The Effect of Integrating15 ways of Personalization Technique in Teaching English on the Iraqi EFL 1st Intermediate Students’ Oral Performance


   

The Effect of Integrating15 ways of Personalization Technique  in Teaching English on the Iraqi EFL 1st Intermediate Students’ Oral Performance

Lecturer,  Faris Kadhim Te’ema Al-Atabi, Ph.D.

University of Wassit / College of Education

مقال نشر في مجلة جيل الدراسات الأدبية والفكرية العدد 43 الصفحة 127.

     

الملخص

  إن القدرة على التواصل باستعمال اللغة الانكليزية هو هدف كل المدرسين, وإن تمكّن المتعلم من اللغة هي الأخرى تظهر في قدرته على استعمال تلك اللغة, وهذا هو السبب في أن  مهارة الكلام هي الأساس الذي يتقدّم كل المهارات الأخرى من ناحية الأهمية. ويظهر أن الأساليب التقليدية وضعف المادة الدراسية التي تفتقر الى الضروريات المهمة للمتعلم تجعل الطلبة العراقيين  غير قادرين على استعمال مهارة الكلام  في مختلف المراحل الدراسية على الرغم من طول فترة التعلم, وهنا تظهر الحاجة الى طرائق وتقنيات واستراتيجيات حديثة تمكنهم من الكلام؛ لذلك عنيت الدراسة الحالية في أن تجد تأثير دمج خمس عشرة طريقة  من تقنية التعلّم الشخصي في تدريس مادة اللغة الانكليزية على الأداء الشفوي للطلبة, وتتميز هذه الخمس عشرة طريقة بكونها مؤثرة, وحديثة, وقوية تناسب الأعمار الصغيرة, وتتميز بسهولة تطبيقها على معظم دروس اللغة الانكليزية. وكذلك بكونها ترتكز على الطلبة حتى الخجول والضعيف منهم؛ ولتحقيق هدف الدراسة اُختيرت مجموعتان من طلبة الصف الأول متوسط: أحدهما تمثل التجريبية التي درّست بواسطة دمج الخمسة عشر طريقة من  تقنية التعلم الشخصي, أما الأخرى فتدرس باتباع الطريقة التقليدية, وبعد معادلة المجموعتين ببعض العوامل التي من شانها أن تؤثر على نتائج التجربة أثبتت نتائج الامتحان الشفوي البعدي أن الوسط الحسابي للمجموعة التجريبية يفوق المجموعة الضابطة, وخلصت النتائج الاحصائية إلى أن المجموعة التجريبية التي درست اللغة الانكليزية بدمج الخمس عشرة طريقة من تقنية التعلم الشخصي كانت النتائج لصالحها.

       

Abstract

The ability to communicate using  English  language  is the goal of most English language teachers . Learners’ mastery of the language is parallel with his/her ability  to speak  that language that is why peaking skill is a prominent skill  to which all  other language skills are subordinated . Due to the traditional techniques and poor materials  that lack most of the language contents necessary for   EFL  learners to practice the language in use, Iraqi EFL young students  are seen unable to speak and   in needs to new ; methods ,  techniques and strategies  to teaching English .Therefore , the present study is intended to find out the effect of integrating  15  ways of personalization technique on their oral performance .These 15 ways of personalization technique are proved to be effective in teaching since it is ;   a recent technique , powerful ones , fits young learners , applicable to all language lessons ,etc. They are also  students-centered in terms of enabling all the students to take part even the shy and the  low level ones  .  To achieve the aim of the study two groups have been chosen randomly from 1st intermediate school students  ; one stands  for the experimental and the other for the control group after equalizing them in some factors that may affect the experiment outcomes .The results of the  speaking post-test reveal that the mean scores  of the experimental group  who are taught English by integrating 15 ways of personalization exceed that of the control one who are taught English by following the conventional way. Therefore, the hypothesis posed in advance  is verified since there is a significant difference between the two mean scores in favour of the experimental group .

Keywords: integrating ,  personalization , and oral performance 

Section One :Introduction

The problem of the Study 

It is quite clear to everyone  that language is commonly defined as  a means of communication and it is  unique to human beings,  by which one can express his feelings , thoughts , attitudes, moods , complex processes , etc. Speaking plays an essential role among the other  main language four skills and occupies an important place in the process of teaching and learning English . For most people , the capacity  to speak a language is the same as knowing that  target language since speech is the most basic tool of human communication (Lazaraton, 2001).

