English vocabulary learning strategies of bui huu nghia high school students

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CAN THO UNIVERSITY DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION ENGLISH DEPARTMENT --------------- ENGLISH VOCABULARY LEARNING STRATEGIES OF BUI HUU NGHIA HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS BA Thesis Field of study: English Language Teaching Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed Researcher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Code: 7062922 Class: NN0652A1 Can Tho, April 2010 Acknowledgements ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS This research is accomplished with the enthusiastic help of many people. First and foremost, I would like to express my whole-heart appreciation to my supervisor, Mrs. Ngo Thi Trang Thao, my supervisor for her helpful guidance and valuable advice during the time of doing this study. She also gave me professional suggestion in carrying out this thesis. Secondly, I also would like to express truthful thanks to my counselor, Mrs. Bui Minh Chau who encouraged my classmates and me to determine on doing research. Moreover, she gave me much useful advice for finding and choosing my research topic. Also, I would like to thank my friends who gave me a lot of useful advice as well as encouragement when I met some problems during the time of doing this study. Finally, I am sincerely thankful to the students at Bui Huu Nghia high school who provided me with the data for this research. i Abstract ABSTRACT The purpose of this study was to identify the vocabulary learning strategies adopted by 216 students at Bui Huu Nghia high school in Cantho city. This study attempted to examine the main strategies that Bui Huu Nghia High School students apply to discover new English words' meaning and to consolidate the meaning of English words once they have been encountered. The subjects of the study consisted of 68 tenth-graders, 82 eleventh-graders and 66 twelfth-graders at Bui Huu Nghia high school. The main instrument used in this research is a questionnaire consisting of 50 items, based mostly on Schmitt’s (1997) taxonomy. The first thirteen items were used to explore the main strategies that students apply to discover English new words’ meaning. The rest items were used to consolidate English words once they have been encountered. The results of the study show that social strategies are mainly used for finding the meaning of the new English words. Furthermore, the use of the strategy ‘asking teacher for an L1 translation’ and the strategy ‘asking classmates for the meaning of the word’ are mostly used among students to find out the meaning of unknown English words. Metacognitive strategies are the highest-ranking category used for remember new English words once they have been encountered. The strategy ‘studying the sound of a word’ and the strategy ‘written repetition’ are the most popular strategies shared by students to retain new English words. Findings of this study imply that most students are quite active to employ vocabulary learning strategies when encountering unfamiliar English words. ii Tóm tắt TÓM TẮT Mục đích của nghiên cứu này nhằm xác định những chiến lược học từ vựng của 216 học sinh của trường THPT Bùi Hữu Nghĩa tại TP Cần Thơ. Nghiên cứu khảo sát những chiến lược chủ yếu mà học sinh trường Bùi Hữu Nghĩa thường dùng để tìm nghĩa từ mới tiếng Anh và để ghi nhớ từ. Đối tượng nghiên cứu gồm có 68 học sinh lớp 10, 82 học sinh lớp 11 và 66 học sinh lớp 12 tại trường THPT Bùi Hữu Nghĩa. Công cụ chính dùng trong nghiên cứu là bảng câu hỏi gồm 50 mục, dựa trên cơ sở phân loại của Schmitt (1997). Mười ba mục đầu trong bảng câu hỏi dùng để tìm hiểu những chiến lược chính học sinh áp dụng để tìm ra nghĩa từ mới. Những mục còn lại dùng để tìm hiểu những chiến lược học sinh dùng để ghi nhớ từ vựng. Kết quả nghiên cứu cho thấy những chiến lược thuộc nhóm có tương tác giữa người với người (Social strategies) được sử dụng chủ yếu để tìm ra nghĩa từ vựng. Trong đó, chiến lược ‘nhờ giáo viên dịch sang tiếng Việt’ và ‘hỏi bạn cùng lớp nghĩa của từ’ được dùng nhiều nhất để tìm ra nghĩa từ tiếng Anh mới. Những chiến lược thuộc nhóm siêu nhận thức (Metacognitive strategies) dùng để học từ vựng được xếp hạng cao nhất. Trong đó, chiến lược ‘học cách phát âm’ và ‘viết đi viết lại nhiều lần’ được học sinh sử dụng phổ biến để ghi nhớ từ vựng. Những kết quả trên cho thấy học sinh khá chủ động trong việc áp dụng những chiến lược học từ vựng khi gặp từ mới. iii Table of Contents TABLE OF CONTENTS Acknowledgements .................................................................................................. i Abstract (English) ................................................................................................... ii Abstract (Vietnamese)............................................................................................ iii List of Tables .......................................................................................................... v Chapter 1 Introduction ............................................................................................ 1 Chapter 2 Literature review..................................................................................... 3 1. Vocabulary Learning Strategies ..................................................................... 3 1.1. Definition of the term vocabulary learning strategy........................... 3 1.2. The Role of Vocabulary Learning Strategies in Language Learning .. 3 2. Classification of Vocabulary Learning Strategy ............................................. 4 2.1. Taxonomies of Vocabulary Learning Strategy ................................... 