A study on difficulties in learning speaking skill faced by non-English major students at Hanoi University of Industry = Nghiên cứu về những khó khăn trong việc

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VIETNAM NATIONAL UNIVERSITY, HANOI UNIVERSITY OF LANGUAGES & INTERNATIONAL STUDIES FACULTY OF POST – GRADUATE STUDIES ***************** NGUYỄN THỊ XOAN A STUDY ON DIFFICULTIES IN LEARNING SPEAKING SKILL FACED BY NON-ENGLISH-MAJOR STUDENTS AT HANOI UNIVERSITY OF INDUSTRY Nghiên cứu về những khó khăn trong việc học kĩ năng nói của sinh viên không chuyên Tiếng Anh tại trường Đại học Công Nghiệp Hà Nội M.A. MINOR THESIS Field: English Teaching Methodology Code: 601410 Hanoi – 2012 VIETNAM NATIONAL UNIVERSITY, HANOI UNIVERSITY OF LANGUAGES & INTERNATIONAL STUDIES FACULTY OF POST – GRADUATE STUDIES ***************** NGUYỄN THỊ XOAN A STUDY ON DIFFICULTIES IN LEARNING SPEAKING SKILL FACED BY NON-ENGLISH-MAJOR STUDENTS AT HANOI UNIVERSITY OF INDUSTRY Nghiên cứu về những khó khăn trong việc học kĩ năng nói của sinh viên không chuyên Tiếng Anh tại trường Đại học Công Nghiệp Hà Nội M.A. MINOR THESIS Field: English Teaching Methodology Code: 601410 Supervisor: Phạm Lan Anh, M.A Hanoi – 2012 4 TABLE OF CONTENTS DECLARATION i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ii ABSTRACT iii LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS iv LIST OF TABLES v TABLE OF CONTENTS vi PART A: INTRODUCTION 1 1. Rationale 1 2. Aims of the study 2 3. Scope of the study 3 4. Significance of the study 3 5. Methodology 4 6. Design of the study 4 PART B: DEVELOPMENT 5 Chapter 1: Literature Review 5 1.1. Theoretical background of Communicative language teaching (CLT) 5 1.1.1. Concept of CLT 5 1.1.2. Characteristics of CLT 6 1.2. Speaking skill 9 1.2.1. Concept of speaking 9 5 1.2.2. Characteristics of speaking 10 1.3. Teaching Speaking Skills in CLT approach 11 1.3.1. Teaching Speaking Skills in CLT approach 11 1.3.2. The techniques in teaching speaking skills 13 1.4. Difficulties in learning speaking skill 15 1.4.1. Difficulties from teachers 15 1.4.2. Difficulties from students 17 1.4.3. Difficulties from objective factors 20 Chapter 2: The study 22 2.1. The context 22 2.1.1. Description of the English course and its objectives at HaUI 22 2.1.2. Description of the students at HaUI 23 2.1.3. Description of the teachers at HaUI 23 2.2. The study 24 2.2.1. Participants 24 2.2.2. Sampling 25 2.2.3. Research methodology 25 2.2.4. Data collection methods 25 2.2.5. Procedures 25 2.3. Data analysis 27 PART C: CONCLUSION 41 1. Summary of findings 41 2. Some suggestions to overcome students’ difficulties 42 2.1. Suggestions for teachers 42 6 2.2. Suggestions for students 43 3. Limitations of the study 44 4. Suggestions for further studies 44 REFERENCE 46 APPENDIX 1: Questionnaire for students (English version) I APPENDIX 2: Questionnaire for students (Vietnamese version) IV APPENDIX 3: Questionnaire for teachers VII APPENDIX 4: Transcription of semi-structured group interview with teachers XI 7 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS HaUI: Hanoi University of Industry CLT: Communicative Language Teaching L1: First language L2: Second language 8 LIST OF TABLES Table 1: Information about students participating in the survey Table 2: Teachers’ years of teaching English and students’ years of learning English Table 3: Teachers’ and students’ opinion about the importance of English speaking skill Table 4: Teachers’ and students’ opinion about the importance of English speaking skill in comparison with other skills Table 5: Teachers’ and students’ opinions about students’ favor of learning English speaking skill Table 6: Teachers’ and students’ judgment about students’ speaking competence Table 7: Students’ reasons for learning English speaking skill Table 8: Teachers’ belief about CLT Table 9: Students’ common difficulties in learning speaking skill 9 PART A: INTRODUCTION 1. RATIONALE OF THE STUDY Nowadays, in the trend of globalization, English has become an international language and has been widely used in many parts of the world. With the development of modern science and technology along with the integration policy, the need of learning English in Vietnam has been increasing day by day. With the purpose of finding a good job with high salary or to study abroad, learners of English nowadays not only wish to master the grammar of the language to pass the exam at school but they also wish to develop their communication competence. However, they often get into a lot of difficulties on the way mastering it. The reasons may be that to speak a foreign language fluently is not easy and it takes a lot of time and effort. There are many factors such as: students’ motivation, students’ characteristics, learning materials, teachers’ teaching methods, etc… which affect students’ achievement in learning English speaking skill. The topic of difficulties in learning English speaking has also attracted me since I began teaching English at Hanoi University of Industry (HaUI). In the hope of helping students master English well to get a good job after graduation, the Faculty of English at HaUI has applied the communicative language teaching approach in teaching and learning for both English-major and non-English-major students. Among four language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing), speaking is paid special attention. However, throughout my teaching for non- English major students at this university, I realize that the speaking lessons are usually not really successful as expected because students have a lot of difficulties in learning this skill. Although students can do the grammar exercises very well, can master quite many new words and structures, they still cannot apply them in learning speaking skill very well. That is one of the reasons why I wish to carry out a research to find out the common difficulties in learning speaking skill and some suggested solutions to the problem. 10 There are quite many researches on learning English speaking skill and difficulties in learning this skill; however, there are still few researches about difficulties in learning speaking skill by students at HaUI, especially by non-English major students although it is a quite big university in Vietnam and the number of non-English major students is also quite large. Being an English teacher for non- English major students at this university, I would like to carry out a research to find out the common difficulties in learning this skill by those students in order to help them to improve the situation in the next semesters as well as to help me and my colleagues to improve our teaching. These above facts have provoked me to conduct a research with the title: “A study on difficulties in learning speaking skill faced by non- English major students at Hanoi University of Industry”. 