Top PDF The Impact of the University Entrance Exam on EFL Education in Turkey: Pre-service English Language Teachers⿿ Perspective

The Impact of the University Entrance Exam on EFL Education in Turkey: Pre-service English Language Teachers⿿ Perspective

The Impact of the University Entrance Exam on EFL Education in Turkey: Pre-service English Language Teachers⿿ Perspective

The second study focusing on the washback of the ESUEE in Turkey was conducted by Yildirim (2010) whose informants were 70 pre-service FL teachers and 6 instructors teaching grammar and language skills courses in the same university. When the learning and teaching practices that students and their teachers had employed while preparing for the ESUEE were examined, it was found that the students’ preparation for the ESUEE was long (2 years on average) and intense (e.g., 64.2% of the students spent more than five hours a day preparing for the exam). Similarly to Sevimli (2007), Yildirim (2010) discovered that the teaching of English during this preparation period was done mainly in Turkish and the aim was to develop only students reading, grammar and vocabulary knowledge. Speaking, listening and writing, on the other hand, were “never” or at best “seldom” the focus of attention in high-school language classes. The language practice was usually in the form of mock exams parallel in form and content to the ESUEE and teachers usually taught students various test-taking strategies. When students were asked to comment on the effects of the ESUEE on their general English language abilities and on their performance in their first year classes at the university, they stated that the preparation for the ESUEE “sharpened their reading, grammar and vocabulary knowledge” (Yildirim 2010, p. 107) but it did not help them develop their writing, speaking and listening skills. The interviews conducted with the university instructors showed that they thought that the ESUEE had a negative impact on students’ overall language abilities. According to some of them, due to its MCI format, the exam not only impeded the development of the students’ productive skills but it also hindered students’ ability to think critically, to use grammatical functions appropriately, to learn the contextual aspects of vocabulary items and to read variety of texts in real life length. Therefore, all of the instructors thought that some of the sections of the exams should be reviewed while others should be changed. Most importantly, university lecturers argued that the UEE should have two stages. The first stage of the exam should be prepared by OSYM and should include less demanding MCI questions while the second stage of the exam should be prepared by individual universities depending on the demands of their programs and the needs of the language-teaching context in Turkey and should include open-ended questions. 3. Methodology
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The Attitudes of Pre-service Teachers towards EFL Writing

The Attitudes of Pre-service Teachers towards EFL Writing

The present study was oriented by three reasons. First, related literature demonstrates that research activities mainly focused on the attitudes towards writing in English among learners rather than teachers. Moreover, the findings obtained from previous research indicate that there is no consensus on the attitudes of EFL learners towards writing. Secondly, no research with sample groups has been carried out in Turkey on the issue. Given that teachers’ attitudes may affect learners’ beliefs, levels of achievement, and attitudes, there is a need for investigating the subject matter in the context of Turkish learners and teachers’ attitudes towards writing. Finally, as previously articulated, it should be examined whether there is a relationship between the attitudes and poor writing instruction due to the exam-oriented language teaching at secondary education and the inadequate curriculum in teacher training programs. In addition, the relationships between the attitudes towards writing in English and certain factors such as age, gender, educational background and language proficiency should be subjected to research. With these concerns in mind, this paper investigates five research questions:
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Identifying Motivational Factors of Pre-service EFL Teachers

