For effective communication, the sender and receiver must interpret the linguistic units correctly and appropriately. In this respect, the speakers’ awareness rate of the units in the language is significant in terms of communication quality. This study aimed to describe the awareness of native language and foreign language Turkish of “işte,” which is one of the units included in discourse competence and is necessary for the development of communicative competence in Turkish. To this end, a screening study, one of the qualitative research methods, was conducted. In the study, participants received questions regarding the functions of “işte” with an interview form comprising videos that were structured with expert opinions, and the form’s reliability was measured through a pilot study, which included different functions of “işte.” Upon examining the responses in terms of awareness among the answers given by the two groups of participants, the rate was determined as 69.47%. The awareness rate of native speakers was 72.71%, and the awareness rate of the participants who learned Turkish as a foreign language was 58.08%. When the awareness rates in 12 different contexts are examined comparatively with each other, a similar proportional distribution is observed except for one function. The findings in this study are parallel to the findings of other studies in the field. A significant difference is noted only in the “transfer” function, and the awareness of native speakers is lower in this function than those who learn Turkish as a foreign language. The reason for this finding has been interpreted as the effect of explicit teaching of some functions in a foreign language.


Communicative competence, discourse markers, Turkish as a foreign language, “işte,” awareness