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An Analysis of Visual Social Semiotics in English Textbook: Pathway to English for Sma/ma Grade

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Nowadays, English grows as a global language in the world. The language obtains a genuinely global status when it develops a special role that is recognized.

Method and procedure

Qualitative research is used to interpret the data. Qualitative data take the forms of words rather than numbers. According to Lindlof and Tylor (2008), qualitative researchers seek to preserve and analyze the situated form, content and experience of social action. The research questions will be answered by using qualitative content analysis approach of English textbook entitled Pathway to English (2016). A content analysis is a scientific method for describing the facets of communication in such way that summary statements and generalizations can be made about content. The content in qualitative content analysis can be text or other material such as musical, pictorial or plastic. In this study, it is concerned with the visual images. A qualitative content analysis will be used to look at the visual images and to see if the use is effective in English textbook. English textbook is one of the most useful tool in teaching and learning process English.

This study will look on the images in each page. Actually, for most content analysis studies, the immense task of analyzing existing documents begin with sampling procedures. The sampling is done after the title are accepted.

Furthermore, researcher play a major role in their studies through numerous ways. They immerse themselves fully into the study. They use a natural setting, the researcher is a primary instrument focus on uses documentation. This particular study will not need immersion and will not take place in a natural setting. The material will be analyzed through interpretive lens. This will help me to answer the research questions.

I chose to analyze the visual images in English textbook published by Erlangga and how the use is effective to support the verbal message. Erlangga is one of the famous and best educational publishers in Indonesia.

Operational Definition

The title of this study is “Analysis of Visual Social Semiotic in English Textbook: Pathway to English for SMA/MA Grade X”. The title need to be defined operationally. The terms that need to be explained are Analysis, Visual, Social Semiotic and English, Textbook, Pathway to English, and SMA/MA.

Analysis refers to a process of examination and determination of something. In this study, it is the data collection. Visual social semiotic is an approach that used to know what can be said and done with images and how it can be interpreted.

English textbook is defined as the printed and bound object of English that be used in any English classes. Pathway to English for SMA/MA Grade X is the subject of the study that will be analyzed. It is published by Erlangga. Besides, it used by most students. 3. 3 Object of the StudyThe object of the study is an English textbook which is used by most schools, especially in Banyuasin. The title of the textbook is Pathway to English for grade 10th. The textbook was designed based on the newest curriculum, K13 revision. It was published by Erlangga. Erlangga is one of the most famous and the biggest book publisher in Indonesia. In fact, it is a top brand for teens since 2013 to 2018. Actually, there are three reasons of the choosing Pathway to English becoming the subject of the study. The first one is because the contradiction message by the written and visual one of an image in the textbook. Secondly, the use of the English textbook is used in most school. The last one, it is because the publisher is known as one of the most famous and the best publisher in the case of ELT textbooks. There are 9 samples as the chosen samples from the subject. They are the pictures in the pages 9, 23, 24, 54, 126, 135, 149, 151 and 152.

Technique for Collecting Data

However, a major role in the studies is played by the researchers. They immerse themselves fully into the study, the natural setting is used. The researcher is primary instrument. I will focus on the visual image within written text in the English textbook. It will not need immersion. It will not take place in a natural setting. The objects will be analyzed through an interpretive lens. It will help me to understand the meanings of the visual images and its message related with the written message.

I choose to analyze the English textbook’ visual images and how their message related with the written one. The purpose of the study is to observe the grammar of visual design from the images. Therefore, the textbook is chosen because some reasons. Firstly, it is used as the most frequent book in the place. Next, it is one of the best of English publisher, Erlangga. Another reason is that it uses many images in each contents of material.

This study will look at the visual image within the text from the textbook. For most content analysis studies, the immense task of analyzing existing documents begins with sampling procedures. Sampling is used by finding out the images with fulfill the specific characteristics which with the problems of the study. Purposive sampling will be applied in order to analyze the object of the study. The sampling is based on the study’ problems. The samples are chosen to fulfill the specific characteristics. The first problems is about visual grammar. Based on the literature review, to fulfill all aspects of the meaning in the proposed taxonomy, the images with human or human like objects are chosen. The second problem is the suitability of the written and visual message. Thus, the samples should be visual images with texts. Thus, the objects of the study will be chosen.

Data Collection

The goal of data collection is to answer the problem questions of the study. The data is collected through 1) public document and 2) analyzing document. The public document is the textbook that has spread and used in many English classes. Meanwhile, the visual images were documented by taking screen shoots.

The title of the chosen textbook is Pathway to English for SMA/MA Grade X. The Pathway to English is a 204 pages textbook. Its contents are divided into ten units that are linked thematically based on K13 Revision. The textbook allows the students to practice four skills in English: listening, speaking, reading and writing. Each unit starts with a visual image. The textbook provides many kinds of pictures. To move from the various images, the focus will be centered on the images with texts. It means that the subject of the data is kind of images which the function is used to go with the text. It is because based on the formulated problems. The study is purposed to know how they mean themselves to support the written text. Therefore, they are 9 pictures that will be analyzed. It will be enough because from 4 previous studies, Bevins (2014) used 2 images and Torres (2015) used 5 images as the samples of the study.

Data Analysis

In order to investigate how the represented participant is visually and textually represented embedded meanings in the English textbook, all the visual images which contained human participants (with text) were extracted from the textbook as the object of the study. Then, the sample is carried out by using descriptive framework. The framework is proposed by Kress and van Leeuwen’ (2006). There are three levels that will be done in order to know the embedded meanings in the images. The level will be started on the representation level. Next, interactive level will be used to know the interactive meaning. The last one is the composition level to know the composition level.

As the visual analysis at the representation level, the interaction and relation between the represented participants (people, place and things) are investigated. The image act of the represented participants participated in the interaction through two main processes of narrative and conceptual. In narrative process, the represented participants are involved in doing something. The participants will be linked by the vector. Regarding the visual analysis at the interactive level, the interaction between the represented participants and the interactive participants is investigated. In order to investigate the relation, there are three elements will be considered. The elements are image act, social distance and perspective. In the last level, in order to analyze the composition meaning of the image, there are three interrelated systems of the images. The interrelated systems are information value, salience and framing. At the last, after the meanings of the images have been interpreted, the way between texts and images are related will be analyzed. I will compare the interpretation of the embedded meanings as the visual messages with the verbal messages of the text. It will be known whether the messages are suitable or not.

Establishment of Trustworthiness

There are three techniques that will be used to establish the trustworthiness of the study. They are sampling validity, communicative validation and rich, thick description. The sampling validity and communicative validation will be used in the same time. The samples of data will be taken. Then, they are being communicated to the experts. In the study, they are lecturers in English Education Study Program of State Islamic University Raden Fatah Palembang.

Meanwhile, the rich, thick description will be used in the interpretation and description of the result in the study. The findings of the research will be conveyed by the description. It may transport the readers to the setting and give the discussion an element of shared experiences. The detail description makes the result become more realistic and richer. This procedure can add to build the trustworthiness of the findings.

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