Identifying Motivational Factors of Pre-service EFL Teachers

The participants of the present study were pre-service EFL teacher candidates enrolled in four-year teacher education programme in one of the large government universities in Turkey (N=210). 210 questionnaires were distributed to all first year pre-service EFL teachers in ELT department at the sample university. With a 65.23% response rate, 137 questionnaires were returned. Of 137 pre- service teachers, 78,8% are female and 21,2 are male. The participants ranged in age from 18 to 31 years. The household size ranged between 2 and 9 people. Annual income was selected by the participants from four bands in increments of 15,000 Turkish Liras (TL) (0–15,000 TL to 120,001+ TL the highest); 60 of 137 respondents (43.8%) selected very low level income option, 47 (34.3) selected low, 17(12.4%) average, 9 (6.6%) selected high income level as their families’ income level. (1 US dollar currently equals to 3.75 TL). Among the parents, the fathers of the participants had higher educational background than their mothers: 35 (25.5%) of fathers were graduated from primary school, 29 (21.2%) secondary school, 37 (27%) from high school, 32 (23.4%) from university, 2 (1.4%)had a Master’s degree and 1 (0.7%) a PhD degree. As for mothers, 70 (51.1%) graduated from primary school, 27 (19.7%) secondary school, 23 (16.8%) from high school, 16 (11.7%) from university and 1 (0.7%) had an MA degree. Regarding parents’ professions, only 11 (8%) of the fathers and 5 (3.6%) of the mothers were teachers. When the participants asked when they decided to choose teaching as a profession, 28 (20.4%) of them stated that they made the decision during the university entrance exam, 69 (50.4%) during high school years and 39 (28.5%) declared primary school years as the timing of the decision to teach.
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Washback Effect of the University Entrance Examination on Iranian Pre-University English Language Teachers’ Curriculum Planning and Instruction

Washback Effect of the University Entrance Examination on Iranian Pre-University English Language Teachers’ Curriculum Planning and Instruction

The impact of a test on teaching and learning is commonly referred to as the washback effect. In Iran, the university entrance exam (UEE) is assumed to exert a negative washback effect on language education. This study examined the nature and scope of the impact of the UEE on pre- university English teachers’ (PETs) teaching and curricular planning in six dimensions, that is, classroom activities and time arrangement, teaching methods, teaching materials, syllabus design, teaching contents, and classroom assessment. It also explored PETs’ expectations of the UEE.
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An investigation of pre-service EFL teachers’ attitudes towards speakers from three circles of English

An investigation of pre-service EFL teachers’ attitudes towards speakers from three circles of English

There is no doubt that teachers are key players in promoting awareness of the World Englishes (WE) perspective as “teachers themselves – in that they each speak particular forms of English – are an embodiment of the diversity of the language, and their own linguistic background and profile thus act as a variable in the educational process” (Seargeant, 2012, p. 69). Thus it is essential to capture the existing perspectives of in-service teachers related to WE. Young &Walsh (2010) investigated 26 non- native English-speaking teachers’ beliefs about the usefulness and appropriacy of varieties of English, such as English as an International language (EIL) and English as a Lingua Franca (ELF). Teacher participants from countries in Europe, Africa and West, South-East and East Asia were all studying at the same university in the UK for post-graduate degrees in fields such as Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, Education and Applied Linguistics. Results indicated that teacher participants were not aware of the English variety that they had learnt in their own country. All of the teacher participants expressed an overwhelming need for a standard when asked to indicate which English they would like to teach. Results also revealed that some participants, including Turkish academics, attributed high prestige and status to British English in specific domains. Young & Walsh concluded that teachers adopted a pragmatic perspective on varieties of English, with a perceived need to rely on a standard form of the language.
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The Education of Bilingual Teachers: Preparation of Thai Pre-service Teachers of English to Teach in Thai-English Bilingual Schools

The Education of Bilingual Teachers: Preparation of Thai Pre-service Teachers of English to Teach in Thai-English Bilingual Schools

Similarly, Coskun’s (2011: 58) quantitative research on the perception of personal preference for a true English accent held by Turkish pre-service teachers of English (N=47) reveals that having native-like pronunciation is perceived as very important (n=38), important (n=5) and not very important (n=4) for the Turkish pre-service teachers. Coskun’s (2011: 57) study reveals that standard American English (n=18) is preferred to standard British English (n=15) and Turkish-English (n=14). On the other hand, Jenkins’s (2010: 20) research on the perceptions of English accents held by the 360 NNESTs from 12 expanding circle countries reveals that the perceived first two best accents are UK English (n=170) and US English accent (n= 100). The empirical studies (Timmis, 2002; Jenkin, 2010; Coskun, 2011) confirmed the existence of a preference for native English pronunciation/accent. Jenkin’s (2010: 27) results of map-labelling task report that both UK and US English accent were given positive labels. In Jenkins’ (2010: 27) study, the labels describing UK accents are, for example, normal, traditional, authentic, proper, classical, perfect, etc. while the US accents are described as pleasant, relaxed, informal, comfortable, etc. In this study (Jenkin, 2010: 27), Swedish English was described positively with comparison to native English accent e.g. almost mother-tongue like, quite natural like native, near-British, and etc.
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In service education and training (INSET) : the perceptions of English language teachers in Malaysia