According to Richards & Renandya (2008) the efficiency of speaking  in English is a target aim  for many second language  or foreign language learners. Consequently, learners are  often evaluated in their progress in language learning as well as the mastery of their English course on the basis of how much they have got  improved in their spoken language ability  .

Richards and Renandya (2002) are of identical views when they claim that , a large percentage of the world’s language learners study English in order to get an ability in the  speaking proficiency . Recently, Nowicka and Wilczyńska (2011,p.24) admit this fact through stating that speaking is extensively considered to be the principal skill that stands on the whole of knowledge of an FL. People may often form judgments about one’s language competence from his speaking rather than from any other language skills.

It has been found that after a very long period of English language teaching , Iraqi learners, in all stages of English language teaching , are unable to speak the language .This fact is much  confirmed by  Iraqi EFL teachers who attribute the learners’ failure or inability to speak the language to many factors from which ; the traditional methods of teaching English   which are mainly teacher-centered that look at  students as passive recipients and ignore the learners’ needs , preferences , likes and dislikes , hobbies and the like .The challenges faced in academic speaking practice are believed to hinder students’ oral communication that include communicating ideas fluently, speaking accurately(grammar), communicating ideas confidently, speaking clearly (pronunciation) and participating actively in discussions(Al- Fatlawi, 2008p.4).Personalization is considered as a  powerful technique for encouraging  the learners’ oral interaction  and participation by giving the learners  ample  opportunities to share with others aspects of themselves as people regarding  their likes and dislikes, feelings, personal experiences, knowledge, opinions, and so on.(www.rosesenior.com)

Feldstein and  Hill  (2016) add that   Personalization is powerful because it enables learners to make connection between the lesson they have and their own lives  thereby making the language they have  more meaningful and relevant. Learners are also  provided with multiple opportunities to use English in unique ways  making statements that no one has heard before and that can, therefore, be highly memorable (and sometimes amusing). Moreover ,  they show that they value the unique statements made by individual students (rather than ignoring them or indicating disapproval), teachers say that personalization makes their classes more alert and alive. Therefore the following research is an attempt to experiment the effect of integrating15 ways of personalization technique in teaching English language on the students’ oral performance

Aims

The present study  aims at finding out the effect of  integrating  15 ways of personalization technique in teaching  English  on the Iraqi EFL Intermediate  students’ oral  performance .

Hypothesis

The present study hypothesizes that there is no statistical  significant difference  between the mean scores of the  students’ oral  performance  who are taught English  by integrating 15 ways of personalization technique  and that of the  students who are taught according to the conventional way .

Limits

The present study  is limited to :

  1. Iraqi EFL 1st intermediate school students
  2. The prescribed textbook ” English for Iraq”
  3. First course during the academic year (2016-2017)

Procedures:

  1. Choosing two groups from the 1st  intermediate school students   randomly ; one  stands  for the experimental group and the other  one stands for the control group ;
  2. Equalizing the two groups;
  3. Teaching the two groups for about one  course ;
  4. Designing an oral test ;
  5. Analyzing and discussing the obtained results .

Section Two :Theoretical Background

Personalization

The term ”personalization ” is recent  term used  by many methodologists and specialists in  the field of language learning and  teaching  . In this respect the following  are the most popular definitions of the this term , for example Kerr (2016)defines personalization as a  powerful technique for encouraging  oral interaction by giving students the opportunity to share with others aspects of themselves as people; their likes and dislikes, feelings, personal experiences, knowledge, opinions, and so on .

