Abstract
 
Abstract

KEYNOTE ADDRESS

Dzulkifly Abd Razak, Prof. Tan Sri Dato’
Vice Chancellor, Albukhary International University

Multiliteracies in a Rapidly Changing World

In a rapidly changing world like today, this issues of coping and adapting would be of primary concern in order to attain a good quality of life. In other words, one must be acquainted with several literacies as part of the learning systems that cover not just what is academically relevant but also socially engaged, and recreationally enriching. A multiliterate person therefore would be someone who is capable in leveraging a range of competencies within a socially, intellectually, culturally and ethically diverse world to actively participate in a balanced live-learn-work-play in the 21st century environment. For example, in terms of languages alone, it is important to recognise that monolingual literacy is no longer adequate or desirable, nor multilingual literacy confined only to the dominant (western) languages of the world. There is increasingly a need to engage and enrich indigenous languages as an attempt to develop multiliteracies in meaningful ways in serving the global community The presentation will attempt to discuss and highlight on how this is attempted using the Albukhary International University as a case-study.

PLENARY

Douglas Robinson, Professor
Dean Academic, Faculty of Arts, Hong Kong Baptist University

English-Language (Post-) Proficiency Instruction in the Context of Asian Liberal Education

Traditionally, a distinction is drawn between “practical” language proficiency courses, which teach students to use spoken and written language more effectively, and “academic” courses in modern languages, which teach specific “content” knowledge in linguistics, literature, and other areas. This paper explores a significant gray area between the two poles—significant in several ways, not the least among which is that it arguably opens a realm often associated with “the liberal arts” or a “liberal education.”

The primary example of this emerging gray area in the paper will be the development process of a course entitled “Varieties of English” at Lingnan University in Hong Kong—a process which the speaker has been overseeing for the last two years. Lingnan calls itself Hong Kong’s “liberal arts university,” and while those of us in the actual liberal arts have often felt inclined to dispute that characterization, there has been a strong move in recent years towards a “liberal-artsification” of the Lingnan experience, especially through the development of a core curriculum.

What makes this gray area interesting and potentially useful for Asian institutions interested in exploring and expanding a liberal arts education is that, at least as we have contextualized it, it involves practical skill that is heavily theory-driven. Our approach comes out of genre theory, especially that branch of genre theory that conceptualizes genres sociologically as “activity systems”; helping students understand how those activity systems work in the real world (especially academic departments and post-graduation workplaces) teaches them both a useful practical skill and, by encouraging metareflection on what they are learning, helps them develop strategies for learning that will continue to generate (push them to construct) practical knowledge in the future.

Malachi Edwin Vethamani, Prof. Dr.
Dean, School of Education, Taylor’s University, Malaysia

Language Education at the Tertiary Level: Reconsidering Issues, Labels and Roles

Language education at the tertiary level has been complicated by various issues. The choice of languages that are offered to students is often driven by market demand for the languages at the workplace. As such, new world languages such English, Mandarin and Spanish now have greater demand and are offered more willingly by language centres in universities. This has resulted in classical languages such as Latin and Sanskrit being ignored. This paper raises questions on the role of universities to encourage the learning of these languages and discusses the implications of ignoring them. This presentation also focuses on the teaching of the English language and issues connected with it especially defining labels like mother tongue, second language and foreign language which have become more and more problematic as the roles and functions traditionally ascribed to them have become inadequate and inappropriate. With this too, notions about native and non-native speakers have to be reassessed. This presentation focuses on reviewing and interrogating these labels in the context of tertiary language education. It will also discuss the implications on tertiary language education should we continue to subscribe and impose these anachronistic labels.

FEATURED SPEAKERS

Antoon De Rycker, LCCI CertTEB, MAL, PhD
School of Communication, Taylor's University, Malaysia

Collocational Fluency in Domain-Specific Vocabulary:
A New Approach to Improving Students’ Definitional Skills

Research has shown that both literacy and academic success are closely associated with the metalinguistic skill of defining words, and this at all levels of education. Less is known, however, about exactly what kind of definitional format university students should be asked to practise (for example, “X is a Y that Z”) to achieve the highest possible learning outcomes. In the present paper I would first like to propose a new definitional format, called ‘deep definition’, i.e. a four-component template based on the Aristotelian-type definition but one that integrates insights from Cognitive Linguistics and Second Language Acquisition (SLA) research. I will explain and illustrate what I mean by ‘deep definitions’ as well as discuss their putative benefits. Additionally, I will examine university students’ production of domain-specific vocabulary in relationship to their overall definitional skills. Using the deep definitional format to measure breadth of active specialist vocabulary knowledge, I will examine, more specifically, whether deep definitions promote student definers’ collocational fluency and usage of conceptually related terms. I will report the preliminary findings of a small-scale pilot research project (N = 38) that I conducted, including survey results regarding student perceptions of, among other things, usefulness and challenge. I will round off by discussing some implications for tertiary language education.

Christian Kahl, Dr. Phil.
Graduate School of Hospitality and Tourism, Division of Hospitality, Tourism and Culinary Arts, Taylor’s University

Student centred learning in a German foundation language classroom as a learning motivator.
A case study at Taylor’s University

Learning a new language is always a challenge, which a person is taking to master it. But does everybody learn in the same way? Does everybody have the same strategy to learn a language? Does everybody have the same strengths and weaknesses when they learn a new language? And does the teacher and his teaching methods have an influence on the learning process of his/ her students?

This research paper is looking at the learning habits of students from different Generations in an interactive/ student-centered learning, German language classroom environment. Since every Generation has different learning habits, people believe that teaching styles have to change too. However, what will happen when a lecturer is using one teaching style to teach all generation at the same time. This case study is looking in the possibility to use student-centered learning as a universe teaching style to support different generations in their journey to learn German.

Key words: Generation differences, learning habits, student-centered learning, German language

Kuldip Kaur Karadwala, Prof.
Open University Malaysia

Scaling up interaction: A sociocultural approach to computer supported collaborative learning

The rise of computer supported collaborative learning (CSCL) activity in tertiary institutions has provided much fodder for research and discussion in recent times.  Yet, little is discussed about principles of computer supported learning, or about the role of the instructor in invigorating the language learning endeavours of students.  This paper adopts a sociocultural approach to argue for the primacy of social interaction in tertiary level language learning, that is, interactional competence defined by principles of online pedagogy and significant instructor presence in CSCL activity.  The paper views interaction through a lens of active teaching, which, essentially, refers to various enabling behaviours deemed significant for language learning.  To provide an instructional context for the paper, four pedagogic principles are described using scenarios and examples from an English language course at Open University Malaysia.  Additionally, the use of examples from CSCL tasks demonstrates the critical role of the instructor in implementing these principles within a web-mediated distance learning environment.  The paper will conclude with recommendations for using the above-mentioned principles as a way to enrich students’ language learning experiences in tertiary institutions.

WORKSHOP

Antoon De Rycker, LCCI CertTEB, MAL, PhD
School of Communication, Taylor's University, Malaysia

Encouraging Collocational and Colligational Fluency through Pedagogical Chunking, Word and Verb Mapping, Pause Reading and Other Strategies

If the words used in this title fail to ring any bells, then this workshop may be for you. First, some background, however. One of the principal insights to emerge from Cognitive Linguistics is that the lexis-grammar divide is in fact a fallacy and that language should be conceived of as a continuum from atomic and specific units (like words) to increasingly complex and schematic ones (like structures). Lexis and syntax are not two distinct components of language but are the same phenomenon looked at from different perspectives. The implication of these (and related) views for foreign language teaching/learning is that more, and more systematic, attention should be paid to those areas where words and structures meet, i.e. collocations (e.g., to catch the bus), colligations (e.g., Stay tuned rather than They were staying tuned) and various multi-word expressions, word partnerships, idiomatic phrases, etc.. In this workshop I will showcase a number of tried-and-tested strategies aimed at making foreign language learners notice these larger ‘chunks’ of language, store them in appropriate ways and activate them when needed. Participants will get an opportunity to experience these strategies first-hand, and to collaborate in groups on designing their own activities. Throughout the workshop, there will be time for critical reflection and further discussion.

