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UNIVERSIDAD CATOLICA DE LA SANTISIMA CONCEPCION

FACULTAD DE EDUCACION

How does direct instruction in Phonetics impact high


school students’ performance in the context of speaking
ability?

Evelyn Salcedo E
Monograph.
Mg.Roxanna Correa P.
Miss: Rachel Slought.

Concepción, September, 2008


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TABLE OF CONTENTS
Page
INTRODUCTION . . . 4

Abstract . . . 5

PART I: Analysis of the Issue

Problem Analysis . . . 6
Justification . . . 7
Research Question . . . 9
Objectives . . . 9

PART II: Theoretical Framework

Conceptual setting . . 10
Approaches to teaching Phonetics. . . 11
Current Educational Approach . . 15
Theoretical Discussion . . . 16
Direct Instruction . . . 16
Teaching Phonetics . . .
PART III: Methodology

Paradigm
Description of the Study . . .
Description of Artifacts . . .
a. Treatment . .
b. Artifacts . .
c. Sample of artifacts . .
1. Pre-test . . .
2. In depth Interview . . .
3. Standardized Interview . .
Timetable . . .

PART IV: DISCUSSION AND IMPLICATIONS OF DATA.

Impacts of the data . . . .


Projections . . .

PART V: BIBLIOGRAPHY . . .

References . . . .
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TABLE OF CHARTS
Page

Methodologies and skills focused throughout time . . . 12


Techniques in teaching pronunciation . . . 22
Aspects focused from phonetics. . . .
Investigation time table . . . . 2

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INTRODUCTION:

There is no doubt that the thousand students that are going through the
current Chilean Educational System are suffering the pressures from a society
that is strongly committed to make their students be competent in English as a
foreign language. At the same time there is an increasing awareness on the fact
that tools provided by the government are inefficient. Course books, contents and
the actual course syllabuses are not enough to make students both; understand
the way L21 works, and communicate effectively.

Amongst the many variables we may find when trying to produce the
perfect recipe to turn students into fluent speakers of English, we will realize that
phonetic issues related for instance to articulation and pronunciation will always
arise as inherent part of language acquisition. The importance we give to these
issues will certainly affect our students’ understanding of the language and
obviously their performance of L2.

When analyzing the current course books used in public schools, it is found
that phonetics are included in objectives but neither as a proper content, nor fully
introduced in classrooms. Chilean students lack an English Phonetic background
that could help them improving the quality of their oral skills.

In this context it seems to be extremely important to include certain


Phonetic instruction into our formal English classes in order to achieve the
communicative competence purpose. Nevertheless, this would require a
considerable effort from teachers who may feel threatened to deal with sound
features.

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The foreign language a person is aimed to learn.
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ABSTRACT:

In this investigation it will be analyzed the impact it would have on students


and in the acquisition of a 2target language to be taught Phonetics directly.

The research will be carried out by exploring two different dimensions.


Firstly the current inclusions of Phonetics as a proper feature of language in the
current Course Syllabi in public schools.

The second aspect that will be explored is the advantages of explicit


formation in Phonetics from the point of view of the teacher, the pupil and experts.
The motivation to this investigation arises from the gap that is created in
students’ minds when trying to teach them the confusing relationship between
spelling and pronunciation which tends to be frustrating to students.

Data were collected through interviews and research on current public


schools course books. The analysis results are aimed to serve as a reflection on
the labor of teachers and in the importance of including such important matters
into the lesson.

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Target language: the language a non-native is in the process of learning.
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I: PROBLEM ANALYSIS

1.1 Problem Analysis

The communicative approach applied in the national curriculum is


demanding teachers to make students communicate proficiently at the four
language skills (reading, writing, listening and speaking) by the end of four years
formation in high school.

Goals and contents included in “Planes y Programas”3--which contains all


the pedagogical aspects that are fundamental to the development of the learner –
include abilities in communication perceived with the final outcome of making
students communicate by the end of High School formation.

Nevertheless, studies are showing that this aim is not being fully
accomplished. A survey4 carried out on public high schools which consisted of
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applying the PET examination to fourth high school year students showed poor
performance on speaking ability. In fact only twenty percent of the students
passed the exam whereas forty-three percent of the students were qualified as
poor in communicative competences. Thus students were not able to
communicate in real context.

Some of the reasons that influenced the acquisition of English as a foreign


language were pronunciation and the not sufficient chances given to students to
practice English orally and receive feedback.

In this context, direct instruction in phonetics may be a useful tool in


providing students theoretical background to help them developing their overall
performance in speaking abilities.

