Other studies focused on the teacher and his role in enhancing oral communication in EFL classroom. Some studies recommended that the teacher should be a model for his students in his behavior and in encouraging oral communication in EFL classroom. Some studies mentioned the role of the teaching methods in oral communication in the EFL classroom.
Other studies mentioned that teaching methods in EFL classroom should balance between grammatical form and communicative instruction. Moreover, some studies focused on group-work strategies and their role in encouraging students to participate in oral communication in the class. Other studies suggested to employ more communicative strategies in the class.
By going through all the previous results, the researcher of this study has decided to figure out factors that affect oral communication in EFL classroom in HITN in Kuwait since a lack of oral communication in EFL classroom has been noticed. A total of students 50 males and 50 females participated in responding to the questionnaire items. The age of students varied, Year one students were According to students letter grade, A students were Table 1 represents the demographic data of the participants.
A questionnaire was carefully developed to address the research questions. Some of the statements were adapted from previous literature and the rest were devised by the researcher. The questionnaire consisted of two parts. The first part sought the demographic data of the participants. The second part consisted of four domains covering a total of 43 items. Domain one The role of the teacher in the communication process in the classroom covered 11 items.
Domain two The role of the learner in the communication process in the classroom consisted of 12 items. Domain three The role of the syllabus in the communication process in the classroom covered 9 items. Domain four The role of the teaching methods in the communication process in the classroom covered 11 items. In addition, findings according to the means of all items will be interpreted according to the following scale:.
This shows an acceptable consistency of reliability, which indicates that the questionnaire items were completely appropriate for research goals. Table 2 shows the reliability coefficients for the study instrument in its four domains. Table 2 the Reliability Coefficient for the Instrument Domains.
To examine the validity of the questionnaire items, the questionnaire was given to an expert in TEFL, and two teaching staff from the Department of Curriculum and Instruction from the College of Education in Kuwait University. Their comments were taken into consideration and they agreed that the items of the questionnaire are valid and reliable to conduct the research.
The responses of the participants were manually coded. The descriptive statistics i. Results of the first through the fourth. Will be presented in Table 3. The role of the teacher in the oral communication process in the classroom. Among the eleven items presented in this domain, the highest means are found in items 5, 11, and1.
These first three high means of the domain items will be interpreted in a descending order. First, item 5 The teacher tries to set a comfortable atmosphere in the classroom is found to be a main factor that discourages students from being communicatively active in the language classroom as the mean was 4. Second comes item 11 The teacher uses difficult terms when explaining new lesson with a mean of 3. Third comes item 1 The teacher asks indirect questions with a mean of 3.
The lowest means are found in items 3, 4, and 6 as follows. In item 3 The teacher encourages students to communicate in the class , with a mean of 1. The means of these three items were low. The findings of this domain reveal that the majority of the participants agreethat teachers encouragethem to communicate in the class. This factor of students' motivation was emphasized by Campos, as a factor that plays a great role in helping students to communicate fluently in EFL classroom.
These findings are consistent with the results found by Kuutila, These results were discussed by Kuutila, as factors that affect learners' willingness to communicate. This result contradicts what Mazouzi has found that only Will be presented in Table 4. Among the twelve items presented in this domain, the highest three means are found in items 5, 12,.
First, item 5 The students laugh atany student when he makes a mistakein English is found to be a major factor that discourages students from classroom communication in the language classroom as the mean was 3. Third comes item 3 I feel anxious in the class of English with a mean of 3. The mean of this item although scored the third position among the items, its mean is moderate according to the scale.
The lowest means are found in items 7, 1, and 2 as follows. In item 7 I appreciate the importance of the English language in our lives , with a mean of 1. Then comes item 1 I usually communicate in the class of English as the mean was 2. Finally comes item 2 I use the English language when I communicate in the class as the mean was 2. This result contradicts what Abebe, et. While in the study of Abebe, et. The feeling of anxiety and inhibition was discussed by Veronica de Andres, and Batiha, et.
