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West Visayas State University

COLLEGE OF EDUCATION
La Paz, Iloilo City

LITERARY INTERPRETATION SKILLS OF BSED SOCIAL SCIENCE AND

MATHEMATICS MAJORS OF THE COLLEGE OF EDUCATION AT THE

WEST VISAYAS STATE UNIVERSITY

by

Jessie L. Labiste Jr.

Irene T. Torres

Chapter 1

The Problem

Chapter 1 includes eight parts: (1) Background of

the Study, (2) Review of Related Literature, (3) Conceptual

Framework, (4) Statement of the Problem, (5) Hypothesis,

(6) Definition of Terms, (7) Significance of the Study, and

(8) Delimitation of the Study.

Part One, Background of the Study, stresses why

this study was conducted.

West Visayas State University
COLLEGE OF EDUCATION
La Paz, Iloilo City

12

Part Two, Review of Related Literature, provides

information about similar and related studies that had been

previously conducted.

Part Three, Conceptual Framework, presents the

rationale for choosing the problem, as well as the theories

from which this study was anchored.

Part Four, Statement of the Problem, specifically

describes the purpose of conducting the investigation.

Part Five, The Hypothesis, enumerates the

hypotheses to be tested.

Part Six, Definition of Terms, defines some of the

important terms in the study.

Part Seven, Significance of the Study, cites the

benefits that can be derived from the results of the

investigation.

Part Eight, Delimitation of the Study, specifies

the scope and the coverage of this research work.

to know the nation’s spirit. in Villa. joys.html. 2003). One will know the dreams. The study of literature opens the door to life-long learning and appreciation of the world’s cultures and languages. In literature one can discover how the people of a nation have reacted to the events around them.edu/~420www/DCCSlit. Students’ interpretation of a literary piece affects their thinking skills essential to the appreciation .rit. However. Literature as a subject in secondary schools was implemented as a means of gaining vicarious experiences. its laws and its political statements. anxieties. thus pointing out the value and significance of a literary piece contributes to the conditions for students’ growth and development. and problems of the people. so necessary in today's workplaces (http://www. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. Iloilo City 13 Background of the Study The history of a nation can be learned in its constitutions. one must read its literature.

the literary craftsmanship of the author to develop awareness and appreciation of the writer’s style and finally values to underscore the significant insights and universal truths presented in the literary piece. and the . Iloilo City 14 of literature. relationships. Social Science is concerned with the origin and development of human society. 1974). and the institutions. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. The latter considers the different genres. This also helps in showing a keen sense of values of what is worthwhile as expressed in a literature. Literary interpretation is viewed as a liberal arts discipline within which the student may deepen and enlarge his knowledge and understanding of the nature of literature (Long. The social sciences explore human society past and present. self-expression or eloquence. and ideas involved in social life. In this regard. understanding and appreciation can be achieved if ease and confidence to a literary piece are fostered in the students’ communicative and linguistic skills and their concern towards the substance and content of the piece.

that the researchers will find out if literary interpretation lends itself to Social Science majors who utilize the historical backgrounds of their field. which are included to reinforce this study. (2) Literature and . On the other hand. It is in this study. business. The discussion that follows include: (1) Literature and the Society. interpreting data and performing calculations that are necessary in subjects such as science. Review of Related Literature Selected readings and researches related to this study are presented. organizing. and industry. Mathematics is a tool that contains the skill for problem solving. and for Mathematics majors who use much of their logical and analytical side-skills which are both beneficial for students who interpret a literary piece. The reviews are found in the literature published and other studies. therefore. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. Iloilo City 15 way human beings behave.

Iloilo City 16 other Fields of Study. Lopez in his essay Literature and Society (1940) “Life is ugly enough as it is. According to Salvador P. and (3) Approaches to Interpret Literature. involving characters in conflict. we propose to make it more beautiful with the products of our imagination. or to express an emotion or idea through artfully arranged images. Man being what he is. to attempt to change him or the world he lives in is bound to be a futile enterprise. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. Literature can also shock. amaze. or provide readers with an escape from reality for a while (Microsoft Encarta Reference Library 2003). Literature and the Society Literature is the use of well-chosen words to tell a story through narrative.” . therefore. The purpose of literature is to entertain and instruct (or to delight and enlighten) the reader through the use of the imagination.

