Linguistic Barriers in Online Teaching at Undergraduate Level in the University of Malakand Pakistan

  • Zaheer Ullah Lecturer, Department of English, University of Malakand, Pakistan
  • Shaukat Ali Assistant Professor, Department of English, University of Malakand
  • Saddam Hussain Lecturer, Department of English, University of Malakand, Pakistan
Keywords: CALL; Linguistic barrier; MALL; Virtual learning; WhatsApp


Language plays a central role in the teaching-learning process. Without language, teaching can never happen; whether it is face-to-face or online teaching. With the outbreak of covid-19, teaching switched over from face-to-face to online one for the first time. Often, in online teaching linguistic barriers occur, since the teacher is not physically present in the classroom to clarify certain situations. This paper attempts to find out various linguistic barriers that occurred in online teaching at the undergraduate level at the University of Malakand. The researchers selected 380 respondents as participants from the total population through a random purposive sampling technique. Besides, a questionnaire was used for data collection. After the data collection, the results were presented in tabulation form showing the frequency and percentage of the respondents. The results were interpreted and analyzed descriptively. The findings of the study indicated that certain linguistic barriers create problems in online teaching for learners. Among those barriers; usage of the English language, difficult terminologies of teachers, complex sentence structure, unknown jargon for learners, absence of body language, and physical absence of teachers, and strong accents of some teachers are the prominent ones. The study suggests that teachers should be properly trained in online teaching with a special focus on the aforementioned areas of difficulties.