4 2.2. Related Studies of Vocabulary Learning strategies ............................ 5 3. Conclusion ..................................................................................................... 7 Chapter 3 Methodology........................................................................................... 8 1. Research questions......................................................................................... 8 2. Research design ............................................................................................. 8 3. Hypothesis ..................................................................................................... 8 4. Participants .................................................................................................... 8 5. Instrument...................................................................................................... 9 6. Research procedure ...................................................................................... 12 Chapter 4 Results .................................................................................................. 13 1. Descriptive statistics for the whole questionnaire ......................................... 13 2. Descriptive statistics for the vocabulary learning strategies to discover new English word meaning ..................................................................................... 13 3. Descriptive statistics for the vocabulary learning strategies to consolidate English words .................................................................................................. 14 4. Conclusion................................................................................................... 15 Chapter 5 Discussion and conclusion .................................................................... 16 1. Discussion.................................................................................................... 16 2. Pedagogical implication ............................................................................... 18 3. Limitations and recommendations for further research ................................. 19 4. Conclusion ................................................................................................... 20 References............................................................................................................. 21 Appendices ........................................................................................................... 23 iv List of Tables LIST OF TABLES Table 1. Vocabulary learning strategies classified by Schmitt (1997) used in the questionnaire ............................................................................................................ 10 Table 2. Descriptive statistics for the mean score of the whole questionnaire ........... 13 Table 3. Descriptive statistics of the degree of use of strategies for the discovery of English new word’s meaning ................................................................................... 14 Table 4. Descriptive statistics of the degree of use of strategies for consolidating English words .......................................................................................................... 15 v Chapter 1 Introduction CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION This chapter introduces the important role of vocabulary and the necessity of vocabulary learning strategies in learning English language at high school as rationale of the research purposes. Thesis organization is also presented in this chapter. 1. General statement of the problems Nowadays, English becomes one of required subjects in almost all schools, colleges and universities in Vietnam because of its importance as an international language. Vocabulary knowledge is essential when we use a foreign language, and English is not an exception since people are unable to communicate without words. Furthermore, vocabulary plays an important role as we enter the 21th century (Soekmen, 1997). Therefore, vocabulary learning is one of the basic parts of language learning. Learners are usually aware of the importance of words in a language, so they themselves might usually realize the fact that vocabulary learning strategies can help them in their vocabulary learning, including discovering the new words’ meaning and consolidating English word when they have been encountered. Because vocabulary learning strategies are considered as the useful means of learning vocabulary, students from elementary schools to universities need strategies for their vocabulary learning; especially, high school students, they are standing between elementary level and advanced level boundaries. These students need to equip themselves with enough vocabulary knowledge when they reach advanced level. Moreover, all of high school students in Vietnam have to pass a national examination, so equipping sufficient vocabulary knowledge for them is necessary. The more necessary vocabulary is, the more important vocabulary learning strategy is. To which degree students apply their own ways to find out the new words’ meaning and remember these new words in their mind is an interesting topic for many researchers who have attempted to study more. Some investigations on vocabulary learning strategies have focused on Asian students (Fan, 2003; Gu & Johnson, 1996; Schmitt, 1997). However, there are few studies focus on Vietnames students. Furthermore, most of studies carried out basing on elementary students or university students. Accordingly, current research tends to focus on intends to examine high school Vietnamese students’ vocabulary learning strategies. 