Personalization is a technique that is also thought as  a part from the communicative language teaching as asserted many communicative language  teaching adopters who claim that  Communicative language teaching  is all about helping students to develop their speaking skills by giving them a range of opportunities to interact in English with fellow students during class time and this can be achieved by  A powerful technique for encouraging oral interaction is that of personalization. (Alex ; 2008; https://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/article/personalisation)

On the other hand “Personalization” as a techniques is ascribed to be  a vital way of language learning and teaching especially for  the low level classes or in the cases in which  the students are far away from the teacher in age .This will result in chatting and talking freely  about themselves is not an easy task if not impossible . This technique is convenient for low level and very young classes in which what the  students most need is  the motivation, enhancements , rewarding ,and the like . Moreover , students need the feeling of the  realization  that they can use English to talk about themselves for different topics .They also need to eliminate the feelings of they are unable  in which they are most impressed by the teacher . (Kerr ,2016)

Personalized learning is also understood as  the teaching and learning that is centered on the  prior knowledge and background , preferences , potential and perception of the learner. It is also seen as a learner-centered education that place the learner at the front and not left behind. Personalization technique  is  a philosophical way  that bases on definite strategies that need to be developed consciously and carefully.

 It is not only a way but it has principles that make it an approach for teaching and learning .It exceeds what we could call “teacher talk” (where lessons only  consist of a lecture with little  , if not any  ,  interaction between the students and the teacher or among the students themselves) or the material where the teacher is merely there to do  exercises from a textbook and/or to tell student to read it. Personalization  is a  powerful way in which the students  take the  ownership of the learning process to be able  a lifelong learner.( Feldstein & Hill , 2016)

What is most distinctive about personalization as a learning and teaching  technique it has an origin  from the personalized learning theory which is centered  on two pillars . Alex(2008) states that  Personalized learning theory is based  on the twin pillars of; 1) differentiated learning pathways for learners  and 2) provide  feedback that enables learners  to make informed judgments about what they’ve learned, how well they’ve learned it, and what to learn next . The importance of these two pillars for effective teaching  is well formed despite that there many school which ignore these two essential pillars  .

Fifteen Ways of Personalization 

The core part of the study is based on integrating the following 15ways of personalization technique  to teaching English lessons. To   accomplish the aim of the study and to verify its hypothesis , these  fifteen ways of personalization are applied to teach most of the topics found  in  ” English for Iraq” for 1st intermediate grade  . Allex (2008) asserts  that there are 15 ways which are game like and other ideas that will allow even very low level students and young learners to say something about  the language they study and take roles to express who they are in a very  simplified  English right  from the very first moment they step into an English class . Here are the 15 ways as they  presented by  Alex ( 2008 );

1.The Make Me Say Yes Game

In this game, students ‘ role is to  ask the teacher Yes/ No questions and wait to  get a point if the teacher’s (true) answer is “Yes”. Possible language points with low level and young classes include multiple verb usages including (can , have and verb to be )  that are used daily in our life expressions like  can (Can you swim? ), ( can you camping )  have (Do you have a pet? ,  Do you have a pen in your bag? ), to be (Are you British? ,  Are you 37?, and like (Do you like pizza? ).

 

2.Likes and Wants

Another way by which the students use the language easily to talk about daily routine or habits  is by asking questions  Do you like…? which is part of the request  of  the Make Me Say Yes game but with  extension that include almost any language point such as , asking students to respond to different topics and  things on each flashcard presents , for example  colours It’s red . Do you like red ? No !  No? Do boys  like red colour ? , food , animals, sports, school subjects, and household jobs and other daily routines. You can also use this language or the more suitable(Do you want..?) when you are giving out flashcards or realia for the next game or activity. Having an emotional reaction to the materials and the vocabulary will help the students remember and expressing their opinions and choosing which they want can help them become more independent in their learning and more likely to speak out.

3.Have

 Using ”Have ” as another way to talk about so many ideas as ( Do you have…? Have you got…?) which  is another piece of grammar you can use to personalize lots of other language points even before you have formally introduced it, e.g. with family members ( Do you have four sisters? ), clothes ( Do you have black socks? ), and toys.

4.Can

Another piece of grammar is ”Can ” you can use to personalize lots of other language points is “can”, e.g. with sports (“Can you swim?”) or body parts (“Can you your nose with your toe?”).

5.Puppets

                Another fun way by which the students are likely to be less shy about asking a puppet personal questions than they are about asking a teacher .This will remove the teacher from the center of the process of learning and keep the class funny and less tensed . Students can then take the puppet and ask each other the same questions (speaking through the puppet), making asking questions they already know the answer to seem less fake and making them less self-conscious speaking with a native speaker-like accent while they are putting on the voice of the puppet.