The factor of communicating in the EFL classroom was emphasized by Faliva, He has found that the student's role is to get involved and to participate with the teacher to achieve the goals of teaching. Also, this factor was discussed by Mazouzi, as an important factor for communicating in EFL classroom. The same findings were proved by Abebe, at. Among the nine items presented in this domain, the highest three means are found in items 6, 5, and 7 which represent a moderate scale of agreement.
First, item 6 There are specific marks for presentation is found to be an important factor that discourages students from classroom communication in the language classroom as the mean was 2. Second comes item 5 We have oral speaking tests with a mean of 2. Third comes item 7 We do some exercises in groups with a mean of 2. The lowest means are found in items 8, 1, and 2 as follows. In item 8 Group work encourages students to use English , with a mean of 2.
Then comes item 1 The syllabus includes some questions for oral communication as the mean was 2. Finally comes item 2 The syllabus concentrates on different skills of the language: reading, writing, listening and speaking as the mean was 2.
Moreover, more than half of the participants reveal that the syllabus includes several tasks for listening and for speaking. Gilakjani, discussed the importance of the integrated content of the syllabus as a great factor on EFL learners. The factor of task type was discussed by Abebe, et. Regarding the items that ask about oral speaking tests and presentation, most of the students were not sure about those activities.
While in the study of Abebe, at. More than half of the participants agree that group work encourages students to use English and that they do some exercises in groups. Fourth , data analysis and discussions of research question "4" How do methods of teaching affect oral communication in EFL classroom? Fourth Domain:. The role of teaching methods in the communicate process in the classroom. Among the nine items presented in this domain, the highest three means are found in items 4, 6, and 11 which represent a moderate scale of agreement.
First, item 4 The teacher uses recordings for listening exercises is found to be an important factor that discourages students from classroom communication in the language classroom as the mean was 3. Second comes item 6 The teacher asks students to write a dialogue and then perform with a mean of 3.
Third comes item 11 There should be an oral speaking test with a mean of 2. The lowest means are found in items 1, 9, and 5 as follows. In item 1 The communicative activities help learners to interact in English , with a mean of 2. Then comes item9 There is a great concentration on grammar in the class as the mean was 2.
Finally comes item 5 The teacher uses the discussion method in the class as the mean was 1. The findings of this domain reveal that more than half of the participants think that teachers use a variety of teaching methods in the class and that the communicative activities help learners to interact in English. Also, the results show that more than half of the participants think that the skill of oral communication is used a lot and at the same time, that there is a great concentration on grammar in the class.
Nishimura, , has recommended that teachers are required to keep an appropriate balance between formal instruction that helps learners acquire grammatical forms and communicative instruction that helps facilitate acquisition. Based on the results of the previous domains, most of the participants have revealed that teachers do not set a comfortable atmosphere in the EFL classroom.
Also, the results have shown that teachers do not accept student's errors and they tend to correct students' errors immediately. From those results we can conclude the reasons why some participants have shown that they feel anxious and embarrassed when making mistakes and that they do not use the language confidently. Although, most of the participants have admitted the importance of the English language in their lives but, they have shown that they do not communicate in English with their peers in the classroom or outside the classroom.
Moreover, the results have shown that some of the students face difficulties in speaking English although some of them have agreed that teachers encourage them to talk freely in the classroom and the syllabus includes several tasks for speaking and several questions for oral communication.
Most of the participants have agreed that teachers use the discussion method in the class and most of the teachers prepare activities for interacting with peers. Also, the participants agreed that the task of group work encourages them to use English and that they do some exercises in group work in the class, but the results have shown that around half of the students do not use the language in the classroom or outside the classroom.
The findings of the study have also shown that some students think that there should be an oral speaking test which as several studies shown helps to solve the problem of weakness in communication skills. Most of the participants have agreed that the syllabus concentrates on different skills of the language, but more than half of them agreed that there is a great concentration on grammar in EFL classroom. Concentrating on grammar in EFL class will lead to a lack in oral communication with the teacher and then that will affect the speaking skill negatively as concluded by many studies.
The present study has analyzed the factors that affect oral communication in EFL classroom. A questionnaire was administered to students from the Higher Institute for Telecommunication and Navigation in Kuwait. The results of the study have shown several factors related to teachers, students, the syllabus and the teaching methods as mentioned above. Based on what has been concluded in this study, the researcher recommends the following points:.