2. Statement of the aims This study aims to explore current vocabulary learning strategies situation in high school, first and foremost, Bui Huu Nghia high school students, because there is a need to know current situations of students’ use of vocabulary learning strategies in Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -1- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 1 Introduction high schools. With a better understanding of the current situation of students’ use of vocabulary learning strategies, teachers can then find ways to help students to become more autonomous learners with, for example, vocabulary language learning strategy training since learner autonomy can be enhanced by introducing the learner to different vocabulary learning strategies which can be used in developing the learning process (Schmitt, 1997). In addition, learning strategies help students to be more active and take more responsibility on their own learning. Finally, the understanding of the students’ vocabulary learning strategies use enables teachers design appropriate materials and activities to help their students improve their vocabulary learning so as to enhance their lexical competence. 3. General organization and coverage of the study The thesis consists of four chapters. In chapter one, Introduction, the important role of vocabulary, the necessity of vocabulary learning strategies in learning English language at high school as rationale of the research purposes and thesis organization are introduced. In chapter two, Literature Review, began with the definition of the term Vocabulary learning strategies and the role of vocabulary learning strategies in language learning. Classification of vocabulary learning strategies and some related studies of vocabulary learning strategies were also reviewed in this chapter. In chapter three, Methodology, a description of the research design, the research questions, participants of the study, the research instruments and the procedure will be reported. The results and findings about the main strategies that Bui Huu Nghia High School students apply to discover new English words' meaning and to consolidate English words once they have been encountered will be described in chapter four, Results. Finally, in chapter five, Discussion and conclusion, a discussion of the results, limitation of the study and recommendations for further research, and conclusion will be presented. Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -2- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 2 Literature Review CHAPTER 2 LITERATURE REVIEW This chapter begins with the definition of the term ‘vocabulary learning strategies’ and the role of vocabulary learning strategies in language learning. Classification of vocabulary learning strategies and some related studies of vocabulary learning strategies are also reviewed in this chapter. 1. Vocabulary learning strategies 1.1. Definition of the term Vocabulary learning strategy Over the recent years a number of studies have been conducted on the topic of vocabulary learning strategies. Many researchers have attempted to define of clarify the term Vocabulary learning strategies. Among the definitions, Catalan’s (2003) seem to be the most appropriate one in language learning situation. Taking into consideration the ideas of different researchers (Oxford 1990, Rubin 1987, Schmitt, 1997 and Wenden, 1987), Catalan (2003) suggested the following concrete and detailed definition of vocabulary learning strategies: Knowledge about the mechanisms (processes, strategies) used in order to learn vocabulary as well as steps or actions taken by students (a) to find out the meaning of unknown words, (b) to retain them in long-term memory, (c) to recall them at will, and (d) to use them in oral or written mode (p.56). 1.2. The role of vocabulary learning strategies in language learning Words are used to express the meaning of objects, actions and ideas. Without words, people may not communicate with others successfully. The striking role of vocabulary knowledge in second or foreign language learning has been recently recognized by theorists and researchers in the field. Accordingly, many types of approaches (strategies), techniques, exercises and practice have been introduced into the field to teach vocabulary (Hatch & Brown, 1995). Because of the important role of strategies in learning vocabulary, it has been suggested that teaching vocabulary should not only consist of teaching specific words but also aim at equipping learners with strategies necessary to expand their vocabulary knowledge (Hulstjin, 1993). Firstly, vocabulary learning strategies help students increase a large number of words successfully. Nation (2001) believes that a large amount of vocabulary could be acquired with the help of vocabulary learning strategies and that the strategies have Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -3- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 2 Literature Review been proved useful for students of different language levels. Therefore, the time teachers spend on introducing different ways of vocabulary learning and practicing to students cannot be considered wasted (Oxford & Nyikos 1989). Moreover, Cameron (2001) believes that children may not implement vocabulary learning strategies on their own and they should be trained to use the strategies. Secondly, vocabulary learning strategies can help students to take more control of their own learning and have more responsibility for their studies. According Nation (2001) and Scharle & Szabo (2000), the main benefits gained from all learning strategies, including strategies for vocabulary