Bandana Chakrabarty, Dr. 1 & S.Asha, Associate Professor Dr. 2
1 Rajasthan School of Arts, Jaipur(Rajasthan), India & 2 Government P.G. College, Tonk (Rajasthan), India

The ‘Third culture’ of the Language Classroom:  Incorporating Culture in Language Teaching

Krasner has rightly advocated the need of culture awareness for competence in Language learning. Culturally appropriate ways to address people, express gratitude, make requests, and agree or disagree with someone are some basic requirements of language learning. Behaviours and intonation patterns differ from community to community and are perceived differently by members of the target language speech community. In order for communication to be successful, language use must be associated with other culturally appropriate behaviour. Hence the language Classroom functions as a neutral space that learners can create and use to explore and reflect on their own and the target culture and language. So it can be termed as the “third culture” of the language classroom. Culture in the Language classroom can be presented through authentic materials, proverbs, role-play, culture capsules, exchange programs, literature, films, folk songs, food and clothing. There is a need to raise awareness on varieties of spoken English as other languages and cultural issues that need to be considered when local meets global. Educators need to evolve and use an activity-based approach that can be adapted in the classroom. Is it possible to develop a culture in the classroom which facilitates language acquisition?

In this interactive presentation, the speakers will facilitate the participants an opportunity for cognitive engagement which will lead to deeper understanding and new insights related to different aspects of the conference theme. We propose to draw inferences from various cultures by using communicative language teaching tools to bring home the point that understanding of culture is an absolute necessity in language acquisition. This experience will encourage educators to apply such techniques with students in the classroom. 

Douglas Robinson, Professor
Dean Academic, Faculty of Arts, Hong Kong Baptist University
Teaching Strategies for Genre Adaptation

This workshop follows up on the plenary talk about developing a “post-proficiency” course at Lingnan University, by walking participants through the structure and a few of the exercises that have been developed for the new course.

Mallikaa Shril, Asst. Professor
Department of English, Loyola College, Chennai-600034,Tamil Nadu, India.

Pedagogy of Language and Andragogy

The study on Andragogy throws light on the newer approaches to understanding Adult Learning and its drive to professionalize the knowledge base to the need-based.  This paper has both descriptive and empirical part and a theory-driven interpretive part. It is a revisit to two of the foundational theories of AL (Adult Learning) with an eye to assessing their usability of English Language as an important component in a learner becoming employable and language becoming practically usable.

Tests of adult learners against non-adult learners on Lateral thinking and Synectics brought out that the scores of adults were better and were related to previous education, various aspects of intelligence and skills apart from age per se.  With the learning tasks the desirable assessment measure was a demonstration of the ability to perform the learned resources. ‘Effectiveness’ was largely determined by learner achievement which was measured by tests and grades. In the process of transmission of knowledge, the silent class rooms were transformed to a talk-filled ones. The adult learners being a part of the sample proved they were not the cognitive machines processing the information alone but AL is much more than the systematic acquisition and storage of contents. In a checklist of teacher-student mutual expectations, student goals and choice of materials, the emphasis is on practical dexterity that they are learning, to develop strategies that should continue to initiate practical expertise in the future.

‘In Andragogy a spirit of mutuality between teacher and student, as joint inquirers prevails’ (Knowles 1988, p 47). Pedagogy is lecture style training whereas Andragogy is participative style training. Adults manage every aspect of their lives so, they are capable of directing and planning their own learning (AL) with their own strategy that would ultimately make them successful.

Key Words: Andragogy, professionalize, Lateral thinking, Synectics, Cognitive machines, joint
                     inquirers, participative style training

Reference:
Knowles S Malcolm, The Modern Practice of Adult Education: From Pedagogy to Andragogy, 1988
W. J. J. Gordon, Synectics: The Development of Creative Capacity
Nicholas Roukes, Design Synectics: Stimulating Creativity in Design Published by Davis Publications, 1988

Workshop: A set of exercises on Lateral Thinking and Synectics will be given to the participants; substantiating the
                  andragogical method proffers the ability of self-directed learning.

Shaila Mahan, Dr. 1& Anshoo Sharma, Dr. 2
1 Associate Professor, Directorate of College Education of Rajasthan, Jaipur, India
2 Associate Professor, SK College Sikar, Rajasthan, India

Commercials for improving Communicative Competence

Involving students in verbal interactions is a key challenge for teachers and drawing them to participate in discussions is an even bigger task. Teachers and instructors are constantly on the look out for new ways and means to engage their students in two-way communicative processes. Teachers can skillfully utilize a variety of authentic resources to engage their students in enhancing their spoken skills. Short commercials to initiate/sustain effective discussions with and among students can be one crucial strategy to achieve this often elusive goal. 
 
Based on this broad premise, the proposed workshop will focus on utilizing   some short commercials and advertisements to stimulate students into creative thinking and an enriching exchange of ideas. The Workshop will commence with a Brainstorming Session which would display some novel ads that would help to demonstrate to teacher-participants how they can employ commercials   for engaging their students in meaningful verbal communication of thoughts/ideas. In the next phase, an attempt will be made to show how a commercial can be used for generating discussion by employing a host of group exercises like jigsaw, information gap activity etc.

The stimulating and   hopefully thought-provoking question-answer sessions and related group activities, based on the Commercials they have seen, this workshop will  attempt to  sensitize the participants and   empower them to use commercials / ad films   to   improve the discussion skills of  their students and potentially facilitate  their overall spoken proficiency/ competence.

Simon Williams
Taylor’s University, Malaysia

All about Wikis

Highlighting a new technology which could be used in the classroom is relatively easy. However, when it comes to actually using it with a class, various problems can occur. This work shop is aimed at people who have an interest in using a Wiki in their class or are currently using them. Three kinds of uses for the Wiki will be looked at. The first, displaying information, secondly, creating private pages. Finally, creating a collaborative environment. 

The workshop will also cover some possible tasks which have been used and could be adapted for any other class. Finally, ways to assess collaborative online work will be discusses. Some ideas of how you can do this will also be explained.

PAPER

Abbass Eslami Rasekh 1 & Salva Shirinbakhsh (corresponding author) 2
Assistant professor 1, PhD student 2, TEFL, University of Isfahan, Iran

Effect of Age on Cultural Schema: The Case of Shekaste-nafsi (modesty)
Drawing on the theories of cultural schemas and group cognition, this paper focuses on the relationship between the social factor of age and the instantiation of Persian cultural schema of Shekaste-nafsi(‘modesty’), glossed as “self-breaking”. The significance of this schema could lie in its frequent use in conversations, especially in compliment responses. This schema motivates Persian speakers to evade the compliment by lowering themselves. The study seeks toinvestigate if social variables have any effect on the distribution of cultural schemas. Data were collected from a corpus of 104 hours of audio-taped conversation and then analyzed through a conversation analytic (CA) methodology. Results revealed that age, as a social factor, has a significant effect on the distribution of cultural schema of Shekaste-nafsi. By and large, the findings necessitate the revisitation, towards the improvement, of Sharifian’s (2008b) notion of ‘heterogeneously distribution’ of schemas.

Sharifian, F. (2008b). Distributed, emergent cultural cognition, conceptualisation, and language. In R. M. Frank, R. Dirven, T. Ziemke & E. Bernandez (Eds.), Body, language, and mind (Vol. 2, pp. 109-136). Berlin/New York: Mouton de Gruyter

Anuratha Kanniah
Asia Pacific University (APU), Bukit Jalil, Kuala Lumpur

The Online Forum of Weblog in the Teaching of Higher Learning Education

Engaging in critical thinking is an important requirement in higher learning education. Today, in language classrooms learners are often involved in problem-solving activities and participate in discussions that may require need to put arguments forward. However, previous literature exemplifies students are generally not able to think critically in discussions. The primary aim of this study was to find out to what extent learners are critical in an online forum. The study also intended to examine the role of technology in enhancing social construction of knowledge in language classroom. The sample population in the study was a group of students studying Practical English module in the School of Foundation in a higher learning institution in Malaysia. The sample population in this study was heterogeneous. Descriptive statistics were used to determine the level of critical thinking skills possessed by the students. The results indicate that there is significant improvement in the learners’ ability to think critically and also actively participate in social construction of knowledge in an online discussion. Even learners who were quiet in the face-to-face session appeared to be active in the virtual mode. The study also recognized the need for instructors to play an important role in the process of knowledge building among learners.