3
Curricular framework that establishes and organizes contents and objectives for every subject
that it is included in the current national syllabus.
4
Results taken from Liceo B-36, Concepcion.
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Preliminary English Test.
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1.2 Justification

Since the early 80’s new changes were made in the perception of
language acquisition. With the rising interest in making people communicate
effectively new issues needed to be included in the teaching processes and
therefore in the current course syllabuses.

As the Communicative approach gained the interest of teachers in the last


two decades, the necessity of re-organizing language teaching increased. This
new trend on teaching demanded new materials and new conceptions of how the
different language skills could be better worked out in the classroom.

The communicative approach allows students to reinforce the four main


skills as well as the three main language systems which include grammar,
phonetics and vocabulary (Larsen-Freeman 2006 p.p 56)These language features
may both be worked out implicitly and be labeled as functions of language—as in
the Communicative approach—or be explicitly taught as through Direct Instruction
Method.

Nevertheless, in the context of our country—Chile-- and taking as reference


the experience of this researcher as student for twelve years and trainee teacher
for three years this investigation is aimed to determine the effect of direct
instruction in phonetics in high school students in the context of oral performance.

From the experience acquired in these years and taking into account the
results on speaking ability from the pilot project carried out in 2006, it may be
concluded that the lack of any theoretical support in the teaching of phonetics to
students may be disadvantageous for the learner and affect the learner’s
performance in oral skills. In fact, providing information of aspects of phonetics
such as the vowel system and articulation may be greatly helpful in developing
student’s oral performance.

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What this research is determined to achieve is the direct relation between


an explicit instruction in phonetics on high school students and its long term
results on the context of speaking ability.

For the sake of this study, phonetics will be taught using the “Direct
instruction method”6. Such methodology is characterized for its commitment to
setting clear goals and the great emphasis given to phonetics instruction.
(Engelmann 2000)

It is important to establish that this research has not the intention of proving
the Communicative Approach as not being worthy, but to improve student’s
performance by complementing such approach with a different emphasis in
phonetics field, this means the usage of Direct Instruction.

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Methodology founded by Engelmann. S. under the premise that students will learn more if they
are explicitly taught and demonstrated what they are aimed to learn
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1.3 Research Question

In this context the question that concerns all teachers and this investigation
in particular is; “How does direct instruction in phonetics impact high school
students performance in the context of speaking ability?

1.4 Objectives

The objectives of this investigation can be categorized as follows:

a) Main objective:

1.1 “To analyze the impact of direct instruction in Phonetics in students’ oral skills”

b) Specific Objectives

1.1.1 To determine the impact of direct instruction in Phonetics in fluency.

1.1.2 To determine the impact of direct instruction in Phonetics in pronunciation

1.1.3 To establish the impact of direct instruction in Phonetics in the


understanding of the relation spelling-pronunciation.

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II- THEORETICAL FRAMEWORK

2.1 CONCEPTUAL SETTING

The concepts involved in this investigation derive from two different fields
of study namely. Nevertheless, for the purpose of this investigation they will be
worked out as complementing each other.

On the one side, trends on teaching phonetics will be researched.


Perceptions on what aspects from phonetics are fundamental to both teach and
learn are the basis of this investigation.

Additionally, this investigation will deal with methodologies in teaching


EFL7. This will be supported according to different authors and a general overview
is provided in the first part of the theoretical framework. This research will work
particularly with “Direct instruction”. Such methodology derives from the direct
method8 and Berlitzer’s methodology9.

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English as a Foreign Language
8
Methodology applied in France and Germany in early 1900. This methodology is also known as
Phonemic Method or Anti-grammatical Method. This methodology was also known for its belief
that second language acquisition should be similar to the acquisition of the mother tongue
9
Methodology that was founded by Maximilian Berlitz in 1878 and paved the way the later
developed Direct Method.
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2.2 Approaches to teaching Phonetics.

Different approaches to language teaching have varied the importance


given to phonetics through time.

Early methodologies did not emphasize phonetics as an important


constituent of language acquisition. Amongst these methodologies we may find
Grammar translation method or the Reading Approach in which Phonetics was
considered to be an irrelevant issue, and other aspects of language such as
grammar and vocabulary were focused the most.

It was not until the Direct Method and more Naturalistic approaches
appeared that foreign language instruction on specific subsidiary skills such as
pronunciation and fluency began to be a relevant matter. Moreover in 1886, the
creation of the IPA (International Phonetic Association) helped placing Phonetics
as an important aspect of language to be taught. (Ur. P 1997 p.p 46)

Later methodologies began paying special attention to sound features.


Good examples of those methodologies were Audiolingualism and the Silent
Way., (Larsen-Freeman. 2006 pp 52) in which a native-like pronunciation was the
main goal of language teaching and little importance was given to communicative
skills.