6.Storybooks with Personal questions

Another way to use fantasy and fiction to lead to talking about their own reality is to use storybooks where there is information about the characters that answers the kinds of personal questions you are practicing , such as names and ages. The students can then ask the questions to or about the storybook character (e.g. “What’s your/ his name?” “My/ his name is Spot the Dog”). The teacher or character in the book can then ask the same questions to the students.

7.Make False Statements

Students most likely love funs and humor by which the teacher says  “Your name is Blblblblblblbl” or “You are 1 year old/ zero” to students is good for a laugh, makes them listen to everything you say from then on in case it is also false, gives them a feeling of power and the ability to speak out in the classroom (they can correct the teacher!), and is a useful way of eliciting the answers to different type  questions .

8.Remember each other

One way to provide the students with confidence and sharing each other even the weak students  is by after they have got used to correcting you on their own personal details, you can get the whole class to correct you on what you say about the one student you pick on , e.g. “His pet is a spider” “No! His pet is a cat!”. This can then be then be extended to students remembering or guessing the answers to questions about other students, e.g. “What is his favourite colour?” They can then test each other, e.g. “What’s my favourite food?” or “How many bedrooms does Jose’s house have?” A variation on this is to get them to close their eyes and test them on what other people are wearing.

 

9.Profile pages

A great way of keeping the students alert and in touch with the teacher is by  showing students that you are really listening to what they say is to let them see you writing it down. This can be something as simple as changing what you have written down when they tell you “I am 5” instead of “I am 4” for the first time. Just jotting it down in your notepad is enough, but having a profile card for each student on the wall that you add to and change information on is even better.

10.Celebrate birthdays

Ways of adding a language point to this include drawing them pictures of presents they would like, counting and correcting the number of candles on a picture of a birthday cake, and singing the Happy Birthday song.

11.Projects , photos and drawings

Arts and crafts work should be a standard part of any pre-school syllabus, but you can add to its language content and how much it helps students remember the language by making sure they put as much personal content into it as possible. For example, make sure they are actually drawing something that looks like their own family by asking “(Does your) father (really have a) beard?” (maybe with mimes), “Wow, your brother’s nose is BIG!” or “How long is your mother’s hair? (To her) ears? Shoulders?”

 

12.Comment on what is different today

Small children have a cute but English-free habit of stopping the whole class to show their teacher the cut on their finger or the pink socks that they didn’t have in the last lesson. You can try to exploit this natural personalization by asking them questions about anything you notice is different, e.g. “Whose is the new poster with an elephant on it?” or “I see Noriko is wearing pink socks. How many people are wearing pink socks today/ have pink socks (at home)?”

13.Please Mr Crocodile

In this traditional English playground game, students stand against the back wall and chant together “Please Mr Crocodile, may we cross the water?” and the crocodile (teacher or good student) says “Only if you are wearing a skirt/ are three years old/ have the letter Y in your name” etc. The students who meet the criteria can cross the classroom to the opposite side of the room, and then when the teacher says “Go” all the others have to try and run across without being eaten by the crocodile. You can play the game either so people who are eaten are out of the game or so they have to become the crocodile.

14.A regular personal questions stage

The fact that young learners of the language quickly forget what they are learned from time to time. This fact means that they need revision of even basic stuff almost every week. One way of doing this is to start every class with them answering and (later) asking personal questions about name, age, favourites , clothes etc. There are many games suitable for these questions and this age group to make sure they don’t get bored with asking the same questions all the time. Games include throwing a ball back and forth as they ask and answer, passing balls along lines of students as a race, and asking and answering whole chains of questions without making a mistake.

15.Talk about their other teachers

Once you have run out of things to say about yourself and all the students in the class, a few questions and answers about their other teachers is a great way of getting their interest, using English for real communication (telling them something they didn’t know such as their Maths teacher’s favourite food) and of making them remember what they learnt when they are outside English class. (https://www.tefl.net/elt/articles/teacher-technique/15-stages-of-using-pre-school-english-songs)

Section Three :Procedures

Methodology

This section  attempts at surveying the procedures adopted in carrying out the experimental part of the present research . More specifically, it highlights the following :

  1. the design of the experiment;
  2. the population and sample selection,
  3. the research instrument, i.e. the post test,
  4. ascertaining the validity and reliability of the  post test,
  5. the teaching materials and lesson plans that are used in teaching the two groups, and finally
  6. the statistical tools employed for data analysis.