Keywords: Critical thinking, online learning, social construction of knowledge

Asantha U. Attanayake, Dr.
English Language Teaching Unit, University of Colombo, Sri Lanka

Building confidence is central to English language teaching in Sri Lanka

According to the findings of my research with 240 students of the three universities namely, Colombo, Sabaragamuwa and Jaffna, there was a clear desire to improve English speech among students. The reason for students to refrain from using English within their social/cultural/academic groups was lack of confidence. The course I planned had the aim of the coined result of the aforementioned issues: To build student confidence to learn English via speech. The course was planned with three theoretical underpinnings embedded in it; Speech Act Theory, the Theory of Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills and Cognitive Academic Proficiency Skills for material production; Cooperative Language Learning which professes the use of grouping, was for the teaching method. The course was piloted to 475 new entrants to the Faculty of Arts, University of Colombo in 2009. The course ran for 3 weeks and at the end, teachers’ views were taken to measure the new level of confidence in students to use English. Of the 21 teachers who taught in the programme, 95% agreed that the programme was successful. Sixty two per cent were of the view that student confidence level was highly improved while 24% believed it was somewhat improved. Ninety five per cent stated that student-teacher and student-student interaction levels were improved. As 90% stated, the special teaching methods used were suitable and effective.

Binnur İLTER, Assist. Prof. Dr.
Akdeniz University / Antalya / Turkey

Different Genders’ Viewpoints about the Language Learning Factors in EFL Classes

In language classrooms, students are in unnatural conversational situations and need supports more than other learning milieus. Consequently, teachers try to capture with various methods and techniques the attention of students who do not learning English. A creative English teacher can organise activities that focus on student - centred learning to set up an enjoyable atmosphere. Many researchers in EFL teaching have discussed that different factors have a positive effect on foreign language learning. Some others claim that there are differences between male and female students in the language learning process. This study examines the language learning factors from the students’ point of view according to their gender. In order to do this, a questionnaire was given to a group of students at Akdeniz University Preparatory Classes. 461 students attending Akdeniz University, Foreign Language Department participated in this study. The data collected through the questionnaire was assessed via SPSS program after the collection of the data. Results were examined, students’ requirements and the factors affecting their learning in negative and positive ways were found out and some suggestions that focus on the learning objectives were put forward.

Key Words: Motivation, EFL Process, Language Learning Factors, Gender Differences

Chih-Kai Chang
National University of Taina

Development and evaluation of highlighting high-frequency words in subtitles to scaffold CFL learners

This study developed a scaffolding system to highlight high-frequency words in subtitles of Chinese videos and evaluate its usability for people who learn Chinese as a foreign language. First, the subtitles of Chinese videos were extracted and analyzed to properly locate the high-frequency words; then, those words in subtitles were highlighted and embedded into videos. Therefore, CFL learners’ cognitive loads, cultural shock, and learning anxiety can be reduced while watching the video. The study adopts the top 800 and 1600 high-frequency words from an analysis report based on Academia Sinica Balanced Corpus of Modern Chinese to identify proper word segmentation in video subtitles and analyze its performance based on the forward maximum matching method. Two international college students from Indonesia served as subjects to test the usability of the innovative scaffolding language learning tool. The preliminary results show that the method can provide scaffolding correctly. Further research is necessary to find out the limitations of the method and prevent segmentation errors in different types of Chinese videos.

Deokar Sunil Shripat, Prof.
R.B.N.B College, Shrirampur, Ahmednagar, (M.S) India

Use of Digital Language Lab: Panacea for Teaching and Learning English Language.

Nowadays the language lab is the panacea and one of the many technological aids that the language teacher can choose to use to enhance teaching and learning of language to ESL learners. A digital language lab is a network of computers, plus appropriate software, which provides most of the functions of a conventional (analogue) language lab together with integration of video, word-processing and other computer applications. They can be expensive to purchase and maintain and really need a specialist classroom which became popular in secondary schools and other institutions in the late 1960s and early 1970s, were a development from this. They were initially perceived as a solution to the problem of teaching a language to a large number of learners in a short time, and undoubtedly were a worthwhile invention. However, they gradually fell out of favour towards the end of the 1970s, partly because of unreliable technology but also because they had become closely associated with an outdated behaviouristic model for language teaching and learning. From around the mid-1980s, the language lab was given a new lease of life. This was due in part to improvements in technology, but also to more user-friendly controls, imaginative materials. The present paper focuses on how Digital Language Laboratory can be effectively used for the teaching and learning of Target Language (TL) to ESL Learners. The language trainer can utilize the different functions of language lab softwares to facilitate the TL learning process. It is also observed that digital Language Lab not only deals with the pronunciation skill of the learner but also it develops other three skills (Reading, Writing and Speaking) respectively. This Technology Enhanced Language Learning (TELL) tool is the panacea for all ESL learners.

Edgar R. Eslit, Prof.
St. Michael’s College, Iligan City, 9200 Philippines

Efficacy of Workbook in Teaching College English

Nowadays, workbooks are taking a prominent role in classroom instructions.  In previous years, two years to be exact, I used to ask my students to buy a “workbook” from other school which I incorporated in my English 2 subject.  While it came so handy because it can easily be bought from the Finance Office, it made me realize that something isn’t right.  It’s not the workbook per se but on how it is being acquired. While it significantly helped the performance of my students, it’s acquisition would seemed to be in shady question for we all know that there are so many teachers in SMC who are capable of making it, yet, its fruition has not been fully realized.  But that’s not the priority in my consideration.  The question remains if it is effective to use as a tool for language instruction or will it create a better impact on the performance of the students and its users like the instructors? It left me wondering.  With its use, though, I felt my teaching could be improved by incorporating all the activities from my workbook into my day-to-day lessons.

English 1 materials can be complex and complicated for freshmen students to understand their lessons.  But with the newest trend in instruction which is the use of a workbook, this helps a lot in organizing their lessons comprehensively.  Workbook can also increase teachers’ creative instruction by breaking down the concepts into smaller pieces of information.  The effects of its use have been studied and the results have shown that they are an effective method of teaching language and reading comprehension (Merkley, 2006).  I would like to expound on it in this action research by studying its impact in my classroom.  How effective is its use or how it enhances my instruction in teaching English 1 will also be touched in this paper.  With the distributed questionnaires, the result of which will answer the contention of this paper if the workbook has made an impact in the performance of the college students.

Edita Pelicano, Ms.
English Department, Our Lady of Fatima University, Philippines

Listening Styles and Listening Comprehension of Nursing Students

The study investigated the relationship between the listening styles and listening comprehension of the 219 fourth year nursing students of Our Lady of Fatima University.  It utilized the Listening Style Inventory questionnaire to know the listening styles of the respondents and the listening section of the TOEFL to measure the students’ listening comprehension level.

Three listening styles appeared: passive, involved and active; no one was a detached listener; majority were involved listeners and the least were the active listeners. The female students had a higher mean score and the active listeners obtained the highest mean score. Highly significant positive correlation of age with listening style indicates that the older students tend to be more active listeners while the younger ones tend to be more passive listeners.  The correlation between the students’ gender and listening comprehension, while negative, did not attain the level of significance.  The listening styles of the students appear to be highly and positively correlated with their listening comprehension scores. The ANOVA results showed that highly significant differences exist within the comparison of the students’ listening comprehension scores among the three different listening styles.  There is a corresponding upward movement in listening styles from passive to active listening style.