learning, is the fact that they enable learners to take more control of their own learning so that students can take more responsibility for their studies. Consequently, the strategies encourage “learner autonomy, independence, and self-direction” (Oxford & Nyikos 1989, p 291). Finally, vocabulary learning strategies permit educators and curriculum designers to match teaching and learning so as to develop students’ potentials in EFL (English as foreign language) learning as well as to assist students become cognizant of the ways they learn most effectively (Schmitt, 1997). In conclusion, vocabulary learning strategies considerably contributed in the process of vocabulary learning and enhancement. Oxford & Scarcella (1994) implicated the provision of systematic vocabulary instruction to let learner master specific strategies to acquire words even outside their classes. Accordingly, students can decide upon how exactly they would like to deal with unknown words if they are equipped with a range of various vocabulary learning strategies. 2. Classification of vocabulary learning strategy 2.1. Taxonomies of vocabulary learning strategy There are several different ways to classify L2 vocabulary learning strategies. Therefore, different taxonomies of vocabulary learning strategies were developed by several researchers. Among the taxonomies of vocabulary learning strategies, Schmitt’s taxonomy of vocabulary learning strategies is typically discussed in this thesis since his taxonomy seems to be the most detailed and concrete one. Schmitt’s taxonomy might be the most elaborate and extensive classification of vocabulary learning strategies to date. The 56 strategies in his taxonomy have been organized in the framework of two systems. First, he based his classification on Oxford’s (1990) work and included four of her categories: social, memory, cognitive and metacognitive. Second, he used a distinction between discovery and consolidation Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -4- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 2 Literature Review strategies offered by Cook & Mayer (1983) and Nation (1990). The former helps students to find out the meaning of a word when encountered for the first time and the latter aid memorization of the word after it has been introduced. Finally, Schmitt (1997) classified the strategies have under two main categories, i.e. strategies for the discovery of a new word's meaning, and strategies for consolidating a word once it has been encountered and divided these strategies into five sub-categories: Social strategies (SOC), cognitive strategies (COG), memory strategies (MEM), determination strategies (DET), and metacognitive strategies (MET). The first part, strategies for finding out the meaning of new English words’ meaning consist of two sub-categories: determination strategies and social strategies. Determination strategies, consisting of nine strategies, include strategies of guessing from one' structural knowledge of a language, guessing from an L1 cognate, guessing from context, or using reference materials. Social strategies with five strategies relate to the strategies of asking a help from someone. The second part, strategies for consolidating English words consist of four subcategories: social strategies, memory strategies, cognitive strategies and metacognitive strategies. Social strategies, consiting three strategies, use interation with other people to remember vocabulary. Memory strategies – mnemonics with twenty-five strategies involve relating the word to some previous knowledge, linking it to some L2 words already familiar to the learner, and grouping the words according to some categories. In addition, word's orthographical of phonological form, word's affixes, roots and word classes can used as a mnemonic strategy. Cognitive strategies, consisting of nine strategies, include repetition and mechanical means to study vocabulary. Metacognitive strategies with five strategies involve a conscious overview of the learning process and making decisions about planning, monitoring, or evaluating the best ways to study (see Appendix 1) 2.2. Related studies of Vocabulary learning strategies There are numerous researches relating to vocabulary learning strategies, and some of th previous researches about this topic in order to find out the similarities as well as the differences between researches and the current research. Ruutmets’ s (2005) research aim to map the current situation as regards young Estonian students’ preferences in relation to vocabulary learning strategies. For the purpose, seven interviews were conducted with students of forms three and four and a 64-item questionnaire was compiled and administered to 230 students of fifth-grade Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -5- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 2 Literature Review and sixth-grade. The results of both the interviews and the questionnaire showed that the use of various vocabulary learning strategies is not very wide spread among the students. All in all, 40 strategies were used seldom or never by students. Yi-Fen (2004) surveyed 625 Taiwan EFL freshmen’s vocabulary learning strategies at some universities in Taiwan. Schmitt’s (1997) vocabulary learning strategy questionnaire was adopted in this study. The aim of this research is to examine to which degree freshmen used vocabulary learning strategies and the comparison between males and females in their use of vocabulary learning strategies and between English-majors and non-English-majors in their use of vocabulary learning strategies. The results showed that female freshmen used more vocabulary learning