2. AIMS OF THE STUDY The study is carried out to find out non-English major students’ difficulties in learning English speaking skill at Hanoi University of Industry from students and lecturers’ points of views. Then, some solutions will be generated from the lecturers at this university to overcome the problems. All these above aims can be realized by answering three following research questions: 1. What are the difficulties encountered by non-English major students in learning English speaking skill from lecturers’ opinions? 2. What are the difficulties encountered by non-English major students in learning English speaking skill from students’ opinions? 3. What are suggested as solutions by lecturers for non-English major students to overcome those difficulties? 11 3. SCOPE OF THE STUDY The study aims at finding out the difficulties in learning speaking skill faced by non-English major students at HaUI. There are many types of difficulties that learners can meet when they study a foreign language. However, due to the limitation of time and the narrow scale, the study only focuses on the most common difficulties in learning speaking skill faced by non-English major students at Hanoi University of Industry from the perspectives of students and teachers. Then, this study will also give out some suggested solutions generated from the teachers in the interview for students to overcome those difficulties and improve their speaking skill. 4. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY In finding out the difficulties of non-English major students in learning speaking English and some suggested solutions, it is hoped that the result of the study will somehow be used as reference to help students to learn speaking skill better in the next semesters. In addition, the result of this study is also strongly believed to help me and my colleagues to better our own teaching at HaUI, as well as those who are in charge of teaching English speaking skill to non-English major students at other universities and colleges in Vietnam with the same situation as at HaUI. Last but not least, this study is also hoped to contribute to recent knowledge about difficulties in learning speaking skill of non-English major students at HaUI. [...]... communicative language teaching is that it pays systematic attention to functional as well as structural aspects of language In reaction to the grammar-translation and audio-lingual methods, the CLT approach emphasizes the communicative activities that involve the real use of language in daily life situation 16 1.2 Speaking Skill Speaking skill plays an important role in learners’ learning process It is considered... activities for teachers to apply in CLT speaking classroom He classifies them into two main kinds: Functional communication activities and social interaction activities In terms of Functional Communication Activities, two main uses of language are mentioned: using language to share information and using language to process information They are then separated into four main groups: a Sharing information with... pair work and limiting teacher talk), plan tasks involving negotiation of meaning, design classroom activities involving guidance, practice for both transactional and interactional speaking Interactional speaking is to both establish and maintain social relationship while transactional speaking is to exchange goods or services Interactional speech is much more unpredictable than the other as it ranges... whereas teachers are facilitators Nunan’s definition of CLT represents a particular view of understanding and explaining language acquisition According to Bock (2000) CLT is tailored to get at meaning and learners negotiate meaning in class Meaning is considered as what is communicated The negotiation of meaning can be implicated through pair work, group work in problem-solving tasks He also states: “Authentic... of CLT and speaking skill: concept of CLT, characteristics of CLT, concept of speaking, characteristics of speaking, teaching speaking skills in CLT approach, the techniques in teaching speaking skills and difficulties in learning speaking skill 1.1 Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) 1.1.1 Concept of CLT There are many different definitions about CLT Hymes (1972) promotes the theory about language... interviewing one by one teacher The content of the interview is recorded and transcribed into texts for data analysis The information from the interviews is analyzed in qualitative methods 34 2.3 Data analysis A Results from survey questionnaires for students and teachers Part I: General information Question 1: General information about participants The information about the students participating in the... Learners often need to be able to speak with confidence in order to carry out many of their most basic interactions and transactions Bygate also highly appreciates speaking by stating that speaking is the medium through which much language is learnt To sum up, it is undeniable that speaking is the key to successful communication By considering what good speakers do, what speaking tasks can be used in. .. will not be able to be successful 1.4.2 Difficulties from students There are many different ideas about difficulties from students in learning a foreign language in general and in learning speaking skill in particular Nunan (1999) pointed out that students unmotivation is one of the factors that causes difficulties in learning speaking skill Unmotivation is caused by lack of perception of progress,... teaching, boredom, lack of relevant materials, lack of knowledge about the goals of the instructional program, lack of appropriate feedback Teachers often find that it is very hard to motivate students in learning communicative competence 25 Tsui (1996) suggests five factors to determine learners’ difficulties in leaning speaking in class: students fear of making mistakes and losing face in front of. .. information routines and interactional ones Information routines may be described to involve two sub-routines: expository and evaluation The former includes description, narration, comparison and instruction The latter consists of explanation, prediction, justification, preference and decision Interaction routines are routines based not so much on sequences of kinds of term 18 occurring in typical kinds of . communicative language teaching approach in teaching and learning for both English -major and non-English- major students. Among four language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing), speaking. guidance, practice for both transactional and interactional speaking. Interactional speaking is to both establish and maintain social relationship while transactional speaking is to exchange goods. approach that one of the most characteristic features of communicative language teaching is that it pays systematic attention to functional as well as structural aspects of language. In reaction
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