Fatemeh Tabassi Mofrad
MA Student of TEFL, Tarbiat Modares University, Tehran, Iran

The Influence of Form-focused Consciousness Raising on
Reading Comprehension through Explicit and Implicit Knowledge of Grammar for EAP Learners

This paper examines the degree of effectiveness of grammar input through consciousness raising on reading comprehension for non-master of English EAP learners by putting emphasis on form-focused instruction and by considering the fact that, the knowledge of grammar of whatever kind is an important component of L2 proficiency (Ellis, et al., 2009). Fifty three PhD applicants participated in this forty five-hour comprehensive grammar course. Students then completed a questionnaire regarding their opinions about the grammar practice and its impact on reading comprehension. The data suggest that although there are disagreements about the place of grammar in ELT, in case of EAP learners, grammar proves to be influential to help them in their academic reading comprehension. The results of this paper show the way students benefit from implicit knowledge of grammar in reading comprehension as explicit grammatical knowledge can be converted into implicit knowledge by involving primarily analyzed knowledge and secondarily as metalanguage (Purpura, 2004).

Finn Harvor, Assist. Prof.
Hankuk University of Foreign Studies, Yongin Campus

\ Digital Opportunity or Digital Excess? E-Publishing and the Reading Habits of University Students

From its rather uncertain inception around a decade ago, e-publishing has become a central aspect of the trade publishing industry (that is, that branch of publishing that sells books to the general public). Textbook publishing is yet to truly make e-publishing part of its business practice. Yet at the same time, particularly with the advent of smart phones, students are now as addicted to reading on screens as they ever have been. As one instructor at a Canadian University whom I interviewed put it, students actually prefer reading on screens. What is the future of the print book in such an environment? Does it have one? Should it have one? Are there differences in reading from a screen and a page? What economic factors will drive changing reading habits? Since all these questions are so current, it is difficult to arrive at final answers. Yet considering these questions now is crucial since technological change will keep occurring in classrooms; some form of change is inevitable. 

Ganesh C. Wagh, Prof.
R.B.N.B. College, Shrirampur, Maharashtra, (India)

Use of Films and Advertisements in Teaching of English: Technology Enhanced Language Learning

It is generally observed that ESL learners in India especially in rural areas fail to learn English adequately even after their contact with (SL)/ TL for six years at schools and colleges. It is also observed that lack of motivation is the big cause and hindrance in the learning of Target Language (TL). Factors like traditional teaching methods, untrained teachers, lecture mode teaching, absence of opportunity to interact in TL outside of the classroom, uninteresting teaching materials are the factors responsible for the learning abilities of the students. Researchers and language trainers have suggested and adopted various innovative and novel methods of teaching Target Language (TL) in vernacular teaching-learning environment. It is seen that Second Language Learner’s (SLL) adopt language skills effectively if they are given an opportunity to come in contact with TL by the utilization of Technology Enhanced teaching tools, films and advertisements in TL teaching.

The present paper focuses on the effective use of TELL, Films and advertisements in TL teaching which enhances the learning ability of ESL students and also enriches four skills of language learners. The TL teacher/ trainer can use English films and advertisements in teaching of English as TL learning and can motivate the students in learning TL. The Technology Enhanced language learning will obviously help the TL teachers and students in teaching and learning process with desired objectives. Technology Enhanced Language Learning also includes use of technology such as internet, Computer Assisted Language Learning, digital language laboratory etc. The language teacher can effectively use these tools to facilitate TL teaching and learning process.

Glyn B. Gabano-Magbanua
University of Southern Mindanao, Philippines

Fluency Training on Students’ Language Anxiety: Insights from the Oral Communication Classroom

The mastery of the English language will certainly ascertain the world-class status of any higher learning institution. However, in the Philippines as in other parts of the world where English is not the first language, teachers find it difficult to teach oral communication skills in English to the students. More often than not, in an oral communication classroom, students generally sit quietly in the class, listening intently to the teacher and carefully taking notes when the teacher writes something on the board. The usual assumption among teachers had always been that students had poor foundation of English in their previous schooling and that they are not given enough opportunities to speak English in the classroom as the teacher would almost always resort to translation in order to foster the understanding of the lesson. What is often taken for granted however is the students’ anxiety towards using oral English in the classroom.

This paper presents the lived experiences of ESL students who were introduced to a warm and easy going classroom with activities geared towards developing their fluency in English, and the role this particular linguistic context plays in controlling the students’ language anxiety. The subjects involved three groups of tertiary students enrolled in Oral Communication subject. Upon evaluation of the effectiveness of the pedagogy, student behaviors toward spoken English revealed a positive change. Moreover, students themselves reported that the pedagogy encouraged them to become more participative resulting to a more interactive English as a Second Language classroom.

Hema Letchamanan & Kasthoori Bai Munusamy Naidu
Centre for Languages, Taylor’s University, Malaysia

Debate: a teaching-learning strategy to enhance intercultural understanding in a tertiary language classroom.

This paper presents findings from a reflective case study which set out to study the use of debate as a teaching-learning strategy. It also features the key benefits of using debate as a teaching-learning strategy to enhance intercultural understanding amongst students from multicultural backgrounds in a tertiary language classroom. Social constructivism which focuses on collaborative learning and places importance on cultural context is employed as the theoretical framework for this research. By combining the data gathered from observation and literature, a rubric was developed to measure students’ involvement and language progress in debate. The researchers report that the implementation of this teaching-learning strategy in two Upper Intermediate level English language classrooms in a higher education institution has brought forth two pertinent benefits; students from different cultural backgrounds have not only gained a better understanding of values and belief systems of cultures other than theirs but have also gained confidence in using the English language in formal situations. The researchers find this strategy effective because it demands that students actively involve in - researching the issues at hand, developing logical arguments, discerning arguments, distinguishing fact from opinion, asking cogent questions, accepting and integrating evidence-based information and reconstructing arguments. Further, students involved in this case study reflect that debate is also a more fun-filled strategy that encourages their accountability. 

Keywords: intercultural, tertiary language classroom, debate, teaching-learning strategy

Irene S. Linag, Prof.
La Consolacion University Philippines.

Modernistic Interpretation Approach in Infusing Literature

Students’ appalling revelation in their “My Expectations” journals written in the beginning of the course disclosed that classic literature has lost its appeal to tertiary education learners, which, they say “has lost its vivacity” due to its irrelevance to their modern life. In order to infuse literature into students’ present life, literature educators must recognize the palpable demand for an appropriately innovative teaching technique that must address the diversity of learning styles among students. To meet this end, this study was conducted to investigate whether modernistic interpretation of selected literary pieces in Philippine classics in English may arouse students’ appreciation of the course. The study specified six literary pieces from Philippine literature in English including short stories, anecdote, narrative essay and novel for theatrical presentation which were assigned to students in groups who then conceptualized modern interpretation of assigned narratives. Students were tasked to draft a script, rehearse and prepare platform stage as phases in their performance task. Opinions on scenarios presented and life’s problems delved on in each theater were pooled from audience and actors. At the end of each performance, students discussed their insights from the theme of the presentation and the latter’s implications to their present life – as student, as part of their family (sibling of child), as member of the society, as future professional and as citizen of their country – in the form of a journal. Students’ year-end journal entries contradicted their initial impression on literature as per its relevance to their present life. Modernistic interpretation helped enhance students’ appreciation and interest in literature and therefore affirmed the effectiveness of this innovative approach to teaching-learning literature. The study laid down pedagogical implications drawn from the findings, and discussed recommendations in the light of authentic tasks and learning styles.

Ismail Fayed, Ali Hussein, Amer Yacoub, Ahmed AlKhazindar, Anas Attal,
Mahmoud Moustafa, Zakaria Gaga, Adnan Alkhiami, Yousif Ali
Qatar University, Qatar

Exploring the Impact of Using Tablet/ Mobile Devices
in Enhancing Students Listening and Speaking Skills in Tertiary Education

With the massive increase in using mobile devices among individuals of all social backgrounds, the question of how these mobile devices may enhance learning arises. Smart mobile phones and the most recent tablet computers have all sustained the vision and potentials of using mobile devices in education and learning. The unprecedented popularity of these devices among teenage learners both in high schools and university level encourages all researchers and educators to explore their influence on learning among individuals and groups. In this research project, students will explore the potentials of using mobile devices and new tablet technologies to sustain students acquisition of listening and speaking skills in English as a second language (ESL). They will highlight the key features in these modern devices that support these language skills. This investigation process aims to identify possible educational mobile features such as mobile applications developed by other users, mobile collaboration applications over wireless connection, language games, synchronous and asynchronous technologies for optimum use of these devices particularly by tertiary level students in a positive and rather educational manner.