In service education and training (INSET) : the perceptions of English language teachers in Malaysia

Litosseliti (2005) also stressed that the synergistic approach produces a whole range of views, opinions, ideas, perceptions and experiences that may provide in- sightful information. Thus, focus groups are socially oriented events which generate invaluable content for research project and makes it a strong methodological tool. Blaikie (2010) stressed that the purpose of using focus groups is very different from individual interviews, and its strength lies in providing a group interaction whereby research participants provide greater insights about why they hold certain opinions. In social science research, focus groups can be used as part of an intervention in the research study and may require more formal and structured groups (Litosseliti, 2005; Stewart and Shamdasani, 2015). On the other hand, it can also have an emphasis on observation which results in exploratory, qualitative, naturalistic and interpretive groups. By using focus groups in this study, the teachers and educators may answer the questions and build on each other’s answers, thus building the richness of the data. They also become more aware of ideas given by others and reflect on discussions as they face contrary views.
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Motivational Strategies Used by Pre-Service English Teachers in Teaching EFL at Senior High School

Motivational Strategies Used by Pre-Service English Teachers in Teaching EFL at Senior High School

In the education field where teachers motivate the learners in learning the language as a foreign language, strategies are needed to accomplish the learning goals. According to Rachvelishvili (2017), using different language learning way can lead to different achievement goals. The learners may get lost if they are not directed well enough during class activities. Furthermore, the strategies to motivate the learners have been discussed by researchers in various teaching contexts (Alsherhri, 2013; Cheng & Dornyei, 2007; Dornyei, 2001; Murray, Gao, & Lamb, 2011). According to Dornyei (2001), “motivational strategies are techniques that promote the individual‟s goal-related behavior” (p.28). Also, how teachers conceptualize their understanding in learners‟ motivation can be pointed into three main features: behaviors, attitudes, and goals (Murray, Gao, & Lamb, 2011). All of these features mentioned are related to the real situation that takes place in the class activity.
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Interculturality and Teacher Education. A Study from Pre-service Teachers’ Perspective

Interculturality and Teacher Education. A Study from Pre-service Teachers’ Perspective

The variable of the future teachers’ specialization is related to their beliefs on most of the items. The specializations that show the most disagreement are: Physical Education, with 7 items (3 of them related to the commitment of the current training practices), and Special Education, with 4 items (all linked to the current training). Among all the variations, items 23, 33 and 47 present the most noteworthy sizes. This result shows that future Physical Education teachers, among others, agree less, compared to future Foreign Language (d=-.48 and d=-.45) and Hearing and Language (d=-.55 and d=-.44) teachers, that the educational system should produce measures to compensate for possible inequalities due to cultural origin, and that collaboration among teachers is necessary to work in multicultural classrooms. On this latter belief, the Physical Education student teachers also show less agreement than those in Special Education (d=-.50). Regarding whether the teachers are qualified to carry out their teaching in culturally heterogeneous classrooms, the Special Education student teachers seem to disagree more than those in Early Childhood Education (d=-.45), Primary (d=-.56), and Hearing and Language (d=-.47).
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Training Pre-Service Language Teachers

Training Pre-Service Language Teachers

I was a brand new trainer with seven years of language teaching experience across different age and proficiency levels. Teaching English and German was something I could always shine at but becoming a teacher trainer touched me far more personally and profoundly. I was forced to realize that language teaching skills and teacher training skills are not necessarily the same unless, of course, a teacher training programme mirrors common language classroom practice. But this ‘mirror model’, if pushed too far, may result in what is usually termed ‘the craft model’, ‘cookbook approach’, a flashy ‘bag of tricks’, ‘quick-fix approach’, and so on. I wanted to link theory to practice or vice versa.
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The Impact of Service Learning on Pre-Service Teachers Preconceptions of Urban Education