In the later decades, the Communicative Approach led teachers into


renewing the concern for teaching Phonetics. Learning grammar and vocabulary
proved not to be sufficient to make students communicate in real context as it
happened with earlier approaches such as Grammar Translation.

The field of modern language acquisition has recognized two co-existing


methodologies or approaches when teaching Phonetics; these are the basis for
most phonetics activities found in real classroom context and workbooks used in
our country. These approaches are an Intuitive Imitative Approach and Analytic-
Linguistic Approach namely. (Murcia 2006 p.p 2)

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The first approach—intuitive imitative-- is based mainly in the acquisition of
sound patterns by pure imitation without providing any further explanation or
theoretical support to what is being taught. This approach is the used by most
teachers of public schools researched. Practices such as the minimal pair drill 10 or
identification of the long/short vowel seem to be the complete range of activities
used in the classroom

Conversely, the analytic-linguistic approach is focused on just the opposite.


The theory of phonetics is introduced explicitly to students. Learners receive
information about all phonetic aspects that are considered to be worthy in their
growth as future EFL speakers.

2.2.1 Methodologies and Techniques applied through time

The following chart adopted from Celce- Murcia11 shows the evolution of
pronunciation as a component of language acquisition throughout the different
methodologies applied in the classrooms.

2.1 Methodologies and skills focused throughout time (Celce-Murcia 2006)


Method Focus Tolerance of Method used Summary
pronunciatio
n errors
Grammar N/A Relatively Teacher Little or no
Translation tolerant correction via attention is
lecture paid to
/explanation pronunciation
Direct Method Accuracy Relatively Teacher Students learn
intolerant correction and by listening to
repetition and repeating
the teacher
model.

10
Technique used to teach pronunciation by contrasting similar or troublesome sounds
11
Murcia. C. (1996). “Teaching Pronunciation, a reference for teachers of English to speakers of other
languages”
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Method Focus Tolerance of Method used Summary
pronunciatio
n errors
Audio-lingual Accuracy Relatively Teacher Pronunciation
intolerant correction. is emphasized
Repetition drill and taught
and practice from the
in the beginning
language lab.
Minimal pair
drill
Silent Way Accuracy Not tolerant Teacher Strong
first, then correction emphasis on
fluency cued by accuracy of
sound/color production.
charts Words are
repeated until
they are
native like
Community Fluency then Somewhat Teacher Learner
language accuracy tolerant correction via decides what
learning repetition degree of
accuracy
he/she is
aimed to
acquire
Total Physical N/A Very tolerant Native Production is
Response and speaker input delayed until
Natural learners are
approach ready to
speak.
Pronunciation
is assumed to
come out
naturally
Communicative Fluency Relatively Learner Adequate
approach obligatory, tolerant engagement pronunciation
accuracy in authentic is assumed to
optional listening and be learnt by
speaking practice over
tasks a period of
time
Suggestopedia Fluency Relatively Peripheral Comfortable
tolerant learning. setting helps
Dialogue reducing the
dramatization learner’s
inhibitions

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From the previous chart it may be concluded that the role given to the
teacher in EFL classrooms has changed over time. Early methodologies promoted
a teacher centered lesson whereas later trends on methodology move forward
promoting a student-centered classroom and foster the learner’s autonomy.

The emphasis given to aspects such as pronunciation accuracy and


fluency has also changed over time. Historical needs have promoted the
necessity either on one aspect or the other. As Celce- Murcia stated, “since
1980’s the urgency on teaching phonetics was renewed” (2006 p.p 3)

According to Diane Larsen-Freeman (2006) in the Communicative


Approach—which is the approach used in EFL classes in Chile-- the focus should
be given primarily to fluency, in order to achieve the natural flow of communication
expected. Accuracy is expected at a second stage and conceived as a
consequence of oral practice (Larsen Freeman, 2006).

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2.2.2 Current Educational Approach

According to curricular changes made in within the LOCE12 framework,


content and objectives were set to public high schools. However this included
giving schools the freedom to decide on their own subject areas organization and
content plan’s. (MINEDUC, 2008)

Knowledge was conceived as embracing concepts and conceptual


systems, including information and procedures. In this context, the communicative
approach may be seen as insufficient since little theoretical support is provided to
students in subsidiary skills such as Phonetics which is learnt mainly inductively.

Planes and Programas also stated that in the area of English as a Foreign
Language, teachers should prioritize linguistics aspects and show expertise on
the four main skills of language. The ability to solve communicative situations is
seen as the success of the students.

The freedom given to teachers to plan on their own subject matters is


maybe the main tool teachers have to make significant progress on education.
Teachers have the responsibility of choosing between a wide range of
methodologies and approaches to use in the classroom and complement then
with the current Communicative Approach.

