Educational Sciences: Theory & Practice

ISSN: 2630-5984

Understanding Fluency and Disfluency in Non-native Speakers’ Conversational English

Nurdan Gürbüz
Department of Foreign Language Education, Faculty of Education Middle East Technical University, Çankaya, Ankara 06800 Turkey


Developing speaking fluency in a foreign language is a challenging goal especially in countries where English is learned as a foreign language as learners have no natural exposure to the target language. This paper discusses how fluency and disfluency are reflected in English conversations of Turkish students. It is assumed that developing fluency in a foreign language can be an easier task if we can understand the nature of fluency. For that purpose, ten Turkish undergraduate students’ conversational English was analyzed to examine how fluency and disfluency are realized in non-native data. The data analyses revealed that fluency is related to a number of factors such as pauses, hesitations and discourse markers and language proficiency level of the speakers.

Fluency, Disfluency, Fluency markers, Conversational English, Non-native conversations, Teaching fluency.