This study attempts to investigate learners’ perceptions of using smart phones for learning. It also explores learners’ motivation to learn English oral skills using tablets and smart mobile phones. Findings of this study will be reported through this presentation. Other findings include reports of using a new smart app developed for QU students to practice ESL skills directly from mobile.

Joanne Koay Lai Keok
A member of The University of Nottingham ALUMNI
Instructional English Varieties: A concern to Malaysian English Language Teachers

The variety of Malaysian English has been an issue of concern to the Malaysian English teachers now and then. In order to explore the views of local English teachers with regard to the variety of English in the context of classroom realism, a mini research was conducted to gain an insight on this aspect. The survey sheet designed comprises three sections: section one touches on the type of classroom English teachers prefer; section two addresses the popular classroom models –RP and GA, phonology and teachers’ attitude towards English language accent; and section three focuses on the lexical feature of Malaysian English: Rojak English, code-mixing and the level of acceptability. Next, the designed survey sheets were given to the English teachers from a local college and a high school respectively. As these teachers received formal training in TESOL or TESL and have worked as English teachers for several years, their views could serve as a reference to any debate of similar concern. Subsequently, these data were discussed, analysed and summarised. Taking into consideration of the vibes of global communication nowadays, intelligibility seems gaining greater importance than before. EIL (English for International Language) becomes another option for teachers who deal with international students or ‘a member of a bigger family’ (Jenkins, 2002). One of the intriguing findings in relation to this localised English variety is its level of intelligibility is satisfactory, despite the fact that Rojak English being the most perplexing feature in Malaysian English. With regard to the myth who speaks the purest English, most of the respondents disagreed that people from London and New York, the inner core, speak the purest English compared to all varieties. Taking into account that this sampling is relatively small, further research is still needed to validate this myth.

John Mark Storey
Centre for the Promotion of Knowledge & Language Learning, Universiti Malaysia Sabah

Should undergraduate students be introduced to a greater range of written genres in EAP courses?
A pilot study from a Malaysian university

This study set out to determine whether the current EAP programme conducted at Universiti Malaysia Sabah introduces students to a sufficient range of written academic genres (e.g. experiment write ups, test reports, reflective writing) for them to be able to cope with the specific coursework demands of their undergraduate programmes. Focusing on the School of Science & Technology, the researcher investigated 10 science programmes and their syllabus requirements to establish the suitability of the writing formats and genres being currently taught in the EAP classroom.  Questionnaires were distributed to the co-ordinators of each science subject programme. The study concludes that greater emphasis should be placed on science-specific genre writing and suggests that previously too much importance has been placed on teaching the components and the rhetorical moves associated with general academic essay types (e.g. analytical, persuasive, argumentative) and the requirements of humanities courses. The broader implications of this study are that while the teaching of general writing strategies remains important, better and closer ties between EAP facilitators and undergraduate programme designers are necessary to ensure that the written genres being taught to students are of practical benefit to them in the completion of their course assignments

Kamariah Samsudin 1, Simone Evans, Dr 2., Er Eng Lee 3, T.Vanitha Thanabalan, Dr 4. & Ananda Kumar 5
13  Lecturer in Quality and Assurance Dept. ELTC, 2 Training Fellow, ELTC,
4 Lecturer in Research & Development, ELTC, 5 Lecturer in Language & Literacy, ELTC

An alternative syllabus for Teaching of Oracy in Teacher Training:
Creating and Developing Cognitive Dissonance

Developing Oracy is a critical area in ELT. Though multiple researches have been done on this area, it is evident that there is a need for further considerations to develop oracy. As English language teaching professionals, it is crucial that we take responsibility to engage ourselves in informing best practices in this domain.

The existing curriculum for oracy in our training institutions focus much on creating stimulus to allow optimal practice in both listening and speaking. A lot of effort is still given to providing real context listening and speaking opportunities with the assumption that this exercise will lead to proficiency in oracy. However, teaching oracy involves more than this.

Teaching listening and speaking for example means developing the capacity to understand aural and oral texts.  There is a need to provide opportunity for learners to make decisions based on linguistic requirements. Therefore we propose that the pedagogy for oracy to be closely related to the creation and development of cognitive dissonance. This means in teaching oracy especially among adult learners, we need to include elements of meaning making which are para-linguistic features, learners’ life experience and context as well as extra-linguistic features of spoken language.

These elements of meaning making are no doubt necessary and provided as basic information in our teacher training curriculum. However, to what extent, are these elements translated in the pedagogy for Oracy? Do we include in our training a domain on developing cognitive dissonance where we explicitly teach people to analyse these elements of meaning making? In this paper, the authors present an alternative syllabi for the teaching of Oracy in which we include ways of creating and developing cognitive dissonance as part of developing oracy. We will also discuss some implications towards the development of teacher training curriculum in ELT.

Kam, Ling Ling Eunice 1, Vighnarajah2* & Chin, Yen Looi 3
1,2* School of Education, Languages & Communications, Wawasan Open University
3 Centre for Languages, Taylor’s University

Understanding the Role of Set Inductions in the Facilitation of Reading Skills

For the Teaching of English as Second Language, learning and mastering the English language can be challenging, daunting and sometimes dull. From a skills-based approach in language teaching, the language is divided into the four skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing. Reading is the foundation of learning new knowledge and gaining new skills, therefore, the ultimate goal of reading is to achieve comprehension. In other words, reading is a meaning making process and this belief is supported by the constructivist view point that students in a reading class should be active participants in meaning making. Although this is desirable, achieving it can prove to be challenging. Hence, English teachers often attempt various strategies and methods to make English lessons interesting to promote students’ motivation and active participation in the teaching and learning process. In this connection, this paper presents interview findings from a six-week study conducted to examine the role of set induction in the promotion of motivation and facilitation of reading skills of the English language. The samples involved were two Intermediate level groups of foreign students who are weak in the English language and undergoing the intensive English course at a private institution of higher learning in Malaysia. Findings indicate that appropriate selection and integration of set induction plays a critical role in motivating students to successfully attempt reading tasks as well as facilitating the necessary reading skills involved in this process.

Loo Soo Yee
Politeknik Sandakan Sabah

Effective of Cooperative Learning on Semester One Polytechnic Students’ Achievement
in Essay Writing Assessment

The main objective of this paper is to discover whether cooperative learning affects Semester One Polytechnic students’ achievement in essay writing (Reaction Paper) assessment in that particular polytechnic college. Quantitative research method was used in this research. The respondents were from two classes or programmes (48 students) of Semester One students in Politeknik Sandakan Sabah. An adapted cooperative learning model was used to carry out the essay writing activities with the Experiment Group (20 students). These activities using the cooperative learning was carried out in groups with the group members’ assigned roles. They will work together to complete the task. The Control Group (28 students) did not use the cooperative learning model. However, the essay writing topics, teaching aids and worksheets were the same. Both groups were given the pre-test and post-test. These tests involved essay writing based on a given topic. Results from both tests were marked based on an adapted writing rubric and analysed using the “Statistical Package for Social Science” or SPSS 11.0 for Windows. Paired Samples T-test was used to evaluate the differences in means between the 2 groups. The Paired Sample T-test shows that significant (p-value) is 0.000, smaller than α = 0.05. Therefore, this supported the hypothesis that students presented with cooperative learning have higher score on English essay writing (Reaction Paper) than those presented with individual learning. The treatment Group’s mean shows an increase of 10.65 and the Control Group’s mean show an increase of 2.07 in the post test despite the different methodologies used on them. However, the increase in the Treatment Group’s mean is higher than the increase in the Control Group’s mean. This means, the students in the Treatment Group fare better than the students in the Control Group. No doubt, cooperative learning affects Semester One Polytechnic students’ achievement in essay writing (Reaction Paper) assessment.