12
Ley Orgánica Constitucional de la Enseñanza in Chile
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2.2.3Theoretical Discussion

This research will be focused on direct instruction, a teaching approach


which was not included in the previous chart but directly derives from the Direct
Method. Although Direct Instruction is a new language teaching methodology that
has just been applied during the last two decades. It still shares some clear
principles with the classical Direct Method.

Direct Instruction is a classroom design model first developed by Siegfried


Engelmann in the late 80’s. This methodology shares some principles with the
“constructivism”13, in the sense that the learner is an active participant in building
his own knowledge. (Grossen 1998 p.p 152)

Engelmann’s methodology is still very much used in fields such as math


and computing. In fact, it has proved to be extraordinary useful in biology.
However for the sake of this investigation the focus will be on its significant
contributions in the pedagogical field Rosenshire (1986) and Cotton (1991)

In education, Direct Instruction follows four basic rules.

1) Setting clear goals and make students to know them.


2) Lessons are well organized.
3) Clear and concise explanations are provided to students.
4) Finally, students should be given as many possibilities as possible to
practice what they have learnt.

This methodology has been long criticized for being rather teacher
centered and forcing the teacher to learn long scripts and clear stages before a
lesson. Nevertheless, this approach to teaching has proved to be efficient in
teaching skills such as reading and writing.

13
Russian movement founded by Vladimir Tattlin in 1913
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Direct instruction has been successfully used on the last decades
supporting the development of reading skills on kindergarten children. Thus the
principles of sequenced teaching have proved to be useful in language teaching in
different schools from United States. In fact recent investigation has proved the
efficiency of Direct Instruction in areas such as; reading, mathematics, language
and social sciences. (National Institute for Direct Instruction, 2003)

According to the National Institute for Direct Instruction (NIFDI) the


emphasis on well organized and pre-scripted lesson plans diminishes the
possibility of misunderstanding from the students and maximizes the potential of
the learner.

The NIFDI proposes a set of standards to improve teaching. These


standards for a new reform in teaching imply a change in curricular aspects as
well as attitudes of the teacher towards the learner. This reform also involves a
more cooperative conception of the relation teacher-learner. The continuous
monitoring of the student academic progress is a priority in the application of
Direct Instruction.

The fact that Direct Instructions expects small increments from the learner
and gives importance to the learning pace of the individuals helps making
students feel they are really progressing and fosters their autonomy providing
them with strategies they can apply during their lives. (Engelmann 2000)

The educational reform that Direct Instruction proposes intends changes at


a curricular level and involves a constant monitoring of students academic
progress as well as a coaching approach in professional development.

Results based on the experience of North American schools proved the


efficiency of DI in high schools. Some of these schools include Appleton and
Milwaukee public schools in Wisconsin

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Teaching Phonetics

According to Harmer (1991) Cook (2000) and Ur (1997) Language teaching


must include instruction on phonetic aspects to make students proficient on
language use. The aforementioned authors described three main aspects of
phonetics which may greatly help EFL learner’s performance. These are

1. Intonation
2. Articulation
3. Stress

Intonation--understood as the rises and falls of the voice when speaking—


is often troublesome to non-native speakers. Intonation patterns are difficult to
identify to foreign language learners and then misunderstanding of the purpose of
the original message can take place.

The paramount importance of including articulation into EFL lessons is also


stated by Ur. The relation between sounds is essential to be learnt in to order to
acquire English like pronunciation. When such relation is not taught typical
problems such as the final /Ι δ / sound on past tenses may occur. (Ur, 1997:49)

The third aspect identified by Penny Ur corresponds to stress. Non-native


speakers usually come across meaning interference when unknowing where to
place stress and thus altering the word class. Good examples of such alteration
are: /: σ ℘ β Ζ Ι κ τ / compared to /σ↔ β : δ Ζ ε κ τ /.

A similar proposal is made by Jeremy Harmer (1991:183) who states that


teaching certain aspects from phonetics may help students dealing with
intelligibility problems in communication and improve not only the understanding
of the learner’s own oral production but also of spoken English in general.

Harmer proposes some easy to follow activities which may help including
features such as intonation into a common lesson. Matching halves of sentences

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that contain the intonation pattern of the message, for instance, encouraging
students to understand the importance of variation in speech and how these
changes can produce a change in meaning (Harmer, 1991:195)

Although intonation is a hard issue to work with, teachers should be


committed to work on intonation on simple exercises that involve listening to
recordings for instance. This task can make learners more familiar with intonation
patterns and its close relation with intentionality.

Working with intonation involves working with stress at a primary level too.
Stress is not only important in isolated words but also in full sentences since it
may shift the emphasis or meaning of sentences.