The Impact of Service Learning on Pre-Service Teachers Preconceptions of Urban Education

candidates’ responses to open-ended questions about urban schools and students. This study found that their teacher candidates perceived urban schools as run-down, chaotic, dirty, overcrowded, and unsafe. They believed that urban schools lacked resources and funding that affected their facilities, such as physical education spaces, and materials such as computers (Hampton, Peng and Ann, 2008). One study found that the majority of preservice teachers reported that their first impressions and reactions about interacting with English Language Learners were punctuated with fear, anxiety, and even shock (Keengwe, 2010). One student even noted “The thought of spending time with a person of another background scared me. I am neither a racist nor do I have anything against people of different skin color than my own. I simple haven’t been given the opportunity to get to know someone with a different ethnicity” (Keengwe, 2010, p. 200).
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Pre-service EFL teachers' conceptions of language proficiency: Entry and exit level qualifications

Pre-service EFL teachers' conceptions of language proficiency: Entry and exit level qualifications

The study was carried out through qualitative methods of data collection. The instrument employed in this study was a semi-structured interview adopted from Butler’s questionnaire titled Self-reported Current and Desired Minimum English Language Proficiency. The interview was administered to 35 pre-service EFL teachers to specify their views on their English proficiency level when they entered the university, and also the proficiency level when they finished the university. Besides, the interview was employed to understand the extent of difference between the entry and exit level language qualifications. For the coding reliability of the interview on language proficiency levels, Kappa Coefficient for Inter- coder Reliability was calculated and it was found that the coding process was highly reliable (κ= .862, p<.001). This study was conducted having resource to the descriptive research design with a view to identifying the perspectives of pre-service EFL teachers pertaining to their English language proficiency level− entry and exit level qualifications.
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Impact of Feedback Timing on Teaching Competence of Pre Service English Teachers

Impact of Feedback Timing on Teaching Competence of Pre Service English Teachers

This study aimed to examine effective feedback timing for pre-service English teachers’ teaching competence. The participants perceived immediate feedback to be more advantageous than delayed feedback even though delayed feedback offered them a less anxious environment. Some of the less confident participants reported the advantages of delayed feedback in terms of low affective filter, but most the participants preferred immediate feedback to delayed feedback. This result is in line with previous literature that explicit direct feedback is more effective for correcting learners’ errors (e.g., Li, Zhu, & Ellis, 2016). This study contributes to current research related to effective timing of feedback for pre-service English teachers. However, it has some limitations. All the participants were Korean pre-service English teachers, so the findings of this study cannot be generalized. Also, this study just examined the perception of the participants on the impact of feedback types. Their teaching practices after receiving two different types of feedback were not empirically compared. Thus, the effects of feedback timing on pre-service teachers’ teaching competence were not investigated. Further research which compares experimental and control groups using statistical analysis will provide more pedagogical implications for developing effective English teacher training courses and programs in EFL settings.
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The Use of Speaking Strategies by Pre-Service EFL Teachers

The Use of Speaking Strategies by Pre-Service EFL Teachers

17 ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE TEACHING attention to implicit strategy instruction, which could also be beneficial to students since “there may be a natural tendency to grow in strategy use without explicit instruction”. Another issue concerning the instruction of speaking strategies is whether using L1 in an EFL classroom to teach speaking strategies should be a common practice or whether it should be avoided. Chamot (2005) proposes the use of L1 if learners are not proficient enough to understand the teacher’s explanation of a specific strategy in English. Usually, younger and/ or beginner learners are the ones who do not understand English well enough and may thus benefit from the teacher’s decision to explain these strategies in L1. Nevertheless, using L2 to explain speaking strategies should be introduced gradually in the process of language teaching. It is important for pre-service EFL teachers to be familiar with a range of speaking strategies so that they can teach them in EFL classrooms. In this paper, we will take Nakatani’s (2006) eight categories of strategies learners use for coping with speaking problems as the theoretical foundation. These eight categories are the following: 1) social affective strategies, where learners try to control their own anxiety and enjoy the process of oral communication, they are willing to encourage themselves to use English, to risk making mistakes, and attempt to give a good impression and avoid silence during interactions; 2) fluency‑oriented strategies, used to speak as clearly as possible so that their interlocutors can understand them, paying attention to the cultural context in which their conversation takes place to avoid misunderstandings; 3) negotiation for meaning while speaking strategies, used when checking whether their interlocutors have understood them or not, repetition and providing examples in order to enhance the listener’s understanding of their intended message; 4) accuracy‑oriented strategies, employed to self-assess the grammatical structures used to determine whether these structures are correct or not, and the attempt to sound like a native speaker; 5) message reduction and alteration strategies, where learners try “to avoid a communication breakdown by reducing an original message, simplifying their utterances, or using similar expressions that they can use confidently” (Nakatani 2006, 155); 6) nonverbal strategies while speaking, used when the message is not communicated through speech only, but through gestures, eye-contact, and so on; 7) message abandonment strategies, used to bring the interaction to an end by giving up on communicating the intended message to the interlocutor (e.g. by asking someone for help, although in this case learners do not give up on conveying their message completely); 8) attempt to think in English strategies, when learners try to think in English while speaking in English.
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An exploration of pre service teachers’ attributions in English