Marinel L. Piamonte

Language Learning Attitude: Its Implication to Language Proficiency and Teaching Strategy

This study explores on the language learning attitude of the Freshmen IT students on the area of self- image, inhibition, risk-taking, ego permeability and tolerance of ambiguity in relation to the learning of English and Filipino languages. It utilized the combination of Qualitative and Statistical analysis of the data produced from the use of a ready- made questionnaire on Language Learning Attitude. The findings reveal a mere average language proficiency of the IT students in English as well as in Filipino. The respondents are above average in their self-image, risk-taking, ego permeability, and tolerance of ambiguity despite being highly inhibited. There is no significant difference between the male and female respondents in the areas of self-image, inhibition, ego permeability as well as tolerance of ambiguity, but the females are significantly higher in their risk-taking attitude. Together, these results imply the need for language teachers to greatly consider the affective variables in teaching the language by modifying their strategies, teaching goals as well as their evaluation materials.

Keywords: language learning attitude, self-image, inhibition, risk-taking, ego permeability, ambiguity, motivation,
                    behavioral and social cognitive theories

Nettie Boivin
Training Fellow, IPG – KL

Using Multimodal Technology in the Malaysian Context – Working Around Constraints

This paper presents how to implement multimodal technology, not just as a fun teaching practice, but rather as an effective engaging tool to best facilitate students language learning. The paper highlights how a theoretical approach can be applied regardless of constraints. The class was an MA TESOL academic language support for international students from China and other Asian countries. The original lesson plan contained a paper-based task in academic writing to facilitate students understanding of the differences between academic and informal sentence construction. Due to the energy level in the class and the researchers’ belief in engaging students through relevant practices I employed SMS as a modality that was relevant to the students. The justification was based on the knowledge of students’ had access to and constantly used smart phones. The lesson was a success in that it engaged the students at a particularly busy academic period in the University term. The activities facilitated students ‘noticing the gap’ between formal and informal language (Marton, Hounsell, & Entwistle, 1997; Schmidt, 2001). This process contained the following pedagogical elements; the sentences had relevance to the student, using the technology to engage them, the process highlighted the importance of genre and audience when understanding difference in formal and informal sentence construction. Furthermore, the paper will discuss how these multimodal techniques can be adapted for constraints in the Malaysian context.

Nurul ‘Izzati Md Fuad
Language Department, IPG Kampus Dato’ Razali Ismail, Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia

Storytelling in a Digital Age:
The Use of Digital Storytelling among Pre-service Teachers in Literature Classroom

Today, the learning methods that are being used by the pre-service teacher educators have evolved from being teacher-centred to more student-centered. Besides that, the digital age has created various new possibilities of introducing technology into the teaching and learning process. This development may have created more independent learners who are willing to search for the information themselves and not merely dependent on the input given by the educators. Through the use of technology the learners would be able to search, synthesize and even create new knowledge. These skills are important for the 21st century learners and beneficial for their lifelong learning process. Digital storytelling is a new concept of storytelling which requires the learners to tell a story using the new media. By adapting this approach the learners would be encouraged to think creative and critically. This study focused on the pre-service teachers majoring in TESL from Teacher Training Institute in Dato’ Razali Ismail Campus, Kuala Terengganu. The participants were required to use digital storytelling to present their ideas and point of view based on selected literature texts. This study sheds light on how digital storytelling could be used in a literature class setting and the obstacles that were faced in carrying out the approach. The findings of this study are significant for teacher educators and educators in general who are interested in the ways digital storytelling could be used in language learning.

Orhan Cakiroglu, Ph.D. Assist. Prof. Dr.
Karadeniz Technical University, Turkey

Foreign Language Teaching in Tertiary Education: A Turkish Perspective

Foreign language teaching has a crucial importance in Turkish education system. As a candidate country to the European Union, Turkish educators need to support foreign language education in a more productive manner than it was provided in the past. The purpose of this presentation is to provide an overview of the current situations and developments of teaching of foreign languages in Turkey. This presentation will consist of three sections. In the first section, the main barriers to good quality o foreign language education will be identified. In the second section, several similarities between Turkey and other countries will be presented. Finally, the potential effective suggestions to provide a better foreign language education will be provided.

By attending this presentation, participants will expand their knowledge about foreign language education in other countries, specifically in Turkey. In addition, suggestions and experiences reported during the presentation will help the participants to consider these suggestions while promoting language education in their countries.

F. Özlem Saka, Assistant Prof. Dr.
Akdeniz University, Turkey

Benefits of Reading Short Stories in Language Classes

Reading literature in language classes is very important to contribute the language learning process. As a part of the target culture, literature supports language learning in many ways. Therefore, examples of literature are included in most curriculum to some extend. At university, especially at the foreign language teaching departments, English teacher candidates have to attend literature classes and learn how to use literary texts in EFL situations. This study is a descriptive study which shows the ideas of students related to the benefits of short stories in EFL situations. At the beginning of the research, the students resist reading examples of literature, thinking that they are boring, difficult to understand and unnecessary. As reading short stories is the quick way of getting into and out of literature, short story is the first genre they come across as a literary work. After studying 7 different short stories in detail, the junior students at the ELT department of Akdeniz University were given a questionnaire asking their ideas about the benefits of short stories. The research group was composed of 40 students. According to the results of the questionnaire, it is understood that besides understanding it is not difficult, boring and unnecessary, they also become aware of the fact that reading short stories has contributed to them in many ways. The answers for the questionnaire were examined through SPSS and the results were interpreted. Some suggestions were made to improve EFL situations.

Parmeshor Baral
Prithivi Narayan Campus, Pokhara, Nepal

Comparing the effectiveness of note giving and elaborated explanation in two English classes

The use of providing lecture note is not a new concept and phenomenon in the arena of English Language Teaching (ELT) as it has been practiced since the time English language was used in Nepal. The teachers prefer to provide elaborated notes to their students and minimize time spent on of subject matter, including facts, evidences and so forth. Meanwhile, some teachers prefer to provide brief points but spend a lot of time explaining the main concept, including examples, anecdotes, facts, evidences, etc. This paper draws upon the results from a small study carried out to find whether note giving or elaborated explanation is good in language classroom in which students already have similar linguistic background, intact groups were used. The students were first administered a pretest. They were then divided into two groups: one was taught by providing elaborated notes while the other was taught with elaborative explanation. The findings suggest that elaborated explanation’s superiority rather than note giving results among the students.

Persis Dineen Rodrigues 1 & Malachi Edwin Vethamani, Prof. Dr. 2
1 Centre for Languages, Taylor’s University & 2 School of Education, Taylor’s University

The Impact of Online Learning in Spoken Discourse among the ESL Learners in a Tertiary Education

The concept of language learning using technology has brought both language instructors and learners to explore the effectiveness of online learning approach. Such computer-mediated activity provides an online platform for ESL learners to further practise their spoken discourse in an individualised learning environment at their own pace and time. This learning approach allows the learners to practise their conversations beyond their classroom learning. This paper presents the findings of effectiveness of the English Proficiency in Conversation (EPiC) online learning that influence the speaking performance of the EPiC group and non-EPiC group in a 12-week Intensive English Programme (IEN). A total of 19 participants took part in this pilot study, and collection of data was carried out via the use of EPiC evaluation, speaking scores, semi-structured interviews and learning journals. The results indicate that the EPiC group performed better than the non-EPiC group in speaking skills. The implications of this study are discussed along with the suggestions for further research.

Key words: Blended learning in spoken discourse, individualised learning, improvement in oral skills, beyond
                    classroom learning

Rajandaran Perumal, Dr.
School of Education, Taylors University, Malaysia

The use of literary texts in the classroom: collaboration between teachers and students

Collaboration in the classroom can also be a cooperative exercise between students and teachers. This paper, based on a qualitative research carried out in a university, discusses how a collaborative discussion between students and teachers can contribute to a more effective literature-based language classroom. Using journals, online forums and interviews, the researcher was able to facilitate an open discussion where students in a tertiary institution were able to provide their views of effective use of literary texts in the classroom. Students need not be the receiving end of the decisions made by teachers in the selection of literary texts in the classroom. This paper will deliberate how students can be a source of information and guide in the selection and use of literary texts in the language and the literature classroom.