Regarding articulation, the author establishes that a good way of improving


students understanding of English pronunciation is working with the difference
amongst similar morphemes. On the one side this helps the learner concentrating
on specific areas of pronunciation and on the other side helps the teacher on
making sounds introduction more manageable than teaching sounds altogether.

Harmer (1991) also introduces the idea of using both sound symbols charts
and articulation charts. These may be greatly helpful for the learner at various
stages of any lesson. An articulation chart helps describing sounds in terms of lips
or tongue and makes the difference between morphemes more visible and easy
to reproduce for the learner.

Besides, the idea of approaching students to the English sound system


would increase student’s independence and contribute to their own self-
awareness on their inaccuracies when speaking. Thus knowing the IPA symbols
would also promote the usage of dictionaries, since once the student knows the
English sound symbols they can understand the transcriptions included in
dictionaries.

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Nevertheless, Harmer states that introducing symbols is a hard task for the
teacher and proposes to introduce the symbols gradually. In fact, the author
identifies four different ways of integrating pronunciation into the lesson (Harmer,
1991 p.p 186). These are

1. Whole lesson: Although the main focus of the lesson is on


pronunciation, aspects such as listening spelling and vocabulary are
also worked out.
2. Discrete slots: Teaching pronunciation by inserting short and
separate bits of pronunciation work. This methodology offers a
change of pace and activities on normal lessons.
3. Integrated phases: This involves teaching pronunciation s parts of
the skills taught in a common lesson. Integrated phases of teaching
pronunciation include modeling and making students work on
prominent sounds.
4. Opportunistic teaching: When pronunciation issues arises in the
course of an activity.

Although Harmer recognizes that having whole lessons advocated to


practicing pronunciation is a luxury to many schools worldwide, the author makes
a clear and important point on teacher’s possibility of mixing these different
approaches of including pronunciation in the classroom.

A similar proposal to Harmer and Ur’s perception on what teaching


phonetics involves is made by Vivian Cook (2004) Cook states that teaching
phonetics and more specific aspects such as articulation and intonation may
greatly contribute to the learner performance as EFL speaker.

Vivian Cook claims that teaching isolated phonemes—as in repetition drills-


is similar to teaching grammar structures by memory and out of a real context.
”Learning to pronounce a second language means building up new pronunciation
habits and overcoming the bias of the first language”(Cook, V. 2004 p.p 48)

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According to Cook, organizing pronunciation instruction around isolated
phonemes is worthless since such a practice ignores the relation between
phonemes and distinctive features14 of the sounds, which results in teaching
pronunciation a supporting theory that is vital to explain how sounds are
produced.

Research carried out by Wielfried Wreden and William Nemser (1991)


showed that the process of acquiring a second or foreign language pronunciation
goes through three main processes. These are

1. Pre-systemic: Learning words without an overall pattern


2. Transfer: The learner tries to adjust the second language to his or her
mother tongue.
3. Approximative: Restructure of L2 sounds into a new system

Results from the research showed that while certain sounds were
successfully produced after training for long periods, whereas other sounds such
as the /↔/ showed great difficulty for the learner even after long training.

Taken from Cook 2004, p.p 49

Although Cook does not explicitly promote stress and intonation—which


are the main aspects fostered by Harmer and Ur—as main components in
teaching pronunciation. She does refer to them implicitly when emphasizing the

14
Basic unit of phonological theory. According to Meter Roach (2005) distinctive features group
into place and manner of articulation.
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importance of teaching how to voice and produce English sounds (articulation)
and how these sounds relate to each other in speech (intonation).

Cook also establishes that teaching pronunciation should be closely related


to the stage the learner belongs to. Therefore she identifies three main standards
techniques to teaching pronunciation.

2.2 Techniques in teaching pronunciation

TECHIQUE LEVEL DESCRIPTION


Imitation Beginner Includes both, repetition
of words and dialogues.
Discrimination of sounds Intermediate Discrimination of
phonemes. Such
as; /λ α Ι σ /
versus /ρ α Ι σ /
Use of Phonemic Script Advanced Students are helped by
looking at phonemic
transcripts.
Adapted from Cook, V ,2004 p.p 55

Cook’s organization of techniques and activities for each learning level is


very helpful for teachers in orienting the way to approach teaching phonetics in
real classroom contexts

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2.3 Aspects focused from phonetics.

Aspect Penny Ur Jeremy Harmer Vivian Cook


Articulation Helps the learners’
comprehension of
how sounds relate
to each other.
Intonation Should be focused Students need to
on how different be aware of how
intonation patterns changes in pitch
alter the meaning convey meaning
of a message to reflect the
thematic structure
of what is been
said.
Stress Necessary to be It should be
taught since stress assumed that
alterations teachers work with
produce word stress every time
class changes. a new word is
introduced.