Experimental Design

The whole experiment is conducted according to some plan which is called” the Experimental Design “. Best and Kahn (2006,P.177) define the experimental design as” the blueprint of the procedures that enable the researcher to test hypotheses by reaching valid conclusions about the relationship between independent and dependent variables”.

Keeping in view the above stated design decisions, the researcher has chosen the non-randomized Pre-Posttest Equivalent-Groups Design to achieve the aim of this study and to test its hypothesis. This design requires two groups of equivalent standing in terms of a criterion measure i.e. the independent variable (Padua and Santos, 1998:31). The first group is the control group whereas the second is the experimental group. Both groups are given the same pretest . The experimental group is given the independent variable i.e.  integrating 15 ways of personalization, while the control group is taught according to the traditional way . At the end of the experimental period, both groups are given the same posttest .To provide a clear picture of the experimental design, consider Table(1 )below.

 

 

Table (1) The Experimental Design

The Groups The Test Independent Variable The Test
EG Pre  Test 15 ways of personalization Post Test
CG Pre Test Traditional way Post Test

 

Population and Sample Selection

The whole population of the present study includes 1st  grade intermediate school students in the city of Wasit province.                                                                                                                           From Al-Hai  1st class students at Al-Hai Intermediate School for boys  has been chosen to be the representative sample of the present study. The total number of those students is 165 who are grouped into four sections, namely: A, B, C and D. Two sections have randomly been selected out of the four sections; namely: B and E. Section B represents the control group which includes forty-three students. Section E represents the experimental group which contains forty-two students. The total number of the students in the two groups is eighty-five . Four repeaters have been excluded from the two sections to avoid their past experience. The final number of the selected sample is eighty and each group has forty students see table (2).

Table (2)The Sample of the Study

Group Number of students
Before Exclusion After Exclusion
CG. 43 40
EG. 42 40
Total 85 80

Equivalence of Groups

           To achieve equalization between the two groups, the following  variables are controlled. Information concerning these variables is taken from the students themselves and their personal records.

 Age of Testees

     Using the t-test formula for two independent samples, it is found that the computed t-value is 0.086; whereas the tabulated t-value is 2.000. So, the difference between the two groups is not statistically significant where the level of significance is 0.05 and the degree of freedom is 58 see table(3).

Table (3) Equalization in Age of Participants

Level of significance d.f. Tabulated
t –valueComputed t- valueSD XNo.Group0.05582.0000.0868.763157.6040CG9.144157.4040EG

Academic Level of the Father

       There is no statistically significant difference between the two groups in the academic level of father variable since the computed X2 value which is 2.26 is found to be lower than the tabulated X2 value which is 5.99 at a degree of freedom of 2 and a level of significance of 0.05 see table (4).

Table(4)Equalization in Academic Level of Father

 
  Groups    No.Illiterate + reads and writes + primary  Intermediate + secondaryInstitute + College +higher studies    Computed X2- value  Tabulated X2- valued.f  Level of significance CG4015205  2.26  5.99  2  0.05EG40121810

 

Academic Level of the Mother

      By applying the Chi- square formula, it is found that there is no statistically significant difference between the two groups in the academic level of mother variable since the computed X2 value which is 0.42 is lower   than the tabulated X2 value which is 5.99 at a degree of freedom of 2 and 0.05 level of significance see table (5).

Table (5)Equalization in Academic Level of Mother

Group No. Illiterate + reads and writes + primary Intermediate
+ secondaryInstitute + College + higher studiesComputed X2- valueTabulated X2- valueDf  Level of significanceCG40131710  0.42  5.99  2    0.05EG40101812

 

 

The Pre-Post Test

      In order to achieve the aims of the study, an interview as speaking pre-posttest  has been used. The pretest is  conducted to ensure the equalization of the groups involved in the study and the posttest  is used to measure the effectiveness of the experimental procedures.

The Choice of The Test Topics

Concerning the test , a structured  interview  has been constructed by the researcher himself . Fulcher (2010:24) claims  that the most common format of testing  speaking is the interview in which the test takers converse with an interviewer and his performance is evaluated . The criteria followed in selecting the topics are authenticity of the topic, modernity of the idea, and suitability to the sample interest and level of the students .Ten  topics and the  list of guiding questions have been exposed to the jury members  mentioned in (Appendix 1 ) to select the most suitable ones for  the pretest and  the post test.

