Cross-linguistic Gender Differences in EFL Learners’ Pause Frequency and Duration

Document Type: Original Article


1 Department of Foreign Languages, Yazd University, Iran

2 Foreign Languages Department, Yazd University



The present paper sought to investigate gender differences in the speech pauses made by Iranian bilingual (L1: Turkish and L2: Persian) learners of English as a foreign language (EFL). To this end, the pauses made by males and females were compared. Via an Oxford Placement test, a convenient sample of 40 bilingual advanced EFL male and female learners were selected from several English language institutes in Tehran, Iran. Three reading passages (English, Persian, and Turkish) were used to measure students’ fluency in terms of their speech pauses in the texts they read. As learners started to read the passages, their speeches were recorded. The collected data were analyzed by means of Praat Software. The data were analyzed in terms of the frequency and duration of the recorded pauses. The results indicated that that there were not any statistically significant differences between males and females regarding their pause frequency and duration across languages. Accordingly, the results represented more similarity than difference across the groups. The implications of the study are discussed.