Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 942

Search results for: EFL learners

942 Survey of Rate and Causes of Literacy Preservation in Adult Newly Learners

Authors: Mohammad Narimani, Zahra Rostamoghli

Abstract:

The main objective of this study is the survey of rate and causes of literacy preservation in adult newly learners. Statistical sample consists of 384 adults who are newly learners of literacy, at 2002, who were selected by stratified sampling method. This is a correlation cross-sectional survey research, in which authors-constructed measures were used for data collection. Results of survey showed that learners' literacy preservation rate after two years was 70%, 61% and 57%, in reading, dictation and mathematic tests, respectively.Following can be noted as factors correlated with literacy preservation; repetition of subjects and learners' subjective review, access to and using the library and publications, feeling of need to and interest in educated matters, socio cultural class of learners, and literacy level of learners' family.

Keywords: literacy preservation, new learner, literacy improvement movement, mathematic test

Procedia PDF Downloads 402
941 Teachers' Emphatic Concern for Their Learners

Authors: Prakash Singh

Abstract:

The focus of this exploratory study is on whether teachers demonstrate emphatic concern for their learners in planning, implementing and assessing learning outcomes in their regular classrooms. Empathy must be shown to all learners equally and not only for high-risk learners at the expense of other ability learners. Empathy demonstrated by teachers allows them to build a stronger bond with all their learners. This bond based on trust leads to positive outcomes for learners to be able to excel in their work. Empathic teachers must make every effort to simplify the subject matter for high risk learners so that these learners not only enjoy their learning activities but are also successful like their more able peers. A total of 87.5% of the participants agreed that empathy allows teachers to demonstrate humanistic values in their choice of learning materials for learners of different abilities. It is therefore important for teachers to select content and instructional materials that will contribute to the learners’ success in the mainstream of education. It is also imperative for teachers to demonstrate empathic skills and consequently, to be attuned to the emotions and emotional needs of their learners. Schools need to be reformed, not by simply lengthening the school day or by simply adding more content in the curriculum, but by making school more satisfying to learners. This must be consistent with their diverse learning needs and interests so that they gain a sense of power, fulfillment, and importance in their regular classrooms. Hence, teacher - pupil relationships based on empathic concern for the latter’s educational needs lays the foundation for quality education to be offered.

Keywords: emotional intelligence, empathy, learners’ emotional needs, teachers’ empathic skills

Procedia PDF Downloads 372
940 The Design and Implementation of Interactive Storybook Reading to Develop the Reading Comprehension of ESL Learners

Authors: A. van Staden, A. A. van Rhyn

Abstract:

The numerous challenges South African, ESL learners experience were highlighted by the results of several literacy surveys and tests, which demonstrated that our learners’ literacy abilities are far below standard and very weak compared to other international countries. This study developed and implemented an interactive storybook intervention program to support the reading development of ESL learners. The researchers utilized an experimental pre-test/post-test research design, whereby 80 ESL learners from five participating schools, were purposively sampled to take part in this study. This paper, inter alia, discusses the key features of this intervention program whilst also reporting the results of the experimental investigation. Results are promising and show a significant improvement in the mean scores of the learners in the experimental group. Moreover, the results show the value of interactive storybook reading in creating responsive literacy environments to develop the literacy skills of ESL learners.

Keywords: ESL learners, reading comprehension, Interactive story book reading, South Africa

Procedia PDF Downloads 60
939 L2 Acquisition of Tense and Aspect by Cantonese and Mandarin ESL Learners of Different Proficiency Levels

Authors: Mable Chan

Abstract:

The present study about the acquisition of tense and aspect by Cantonese and Mandarin ESL learners aims to investigate the relationship between knowledge, the role that classroom input plays in the development of that knowledge, and learners' use of the L2 knowledge they acquire (i.e. their performance). Chinese has been argued as a tenseless language and Chinese ESL learners have to acquire the property from scratch. The study of acquisition of tense and aspect is a very fruitful research area in second language acquisition for a number of reasons. First, tense and aspect are notorious for being difficult for Chinese ESL learners. Second, to our knowledge, no studies have been done to compare Cantonese and Mandarin ESL learners and age effects in one single study. Data are now being collected and the findings from this comparison study of tense-aspect acquisition will shed light on both theoretical and pedagogical issues in second language acquisition, and contribute to a better understanding of both theoretical aspect concerning L2 acquisition of tense and aspect, and pedagogy of tense for L2 Chinese ESL learners.

