The Effect of Arabic Language on EFL University Students’ Use of Metaphorical Expressions in Writing


  • Rasha H. Ahmed College of Languages, Nawroz University, Duhok, Kurdisatn Region - Iraq
  • Hussein A. Ahmed College of Languages, Nawroz University, Duhok, Kurdisatn Region - Iraq



Metaphor, Metaphorical Expressions, Figurative meaning, Literal Meaning, Essay Writing


Metaphor is an expression that is used to denote an object, not from a literal meaning, but a similar, figurative meaning. It uses symbols in the place of reality, makes writing more interesting and helps readers understand the ideas the author is trying to convey. Metaphor is a means to think about something, find a new meaning for it, and view it from a different perspective. The current study focuses on the role of EFL university students' native language, namely Arabic in shaping the metaphors used in their writing. It endeavours to find out the types and the frequencies of metaphorical expressions used in essay writing by a sample of EFL university Arab students. As such, the study hypothesizes that  EFL university students use of metaphorical expressions in writing is affected by their native language, i.e. Arabic, and that the metaphors used by EFL Arab university students fall within the already known and common domains of metaphor use. To validate the preceding hypotheses, a sample of (21) Arab 3rd year students at the Dept. of English / College of Education/ University of Mosul, Duhok Site during the academic year 2015-2016 was randomly selected and asked to write essays on topics pertinent to their daily life. The results show that there are many types of metaphorical expressions' used by the sample of the study in their writing. This validates the hypotheses set for the current study which state that metaphors are a universal linguistic phenomenon that exists in all languages and are open for use by the speakers of those languages.


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How to Cite

Ahmed, R. H., & Ahmed, H. A. (2018). The Effect of Arabic Language on EFL University Students’ Use of Metaphorical Expressions in Writing. Academic Journal of Nawroz University, 7(3), 145–153.