An exploration of pre service teachers’ attributions in English

Abstract. With the developments in cognitive psychology, language learners’ beliefs have received considerable attention in the domain of language teaching and learning. One area that merits investigation as to what the learner brings to this educational process is learner attributions which are commonly defined as ‘perceived causes of success and failure’. This paper investigated pre-service teachers’ perceptions of student attributions and their performance in English. Attributions are categorized as either internal (for instance ability) or external (for instance task difficulty). Motivated by these theoretical concerns, the study investigated the attributions of 122 pre-service teachers majoring in English and the connections between attribution and proficiency and gender. The study concludes with a set of far-reaching pedagogical implications and suggestions for learner training and teacher action in the EFL classroom. The results underscore the need for pre-service students to become aware of their own perceptions with regard to students' success and failure in English.
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Pre-service EFL Teachers' Beliefs about Foreign Language Learning and How They Relate to Gender

Pre-service EFL Teachers' Beliefs about Foreign Language Learning and How They Relate to Gender

Results of the ANOVA procedure to determine gender-related differences indicated no significant differences among males and females. For that reason it seems possible to con- clude that beliefs about language learning do not vary by gender. The finding should be exam- ined more closely in the future. It is possible that age, stage of life or language learning con- text may also be important sources of group variation in learner beliefs. The learners dis- cussed here all studied English as a foreign language and they are all adults who would teach English in the future. It is possible that such contextual differences in the language learning situation as well as specific classroom practices would have an impact on learner beliefs.
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Becoming a professional: Exploring EFL pre-service teachers’ conceptions of an effective foreign language teacher

Becoming a professional: Exploring EFL pre-service teachers’ conceptions of an effective foreign language teacher

Second, when the emerged themes were compared across the grades, it was observed that the frequency of some of the themes in defining an effective language teacher was stable, some increased and some even decreased in terms of the frequency of the themes. As it has been underscored in most of the studies in the relevant literature, to explore the qualities of an effective teacher, personality traits were the first to come to the mind (Gönenç, 2005). The current results indicated that after being patient, the essential characteristic of an EFL teacher is to have positive personality traits such as being friendly and helpful. Similarly, Weinstein (1989) confirmed that PTs give importance to the positive personality traits of an effective EFL teacher. However, there were themes gradually not observed among the grades. For instance, the freshmen mentioned that an effective teacher acts as the authority in the class; however, this view differed when it was compared to other grades. This change may be due to the effect of the courses in which the EFL PTs were enrolled that called for an immediate recall of the constructed image of an EFL teacher. Accordingly, the juniors and seniors considered an effective teacher as a guide, facilitator or prompter and considered effective teaching as a requirement of student-centered teaching practice. The metaphors used by EFL PTs to describe the role and the process of evaluation and feedback was either ignored or mostly insufficiently stated. As highlighted in the literature by Nitko (1996), Hatipoğlu and Erçetin (2014) also discussed that the number of courses on testing and evaluation is limited which is insufficient for developing the necessary skills to value the importance of evaluation and assessment and to define more than just considering assessment and evaluation as a form of feedback. Thus, it was evident that the EFL PTs did not have a notion of evaluation other than feedback (n = 8, 18.6%). The finding leads to the need for examining the content and implication process of teacher education courses to contribute to professional learning and provide the opportunity for EFL PTs to create personalized assessment tools to assess and evaluate students’ learning processes and evaluate the learning process.
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PRE-SERVICE ENGLISH TEACHERS’ PERCEPTIONS OF PRONUNCIATION