Keywords: aspect, second language acquisition, tense, universal grammar

Procedia PDF Downloads 268
938 The Use of Authentic Videos to Change Learners’ Negative Attitudes and Perceptions toward Grammar Learning

Authors: Khaldi Youcef

Abstract:

This investigation seeks to inquire into the effectiveness of using authentic videos for grammar teaching purposes. In this investigation, an English animated situation, Hercules, was used as a type of authentic multimedia to teach a particular grammatical structure, namely conditional sentences. This study also aims at investigating the EFL learners’ attitudes toward grammar learning after being exposed to such an authentic video. To reach that purpose, 56 EFL learners were required ultimately to respond to a questionnaire with an aim to reveal their attitudes towards grammar as a language entity and as a subject for being learned. Then, as a second stage of the investigation, the EFL learners were divided into a control group and an experimental group with 28 learners in each. The first group was taught grammar -conditional sentences- using a deductive-inductive approach, while the second group was exposed to an authentic video to learn conditional sentences. There was a post-lesson stage that included a questionnaire to be answered by learners of each group. The aim of this stage is to capture any change in learners' attitudes shown in the pre-lesson questionnaire. The findings of the first stage revealed learners' negative attitudes towards grammar learning. And the third stage results showed the effectiveness of authentic videos in entirely turning learners' attitudes toward grammar learning to be significantly positive. Also, the utility of authentic videos in highly motivating EFL learners can be deduced. The findings of this survey asserted the need for incorporation and integration of authentic videos in EFL classrooms as they resulted in rising effectively learners’ awareness of grammar and looking at it from a communicative perspective.

Keywords: multimedia, authentic videos, negative attitudes, grammar learning, EFL learners

Procedia PDF Downloads 15
937 Listening Anxiety in Iranian EFL learners

Authors: Samaneh serraj

Abstract:

Listening anxiety has a detrimental effect on language learners. Through a qualitative study on Iranian EFL learners several factors were identified as having influence on their listening anxiety. These factors were divided into three categories, i.e. individual factors (nerves and emotionality, using inappropriate strategies and lack of practice), input factors (lack of time to process, lack of visual support, nature of speech and level of difficulty) and environmental factors (instructors, peers and class environment).

Keywords: listening Comprehension, Listening Anxiety, Foreign language learners

Procedia PDF Downloads 377
936 Linguistic Attitudes and Language Learning Needs of Heritage Language Learners of Spanish in the United States

Authors: Sheryl Bernardo-Hinesley

Abstract:

Heritage language learners are students who have been raised in a home where a minority language is spoken, who speaks or merely understand the minority heritage language, but to some degree are bilingual in the majority and the heritage language. In view of the rising university enrollment by Hispanics in the United States who have chosen to study Spanish, university language programs are currently faced with challenges of accommodating the language needs of heritage language learners of Spanish. The present study investigates the heritage language perception and language attitudes by heritage language learners of Spanish, as well as their classroom language learning experiences and needs. In order to carry out the study, a qualitative survey was used to gather data from university students. Analysis of students' responses indicates that heritage learners are motivated to learn the heritage language. In relation to the aspects of focus of a language course for heritage learners, results show that the aspects of interest are accent marks and spelling, grammatical accuracy, vocabulary, writing, reading, and culture.

Keywords: heritage language learners, language acquisition, linguistic attitudes, Spanish in the US

Procedia PDF Downloads 95
935 Error Analysis of the Pronunciation of English Consonants and Arabic Consonants by Egyptian Learners

Authors: Marwa A. Nasser

Abstract:

This is an empirical study that provides an investigation of the most significant errors of Egyptian learners in producing English consonants and Arabic consonants, and advice on how these can be remedied. The study adopts a descriptive approach and the analysis is based on audio recordings of two groups of people. The first group includes six volunteers of Egyptian learners belonging to the English Department at Faculty of Women who learn English as a foreign language. The other group includes six Egyptian learners who are studying Tajweed (how to recite Quran correctly). The audio recordings were examined, and sounds were analyzed in an attempt to highlight the most common error done by the learners while reading English or reading (or reciting) Quran. Results show that the two groups of learners have problems with certain phonemic contrasts. Both groups share common errors although both languages are different and not related (e.g. pre-aspiration of fortis stops, incorrect articulation of consonants and velarization of certain sounds).