strategies than male ones. Also, English-majored students use vocabulary learning strategies more frequently than non-English majored ones. In addition, the results reported that electronic dictionary, written repetition, study the sound of the word, bilingual dictionary (English-Chinese) and verbal repetition are the most popular strategies among these students. Lin (2001, cited in Lan & Oxford 2003), using several research instruments (classroom observation, written records, oral interviews), studied the vocabulary learning strategies of seven Taiwanese elementary school students. Despite the small sample size, 73 strategies were identified, which were categorized into metacognitive, cognitive and social-affective strategies. The research revealed that the subjects relied mostly on rote memorization of words, did not have good dictionary use and notetaking skills. Schmitt (1997) conducted a study of vocabulary learning strategies concentrating on which strategies learners used and which of them learners found the most helpful and the least helpful. Schmitt collected the data for his study using questionnaires with a list of 56 strategies and used his taxonomy in the analysis. The participants of Schmitt’s (1997) study consisted of 600 Japanese learners of English with four different groups: junior high school students (between 7 to 9 years of age), high school students (between 10 to 12 years of age), university students and adult learners. Each participant was provided with a 56-strategy questionnaire and they were to write down which strategies they use and which of them they found the most helpful. Schmitt’s (1997) study suggested that using a bilingual dictionary and guessing from context were especially popular among Japanese learners of English to find out the meaning of unknown words. Furthermore, verbal repetition, written Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -6- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 2 Literature Review repetition and study the spelling were rather popular with students to remember English words. These above studies investigated vocabulary learning strategies at different educational levels and led to surprisingly various results. Ruutmets’ (2005) results of both the interviews and the questionnaire reflected that the use of different vocabulary learning strategies is not very popular among the students. Yi-Fen’s (2004) research showed that electronic dictionary, written repetition, study the sound of the word, bilingual dictionary (English-Chinese) and verbal repetition are the most employed strategies among these students. Besides, rote memorization of words is mostly used by elementary students is the findings from Lin’s (2001) study (cited in Lan & Oxford 2003). Schmitt’s (1997) surveys were handed out using a bilingual dictionary, verbal repetition, written repetition, studying the spelling and guessing from context were popular strategies to learn vocabulary among Japanese learners of English. The participants in these studies are varied; however, there are few surveys on vocabulary learning strategies among high school students (between 16 to 18 years of age). Especially, there are few studies focusing on strategies for discovering new English words’ meaning and for consolidating new English words. Therefore, the aim of the study is to investigate the main vocabulary learning strategies that high school students use to find out the meaning of new English words and to retain new words. 3. Conclusion In the chapter, it is clear that vocabulary learning strategies are very essential for students to find out the meaning of new English words and to consolidate English words once they have been encountered. These strategies also help students become more autonomous, independent and self-directed (Oxford & Nyikos 1989). Therefore, teachers can have some suitable ways to help their students in vocabulary learning if they have a better understanding of the current situation of students’ use of vocabulary learning strategies. Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -7- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 3 Methodology CHAPTER 3 METHODOLOGY In this chapter, the research methodology of the study including (1) the research questions, (2) hypothesis, (3) the research design, (4) the participants, (5) the instrument and (6) research procedures will be described. 1. Research questions From the background of the previous chapter, vocabulary learning strategies have become an interesting topic for many researchers during previous years; however, there are few studies on high school participants. Moreover, studies focused on both strategies for discover new English words’ meaning and for consolidate new English words once they have been encountered are still limited. This is the reason why the present study aims to examine the vocabulary learning strategy use of high school students. The present research aims to answer two following questions: (1) What are the main strategies that Bui Huu Nghia High School students apply to discover new English words' meaning? (2) What are the main strategies that Bui Huu Nghia High School students apply to consolidate English words once they have been encountered? 2. Hypothesis From the literature review, it is hypothesis that social strategies are mostly used by Bui Huu Nghia high school students to discover new English words’ meaning and cognitive strategies are mostly applied by Bui Huu Nghia high school students to consolidate English words when they have been encountered. 3. Research design The present study used the descriptive survey method to determine the vocabulary learning strategies employed by Bui Huu Nghia high school students. This survey described the natural phenomena without any treatment. 