Causes of students' limited participation in EFL classroom: Ethiopian public universities in focus. International Journal of Educational Research and Technology, 6 1. March pp. Andre, V. Exploring the factors of classroom anxiety in the context of EFL Arab students.
April June Bizzell, P. Review of the book " The Social construction of Written Communication. Campos, J. How to help EFL beginner students to communicate fluently. Faliva, M. Elements of optimizing the communication in EFL classes. The Round Table. Partium Journal of English Studies.
ISSN Gilakjani, A. A study of factors affecting EFL learners' English pronunciation learning and the strategies for instruction. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science. Kang, S. Dynamic emergence of situational willingness to communicate: A comparison of behavior in whole class, group and dyadic interaction. In considering what should be included in a well-rounded college education, there is widespread agreement that the primary goal is for students to learn critical habits of mind.
However, data from two-year colleges nation-wide suggests a somewhat stronger role for communication courses in the general education curriculum [ 29 ]. A national study of two-year and four-year colleges [ 30 ] reported that more than half of the responding institutions require a basic oral communication course in their general education curriculum. The AGSC-approved general education curriculum gives students the option to take an oral communication course or to avoid one entirely!
This rationale translates into a 6-hour English composition requirement for every college student in Alabama. An oral communication course is one of several courses in the humanities from which students may choose to complete their Area II requirements.
So, students who have had an English course throughout their school years are now required to take at least 9 more semester hours of English at the college level. But these same students, who likely never had a single oral communication course in their life, may choose to take an oral communication course at the college level or avoid it altogether. Sessions, personal communication, October 19, But when a workable plan was offered, the AGSC balked.
Noteworthy in all this is the fact that no one seems to question the value of written communication skills. All this is in addition to the English composition and literature courses students have had nearly every year from first grade through high school. And yet, oral communication is rarely taught prior to college and is often listed as optional in many general education college curricula.
One way to explore why oral communication is or is not included in the general education curriculum is to evaluate the guiding principles that give rise to that curriculum. It states that college students should prepare for twenty-first century challenges by gaining intellectual and practical skills including inquiry and analysis, critical and creative thinking, written and oral communication , quantitative literacy, information literacy, teamwork and problem solving.
A Taxonomy of Student Outcomes , a report produced by the U. This domain includes skills in reading, written and oral expression , numeric calculations, and information acquisition including the use of libraries, information technologies, and listening page The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools SACS Commission on Colleges is the regional accrediting agency with oversight responsibility for degree-granting public colleges in 11 southern states, Latin America, and nine other international sites [ 34 ].
But these standards are not always met. And yet, their general education requirements include 12 semester hours of English courses but no oral communication courses! Objectives for ENGL reflect more of the same. Thus, the objectives of the second composition course reflect a continuation of the same skills outlined in the first composition course. While Auburn University says it values effective oral communication by including it as a key general education outcome, it offers no course requirement in its general education curriculum to achieve this outcome.
Many colleges and universities do not provide any academic goals in the form of student learning outcomes. For those that do, most list oral communication skills among the most desired outcomes, yet many of these schools do not require an oral communication course. The answer may be seen in the national report of the University Learning Outcomes Assessment [ 39 ] compiled annually by the Center for Learning Outcomes Assessment, Inc. This study taps a sample of more than 18, undergraduate students to assess seven key learning outcome domains—critical thinking, self-awareness, communication, diversity, citizenship, membership and leadership, and relationships.
An examination of the lowest scored items in each domain reveals low levels of oral communication skills in six of the seven domains. Despite lofty mission statements and student learning outcomes that focus on oral communication, many schools do not require oral communication in their general education curriculum.
At best, these schools are being disingenuous; at worst, they are being academically negligent. At the state level, the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education and the AGSC should translate sound principles into best practices and require an oral communication course in the general education curriculum for all two-year and four-year colleges in Alabama. That is, if the college has a stated mission that includes oral communication competency for its graduates, then the course of study should be compatible with that stated mission.
Even if these agencies will not act, colleges can and should strive to improve their core curriculum. There are ample opportunities to do so. However, these two-year colleges lack a consistent method of evaluating minimum oral communication competency.
