Algeria represent a similar designed work since many similarities are noticed with the consideration of the approach adopted and of the social differences existing between the two countries. The study, therefore, implies that further research about the English language textbooks and syllabuses between the different countries of the developing world would highlight findings of a paramount importance for these countries and the field of education.