Accordingly, the jurors approve   ten conversation topics with  their  lists of guiding questions. Most of the Jurors agree on the (1,2,4,11,6)  topics for the pretest and the(3,5,7,8,9,10)  for the posttest  .

Scoring Schemes

An analytic scoring scheme has been adopted and modified from Brown (2004p.244) for scoring the  speaking  test . Classroom evaluation of learning is best served through analytic scoring , in which as many as five major elements is best served through analytic scoring (ibid:243). The idea of giving a number of scores makes scoring more reliable, because this usually involves balancing perceptions of a set of different aspects of the text (McNamara, 2000,p.44).

         To assess the performance of the subjects’ responses to each item of the speaking test, the following scoring scheme has been adopted from Brown (2001,p.406-407) with some modification: (the last component “task” has been deleted in accordance with the jury member suggestions). This scoring scheme consists of five components to be rated and a rating scale(1-5) . Accordingly, the highest score of the test is 25 whereas the lowest score is 5  see table (6).

Table ( 6 )Components and Scores of the  Speaking Scoring Scheme

No. Components Scores
1 Grammar 5 scores
2 Vocabulary 5 scores
3 Comprehension 5 scores
4 Fluency 5 scores
5 Pronunciation                                5 scores
Total 25 scores

Face validity of the pre-test is achieved by exposing it to a number of jurors . The agreement percentage of the suitability of the test items is 100%. As far as reliability is concerned, the Alpha-Cronbach formula is applied where it is found out to be 0.78.

Applying the two independent samples t-test formula, it is shown that there is no statistically significant difference between the mean scores of two groups on the pre test at 0.05 level of significance and 58 degree of freedom, since the calculated t-value which is 1.249 is less than the tabulated t-value which is 1.641 as shown in table (7).

Table (7) The Pre Test

Group No. Mean SD. Computed t- value Tabulated  t- value Df Level of Significant
CG 40 5.700 3.196 1.249 2.000 58 0.05
EG 40 6.933 4.362

The Instructional Material

Five units  have been taught from which five topics have been  selected from  “English for Iraq”  for 1st intermediate students , to be the instructional material of the present study. Here are the   topics and their pages are presented in table (8)  :

1-Unit one “My spare time”  ; (the holidays , spare-time activities , hobbies and routine activities ) P.5 –10

2-Unit two “Dates and seasons “; (weather words , months , seasons and ordinals ) p.15-18

3-Unit three “What have you done today ” ; (adjective and adverbs describing moods and feelings and activities )P.21-29

4-Unit four “lazy days , birthday “

5-Unit five “Other countries”  ( have you been to , where have you been )

Table (8)The Teaching Material and the pages  of the Study

No. of
UnitTitle of the unitPage No.Types of topics1″My spare time “51-the holidays ,2- how often , 3-the birdwatcher2″The seasons of the year “141-the months of the year ,2-what ‘s the date , 3-different school 4-eid al-fitr 5-new year’s day in London3Good Gwen and Lazy Len211-I’ve finished my work ,2-What’s the matter ,3-Mad Mack , 4-once upon a time4″Lazy Len’s day “301-khalid’s birthday present 2-the monkey in the café 3-writing story5″Other countries “341-Big Bill , 2-we have been everywhere 3-four countries , 4-have you ever been to Indonesia 5-where have you been

 

Pilot Administration of the Post Test

     It is a common practice that data collection instruments should be tried out before they are finally administered (Klein, 1970: 129). Therefore, the test has been administered to a sample of one hundred students randomly drawn from the population and from different intermediate school . The aim of this application is to:

  1. estimate the appropriateness of the test to the students’ ability;
  2. secure the clarity of the test instructions to the testees;
  3. analyze the test items in the light of the students’ responses to determine their effectiveness in terms of difficulty level and  discriminatory power; and
  4. calculate the reliability coefficient of the test.

        The pilot study was carried out on 23rd December 2012 on 100 female students. The findings of the pilot administration have indicated that the test items are appropriate to the respondents, and the time which all the students took to answer ranges between 40 to 45 minutes. The average time is then 42.5 minutes.