Keywords: consonant articulations, Egyptian learners of English, Egyptian learners of Quran, empirical study, error analysis, pronunciation problems

Procedia PDF Downloads 203
934 Acquisition of the Attributive Adjectives and the Noun Adjuncts by the L3 Learners of French and German: Further Evidence for the Typological Proximity Model

Authors: Ali Akbar Jabbari

Abstract:

This study investigates the role of the prior acquired languages, Persian and English, concerning the acquisition of the third language (L3) French and German at the initial stages. The data were collected from two groups of L3 learners: 28 learners of L3 French and 21 learners of L3 German, in order to test the placement of the attributive adjectives and the noun adjuncts through a grammaticality judgment task and an element rearrangement task. The aim of the study was to investigate whether any of the models proposed in the L3 acquisition could account for the case of the present study. The results of the analysis revealed that the learners of L3 German and French were both affected by the typological similarity of the previous languages. The outperformance of the German learners is an indication of the facilitative effect of L2 English (which is typologically more similar to the German than that of French). English had also a non-facilitative role in the acquisition of French and this is proved in the lower performance of the French learners. This study provided evidence for the TPM as the most accepted model of L3 acquisition.

Keywords: cross-linguistic influence, multilingualism, third language acquisition, transfer

Procedia PDF Downloads 104
933 Iranian EFL Learners' Attitudes towards Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL)

Authors: Rose Shayeghi, Pejman Hosseiniun, Ghasem Ghorbanirostam

Abstract:

The present study was conducted to investigate the Iranian EFL learners’ attitudes toward the use of computer technology in language classes as a method of improving English learning. To this end, 120 male and female Iranian learners participated in the study. Instrumentation included a 20-item questionnaire. The analysis of the data revealed that the majority of learners had a positive attitude towards the application of CALL in language classes. Moreover, independent samples t-tests indicated that male participants had a significantly more positive attitude compared with that of the female participants. Finally, the results obtained through ANOVA revealed that the youngest age group had a significantly more positive attitude toward the use of technology in language classes compared to the other age groups.

Keywords: EFL learners, Iranian learners, CALL, language learning

Procedia PDF Downloads 373
932 Anxiety Caused by the Single Mode of Instruction in Multilingual Classrooms: The Case of African Language Learners

Authors: Stanle Madonsela

Abstract:

For learning to take place effectively, learners have to use language. Language becomes a critical tool by which to communicate, to express feelings, desires and thoughts, and most of all to learn. However, each individual’s capacity to use language is unique. In multilingual countries, classrooms usually comprise learners from different language backgrounds, and therefore the language used for teaching and learning requires rethinking. Interaction in the classroom, if done in a language that is understood by the learners, could maximise the outcomes of learning. This paper explores the extent to which the use of a single code becomes a source of anxiety to learners in multilingual classrooms in South African schools. It contends that a multilingual approach in the learning process should be explored in order to promote learner autonomy in the learning process.

Keywords: anxiety, classroom, foreign language teaching, multilingual

Procedia PDF Downloads 422
931 A Conundrum of Teachability and Learnability of Deaf Adult English as Second Language Learners in Pakistani Mainstream Classrooms: Integration or Elimination

Authors: Amnah Moghees, Saima Abbas Dar, Muniba Saeed

Abstract:

Teaching a second language to deaf learners has always been a challenge in Pakistan. Different approaches and strategies have been followed, but they have been resulted into partial or complete failure. The study aims to investigate the language problems faced by adult deaf learners of English as second language in mainstream classrooms. Moreover, the study also determines the factors which are very much involved in language teaching and learning in mainstream classes. To investigate the language problems, data will be collected through writing samples of ten deaf adult learners and ten normal ESL learners of the same class; whereas, observation in inclusive language teaching classrooms and interviews from five ESL teachers in inclusive classes will be conducted to know the factors which are directly or indirectly involved in inclusive language education. Keeping in view this study, qualitative research paradigm will be applied to analyse the corpus. The study figures out that deaf ESL learners face severe language issues such as; odd sentence structures, subject and verb agreement violation, misappropriation of verb forms and tenses as compared to normal ESL learners. The study also predicts that in mainstream classrooms there are multiple factors which are affecting the smoothness of teaching and learning procedure; role of mediator, level of deaf learners, empathy of normal learners towards deaf learners and language teacher’s training.

Keywords: deaf English language learner, empathy, mainstream classrooms, previous language knowledge of learners, role of mediator, language teachers' training

Procedia PDF Downloads 100
930 Absence of Developmental Change in Epenthetic Vowel Duration in Japanese Speakers’ English

Authors: Takayuki Konishi, Kakeru Yazawa, Mariko Kondo

Abstract:

This study examines developmental change in the production of epenthetic vowels by Japanese learners of English in relation to acquisition of L2 English speech rhythm. Seventy-two Japanese learners of English in the J-AESOP corpus were divided into lower- and higher-level learners according to their proficiency score and the frequency of vowel epenthesis. Three learners were excluded because no vowel epenthesis was observed in their utterances. The analysis of their read English speech data showed no statistical difference between lower- and higher-level learners, implying the absence of any developmental change in durations of epenthetic vowels. This result, together with the findings of previous studies, will be discussed in relation to the transfer of L1 phonology and manifestation of L2 English rhythm.