These courses include English , , , Speech , , Math , , or a higher level math course. Lurleen B. In other words, basic instruction in oral communication is being relegated to a module in a course in a discipline other than communication.
In order to qualify, a course must be devoted to [English composition]. In short, attempting to provide adequate oral communication education in other discipline courses fails to provide concentrated training in oral communication. The final report of the Committee on Written and Spoken English [ 45 ] at Washington University reached a similar conclusion:. Not only is the incorporation of oral presentation skills into the curriculum difficult, but student presentations also consume a great deal of class time….
To support courses in oral communication it would be important to persuade students that their future career opportunities will also benefit from them. The notion that all of these criteria can be adequately met in some other discipline-specific course strains credibility. Only one of the two-year colleges has neither an oral communication degree nor a required oral communication course in their general education curriculum.
Speech oral communication at this college is located in the English department. And even writing-across-the-curriculum programs are academic supplements to not replacements for required English composition courses. Friedland [ 47 ] claimed that many colleges are recognizing a need for oral communication across the curriculum. The rationale is that many small colleges do not have faculty in communication.
This is flawed reasoning that exposes an unwillingness to hire the needed faculty. Another example of this flawed reasoning is St. Olaf College in Minnesota. They had a four-year grant to establish an oral communication across the curriculum program. These small colleges have sufficient numbers of faculty in other core areas like English and mathematics. Imagine if the requirement was for students to complete 3 semester hours in mathematics unless provisions for addressing math competencies represent an integral module in a required discipline-specific course.
What if written communication competency was treated like oral communication competency? Would English faculty be concerned if a psychology teacher or a history teacher were the evaluator for the written communication competency? Many courses throughout university curricula require students to orally present material as a major component of the course.
However, merely assigning communication projects and grading them will not by itself promote better communication. At least two English composition courses are required in most college general education curricula.
The rationale is that written communication skills are important. However, no rationale ever seems to be provided as to why it takes two courses to meet this basic skill especially since students have had English composition courses throughout their academic life. Similarly, at least one mathematics course is required in most general education curricula to meet computational competency requirements. The missing piece is almost always the oral communication component.
A reasonable and more academically responsible approach is to address oral communication competency in the same manner as written communication competency. That is, since there are required English composition courses in the general education curriculum to address written communication competency, the same rationale should require an oral communication course to address oral communication competency.
SACS could also clarify that their intent is for qualified oral communication faculty to evaluate oral communication competencies. One-third 13 of 40 of the public two-year and four-year colleges in Alabama require Public Speaking, ten percent require public speaking or fundamentals of oral communication, and one university requires only fundamentals of oral communication see Table 1. Five Alabama colleges have no communication course requirement or option in their general education curriculum.
If an oral communication course is included in the general education curriculum, the key question is: which oral communication course should be included? In the communication discipline, that list consists of Fundamentals of oral communication, fundamentals of public speaking, and Introduction to interpersonal communication.
These three courses are approved transfer courses for all Alabama institutions of higher education. The basic fundamentals of oral communication SPH class is a hybrid course that includes instruction and accompanying skill training in listening, language, nonverbal, public speaking, voice and diction, interpersonal, problem solving, group dynamics, leadership, and communication ethics. The public speaking class SPH typically includes coping with communication apprehension, audience analysis, topic selection, research skills, organization, presentation aids, delivery, informative speaking, persuasive speaking, and special occasion speaking.
Introduction to interpersonal communication SPH focuses on communication in dyadic situations. It is worth noting that other disciplines offer introductory courses. For example, the fine arts course options at most colleges and universities include introductory courses in art, music, and theater.
Each of these courses is a broad-based introduction to their respective disciplines rather than more narrowly focused courses like painting, sculpting, musical composing, orchestral conducting, acting, or directing. The choice is whether to provide a broad-based introductory communication course which includes a public speaking component, or to offer only a public speaking course that will focus on that specific skill.