History would even say that some writers . flowers. criticizing what they believe to be the evils brought about. and the whole realm of nature. bemoaning and attacking abuses. 1973).. Now. birds. Italy. Pizarro or Cortez (Shuman. making them serious on political and social questions. Literary work is a self-existent whole which will reveal its own laws. Moreover. 1995). West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz.al. meanings and implications as it approach intensely and sensitively (Bain. et.al. Dagot. literature placed to the outward charms. mountains. It fills the reader with the same zest for adventure that the people of Old England. thus. literature shrines the spirit of the present day. Portugal and Holland.(1974) sited that literature is of course primarily a humanistic endeavor and as such has relevance in a very extensive fashion. Iloilo City 17 Long ago. the sea. Lopez (1940). as well as the tragedy. said that writers are greatly inspired more on sociological themes. felt when they stood wondering at the reports of Columbus or Magellan. et. the comedy and the spiriting growth of man. Spain.

and secondarily only of the imagination. The writer who has admitted to himself that the problems of society are his proper meat and drink has come to a point where merely technical problems have become small account compared to the ultimate problem which he is presumed to have already answered for himself. Lopez further advanced that the greatest masters of literature are those who have employed it in the service principally of reason. “literature is the imaginative representation of life and nature.” . whether there is such a thing as progress. that. Lopez concluded the principle. Thus. what really interests the writer is some sort of assurance that his writing will result in something that can lay his hands on as good and useful. Iloilo City 18 long ago were principal defendants in the most spectacular abuses that happened to a country and these people were proven to have a growing spirit of nationalism and the universal aspiration for independence that marked the full intellectual maturity of the young literary writers. and whether it is within the capacity of man ever to achieve progress. namely. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. In the end.

Thus. (1973). Tennyson. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. related to a specific time and place – besides having universal and timeless aspects (Bain.” Bain.. Law (1929) advanced that the study of science is linked eternally with literature which. Man turns to literature to seek refuge from the drabness and chaos of everyday life. is the record of man’s effort to understand his world and his fellow man. at its best. 1973). I should know what God and man is. It is his self- expressed and sublimated realm as well as his salvation . when he wrote: “Little flower – but if I could understand What you are root and all. agreed that literature seems as vast as the universe itself. et.al. The great English poet. Iloilo City 19 Literature and Other Fields of Study Seeing the relation of literature to other arts and to the larger culture of which it is part is chiefly a matter of thinking about literature in context.et.al. proclaimed this. and all in all.

but like writers of fiction they wrote detailed narratives of events and vivid character sketches with great attention to language and style. The complex relations between literary art and historiography have been and continue to be a subject of serious debate (Encarta. the text themselves. Thus it is in literature that people. Graham (2004). West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. 2003). history was regarded primarily as a special kind of literature that shared many techniques and effects with fictional narrative. from . with their elaborately constructed backgrounds of historical events allude constantly and insistently to social and political conditions as determining factors in the fortunes of their fictional protagonists. Iloilo City 20 through a hypothetical solution of problems that afflict humanity (Dagot. cited from “George Eliot’s dialogue with History” that Eliot’s notebook reveals the vast quantity of historical research that preceded the composition of his last four novels. Until modern times. 1974). Historians were committed to factual materials and personal truthfulness. from different walks of life.

West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. being and remaining human (Long.” Another wonder of interpretation is a communion across cultures. we come more fully to realize that it is not just this or that against which we protest – it is the “human conditions” the awesome challenge of becoming. “a communion with the past. It . In the lyric poem. Iloilo City 21 different ages. across more than 800 years. “The Red Cockatoo” from over 1100 years ago by Po Chu-I. people. across incredible differences in technology. Literary interpretation is an important theoretical work for teachers of literature at all levels. And from these complexities. 1974). But as we look across the galaxies of the ages of man with the instrument of interpretation. so ardently desire for communication and all too often the situation of our culture is neatly nailed into dead-end observations that we must not fail to communicate. This is one of the wonders of interpretation. even some of the very names throughout the ages. we share in a communion with the ages. cultures and traditions find a “community”.

