The Effects of Mother Tongue and other Schoolrelated Factors on English Language Learning: the Case of Grade Nine Students Whose Mother Tongue is Af an Oromo in Arsi Zone

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Addis Ababa University


The purpose of this study was designed to examine the impacts of mother tongue (Afan Oromo) and other school related factors on students learning ability in Engli sh language and to forward the finding with possible recommendations to concerned stakeholders so that they would take measures in improving at various levels. A descriptive survey method was employed. The sample consisted of 200 students, ten English teachers and three school principals draw from three sample high schools in Arsi Zone. Regarding the respondents, students from each sample school were selected using stratified random sampling. But the principals, Engli sh teachers were se lected using available sampling. To gather the necessary data questionnaire (open and closed ended), interviews and observation were the main instruments employed. The information gathered through questionnaire and observation was analyzed in percentage whilst the information collected through interviews and open-ended questions were analyzed qualitatively. The major findings of the study include the vowel length and consonant geminations of certain sounds in the written form of Afan Oromo confuse to a certain extent the English learner. The level of teachers ' qualification and teaching experience were adequate to teach English at grade level except two teachers "vho "Ycrc diploma holders. School instructional resources were inadequate. The overcrowded nature of the classroom was also another findin g. Students' readiness for learning Engl ish which is through students' motivation was appropriate. For various reasons, the ability of the students in English currently low. Based on the findings recommendations are made to existing problems. Accordingly, Qube had better revised to minimize sound confusion to learn English and lengthing of vowels and gemination of consonants, devising mechanism to improve the quality of English teachers, encouraging private investors to open private high schools, employing different methods of teaching English, encouraging students to improve Engli sh language and others were recommended to solve the identified problems.



The Case of Grade Nine Students Whose Mother Tongue is Af an Oromo in Arsi Zone