2.3 How to teach phonetics?


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Vivian Cook “Teaching pronunciation in an integrated way plays minor effect on


the whole system, and improves the pronunciation of isolated words
only”. (2004 p.p 57)
Jeremy Harmer “The fact that some students are able to acquire reasonable
pronunciation without overt pronunciation instruction, should not
blind teachers from the benefits of focusing pronunciation in
common lessons Teaching pronunciation will not only benefit the
learner’s oral production but also his or her general understanding
of English”. (1991 p.p 183)
Penny Ur “Although many teachers never teach pronunciation and their
students seem to perform satisfactory. It is a pity to neglect
deliberate correction and training since there is evidence that this
improves learner’s pronunciation”. (1997 p.p 55)

III: Methodology

3.1 Paradigm.

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An investigation paradigm may be understood as the beliefs system and
attitudes towards a vision of the world that a determined group of scientists share.
(Alvarez, 1982) Moreover such a paradigm involves a certain methodology
This investigation in particular, was situated under a critical paradigm.
According to Khűn (1971) the critical paradigm is characterized by understanding
reality as praxis. Thus, the critical paradigm involves a continuous self reflection of
the teaching performance.

3.2 Description of the Study

The research consisted of taking a sample of 60 students from intermediate


level EFL classes at a public school in Concepcion. Students chose participating
on the project by their own. (Not selected at random).

Thirty students comprised the experimental group (fifteen male and female)
and received complementary theoretical support on the English vowel system and
articulation. Aspects such as intonation and stress were also covered but in a
minor way.

The other thirty students formed the control group. (Fifteen male and
female) Students belonging to both groups went under pre and post-tests in order
to calculate in a reliable way whether students had or not progressed after
attending classes where DI was used to provide information on phonetics.

The data collection instruments included standardized interviews as well as


in depth interviews to get student’s perceptions about the teaching process.
Quantitative as well as qualitative data collection techniques were applied to both
groups.

A background questionnaire was designed to determine the previous


formation of the learners in the study of EFL. The questionnaire (see artifacts)
contained information on areas such as previous studies of English in other
institutes and time dedicated to studying.

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The course consisted of 50 minute sessions twice a week for a period of
five months. No major changes were made in the content set by the national
curriculum standards.

Direct instruction lessons were prepared with time and were skilled
focused. Speaking activities were supported with charts of letters and the
phonetics’ charts that helped students practicing the vowels. Direct instruction
lessons also included four classes fully dedicated to introducing vowels intonation
and articulation.

3.3 Description of Artifacts.

a) Treatment.

Both the experimental and the control group followed the syllabi of their
language department. Nevertheless students from the experimental group
were provided phonetics background in a direct instruction format throughout
the five months of the research. At times the focus on phonetics was explicit
but students were told in advance of the goals of every lesson and content that
was taught.

Data on their perceptions on language improvement was also collected.


This helped viewing the real dimension of how students conceived the idea of
being taught phonetics and how worthy they thought it was the process.

b) Artifacts.

The pre-test to both groups consisted of a speaking task where learners


had to prepare a presentation on self-description.

In the self description task students were asked to describe themselves


to a foreigner friend coming to town. Students had to use previous knowledge
and show their abilities as EFL speakers.

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The post test applied to both groups consisted of a city description. The
activity required students to use previous vocabulary as well as using the
knowledge acquired during the treatment to the experimental group. This also
included a recorded sample of students performing their oral report.

Interviews to set the background study of English were also important to


set the equity at the beginning of the study amongst both groups.
Standardized interviews were also applied to get students final perception by
the end of the five months teaching.

Background
info

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Estimado alumno/a. Te invitamos a responder la siguiente


encuesta a fin de establecer tus experiencias en el aprendizaje del
Ingles como lengua extranjera. Esta información será de vital
importancia para establecer el contexto de nuestra investigación
Agradecemos de ante mano tu honestidad al responder esta
encuesta.