Keywords: vowel epenthesis, Japanese learners of English, L2 speech corpus, speech rhythm

Procedia PDF Downloads 199
929 The Effect of Using LDOCE on Iranian EFL Learners’ Pronunciation Accuracy

Authors: Mohammad Hadi Mahmoodi, Elahe Saedpanah

Abstract:

Since pronunciation is among those factors that can have strong effects on EFL learners’ successful communication, instructional programs with accurate pronunciation purposes seem to be a necessity in any L2 teaching context. The widespread use of smart mobile phones brings with itself various educational applications, which can assist foreign language learners in learning and speaking another language other than their L1. In line with this supportive innovation, the present study investigated the role of LDOCE (Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English), a mobile application, on improving Iranian EFL learners’ pronunciation accuracy. To this aim, 40 EFL learners studying English at the intermediate level participated in the current study. This was an experimental research with two groups of 20 students in an experimental and a control group. The data were collected through the administration of a pronunciation pretest before the instruction and a post-test after the treatment. In addition, the assessment was based on the pupils’ recorded voices while reading the selected words. The results of the independent samples t-test indicated that using LDOCE significantly affected Iranian EFL learners' pronunciation accuracy with those in the experimental group outperforming their control group counterparts.

Keywords: LDOCE, EFL learners, pronunciation accuracy, CALL, MALL

Procedia PDF Downloads 478
928 Interaction Tasks of CUE Model in Virtual Language Learning in Travel English for Taiwanese College EFL Learners

Authors: Kuei-Hao Li, Eden Huang

Abstract:

Motivation suggests the willingness one person has towards taking action. Learners’ motivation has frequently been regarded as the most crucial factor in successful language acquisition. Without sufficient motivation, learners cannot achieve long-term learning goals despite remarkable abilities. Therefore, the study aims to investigate motivation of interaction tasks designed by the researchers for college EFL learners in Travel English class in virtual reality environment, integrating CUE model, Cognition, Usage and Expansion in the course. Thirty college learners were asked to join the virtual language learning website designed by the researchers. Data was collected via feedback questionnaire, interview, and learner interactions. The findings indicated that the course in the CUE model in language learning website of virtual reality environment was effective at motivating EFL learners and improving their oral communication and social interactions in the learning process. Some pedagogical implications are also provided in helping both language instructors and EFL learners in virtual reality environment.

Keywords: motivation, virtual reality, virtual language learning, second language acquisition

Procedia PDF Downloads 313
927 Frequency of the English Phrasal Verbs Used by Iranian Learners as a Reference to the Style of Writing Adopted by the Learners

Authors: Hamzeh Mazaherylaghab, Mehrangiz Vahabian, Seyyedeh Zahra Asghari

Abstract:

The present study initially focused on the frequency of phrasal verbs used by Iranian learners of English. The results then needed to be compared to the findings from native speaker corpora. After the extraction of phrasal verbs from learner and native-speaker corpora the findings were analysed. The results showed that Iranian learners avoided using phrasal verbs in many cases. Some of the findings proved to be significant. It was also found that the learners used the single-word counterparts of the avoided phrasal verbs to compensate for their lack of knowledge in many cases. Semantic complexity and Lack of L1 counterpart may have been the main reasons for avoidance, but despite the avoidance phenomenon, the learners displayed a tendency to use many other phrasal verbs which may have been due to the increase in the number of multi-word verbs in Persian. The overall scores confirmed the fact that the language produced by the learners illustrates signs of more formal style in comparison with the native speakers of English by using less phrasal verbs and more formal single word verbs instead.

Keywords: corpus, corpora, LOCNESS, phrasal verbs, single-word verb

Procedia PDF Downloads 120
926 Efficacy of Clickers in L2 Interaction

Authors: Ryoo Hye Jin Agnes

Abstract:

This study aims to investigate the efficacy of clickers in fostering L2 class interaction. In an L2 classroom, active learner-to-learner interactions and learner-to-teacher interactions play an important role in language acquisition. In light of this, introducing learning tools that promote such interactions would benefit L2 classroom by fostering interaction. This is because the anonymity of clickers allows learners to express their needs without the social risks associated with speaking up in the class. clickers therefore efficiently help learners express their level of understanding during the process of learning itself. This allows for an evaluative feedback loop where both learners and teachers understand the level of progress of the learners, better enabling classrooms to adapt to the learners’ needs. Eventually this tool promotes participation from learners. This, in turn, is believed to be effective in fostering classroom interaction, allowing learning to take place in a more comfortable yet vibrant way. This study is finalized by presenting the result of an experiment conducted to verify the effectiveness of this approach when teaching pragmatic aspect of Korean expressions with similar semantic functions. The learning achievement of learners in the experimental group was found higher than the learners’ in a control group. A survey was distributed to the learners, questioning them regarding the efficacy of clickers, and how it contributed to their learning in areas such as motivation, self-assessment, increasing participation, as well as giving feedback to teachers. Analyzing the data collected from the questionnaire given to the learners, the study presented data suggesting that this approach increased the scope of interactivity in the classroom, thus not only increasing participation but enhancing the type of classroom participation among learners. This participation in turn led to a marked improvement in their communicative abilities.

Keywords: second language acquisition, interaction, clickers, learner response system, output from learners, learner’s cognitive process

Procedia PDF Downloads 455
925 A Corpus Study of English Verbs in Chinese EFL Learners’ Academic Writing Abstracts

Authors: Shuaili Ji

Abstract:

The correct use of verbs is an important element of high-quality research articles, and thus for Chinese EFL learners, it is significant to master characteristics of verbs and to precisely use verbs. However, some researches have shown that there are differences in using verbs between learners and native speakers and learners have difficulty in using English verbs. This corpus-based quantitative research can enhance learners’ knowledge of English verbs and promote the quality of research article abstracts even of the whole academic writing. The aim of this study is to find the differences between learners’ and native speakers’ use of verbs and to study the factors that contribute to those differences. To this end, the research question is as follows: What are the differences between most frequently used verbs by learners and those by native speakers? The research question is answered through a study that uses corpus-based data-driven approach to analyze the verbs used by learners in their abstract writings in terms of collocation, colligation and semantic prosody. The results show that: (1) EFL learners obviously overused ‘be, can, find, make’ and underused ‘investigate, examine, may’. As to modal verbs, learners obviously overused ‘can’ while underused ‘may’. (2) Learners obviously overused ‘we find + object clauses’ while underused ‘nouns (results, findings, data) + suggest/indicate/reveal + object clauses’ when expressing research results. (3) Learners tended to transfer the collocation, colligation and semantic prosody of shǐ and zuò to make. (4) Learners obviously overused ‘BE+V-ed’ and used BE as the main verb. They also obviously overused the basic forms of BE such as be, is, are, while obviously underused its inflections (was, were). These results manifested learners’ lack of accuracy and idiomatic property in verb usage. Due to the influence of the concept transfer of Chinese, the verbs in learners’ abstracts showed obvious transfer of mother language. In addition, learners have not fully mastered the use of verbs, avoiding using complex colligations to prevent errors. Based on these findings, the present study has implications for English teaching, seeking to have implications for English academic abstract writing in China. Further research could be undertaken to study the use of verbs in the whole dissertation to find out whether the characteristic of the verbs in abstracts can apply in the whole dissertation or not.

Keywords: academic writing abstracts, Chinese EFL learners, corpus-based, data-driven, verbs

Procedia PDF Downloads 245
924 Teaching–Learning-Based Optimization: An Efficient Method for Chinese as a Second Language

Authors: Qi Wang

Abstract:

In the classroom, teachers have been trained to complete the target task within the limited lecture time, meanwhile learners need to receive a lot of new knowledge, however, most of the time the learners come without the proper pre-class preparation to efficiently take in the contents taught in class. Under this circumstance, teachers do have no time to check whether the learners fully understand the content or not, how the learners communicate in the different contexts, until teachers see the results when the learners are tested. In the past decade, the teaching of Chinese has taken a trend. Teaching focuses less on the use of proper grammatical terms/punctuation and is now placing a heavier focus on the materials from real life contexts. As a result, it has become a greater challenge to teachers, as this requires teachers to fully understand/prepare what they teach and explain the content with simple and understandable words to learners. On the other hand, the same challenge also applies to the learners, who come from different countries. As they have to use what they learnt, based on their personal understanding of the material to effectively communicate with others in the classroom, even in the contexts of a day to day communication. To reach this win-win stage, Feynman’s Technique plays a very important role. This practical report presents you how the Feynman’s Technique is applied into Chinese courses, both writing & oral, to motivate the learners to practice more on writing, reading and speaking in the past few years. Part 1, analysis of different teaching styles and different types of learners, to find the most efficient way to both teachers and learners. Part 2, based on the theory of Feynman’s Technique, how to let learners build the knowledge from knowing the name of something to knowing something, via different designed target tasks. Part 3. The outcomes show that Feynman’s Technique is the interaction of learning style and teaching style, the double-edged sword of Teaching & Learning Chinese as a Second Language.