Since most college students who take a communication class take only one, it is reasonable to offer a course that is as broad-based and exhaustive as possible [ 49 ]. This means that the basic Fundamentals of oral communication course should be the preferred course offering since it is broad-based and it includes a public speaking component. The AGSC general studies core curriculum web site echoes this same perspective. That syllabus clearly specifies that the course will be broad-based and will prepare students to demonstrate a knowledge of intrapersonal, interpersonal, small group, and public communication [ 51 , n.
Even the professional organization for the communication discipline—the National Communication Association NCA —is on record supporting a broad-based approach to teaching much needed communication skills [ 52 ]. NCA members agree that rather than focusing on narrow applications, a required oral communication course should emphasize the most basic and universal concepts and skills that cut across many fields such as listening respectfully and critically, explaining points clearly, asking questions to gain understanding, adapting messages to different contexts, and solving problems in groups.
The platform statement concludes that, above all, it is imperative that students are introduced to the complex ethical issues that will face communicators in a multicultural and technologically complex society. The public speaking course is narrowly focused and does not address broader communication issues or skills. The panelists went on to say that in most cases, the typical student will only take one course in communication, and therefore that course should be more representative of the field than what is typically offered in a public speaking course [ 53 ].
Student speeches also take up as much as one-third of the class sessions thereby dramatically reducing the number of lectures an instructor has to prepare or present. At the state level, the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education could provide strong leadership by insisting on a broad-based oral communication course as part of their prescribed general education curriculum.
Students taking a basic Fundamentals of oral communication course are exposed to a wide range of communication contexts and essential skills. Offering public speaking as the only required communication course would provide public speaking training at the exclusion of the other kinds of communication skills workers in business and industry continue to advocate. Colleges need not malnourish their students when it comes to communication education.
It should be the main course. Data from a nation-wide study of two-year colleges suggests that an alarming proportion of college faculty who teach oral communication courses do not have a graduate degree in the discipline [ 29 ]. These faculty members teaching out of their discipline represent more than half the full-time communication faculty at their school. Teaching a fundamentals of oral communication course requires a broad, deep understanding of the field of communication including its theory, research, and techniques.
This course, which includes a public speaking component, is a much more challenging course to teach. It requires a well-trained communication professional to guide students through the various contexts and applications of communication. Oral communication education provides instruction and guidance to help students develop and improve their oral communication skills.
The effective application of those skills is evidence of communication competence. No other regional accrediting body specifies that 18 graduate semester hours in a discipline qualifies someone to teach that discipline.
Since there is no demonstrable shortage of degreed people in the communication discipline, requiring only 18 graduate semester hours of some kind of communication-related courses unnecessarily diminishes faculty credentials standards when it comes to oral communication. The manual then specifies the qualifying fields as communications, oratory, and speech.
Obviously absent from this list of qualifying fields is English and theater. However, this is not happening, nor is it likely to happen. Ironically and inexplicably, however, English and theater faculty often teach oral communication classes.
There is no question that English and theater and communication are separate disciplines. Each has their own professional associations, conventions, academic journals, lines of research, and so forth. Further, there is no shortage of fully qualified and properly credentialed communication graduates nationally, regionally, or in Alabama.
The National Center for Education Statistics survey of degrees in Communication from shows that 6, graduate degrees in Communication were conferred in a single academic year. This figure includes degrees in general communication, advertising, journalism, broadcast journalism, public relations, organizational communication, and radio and television broadcasting.
Based on this data, there were enough people who earned a graduate Communication degree in one year to fill at least one faculty position at every public two-year and four-year college in the United States! No, there is no shortage of qualified and properly credentialed communication graduates. But some of those graduates who desire to teach oral communication courses at public colleges are not being hired because English graduates, theater graduates, speech-language pathology graduates, and so forth are teaching the courses instead.
Imagine the outcry that would be heard if an English composition course was listed as an oral communication course or taught by anything other than a fully qualified and properly credentialed English faculty member! At some Alabama colleges, the communication discipline has been adopted! This is nothing less than academic dishonesty. Philosophically, one could argue that any person with particular skills may be able to effectively teach those skills whether they have a graduate degree or any degree at all.
Realistically, accrediting agencies, institutions of higher learning, and tradition all call for faculty members who have completed specific academic training with a certain number of courses in the teaching discipline.
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