there are several ways of responding to literature. . Teachers who prod their students with salient questions and who encourage them to think through and. (b) Moral or Humanistic Approach. Approaches to Interpret Literature According to Maramba (1993). 1995). West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. It therefore mirrors reality and at the same time transforms that reality into an ideal which man strives to achieve. among other things that teacher talk no matter how brilliant and well informed it is. does not yield lasting results in helping students to interpret literature. in small group discussions. stated that it encompasses any kind of human situation or phases of human activity by means of its own particular mode or modes of presentation. (c) Historical Approach. Some of these are through: (a) Formalistic or Literary Approach. Dagot (1974). Iloilo City 22 demonstrates. to talk through their reactions to work of literature produce students who are better able to deal independently with texts when they encounter them outside the classroom (Shuman.

(e) Cultural Approach. the teacher has heard of their approaches. Iloilo City 23 (d) Sociological Approach. independent of author. or any other extrinsic factor. These approaches provide a framework for students to analyze and respond to literature independently at higher levels of thinking and reaction than the literal and interpretive levels. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. It is only the versatility and the imagination with which the reader can apply that is sometimes missed. The selection is read and viewed intrinsically. These approaches are old hat with changing names. Approaches to literature can assist in formulating questions. Formalistic or Literary Approach. or for itself. age. Theoretically. in teaching literature and attempting to come up with criticisms for a better literary appreciation. This approach is close to the “art for arts sake” dictum. (f) Psychological Approach. and (g) Impressionistic Approach. The first approach is called “formalistic” or “pure” or “literary”. The study of the selection is more or less based on the so-called literary elements which more or less boil .

atmosphere. etc. Iloilo City 24 down to the literal level (subject matter). attitudes. this approach is close to . technical values (plot. visions. Moral or Humanistic Approach. language.) and total effect (the interrelation of the forgoing elements) and communication. empathy. point of view. “symbol”. the affective values (emotion. endowed with intellect and free will. universal truths. figure. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. etc. romantic or realistic tradition. that is. character). scene. “comedy”. tone. or that the piece does not misinterpret the true nature of man is hotly contested. structure. making literature all the more challenging. metrics. The reader or critic more or less “requires” that the piece present man as essentially rational. Whatever the case. etc. classical. or against any literary tradition or movement like the folk tradition. the ideational values (themes. mood.). Another approach is the moral or humanistic approach where the nature of man is central to literature. This approach could also include the study of the selection against any literary concept or term like “satire”. etc. imagery.

that it is sometimes equated for the latter or taken . which. The sociological approach. Historical Approach. the sociological approach may be said to have branched out. and for pieces tackled or discovered for the first time. is mentioned previously. Sociological Approach.) this historical approach is often suitable to high school classes. The very popular approach. sees literature as both a reflection and a product of the times and circumstances in which it was written. Man as a member of a particular society or nation at a particular time. (From this approach. sometimes looms so large. is central to the approach. to survey courses. for average classes. Iloilo City 25 the “morality” of literature: to questions of ethical goodness or badness. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. may be considered an extension of the historical approach. based on Taine’s “moment-milieu race”. It operates on the premise that the history of a nation has telling effects on its literature and that a piece can be better understood and appreciated if one knows the times surrounding its creation.

West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. Often. the artistic. It considers literature as principally the expression of man within a given social institution. the selection has to be understood. the ideological aspects. contemporaneity. Socially-committed literature almost deliberately invites questions using this approach. The sociological approach stresses social “relevance”. thus passing into the “proletarian approach”. in which men are somewhat simplistically divided into the “haves and have-nots”. the sociological. which tends to underscore the conflict between the two classes.” especially when it tends subtly or deliberately towards propaganda (another controversial matter in literature). This approach considers literature as one of the principal manifestations and vehicles of a nation’s race or “culture” – the technological. . and considers the literary piece in the total cultural milieu in which it was born. Iloilo City 26 by itself. Cultural Approach. and it deems communication with the reader important. this social institution is reduced to a question of economics. social “commitment”. Wanting to disseminate a “message.