Item Analysis

      Madsen (1983:180) states that to ensure a good test, it is not enough to select appropriate language items. Each item in the question needs to function properly; otherwise, it can weaken the test. Therefore,” item analysis” is used for checking individual items“. It is the process of examining the students’ responses to each test item to judge the quality of the item, specifically, the difficulty and discriminating ability of the items (Mehrens and Lehmann, 1991: 161).

      After scoring the testees’ papers, the researcher arranged them in order of scores from the highest to the lowest. Then she separated two groups of test papers: an upper group consisting of the highest 27% of the scores and a lower group consisting of the lowest 27% of the scores.

 Difficulty Level

     One of the aims of the pilot study is to determine the difficulty level (henceforth DL) of the test items. However, if the test items are too difficult or too easy, they will lack the necessary power of discrimination; indiscriminative tests are misleading (Madsen 1983: 180). DL should range from 0.20 to 0.80 (Ebel, 1972: 200). The item whose DL ranks among the above ranges is acceptable (Bloom et al., 1971:66). The DL of all the test items ranges between 0.42 to 0.78 .

Discriminating Power

According to Ebel (1972,202) the item is considered acceptable if its discriminating power, DP for short, is 0.30 and above. The results of applying the DP formula to the test items are demonstrated. The DP of the present study test items ranges between 0.31 and 0.54.Therefore; all the test items are acceptable.

The Post Test Reliability

      Jackson (2012:66) states that one means of determining whether the measure the researcher is using is effective is to assess its reliability. “It is the extent to which a test is consistent in its assessment of what is says it is measured”(Carducci, 2009:43).

         As believed by Harmer (2001:322), “Reliability is enhanced by making the test instructions absolutely clear, restricting the scope for variety in the answers, and making sure the test conditions remain constant”. The reliability coefficient of the post- test has been computed by Alpha- Cronbach formula, where the reliability coefficient is found out to be 0.82. Such high reliability is considered acceptable since it is above 0.50 and reaches more than 0.68 (Nunnaly and Ator, 1972:226).

The Application of the Experiment

       The experiment started on the 22nd of October, 2017 and ended on the 7th of January, 2018. That is, it has lasted  for twelve weeks, five lessons  per week .One requirement for conducting the proposed experiment is lesson plan which contains the detailed information about the objectives, teaching techniques, steps and assessment procedures that can be followed in teaching the two groups. Two typical lesson plans are set for the two groups; the first is for the experimental group which is based on integrating the 15 ways of personalization technique , while the second is for the control group which is based on the traditional  technique.

Final Administration of the Post Test and the Scoring Scheme

    After achieving the post-test face validity and reliability, it has been administered to both groups, the experimental and the control, on the same day, 7th of January 2018. The allocated time for answering the test is 15 minutes. The testees are instructed to choose a card from the container which includes different card questions .The researcher record the students’ answer to mark them according to the scoring scheme .  After the testees have answered the questions and recorded them  by the researcher scored , tabulated and analyzed statistically in order to find the final result.

Results and Discussions

 To achieve  the aim of the present study which is ” the effect  of integrating 15 ways of personalization technique in teaching English  on Iraqi EFL students’ oral performance , it is hypothesized that there is no statistically significant difference between the mean score of the oral  performance of student of both the control group and the experimental one. In verifying the above hypothesis, the mean scores as well as standard deviations are calculated for the two groups as shown in table (9) below.

Table(9)The Mean Scores, Standard Deviations and t-test Value

 

 

For the Two Groups in the Post Test

Group No. Mean SD Computed t- value Tabulated  t- value Df Level of significance
EG 40 11.833 4.315 4.567 2.000  
580.05CG407.43333.036

   Using the t-test for two independent samples, it is found that the computed t-value is 4.567 which is greater than the tabulated t-value which is 2.000 at 58 degree of freedom and 0.05 level of significance. This reveals a statistically significant difference between the mean scores in favor of the experimental group which is taught English  by the personalization technique .

  Discussion of Results

       Depending on the results of the present study , the technique adopted by the researcher in his experiment has proved to be effective since the oral  performance of the experimental group subjects in the post test administered at the end of the experiment has surpassed that of the control group subjects.