Rajendraprasad Y Shinde1, Dr. & Smita Nayak, Mrs. 2
1 Head, Department of English, K.V. College, Wai, Dist. Satara, MH, India
& 2 Lecturer, MES College, Vasco, Goa, India

“Use of Satellite and Cable T V in Teaching English Literature”

The subject of this paper is the use of satellite technology for the effective teaching of literary works. We use ICT as the general term that includes radio, television, cell phones, satellite communication, software, audio-visual aides and other such means. This paper is limited to the use of C Band Satellite System which can be used to teach English Language and Literature. Students understood the social milieu from the visual medium of watching the films. The informal atmosphere in the Department and watching various programmes like Talk Shows on BBC like Hard Talk, News Bulletins help students to understand the nuances of creative use of language in literature. In the traditional teaching books are used for all purposes of explaining the social background of a literary work but actual visual impact of watching those particular countries eliminates the first language culture impact on their minds and they will easily get accustomed to the culture of English Language, Western Culture. They will easily catch the differences between their own culture and the foreign culture.

Reza Raissi
Universiti Teknologi Malaysia

Do student-student interactions improve their language learning?
A comparison between GTM and CLT approaches in this way.

The interaction hypothesis for second language learning has been supported by empirical research demonstrating that learning is facilitated by interaction in the target language. However, interaction between native speakers (NSs) and nonnative speakers (NNSs) differs in significant ways from interaction between NNSs. Because of these differences, the question of whether foreign language learning is facilitated by NNS-NNS interactions remains unanswered. The purpose of the current research is to investigate this question to this end the researcher used two different and famous approaches of language teaching namely communicative language teaching (CLT) and grammar translation method (GTM) in his two different classes to see whether interactions can help them to improve their language proficiency . Researcher used two different teaching approaches which are considered as the focus of attention in the EFL/ESL contexts namely Communicative Language Teaching and Grammar Translation Method (GTM) in an ESL context of Malaysia. Two groups of the participants have been participated in this study namely control group and treatment group, students of the treatment group have received the CLT instruction in which they had high amount of interaction in the considered classes during 14 weeks of the classes while students in the control group didn’t receive any interaction in the target language by implementing GTM approach. Pretest and delayed posttest have been used in this study for measuring student’s proficiency during the course instruction. Results of the experiment have been analyzed descriptively which shows that by implementing CLT and incorporating interaction among nonnative students, their general knowledge of English can be improved significantly, at the end of the research some useful pedagogical implications have been supported by the researcher which can be useful to the body of knowledge as well as ESL/EFL contexts.

Salma Ainy, PhD
Associate Professor (English Language and Literature)
Bangladesh Open University, Gazipur 1705

Teaching of English Literature to Bangladesh Open University Distant Learners

This paper aims at investigating the possibility of making literature an effective area of study to the open university learners, who will be receiving education through distant mode. I shall speculate and discuss how the benefits of learning literature could be spread throughout the target society to minimize the discrepancy between different educational opportunities offered to the individual. In order to combine these aspects and to present concluding recommendations, the areas that I hope to throw light especially on are the advantages literature offers both from humanistic point of view as well as from the linguistic one, and also the role of the open university in catering for the needs of the masses.

At present, in Bangladesh, the teaching of literature, has been put into the area of neglect and is also thought to be a branch that is connected with face-to-face teaching initiating direct enjoyment and critical thinking about literary texts, especially classics. Therefore, in a situation where face-to-face teaching is limited, study of literature poses a significant challenge. It is even more difficult when the system is to address an emergent student body comprised mostly of mature students who are likely been away from mainstream education for quite sometime, and therefore, suffer from the fear of the newest trends in education where they are expected to pace themselves with the available resources.

This paper therefore, would try to trace the different answers provided to these challenges of teaching literature in the language teaching arena. It also would try to throw some light on the different e-learning aids that are useful in disseminating teaching through distant mode. This study overall aims at discussing the objectives, methods, educational material and educational procedures, that would be helpful in introducing literary texts at Bangladesh Open University.

Seyed Hassan Talebi, Assist. Prof. Dr.
The University of Mazandaran, Iran

Cross-linguistic Transfer of Reading Strategies and Reader’s Autonomy: A Process View

The concept of autonomous learning in foreign language teaching was first introduced by Henri Holec (1981:3). He defines learner autonomy as “learners’ ability to manage his learning”. Focus on the process of reading, not just on the product, makes less able learners be more effective learners. This paper intends to discuss issues in transfer of reading strategies across languages and relate it to the concept of autonomy. Three experimental studies as carried out in this regard by the author will be discussed. It is concluded that for training readers who take responsibility for their reading we need to familiarize them with the process of reading. In other words, in order to have readers who are autonomous in reading in a given language, say L1, L2, or any further language, we should familiarize students with strategic reading. However, these attitudinal changes towards reading tasks in a particular language can be observed in other languages as a result of cross-linguistic transfer of attitudes.

Key words: Transfer, reading strategy, autonomy

The Relationship of Linguality and the Degree of Reading Strategies Awareness and Use with Reading Comprehension Ability of poetic texts in ESL context

This study is intended to investigate whether the degree of reading strategies awareness and use and Linguality of the learners will have any effect on students' reading comprehension ability. It is also going to find out whether there is a significant interaction between reading strategies and linguality in reading scores. To this purpose a reading proficiency test, a reading comprehension test composed of three poems and a reading strategies questionnaire for poems containing 37 items as a retrospective measure of determining the students' awareness and use of reading strategies while reading poetic texts were distributed. The data analysis showed that students with high reading strategy score had significantly higher reading scores compared to students with low reading strategy score and that bilinguals had significantly higher reading scores than monolingual students. Lastly, the interaction effect between reading strategy and linguality was found to be non-significant indicating that pattern of reading scores was same for mono- and bi-lingual students irrespective of their reading strategy levels. It is suggested that to improve the reading comprehension ability of our learners we need to have strategic readers who use strategies highly and effectively. In addition, in contexts in which we have monoloingual and bilingual students attending in one classroom we should consider the differences they have in reading comprehension ability of poetic texts. Monolingual students seem to need more help from the side of teacher in order to get more awareness of strategies of reading and to use them more effectively.

Key words: Linguality, reading strategies awareness, poetic texts

Shobha Nandagopal
HOD, Foundation Department, Oman Medical College, Muscat, Oman

  Using CLIL to Foster Critical Thinking and Independent Learning in ESL Medical Students

Content and language integrated learning’ (CLIL) teaches content through a foreign/second language enabling, for example, EFL/ESL students to use their English skills immediately, rather than developing those skills at the moment for use afterward.  However, language skills and content knowledge are only two elements of the skill set necessary for success in higher education.  Given current emphasis on teaching students ‘how to think’ (instead of ‘what to know’), it is equally pertinent that students develop skills for abstract thinking and independent learning. This is particularly relevant in countries where primary/secondary education retains a tradition of rote memorization. In this situation, EFL/ESL students can benefit from expanding CLIL beyond English and content instruction, via a curriculum that fosters critical-thinking, problem-solving, and independent learning.  Such a CLIL-English course was offered to premedical ESL students at Oman Medical College.  The course took the format of an electronic journal club and seminar series.  It was team-taught and assessed by English, science, IT, and clinical instructors.  Students had readings from medical journals and then seminars on the same topics by content experts.  Students extended their content knowledge via independent study, small-group peer discussions, and online-forum discussions with peers and content experts.  Thereafter, students summarized their findings in written reports and oral presentations.  Students were assessed for language and content in small-group and online discussions, written reports, and oral presentations. The multidisciplinary, cross-curricular approach emphasized the inherent integrated nature of medicine. Moreover, it helped students to perceive the ‘bigger picture’ of each topic, which in turn discouraged the compartmentalization of English skills and content knowledge.  Students rated the course with high satisfaction.  Also, it appeared to improve their academic performance in subsequent medical coursework. This prototype course is highly adaptable and can be tailored to fit the requirements of other ESL/ESP programs.

Simon Williams.
Taylor’s University, Malaysia

Investigating EFL writing proficiency using a Task-based learning framework

New teaching methodologies are being created and implemented into classrooms everyday. This study takes a Task-based learning (TBL) framework and adapts it for the EFL classroom. In order to investigate the possible benefits of this framework to students’ writing proficiency, a quantitative study was carried out at a university in Malaysia. In total one hundred and eleven scripts from a pre,during and post test were analysed from experimental and control groups. To do this, the scripts were analysed for overall content with a rubric and a T-unit measure for accuracy. In the case of this study, the hypothesis of increased writing proficiency from the use of a TBL framework was rejected as there was no significant difference in findings from the experimental to the control group.