Keywords: Chinese, Feynman’s technique, learners, teachers

Procedia PDF Downloads 76
923 Teaching Young Learners How to Work Together: Pedagogical Ideas for Language Teachers

Authors: Tomas Kos

Abstract:

An increasing body of research has explored patterns of interaction and peer support among young learners. Although some studies suggest that young learners can collaborate and support each other, other studies indicate that young learners may lack the ability to work together and support one another when interacting on classroom tasks. Moreover, despite the claims that peer collaboration is conducive to learning, studies have not paid enough attention to the “how” to enhance peer collaboration on classroom tasks. To fill this gap, this “how-to” article proposes that teaching young learners how to work together is a powerful pedagogical tool that can greatly improve collaborative behavior and a sense of mutuality among young learners. This article will pay particular attention to primary schools and the context of English as a foreign language. It will first review literature related to patterns of interaction and peer support conducted in the cognitive and sociocultural framework. It will then address what it actually means to collaborate. At the heart of the article, it will discuss some practical pedagogical ideas for language teachers, which entail teaching collaborative principles and strategies that will help their students to support each other and engage in communication with each other.

Keywords: young learners, peer collaboration, peer interaction, peer support, patterns of interaction

Procedia PDF Downloads 47
922 An Analysis of Learners’ Reports for Measuring Co-Creational Education

Authors: Takatoshi Ishii, Koji Kimita, Keiichi Muramatsu, Yoshiki Shimomura

Abstract:

To increase the quality of learning, teacher and learner need mutual effort for realization of educational value. For this purpose, we need to manage the co-creational education among teacher and learners. In this research, we try to find a feature of co-creational education. To be more precise, we analyzed learners’ reports by natural language processing, and extract some features that describe the state of the co-creational education.

Keywords: co-creational education, e-portfolios, ICT integration, latent dirichlet allocation

Procedia PDF Downloads 497
921 Second Language Perception of Japanese /Cju/ and /Cjo/ Sequences by Mandarin-Speaking Learners of Japanese

Authors: Yili Liu, Honghao Ren, Mariko Kondo

Abstract:

In the field of second language (L2) speech learning, it is well-known that that learner’s first language (L1) phonetic and phonological characteristics will be transferred into their L2 production and perception, which lead to foreign accent. For L1 Mandarin learners of Japanese, the confusion of /u/ and /o/ in /CjV/ sequences has been observed in their utterance frequently. L1 transfer is considered to be the cause of this issue, however, other factors which influence the identification of /Cju/ and /Cjo/ sequences still under investigation. This study investigates the perception of Japanese /Cju/ and /Cjo/ units by L1 Mandarin learners of Japanese. It further examined whether learners’ proficiency, syllable position, phonetic features of preceding consonants and background noise affect learners’ performance in perception. Fifty-two Mandarin-speaking learners of Japanese and nine native Japanese speakers were recruited to participate in an identification task. Learners were divided into beginner, intermediate and advanced level according to their Japanese proficiency. The average correct rate was used to evaluate learners’ perceptual performance. Furthermore, the comparison of the correct rate between learners’ groups and the control group was conducted as well to examine learners’ nativelikeness. Results showed that background noise tends to pose an adverse effect on distinguishing /u/ and /o/ in /CjV/ sequences. Secondly, Japanese proficiency has no influence on learners’ perceptual performance in the quiet and in background noise. Then all learners did not reach a native-like level without the distraction of noise. Beginner level learners performed less native-like, although higher level learners appeared to have achieved nativelikeness in the multi-talker babble noise. Finally, syllable position tends to affect distinguishing /Cju/ and /Cjo/ only under the noisy condition. Phonetic features of preceding consonants did not impact learners’ perception in any listening conditions. Findings in this study can give an insight into a further understanding of Japanese vowel acquisition by L1 Mandarin learners of Japanese. In addition, this study indicates that L1 transfer is not the only explanation for the confusion of /u/ and /o/ in /CjV/ sequences, factors such as listening condition and syllable position are also needed to take into consideration in future research. It also suggests the importance of perceiving speech in a noisy environment, which is close to the actual conversation required more attention to pedagogy.