      This success is due to certain aspects concerning personalization technique. For example, using the 15 ways of personalization have  effected a great deal in proving and promoting the students’ ability in expressing themselves using the English  language.

    Also, Krashen (1985:34) shows that being well- trained in provides students with fun which lowers their affective filter, making them more ‘affectively’ open to the language. If students are trained well in using the above mentioned technique, they would be more able . might analyze this technique components with more details and wider comprehension of questions based on the given narration.

The present study conforms to Krashen’s (1985) in that Iraqi EFL students have fun using personalization technique as they start using the language to talk about different topics .

Most of Iraqi EFL students struggle with talking and speaking using the language because of their shyness and scared of failure  . Therefore, a solution for such problems would be adopting techniques and strategies that might be used to support the classroom curriculum, and the type of technique that seemed to best fit the situation personalization technique .

Conclusions

According to the results of the present study, it has been found worth to explore the impact of Personalization technique on the conventional one followed in teaching English lessons for 1st intermediate students  .The following are the main conclusions :

  1. Teaching English via personalization technique helps students express themselves as active participants even for low level and shy students .
  2. Students seem to benefit from personalization technique insofar it helps them organize their ideas , thoughts , attitudes etc. when they speak.
  3. The results also show that students could answer main idea questions which require inferential rather than literal comprehension.
  4. personalization technique encourages the competition among students who become active and able to reach their best performance.
  5. It also breaks the boredom on the side of the students since using personalization technique and filling it is regarded an interesting activity to do.
  6. By using personalization technique, students were capable of  talking as good language speakers .
  7. It has been noticed that students’ interest in these 15 ways has increased and this is due to these ways . Consequently, their motivation for understanding and comprehension has also increased.

 

Appendix (1)

1-Holidays :

1.Do you go away in the holiday ?  2.Where do you go ? 5.what do you do there ?(visiting  , fishing, swimming  4.What do you do all the time ?5.Do you go with or without a friend ?

2.Spare time :

1.What do you do in your spare time ? 2.What do you like to do ?3.Do you like (pictures , watch t.v , animals ,etc. ?4.Tell me about the things you do in your spare time .

 

3-How often :

1.How often do you play (football ,tennis , basketball , etc.) 2.Do you always have a rest after (homework , dinner …3.When do you usually do your homework ? 4.Do you sometime play a game ?5.Do you always  visit your grandparents’ ?

4-The seasons of the year :

1.How many seasons are in the year ? 2.Is winter cold ?  3.When does it rain in the year ?   4.when is it cold in the year?    5.When is it sunny in the year ?   6.How is it in the spring ?   7.Is it hot or cold in summer ?

5-Months of the year:

1.How many months are there in the year ? 2.How many days are there in one year ?

3.How many days are there in a leap year ? 4.What is the longest month in the year

5.What is the shortest month in the year? 6.Which  is the first moth ? 7.Which  is the last month ? 8.Which is the coldest month ?   9.Which is the hottest  ? 10.When does it snow  ? 11.When does it rain   ? 12.When is it cloudy  ? 13.When is it windy ?

14.What ‘s  the date to day ?

6-When is your birth day:

1.Do you enjoy birth days ?  2.What do you do in birth days ? 3.How old will you be on your next birth day ?  4.What do you get in your birthday ? 5.Whom  do you invite  for your birthday ?

7-New year’s day :

1.When is the new year’s day?  2.What do you want to do in the new year’s day

3.Do you go to the park to play  4-Do you sing , play , eat …?

8-Once upon a time

1.Do you tell lies ?  2.Do you laugh at people  3.Do you tell the truth ?

9-What’s the matter

What do you say to someone in the following situations

1.your friend is worried .  2.your sister is upset   3.your father is sad  4.Your brother is excited   5.Your mother is happy 6.Your friend is frightened

10-Have you ever been (have you ever done )

1.Have you ever been to turkey ,Iran , Sudia , etc. 2.have you ever ridden a horse   3.have you ever been to Basrah   4.have you ever driven a car

11-Four countries

1-does India have a big population?  2.what animals do people ride in India?  3-what do people do in India ?   4-Is Oman big or small country

5-what do people do in Oman?  6-Does  Oman have small population?

7-Is Iraq a big or a small country ? 8-What do people work in Iraq?

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Updated: 2018-09-04 — 17:05

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