Subashini Rajanthran
Nilai University College

Promoting a Global Awareness Perspective within English Language Teaching

This paper examines the notion of promoting global awareness in the language classroom. It is conceived as a result of an ongoing research on the development of global awareness among university students in a private institution of higher learning. This paper further aims to promote the dual roles of English language teachers. First and foremost, language teachers are the conveyors of linguistic knowledge, and secondly, they are educators who raise an awareness and understanding in students on how the world they live in functions. Thus, language teaching should not be confined to linguistic skills development but must also hone other relevant skills that enable students to function independently, think competently, creatively and most importantly be sensitive to the numerous issues in their surroundings. The focus of research is on the current English language curriculum which reflects evidence that pertinent issues relating to global awareness are missing or are inadequately dealt with.  This gap in the curriculum reveals a lack of skills and attitudes that students will require to confront future global challenges, especially so as we move towards a borderless world.  This paper further aims to share ideas and information regarding the types of  activities that can be conducted in the classroom  which links English language teaching and global issues, namely hunger and poverty, globalisation, human rights, and social responsibility. The highlight of this research is to promote a global awareness perspective within English language teaching. The inclusion of global awareness elements in the curriculum will enable undergraduates to expand their views of the world and make them be aware of the need to think critically about the diverse cultures, economical and environmental perspectives. The classroom activities presented will further equip learners with the knowledge, skills and values which can help them confront local and global issues.

Sujatha Krishnan & Mohd Ridhwan Abdullah
Centre for Languages, Taylor’s University, Malaysia

“Lights, Camera, Speak! - Enhancing English Language Proficiency
through Self-Recorded Videos in Speaking Lessons”

In this age of technology, English as a second language (ESL) classes have to be more relevant and interesting to appeal to our technology-savvy students. Instead of being given the typical learning experience of ‘talk and chalk’ where the teacher is in the center stage, this study aims to get students to be collaborative partners in their own learning. This research-based paper looks at enhancing undergraduates’ proficiency levels using self-recorded videos in a language classroom in a tertiary setting. The students were given a set of assignments which enable them to have the time and the opportunity to practice their presentations by doing a few takes of video until they are confident with their final product. The research was conducted for a whole semester and students were given ample time to complete the assigned projects. Prior to the assignment, the students were asked if they had any problems with doing self-recorded video and a sample for each assignment was also shown to better guide the students. Furthermore, the students were given immediate feedback to enable them to improve their performance. The final video is then submitted and feedback is given. This is a replacement to the typical PowerPoint-based presentation that has students doing a live presentation in front of their classmates, especially when they can be shy and have lack of confidence to perform. The findings of this study indicated that students performed better and were more confident with their overall performance.

Keywords: ESL, tertiary education, video technology, presentation skills, speaking

Tamas Kiss, Dr.1 & Csilla Weninger, Dr.2
1 2 Assistant Professor, National Institute of Education,
English Language and Literature Academic Group, Singapore

Textbooks, culture, and complexity in tertiary language teaching: Unexplored opportunities

This paper introduces a semiotic approach to analysing the cultural content of tertiary EFL/ESL textbook materials. It argues that while traditional content analyses may provide valuable insights, they overlook the cultural meaning potential of textbooks since they tend to ignore a key element: how language learners interact with texts and visuals imbedded in the framework of a pedagogic task. We demonstrate how cultural meanings can emerge through processes of unguided semiosis, supported by sharing and reflection in a complex, non-linear and essentially dynamic learning environment. For this to happen, however, teachers may need to reconsider their current approaches to teaching culture, embrace complexity, and allow order to emerge from chaos in their classrooms. The paper suggests that collaboratively negotiated and shared (re)presentations of cultural meaning contribute to the development of the learners’ global cultural awareness and prepares them for intercultural citizenship in our today’s world.

S.Thivviyah Sanmugam & Nyanaambigai Rajanthran
Politeknik Sultan Azlan Shah

The Use of Students’ Specialized Content in Communicative English Classrooms: Voices of English Language Lecturers

English language lecturers at polytechnics are responsible to prepare students from various fields such as engineering, business, hotel and catering, and Information Technology for occupational purposes.  However, these lecturers who are entering the domain of ESP teaching for the first time are skeptical about integrating students’ specialized content in their teaching and learning activities as they are graduates of Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) programmes. In addition, English Language syllabus in polytechnics has undergone a change from English for Technical Purposes and Commercial Purposes in 2002 to the teaching of Communicative English in the year 2010. Now, with the primary focus given to communicative syllabus, students’ specialized content is often ignored in the classroom. Thus, a research is conducted in order to investigate the perceptions of English Language lecturers on integrating students’ specialized content in the classroom. Data were collected from 65 English Language lecturers from three different polytechnics through the questionnaires, which were then analyzed to get the value of mean, frequency and percentage score. This study will allow relevant authorities to identify the perceptions, challenges and needs of the English language lecturers and to provide appropriate in-service training and courses in order to improve the teaching of English at Malaysian polytechnics.

Wei Keong Too, Assist. Prof. Dr.
The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus

Positioning English Language Teaching at the Tertiary Level in Malaysia

English language has played a prominent role in the Malaysian education, especially in tertiary level institutions.  For most tertiary institutions in Malaysia, a pass in the English language at the O-levels is a pre-requisite for enrolment.  For those who do not meet this minimum requirement of English language proficiency level, additional English language courses are offered to them and they will need to attain a certain level of English language proficiency before they can graduate from these institutions.  In addition, students are also required to enrol into one or two English language courses which are part of their programme of study.

Given its multiple roles at the Malaysian tertiary level institutions, understanding how English language is taught and learnt is important.  Two questions can help us understand the teaching and learning of English language in these institutions: What is taught in the English language courses?  How are these course taught?  In this presentation, I will present a case study comparing two different higher education institutions in their delivery of English language courses.  I shall discuss the types of courses offered, their delivery and assessments of these courses. The analysis will focus on the trends and challenges of offering these courses within the Malaysian context.  I will conclude my presentation by examining the implications and suggesting possible future directions in offering English language courses in Malaysia. 

Yasser Aminifard 1, Ebrahim Safaei 2 & Amin Aminifard 3

1 Islamic Azad University, Dehdasht Branch, Dehdasht, Iran, 2 Islamic Azad University, Shahreza Branch, Esfahan, Iran & 3 Department of Education, Yasouj, Iran

Speech Act of Suggestion across Language Proficiency, Gender and Age in Iranian Context

This study investigated how Iranian EFL learners made use of suggestion strategies. With this aim, 105 Iranian English learners participated in this study. A Discourse Completion Test (DCT) was used to generate data related to the suggestion strategies employed by the participants. Percentage and Chi-square test were used to analyze the data. The findings were compared with those of Jiang (2006) in order to find out the similarities and differences between Iranians and English natives with regard to their suggestion strategy use. Research findings revealed remarkable differences between natives and non-natives in terms of producing suggestion strategies. The findings further showed that different language proficiency levels did not produce any significant differences in the production of suggestion speech act. However, participants' performances considering different gender and age reached statistical significance. Finally pedagogical implications are discussed for the learning situation.

PRODUCT PRESENTATION 

Thomas Ng
The Founder, CEO, Genashtim Innovative Learning

Language - The difference between Knowledge Acquisition and Application

 “Learn about how EPiC Online (English Proficiency in Conversation Online) has leveraged technology and the internet to provide a convenient and cost-effective solution”

Much of the traditional approach towards language education is focussed on knowledge acquisition. Knowing the technical aspects of a language is quite different from being able to use the language - application. The ideal approach for application is total immersion. This typically means living for a period of time in an environment where people do not speak the language that you know, but speak the language that you are learning. This, in most cases, is logistically impractical and costly. With technology and the internet, there are convenient and cost effective solutions.

***Abstracts above are in the original form sent by the respective authors. No editing has been made to the abstracts by the Conference Organising Committee.

 
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