Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in International & Global Studies: International Development and University Honors


International and Global Studies

First Advisor

Kimberley Brown


English language -- Idioms, English language -- Study and teaching -- Chinese speakers, English language -- Study and teaching -- Foreign speakers, Language acquisition




This paper reviews the discourse of 21 contemporary papers that focus on idioms in Chinese English as a Foreign Language (EFL) contexts. Key topics are identified: comprehension and retention, motivating factors, familiarity, and student perceptions. Common factors between the papers in each topic are analyzed, and some gaps in the literature identified. This paper further finds which common factors between papers are also common between multiple key topics. It seeks primarily to answer a single research question:

  • Where is the friction in the discourse between the East and the West, and how does it impact idiom EFL education in Chinese contexts?

The key topics are: comprehension and retention, etymological motivation, familiarity, and student perceptions. This paper finds remarkably little friction from Chinese researchers against Western ideas for idiom education. This paper concludes with some speculation as to why this is the case.

Persistent Identifier