An Evaluation of the Speaking Activities in the Students' Spoken English Module: A Case at Dessie College of Teacher Education Linear 2nd Year English Language Program Students in Focus

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Addis Ababa University


The study was mainly intended to assess to what extent the speaking activities in the spoken module of Desse College of Teacher Education (DCTE) are appropriately designed with respect to addressing the learners' interests and how far they meet the major speaking task designing criteria. Pertaining to the study itself, assessing the attitudes of teachers and students towards the activities, assessing the motivational values of the activities, assessing the techn iques, methods and presentation used in the speaking tasks and fina lly assessing the organization of the tasks were examined. Content analysis was used as a major instrument to obtain information regarding how appropriate and suitable the speaking tasks (activities) for the trainees to participate on and how they meet their interests being as prospective teachers. The questionnaire and interview developed and used to measure the attitudes of the students and teachers towards the speaking activities (tasks) which are portrayed in the trainees 'spoken module. The findings of the study indicated that the inappropriateness of the speaking activities in the trainees' module in eliciting students' oral participation was taken as a fa ctor that hamper pair/group work in the classroom. The findings also showed, the absence of varied, interesting, real world, relevant activities to the needs and interests of the trainees in their spoken module. Along with this, the findings indicated that the inability of the speaking activities in promoting genuine communicative interaction among students by using various forms of classroom organization. Besides, the findings disclosed that the activities in the trainees' module have low motivational values and are not able to be integrated with the other skills except writing. In addition, the absence of supplementary materials like language laboratory, audio visual teaching aids, etc hindered trainees spoken ability. Not giving considerable attention to the structural syllabus which focused on the English sound system like segmental and superasegmental featu res and merely focusing on the functional syllabus were also the other findings which were manifested in the research. Considered vis-a-vis these and other findings on the suitability of the speaking tasks (activities) in addressing students interests, the parallel effect of the approach ill the module in not incorporating many activities, and the absence of practice session of the activities, which do not allow learners' to communicate and cooperate in groups brought an ample problem in students spoken language proficiency. Therefore, the study recommended that when course materials are prepared, addressing the growing needs of students to become proficient in speaking English by giving due emphasis to what students require to participate orally in speaking activities often presented in group or pair modes of learning should be considered. It is also noted that the program (syllabus) to be prepared ought to take in hand the question of methodology, too. It should enable the learners and the teachers to use pair and group work, simulations, games and dramas. Besides, the study recommends that continuous course material adaptation based on the appropriateness of the activities for communicative goals should be practiced on the speaking tasks.



Students' Spoken English Module