Si. No.
1. He estudiado Ingles en instituciones
particulares (Institutos, cursos pagados).
2. Estudio Ingles por Internet.
3. Uno de mis padres habla ingles.
4. He estado en países de habla Inglesa.
5. Estudio Ingles a lo menos 4 horas semanales.
6. He estado en salones de Chat con amigos
extranjeros de habla Inglesa.
7. Tengo un diccionario de Ingles en casa.
8 Tengo revistas y/o libros en inglés en casa.
9. Con frecuencia tomo clases particulares de
Ingles.
10. Creo que mi nivel de Ingles puede mejorar si
aprendo algunos aspectos de la fonética Inglesa
11. Creo que mi fluidez mejorara si aprendo las
vocales del Ingles.
12. Creo que faltan oportunidades para practicar
el Ingles en clases.
Si. No.
13. Desconozco las vocales del Ingles.
14. La fonética que enseñan los libros es
suficiente para hablar de manera eficaz.
15. Los libros de clases deberían incluir una
mayor cantidad de oportunidades para ejercitar la
producción oral.
16. El aprendizaje de la articulacion de los sonidos
del Ingles me puede ayudar a diferenciar de

28
MONOGRAPH
mejor manera los sonidos similares.
17. Tengo interés por aprender de manera mas
profunda el sistema de sonidos del Ingles.
18. Estimo necesario destinar algunos momentos
de la clase a explicar y practicar aspectos
fonéticos del Ingles.

Concepcion,2008

Estimado alumno/a. Te invitamos a responder la siguiente


encuesta a fin de establecer tus percepciones respecto a los cambios

29
MONOGRAPH
que has presenciado en la enseñanza del idioma Ingles. Esta
información será de vital importancia para analizar si dichos cambios
han sido beneficiosos de acuerdo a tu punto de vista.
Agradecemos de ante mano la mayor honestidad posible.

1. ¿Cómo crees que te ha


beneficiado en el aprendizaje del
Ingles el conocer los objetivos de
cada clase?
2. A tu juicio ¿cuales son las
mayores fortalezas de la
enseñanza del Ingles siguiendo el
modelo de enseñanza explicita?
3. ¿Qué aspectos de tus
presentaciones orales te ha
ayudado a desarrollar el
aprendizaje de la fonética
Inglesa?
4. ¿Por qué crees que los
profesores no enseñan fonética
explícitamente en los Liceos de tu
cuidad?

30
MONOGRAPH

Estimado alumno/a. Te invitamos a responder la siguiente


encuesta a fin de establecer tus percepciones respecto a los cambios
que has presenciado en la enseñanza del idioma Ingles. Esta
información será de vital importancia para analizar si dichos cambios
han sido beneficiosos de acuerdo a tu punto de vista.
Agradecemos de ante mano la mayor honestidad posible.

De En Sin
acuerdo desacuerdo comentario
s
1. La enseñanza del Ingles bajo
el modelo de Enseñanza
Explicita ayudo mi comprensión
del Ingles.
2. La enseñanza de la fonética
es necesaria para mejorar el
nivel de Ingles de los Liceos
Municipalizados
3. El aprendizaje de la
articulación de sonidos ayudo a
mejorar la calidad de mis
presentaciones orales
El aprendizaje de las vocales y
diptongos del Ingles influyen en
la pronunciación del Ingles.
5. El aprendizaje de la fonética
Inglesa me puede mejorar la
calidad de presentaciones
orales.

6. El aprendizaje de algunos
aspectos de la fonética Inglesa
ayudo a mi comprensión del
Idioma extranjero.
31
MONOGRAPH
7. Tras haber aprendido algunos
aspectos de la fonética Inglesa
me siento mas seguro cuando
hablo en Inglés.
8. El conocer de antemano los
objetivos de cada clase ayuda a
mi comprensión de lo que
ocurre en la sala de clases.
9. El conocer los contenidos y
objetivos de cada clase hace
sentirme más cómodo en las
clases de inglés.
10. Aprendo mejor cuando
recibo oportunidades de
practicar reiteradamente lo
aprendido.
11. Aprendo mejor cuando
siento el real interés del
profesor por mi progreso.
12. Tras haber aprendido la
articulación y vocales inglesas
mi fluidez al hablar Ingles
mejoró.
13. Comprendo de mejor
manera la relación entre como
se escribe y el sonido de las
letras del Ingles.
14. Mi interés en el Ingles
aumento tras haber aprendido
mas en profundidad sobre el
idioma.
15. Tras haber aprendido la
articulación y vocales inglesas
soy mejor hablante de Ingles.