Keywords: background noise, Chinese learners of Japanese, /Cju/ and /Cjo/ sequences, second language perception

Procedia PDF Downloads 79
920 Oral Fluency: A Case Study of L2 Learners in Canada

Authors: Maaly Jarrah

Abstract:

Oral fluency in the target language is what many second language learners hope to achieve by living abroad. Research in the past has demonstrated the role informal environments play in improving L2 learners' oral fluency. However, living in the target country and being part of its community does not ensure the development of oral fluency skills. L2 learners' desire to communicate and access to speaking opportunities in the host community are key in achieving oral fluency in the target language. This study attempts to identify differences in oral fluency, specifically speech rate, between learners who communicate in the L2 outside the classroom and those who do not. In addition, as the desire to communicate is a crucial factor in developing oral fluency, this study investigates whether or not learners' desire to speak the L2 outside the classroom plays a role in their frequency of L2 use outside the classroom. Finally, given the importance of the availability of speaking opportunities for L2 learners in order to practice their speaking skills, this study reports on the participants' perceptions of the speaking opportunities accessible to them in the target community while probing whether or not their perceptions differed based on their oral fluency level and their desire to communicate. The results suggest that exposure to the target language and daily communication with the native speakers is strongly related to the development of learners' oral fluency. Moreover, the findings suggest that learners' desire to communicate affects their frequency of communication in their L2 outside the classroom. At the same time, all participants, regardless of their oral fluency level and their desire to communicate, asserted that speaking opportunities beyond the classroom are very limited. Finally, the study finds there are marked differences in the perceptions learners have regarding opportunities for learning offered by the same language program. After reporting these results, the study concludes with recommendations for ESL programs that serve international students.

Keywords: ESL programs, L2 Learners, oral fluency, second language

Procedia PDF Downloads 358
919 Teachers’ Perceptions on Communicating with Students Who Are Deaf-Blind in Regular Classes

Authors: Phillimon Mahanya

Abstract:

Learners with deaf-blindness use touch to communicate. However, teachers are not well versed with tactile communication technicalities. Lack of technical know-how is compounded with a lack of standardisation of the tactile signs the world over. Thus, this study arose from the need to have efficient and effective tactile sign communication for learners who are deaf-blind. A qualitative approach that adopted a case study design was used. A sample of 22 participants comprising school administrators and teachers was purposively drawn from the institutions that enrolled learners who are deaf-blind. Data generated using semi-structured interviews, non-participant observations and document analysis were thematically analysed. It emerged that administrators and teachers used mammoth and solo touches that are not standardised to communicate with learners who are deaf-blind. It was recommended that there should be a standardised tactile sign manual in Zimbabwe to promote the inclusion of learners who are deaf-blind.

Keywords: communication, deaf-blind, signing, tactile

Procedia PDF Downloads 107
918 Services-Oriented Model for the Regulation of Learning

Authors: Mohamed Bendahmane, Brahim Elfalaki, Mohammed Benattou

Abstract:

One of the major sources of learners' professional difficulties is their heterogeneity. Whether on cognitive, social, cultural or emotional level, learners being part of the same group have many differences. These differences do not allow to apply the same learning process at all learners. Thus, an optimal learning path for one, is not necessarily the same for the other. We present in this paper a model-oriented service to offer to each learner a personalized learning path to acquire the targeted skills.

Keywords: learning path, web service, trace analysis, personalization

Procedia PDF Downloads 289
917 Production of Oral Vowels by Chinese Learners of Portuguese: Problems and Didactic Implications

Authors: Adelina Castelo

Abstract:

The increasing number of learners of Portuguese as Foreign Language in China justifies the need to define the phonetic profile of these learners and to design didactic materials that are adjusted to their specific problems in pronunciation. Different aspects of this topic have been studied, but the production of oral vowels still needs to be investigated. This study aims: (i) to identify the problems the Chinese learners of Portuguese experience in the pronunciation of oral vowels; (ii) to discuss the didactic implications drawn from those problems. The participants were eight native speakers of Mandarin Chinese that had been learning Portuguese in College for almost a year. They named pictured objects and their oral productions were recorded and phonetically transcribed. The selection of the objects to name took into account some linguistic variables (e.g. stress pattern, syllable structure, presence of the Portuguese oral vowels in different word positions according to stress location). The results are analysed in two ways: the impact of linguistic variables on the success rate in the vowels' production; the replacement strategies used in the non-target productions. Both analyses show that the Chinese learners of Portuguese (i) have significantly more difficulties with the mid vowels as well as the high central vowel and (ii) do not master the vowel height feature. These findings contribute to define the phonetic profile of these learners in terms of oral vowel production. Besides, they have important didactic implications for the pronunciation teaching to these specific learners. Those implications are discussed and exemplified.