it makes full use of the reciprocal function between culture and literature. of “neurosis”. sometimes very fruitful. Set in dizzying motion. it considers literature as the expression of “personality” of “inner drives”.” It has resulted in an almost exhausting and exhaustive “psycho-analysis” of characters of symbols and images. principally by Freud. Impressionistic Approach. Iloilo City 27 Seemingly one of the main thrusts of the present dispensation. of recurrent themes. etc. The last approach is the now popular impressionistic approach – very personal. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. The approach is one of the richest ways to arrive at the culture of a people and one of the pleasurable ways of appreciating the literature of a people. sometimes simply the . The sixth approach is the psychological approach. of the characters and even the “psychology of creation. It goes by the dictum “culture teaching through literature. It includes the psychology of the author. perhaps beyond his widest expectations. very relative.” Psychological Approach.

Standard questions for this approach are the “reaction-response” papers so much in vogue now. Iloilo City 28 lazy man’s way out. It is also possible that one approach cannot really be separated from others and that approaches are actually interrelated. is still the heart and soul of literature. not commentary or criticism. She pointed out that there are other approaches to the foregoing approaches. Maramba (1993). West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. . Likewise. should not be overlooked. language. There is no such thing as a “best” approach. Students may be asked to react or respond to anything in a literary piece that may have impressed them for one reason or another. or to the piece as a whole. Textual readings. questions on style. It depends on the nature of the selection on to what approach to be used. Unconditioned by the explanation and often taking the impact of the piece has communicated. recognizing different perceptions of readers is a must and should not be underestimated. Lastly. however. Questions on total effect should be asked. made some clarifications about these approaches.

which is the study of individual behavior and the mind. 1984 (in Sicabalo. Social Science is concerned with the origin and development of human society. Literature does indeed impinge on other disciplines and subjects and one reason is that. and the institutions. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz.” And what it thinks about is alien to literature. as Matthew Arnold said of poetry. interpreting data . and the way human beings behave. which investigates the way society is structured and how it functions. It examines the way society influences people's behavior and attitudes Microsoft Encarta Reference Library (2003). Peterson. literature “thinks. The social sciences explore human society past and present. stated that Mathematics is a tool that contains the skill for problem solving. relationships. They include sociology. Literature gives life to people. on the other hand. organizing. Social psychology draws on research in both these fields. Iloilo City 29 Conceptual Framework Every country has a story to tell. as well as psychology. and ideas involved in social life. 2003).

business. Iloilo City 30 and performing calculations that are necessary in subjects such as science. Pupils make conjectures and convincing arguments. Mathematics as communication promotes the development of pupils in formulating mathematical ideas. and industry. Mathematical problem solving suggests that pupils should use with increasing confidence. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. 1999 (in Sicabalo. mathematics was able to solve problems that were previously difficult or impossible to solve. 2003). . As stressed by Pendon. reflect on and clarify their own thinking about mathematical definitions and expresses generalizations discovered through investigations. Through the development of modern computers and calculators. Bobbit (in Gualferio. 2002) said that it is the school as well as the teachers to construct the pupil’s learning environment and learning experiences to their advantage to various activities and exercises that are related and demanded by their society. problem solving approaches to investigate and understand mathematical content.

or play he reads becoming alive and meaningful to him. feelings in other readers. One way to cause this kind of response is to present the student with literary works that have aroused strong. and it is a knowledge he alone can transmit to students. A student may find his way to literature in various ways. it provides the values and locates the terms on which we must meet the actual challenges in life. Most of what a teacher can teach and a student can learn about literature is form – the rhetorical and structural means by which literature achieves its ends. it is a shaping force in our lives. Iloilo City 31 (McGraw. . advanced that knowledge of formal elements of literary work is presumably a large part of every English teacher’s experience. Genuine response to literature engages our whole being – our emotions and imagination as well as our critical faculties. 1965). To the extent that literature trains the imagination. but all approaches depend for their final effectiveness on the poem. prose work. and often conflicting. exercises the intellect. and matures the emotions. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz.