32
GRAMMAR VOCABULARY COMPREHENSION FLUENCY PRONUNCIATION TASK
1. Errors in grammar Speaking vocabulary Within the scope of his No specific fluency Errors in pronunciation are Can ask and
are frequent but inadequate to Express very limited language description. Refer to other frequent but can be answer questions
speaker can be anything but the most experience can tour language areas for understood by a native on topics very
understood by a native elementary needs. understand simple implied level of fluency. speaker used to dealing familiar to him.
speaker used to questions and with foreigner’s attempting Able to satisfy
dealing with foreigner’s statements if delivered to speak his language. routine travel
attempting to speak with slowed speech needs and
his language. repetition or paraphrase minimum
courtesy
requirements.
2. Can usually handle Has speaking Can get the gist of most Can handle with Accent is intelligible Able to satisfy
elementary vocabulary sufficient to conversations of non- confidence but not with though often quite faulty. routine social
constructions quite express himself simple technical subjects that facility most social demands and
accurately but does not with some do not require situations including work
have confident control circumlocutions. specialized knowledge. introductions and casual requirements,
of the grammar conversations about needs help in
current events as well as handling any
work and family. complication or
difficulty.
3. Control of grammar Able to speak the Comprehension is quite Can discuss particular Errors never interfere with Can participate
is good. Able to speak language with complete at a normal interests of competence understanding and rarely effectively in
the language with sufficient vocabulary to rate of speech. with reasonable ease. disturb the native speaker. most formal and
sufficient structural participate effectively Rarely has to gripe for Accent may be obviously informal
accuracy to participate in most formal and words. foreign. conversation on
effectively in most informal conversations practical social
formal and informal on practical social and and professional
conversations on professional topics. topics.
practical social and Vocabulary is broad
professional topics enough that he rarely
has to gripe for a word
4. Able to use the Can understand and Can understand any Able to use language Errors in pronunciation are World rarely be
language accurately on participate in any conversation within the fluently on all levels quite rare. taken for a native
all levels normally conversation within the range of his experience normally pertinent to speaker but can
pertinent to range of his experience professional needs. Can respond
professional needs. with a high degree of participate in any appopiately even
Errors in grammar are precision of conversation within the in unfamiliar
quite rare. vocabulary. range of this experience situations. Can
with a high degree of handle informal
fluency. interpreting from
and into
language.
5. Equivalent to that o Speech on all levels is Equivalent to that o fan Has complete fluency in Equivalent to and fully Speaking
fan educated native fully accepted by educated native the language such that his accepted by educated proficiency
speaker. educated native speaker. speech is fully accepted by native speakers. equivalent to that
speakers in all its educated native speakers. o fan educated
features including native speaker.
breath of vocabulary
and idioms,
colloquialisms and
pertinent cultural Oral proficiency scoring categories (Brown, 2001, p.p 406-
407)
MONOGRAPH
references.

34
PART V: REFERENCES

Brown, D. (2004).Language Assessment. Principles and classroom

practices..Longman,

Celce-Murcia. D. (1996) Teaching Pronunciation: A Reference for Teachers

of English to Speakers of Other Languages. Cambridge University

Press.

Harmer,J. (1991). The practice of English language teaching.

Longman.

Larsen. D. (2006) Techniques and principles in Language Teaching. Oxford

University Press

Roach, P. (2003). English Phonetics and Phonology, a practical course

Oxford University Press.

Ur, Penny. (1997). A course in language teaching, practice and theory

Cambridge University Press.


MONOGRAPH

WEB PAGES.

Glossary of ESL pronunciation terms. (N.d) Glossary of ESL and Language

Terminology. Retrieved on October 1, 2008, from

http://www.cz-training.com/glossary.html

Grossen. B. (1998, December 2) Direct Instruction.

Retrieved on August 25, 2008, from

http://education.calumet.purdue.edu/vockell/CAI/Cai3/cai3direct.htm

Lindsay. J. (Ed) (2008). What the data really shows,. Direct Instruction

Really Works. Retrieved on October 24,2008 from

http://www.jefflindsay.com/EducData.shtml

Los paradigmas de Kühn (2003) Evoluciin Cientifica y Metodologica.


Rettrieved on November 5,2008 from
http://www.eumed.net/cursecon/libreria/rgl-evol/2.4.5.htm

MINEDUC. (2008). Contenidos Obligatorios Educación Media en Chile.

Retrieved on September 9, 2008, from

http://www.mineduc.cl/index.php?

id_portal=1&id_seccion=204&id_contenido=90

MINEDUC. (2008). Marco Curricular Educación Media en Chile

36
MONOGRAPH
Retrieved on September 10, 2008, from

http://www.curriculummineduc.cl/docs/mediGene/marcocurriculardee

ducmedia.pdf

Modern Foreign Languages. (1999, September 15). Direct Method.

Retrieved on August 25, 2008, from

http://www.aber.ac.uk/~mflwww/seclangacq/langteach5.html

National Institute for Direct Instruction (2003) Retrieved October 24, 2008,

from http://www.nifdi.org/index.html#what

Riggs Institute. (1999). Phonetics, spelling, whole language

Retrieved on September 8, 2008, from

http://www.riggsinst.org/Monographs.aspx

What is Direct Instruction? Retrieved on October 15, 2008 from

http://www.uoregon.edu/~bgrossen/pubs/aftdi.htm

37