4. Participants The current thesis is accomplished with the involvement of six classes, totally 216 students, in Bui Huu Nghia high school. Participants include 137 females and 79 males. These participants come from two tenth-grade classes, two eleventh-grade classes and two twelfth-grade classes that were randomly chosen among 40 classes at Bui Huu Nghia high school. All the participants are learning seven-year English program. Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -8- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 3 Methodology 5. Instrument Schmitt’s (1997) taxonomy of vocabulary learning strategies is focused on the chapter. The present thesis has been carried out based on Schmitt’s taxonomy of vocabulary learning strategies because of some reasons. First, among the taxonomies, Schmitt’s taxonomy is quantitatively detailed enough to study learners’ vocabulary learning strategies because Schmitt classified vocabulary learning strategies under two main categories (strategies for the discovery of a new word's meaning, and strategies for consolidating a word once it has been encountered). Second, Schmitt’s taxonomy is qualitatively related to the topic of the current study since Schmitt’s taxonomy is suitable to the purpose of the present thesis. Finally, Schmitt’s taxonomy was taken form based on both theory and realistic study; therefore, Schmitt’s seem to be the most appropriate one in language learning situation. Schmitt’s consisted 56 items; however, the present study just applied 50 items since the rest which are not suitable to high school students’ level, are too strange, unnecessary and complicated for students to understand. For example, use semantic map, configuration, use semantic feature grids and use spaces word practice are more suitable to English-majors than high school students or check for L1 cognate are strange and complicated for them. Moreover, both skip or pass new word and continue to study word over time are used to check students’ degree of studying English words. Therefore, continue to study word over time – one of them was applied in the questionnaire. The five-scale Likert questionnaire was grouped into two groups: (1) the first thirteen items divided into 2 categories: determination strategies (DET) and social strategies (SOC1) are used to investigate the main strategies that Bui Huu Nghia high school students apply to discover new English words’ meaning, and (2) the rest with 4 categories: social strategies (SOC2), memory strategies (MEM), cognitive strategies (COG) and metacognitive (MET) are used to investigate the main strategies that these students apply to consolidate English word once they have been encountered. The detailed strategies included in each category are shown in Table 1. Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed -9- Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 3 Methodology Table 1 Vocabulary learning strategies classified by Schmitt (1997) used in the questionnaire Item Part Categories Item in the questionnaire No. 1 – Strategies Determination 1. Analyze part of speech for the strategies 2. Analyze affixes and roots discovery of a (DET) 3. Analyze any available pictures or gestures new words 4. Guess from textual context meaning 5. Bilingual dictionary 6. Monolingual dictionary 7. Word lists 8. Flash cards Social 9. Ask teacher for an L1 translation strategies 10. Ask teacher for paraphrase or synonym of new word (SOC1) 11. Ask teacher for a sentence including the new word 12. Ask classmates for meaning 13. Discover meaning through group work activity 2 – Strategies Social 14. Study and practice meaning in a group consolidating a strategies 15. Teach check students' flash cards or word lists for word once it (SOC2) has been encountered Memory accuracy 16. Interact with native speakers 17. Study a word with a pictorial representation of its strategies (MEM) meaning 18. Image word’s meaning 19. Connect word to a personal experience 20. Associate the word with its coordinates 21. Connect the word to its synonyms or antonyms 22. Use ‘scales’ for gradable adjectives 23. Peg method 1 24. Loci method 2 25. Group words together spatially on a page 26. Use new word in sentences 27. Group words together within a storyline Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed - 10 - Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 3 Methodology 28. Study the spelling of a word 29. Study the sound of a word 30. Say a new word aloud when studying 31. Image word form 32. Underline initial letter of the word 33. Use keyword method 34. Affixes and roots (remembering) 35. Part of speech (remembering) 36. Use cognates in study 37. Learn the word of an idiom together 38. Use physical action when learning a word Cognitive 39. Verbal repetition strategies 40. Written repetition (COG) 41. Word lists 42. Flash cards 43. Take notes in class 44. Use vocabulary section in your textbook 45. Listen to tape of word lists 46. Put English labels in physical objects 47. Keep a vocabulary notebook 48. Use Metacognitive strategies (MET) English-language media (songs, movies, newscasts, etc) 49. Testing oneself with word tests 50. Continue to study word over time 1 memorizing lists of facts by linking them to familiar words (or numbers) by means of an image 2 remembering words by mentally placing them in specific locations Each strategy in the questionnaire includes a five-point checklist items never, seldom, sometimes, usually and always. In total, the questionnaire contained 50 fivepoint scale checklists for students to put a tick on the scale that most appropriate to themselves (see Appendix 2). The questionnaire was designed based on Schmitt’ taxonomy so it was original in English. However, the Vietnamese version was used when delivering to high school students to assure that students with different proficiency levels could adequately Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed - 11 - Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 3 Methodology understand the items in the questionnaire (see Appendix 3). The questionnaire was piloted for the reliability of the instrument, and the alpha () was computed to be .91 so the questionnaire was reliable to use in the study. 