Keywords: Chinese learners, learners’ phonetic profile, linguistic variables, Portuguese as foreign language, production data, pronunciation teaching, oral vowels

Procedia PDF Downloads 150
916 The Output Fallacy: An Investigation into Input, Noticing, and Learners’ Mechanisms

Authors: Samantha Rix

Abstract:

The purpose of this research paper is to investigate the cognitive processing of learners who receive input but produce very little or no output, and who, when they do produce output, exhibit a similar language proficiency as do those learners who produced output more regularly in the language classroom. Previous studies have investigated the benefits of output (with somewhat differing results); therefore, the presentation will begin with an investigation of what may underlie gains in proficiency without output. Consequently, a pilot study was designed and conducted to gain insight into the cognitive processing of low-output language learners looking, for example, at quantity and quality of noticing. This will be carried out within the paradigm of action classroom research, observing and interviewing low-output language learners in an intensive English program at a small Midwest university. The results of the pilot study indicated that autonomy in language learning, specifically utilizing strategies such self-monitoring, self-talk, and thinking 'out-loud', were crucial in the development of language proficiency for academic-level performance. The presentation concludes with an examination of pedagogical implication for classroom use in order to aide students in their language development.

Keywords: cognitive processing, language learners, language proficiency, learning strategies

Procedia PDF Downloads 399
915 An Exploration of the Effects of Individual and Interpersonal Factors on Saudi Learners' Motivation to Learn English as a Foreign Language

Authors: Fakieh Alrabai

Abstract:

This paper presents an experimental study designed to explore some of the learner’s individual and interpersonal factors (e.g. persistence, interest, regulation, satisfaction, appreciation, etc.) that Saudi learners experience when learning English as a Foreign Language and how learners’ perceptions of these factors influence various aspects of their motivation to learn English language. As part of the study, a 27-item structured survey was administered to a randomly selected sample of 105 Saudi learners from public schools and universities. Data collected through the survey were subjected to some basic statistical analyses, such as "mean" and "standard deviation". Based on the results from the analysis, a number of generalizations and conclusions are made in relation to how these inherent factors affect Saudi learners’ motivation to learn English as a foreign language. In addition, some recommendations are offered to Saudi academics on how to effectively make use of such factors, which may enable Saudi teachers and learners of English as a foreign language to achieve better learning outcomes in an area widely associated by Saudis with lack of success.

Keywords: persistence, interest, appreciation, satisfaction, SL/FL motivation

Procedia PDF Downloads 346
914 Second Language Skill through M-Learning

Authors: Subramaniam Chandran, A. Geetha

Abstract:

This paper addresses three issues: how to prepare the instructional design for imparting English language skill from inter-disciplinary self-learning material; how the disadvantaged students are benefited from such kind of language skill imparted through m-learning; and how do m-learners perform better than the other learners. This paper examines these issues through an experimental study conducted among the distance learners enrolled in a preparatory program for bachelor’s degree. This program is designed for the disadvantaged learners especially for the school drop-outs to qualify to pursue graduate program through distant education. It also explains how mobile learning helps them to enhance their capacity in learning despite their rural background and other disadvantages. In India, nearly half of the students enrolled in schools do not complete their study. The pursuance of higher education is very low when compared with developed countries. This study finds a significant increase in their learning capacity and mobile learning seems to be a viable alternative where the conventional system could not reach the disadvantaged learners. Improving the English language skill is one of the reasons for such kind of performance. Exercises framed from the relevant self-learning material for enhancing English language skill not only improves language skill but also widens the subject-knowledge. This paper explains these issues out of the study conducted among the disadvantaged learners.

Keywords: English language skill, disadvantaged learners, distance education, m-learning

Procedia PDF Downloads 350
913 Dialogue Journals as an EFL Learning Strategy in the Preparatory Year Program: Learners' Attitudes and Perceptions

Authors: Asma Alyahya

Abstract:

This study attempts to elicit the perceptions and attitudes of EFL learners of the Preparatory Year Program at KSU towards dialogue journal writing as an EFL learning strategy. The descriptive research design used incorporated both qualitative and quantitative instruments to accomplish the objectives of the study. A learners’ attitude questionnaire and follow-up interviews with learners from a randomly selected representative sample of the participants were employed. The participants were 55 female Saudi university students in the Preparatory Year Program at King Saud University. The analysis of the results indicated that the PYP learners had highly positive attitudes towards dialogue journal writing in their EFL classes and positive perceptions of the benefits of the use of dialogue journal writing as an EFL learning strategy. The results also revealed that dialogue journals are considered an effective EFL learning strategy since they fulfill various needs for both learners and instructors. Interestingly, the analysis of the results also revealed that Saudi university level students tend to write about personal topics in their dialogue journals more than academic ones.

Keywords: dialogue journals, EFL, learning strategy, writing

Procedia PDF Downloads 395