Iloilo City 32 It is in this premise that the study came about which is better presented through the paradigm that follows: Independent Variables Dependent Variable BSED Social Science Majors Literary Interpretation Skills BSED Mathematics Majors Fig. Specifically this study aimed to answer the . Research paradigm showing the independent and the dependent variables Statement of the Problem This study sought to find out the literary interpretation skills of the BSED Social Science and Mathematics Majors of the College of Education at the West Visayas State University. 1. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz.

the following hypothesis is advanced: 1. What is the level of literary interpretation skills of the BSED Social Science and Mathematics Majors of the College of Education at the WVSU as an entire group? 2. What is the level of literary interpretation skills of the BSED Social Science and Mathematics Majors of the College of Education at the WVSU when classified as to their major? 3. Is there a significant difference between the levels of literary interpretation skills of the BSED Social Science and Mathematics majors of the COE at the WVSU? Hypothesis Based on the preceding problems. Definition of Terms . Iloilo City 33 following questions: 1. There is no significant difference between the level of literary interpretation skills of BSED Social Science and Mathematics majors. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz.

the researchers used the same definition. country or age (The Definitive Meriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language. 1986) In this study. especially writing having excellence in form or expression and expressing ideas of permanent or universal interest. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. Literature – refers to writings in prose or verse. Iloilo City 34 For the purpose of clarity and understanding of the textual presentation in this study.eng. the body of written works produced in a particular language. Literary Interpretation – refers to all actions involved in reading from apprehension. the same definition was adopted.html) In this study.edu. the following terms are defined conceptually and operationally. in terms of text analysis. Skill – refers to the ability to use one’s knowledge effectively and readily in execution or .tw/ Literary Criticism/newcriticism/general_introd. appreciation to analysis. it includes explaining and clarifying the meaning of a text so that its rich meaning can be understood (http://www.fju.

West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. Mathematics – science with relationship and symbolism of numbers and magnitude and that includes qualitative problems (Merriam Webster. Mathematics refers to the specialization of the student-respondents. history. Social Science referred to the specialization of the student-respondents. or anthropology (Microsoft Encarta Reference Library. 1986) In this study. psychology. economics. to technical expertness or proficiency (The Definitive Merriam-Webster Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language. 2003) In this study. 1998) In this study. skill referred to the test performance in literature of Social Science and Mathematics majors of the College of Education at WVSU. Social Science . Iloilo City 35 performance. .any of the disciplines within social science that study a particular area of human society such as sociology. political science.

they would be able to find effective means of improving their strategies and methods in teaching to provide the students enough knowledge and skills in literature. social and personal lives. Literature teachers may also benefit from this study. Iloilo City 36 Significance of the Study The result of this study will be beneficial to the students. school administrators and future researchers. teachers and faculty. This may motivate students to also consider literature as an essential part of their academic. The findings of this study will make the students realize their own skills in literary interpretation. The school administrators may also benefit from this study. As a result. This is to assess their own efficiency and effectivity in teaching. This will encourage studying more and putting on more efforts to improve their interpretation skills. Result may be used as a basis of performance rating for literature teachers. This study will give them insights on how to improve their instruction in literature . West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz.

this study will serve as a big help for future researchers whose main interest is on this competency. West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. This is not only limited to literature teachers but also to those teachers from different fields of specialization. Furthermore. Lastly. The school administrators will provide teacher’s trainings to enhance their effectivity and efficiency. The student-respondents utilized in the study were a product of random sampling method and were then classified according to specialization. Delimitation of the Study This descriptive study was limited at determining the literary interpretation skills of BSED Social Science and Mathematics majors of the College of Education at the West Visayas State University. this can be used as basis for planning and evaluating literature instruction. they will know the qualities needed for an effective teacher. Iloilo City 37 especially if their students are inclined more on the other fields of study. . Finally.

West Visayas State University COLLEGE OF EDUCATION La Paz. Villa in her unpublished master’s thesis entitled “English Proficiency and Literary Interpretation Skills of College Freshmen at West Visayas State University”. Iloilo City 38 The data needed for the study were obtained through an adopted test in literary interpretation constructed by Victoria S. standard deviation and t-test were used in analyzing the data descriptively and inferentially. The mean. .