6. Research procedures This research was carried out during two months. First, in order to collect the data for the survey, a questionnaire is designed on the background information from the literature review. Second, the first draft of the English and Vietnamese questionnaire was designed. Next, the questionnaire was piloted at Bui Huu Nghia high school with the participation of 120 students. Then, the main data was collected from 216 students at Bui Huu Nghia high school. The students were given detailed instructions on how to complete the questionnaire. They were also free to ask for clarification at any point during the time of filling it in. Finally, the data analysis was performed with the help of SPSS 11.5 for Windows. Descriptive statistics were computed to summarize the students' responses to the 50 vocabulary learning strategies listed in the questionnaire. Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed - 12 - Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 4 Results CHAPTER 4 RESULTS The purpose of this chapter was to report the results of the collected data in this study. 1. Descriptive statistics for the whole questionnaire After collecting the data from 216 students, a five-point scale was used to decode students’ responses: ‘always’-5, ‘usually’-4, ‘sometimes’-3, ‘seldom’-2, ‘never’-1. These points were used for SPSS analysis. It might imply that the more points students got, the higher degree of using strategies students had. First, the reliability score of the instrument was computed. Next, descriptive statistics for mean score of the whole questionnaire were analyzed. Then, descriptive statistics for mean score of each part of the questionnaire were analyzed to identify the main strategies that students apply to discover the meaning of the new English words and to retain new English words. Finally, descriptive statistics of each category in each part was used to illustrate related issues. Reliability of the questionnaire on English vocabulary learning strategies of Bui Huu Nghia high school students is very high reliability (=.91). Descriptive statistics of the mean score of the whole questionnaire in Table 2 show that the whole questionnaire receives an above average mean score (M=3.00, SD=.47), implying that students ‘sometimes’ used vocabulary learning strategies in their learning English vocabulary. Table 2. Descriptive statistics for the mean score of the whole questionnaire Std. TOTAL N Min Max Mean Deviation 216 1.58 4.22 3.00 .47 2. Descriptive statistics for the vocabulary learning strategies to discover new English word’s meaning (Research question 1) Part 1 in the questionnaire consists of strategies for discovering English words’ meaning, includes two categories: determination strategies (DET) and social strategies (SOC1). Descriptive statistics for the mean score to discover what are the main Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed - 13 - Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh Chapter 4 Results strategies that students use to find out the meaning of new English words were analyzed. The result is presented in Table 3. The results reported that the mean score of social strategies (M=3.52, SD=.67) is higher than the mean score of determination strategies (M=3.01, SD=.59), indicating that SOC1 are used more frequently than DET. Table 3. Descriptive statistics of the degree of use of strategies for the discovery of English new word’s meaning Std. N Min Max Mean Deviation DET 216 1.00 4.63 3.01 .59 SOC1 216 1.80 5.00 3.52 .67 To gain further insights, the mean score of each strategy is considered (see Appendix 5). It can be seen that the strategy asking teacher for an L1 translation (M=3.77, SD=1.12) and the strategy asking classmates for the meaning of the word (M=3.76, SD=1.10) receive highest mean score. Therefore, these two strategies are most typically used by students to know the meaning of new English words. 3. Descriptive statistics for the vocabulary learning strategies to consolidate new English words once they have been encountered (Research question 2) The strategies of part 2 in the questionnaire include four categories of vocabulary learning strategies of consolidation English new words. Descriptive statistics for the mean score to discover what are the main strategies that students use to remember new English words were analyzed. From Table 4, the mean scores of four categories of vocabulary learning strategies are from 2.48 to 3.43. It can be implied that students ‘sometimes’ use these strategies to retain new words. Among these strategies, social strategies (SOC2) are reported with the lowest mean (M=2.48, SD=.08), implying that students ‘sometimes’ use social strategies in remembering new word. In contrast, metacognitive strategies (MET) are reported with the highest mean (M=3.43, SD=.81) implying that metacognitive strategies are quite ‘usually’ applied by students. Supervisor: Ngo Thi Trang Thao, M.Ed - 14 - Reseacher: Ho Thi Kim Thanh
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