Students’ Perception towards Literature Integration in the English Language Departments at Duhok and Zakho Universities

Aveen Mohammed Hasan, Zaiton Fareeq Hasan


This study investigates the students’ perceptions towards literature integration in language learning in the English Language Departments (henceforth ELD) at Duhok and Zakho universities. Knowledge about students’ perceptions will influence their interest and language learning development. Literature is an important part of the syllabus at most ELDs in the Kurdish universities. Although studies have shown the importance of the learners’ perception, no studies have examined the students’ perceptions towards their literature modules in the ELDs at the Kurdish universities. The study is based on the responses of 268 undergraduate students to a questionnaire consisting of close-ended, multiple choices (quantitative data) and open-ended questions (qualitative data). The quantitative data is analyzed using the statistical analysis software (SPSS) and the qualitative using thematic analysis. The majority of the students have positive perceptions towards literature integration in their study program. They show that it contributes to the their language development in general and their vocabulary, speaking and reading skills in particular and novel is selected as the most beneficial literary genre for language development. Additionally, literature contributes to develop the learners’ cultural awareness in general and helps to identify the similarities and differences between the English culture and the learners’ own culture. The study also shows the contribution of literature to the learners’ personal growth in terms of active participation in class activities, increasing their critical thinking and analytical skills and helps them to understand theirs and other people’s experiences. The students are satisfied with the selected literary texts and topics and to some extent with the teaching methods which are mostly teacher led, but they suggest more students’ involvement. However, students face some difficulties, mostly language difficulty, that need to be taken into consideration. Thus, it is recommended that literature should be kept in the ELDs curriculum and teachers and administrators should make students aware of the value of the literature, understand the students needs and work to overcome the problems they encounter in literature study. Generally, knowing the students’ perceptions towards literature classes will be helpful for the researchers, educational policy makers and the language teachers to determine English language learners’ genuine needs, motivation or challenges and issues in relation to the use of literary texts as teaching materials and to develop a suitable teaching approach to use the literary texts.


Literature Integration, Perceptions Of Literature, English Language Learning, Students’ Perception, Kurdish Universities

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