PRE-SERVICE ENGLISH TEACHERS’ PERCEPTIONS OF PRONUNCIATION

The data for this study was accumulated through online-questionnaire and interview. These two methods are chosen to get better understand the perceptions of pre-service English teachers, such as their feelings and their motivations (Fishman et al. 1977). The online questionnaire used because it is very valuable tools for large data collection studies in a short time to meet generalizability in results (King, Lai, & May, 2017). This questionnaire for the research consisted of three sections; participants’ training on pronunciation, participants’ knowledge and competence about pronunciation, and participants’ perception about the teaching of pronunciation. After the data from the questionnaire were collected, 3 of the participants were chosen randomly to be interviewed to get deeper information. Also, interviewing allows intimacy to grow between the researcher and the participants and therefore deeper sources of data can be obtained (King, Lai, & May, 2017). The data were collected by methods which already mentioned before, the interview was done by the researcher face-to-face with the participants one by one with each interview took 20-25 minutes. Because of all of the participants were in the last year of college and doing an internship, as well as three interview participants, it was found difficulty in determining the available times with the participants.
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Pre-Service Teachers’ Beliefs about Inclusion in Turkey

Pre-Service Teachers’ Beliefs about Inclusion in Turkey

The purpose of this research was to explore pre-service teachers’ beliefs about inclusion in Turkey. A total of 300 pre-service teachers were surveyed. Majority of the pre-service teachers expressed that they did not think that they had necessary skills to effectively work with children with disabilities. Lack of experience and knowledge, overcrowded classrooms, lack of collaboration between teachers and specialists were seen as barriers to inclusion. Majority of the participants indicated that they would be willing to accept students with physical disabilities, speech disorders, and ADHD while only a small percentage indicated that they would accept students with autism, mental retardation, and conduct disorder into their classrooms. Results indicated that program type, satisfaction with the field experience, and taking a special education course were found to be effecting pre-service teachers’ beliefs about inclusion. In general, pre- service teachers who are in early childhood and elementary education programs, satisfied with the field experience and has taken a special education course expressed more positive beliefs about inclusion.
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Redesigning a University Entrance Interview Protocol: A Case Study with Pre-Service Elementary School Teachers in Korea

Redesigning a University Entrance Interview Protocol: A Case Study with Pre-Service Elementary School Teachers in Korea

The term, ‘interview’ derives from Latin and middle French words, meaning to see between or ‘see each other’. Oxford English dictionary (2013) defines it as “an oral examination of an applicant for a job, college place, etc.” Generally, interview is conducted between people where questions are inquired and answered. According to Dessler (2012), “An interview is a procedure designed to obtain information from a person’s oral response to oral inquiries.” By conducting a systematic interview, the interviewees can deeply grasp needed information and knowledge from the interviewer. In order to choose the best or at least qualified candidate in a teachers’ college, an interview test has been emphasized along with other areas (Brownell et al, 2007; Cook & Zallocco, 1983; Mallozzi, 2009; Morris, 1999; Rapley, 2001). The interview is the second stage of the selecting process and the most important. By conducting an interview, the reviewers of admission have a chance where candidates can describe their visions, experiences and skills and can get an idea of what they want to accomplish with the university (Edwards et al, 1990; Mounset et al, 2006; Ralston et al, 2003). During an interview, one of the reviewers’ purposes can be to gather additional information about candidates which is not stated in the application packet. Reviewers strive to figure out who will be a good teacher while having a conversation and asking questions. Basically, an interview is conducted in a Korean language to analyze candidates' motivations, goals, aptitude, and relative knowledge in the field of education. and takes approximately 10 minutes. Accordingly, it is very important for each candidate to be logical and communicate well with the interview questions to deliver sound and systematic opinion.
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