Tài liệu Factors affecting first year medical technology students on using ell software to improve their pronunciation at a medical and pharmaceutical university in vietnam

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VIETNAM NATIONAL UNIVERSITY, HANOI UNIVERSITY OF LANGUAGES AND INTERNATIONAL STUDIES FACULTY OF POSTGRADUATE STUDIES NGUYỄN THỊ HẢI YẾN FACTORS AFFECTING FIRST-YEAR MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY STUDENTS ON USING ELL SOFTWARE TO IMPROVE THEIR PRONUNCIATION AT A MEDICAL AND PHARMACEUTICAL UNIVERSITY IN VIETNAM (CÁC YẾU TỐ ẢNH HƯỞNG ĐẾN VIỆC SỬ DỤNG PHẦN MỀM ELL ĐỂ CẢI THIỆN KHẢ NĂNG PHÁT ÂM CHO SINH VIÊN KỸ THUẬT Y HỌC NĂM THỨ NHẤT TẠI MỘT TRƯỜNG ĐẠI HỌC Y DƯỢC Ở VIỆT NAM) Master thesis Major: English Language Teaching Code: 60140111 HANOI - 2017 VIETNAM NATIONAL UNIVERSITY, HANOI UNIVERSITY OF LANGUAGES AND INTERNATIONAL STUDIES FACULTY OF POSTGRADUATE STUDIES NGUYỄN THỊ HẢI YẾN FACTORS AFFECTING FIRST-YEAR MEDICAL TECHNOLOGY STUDENTS ON USING ELL SOFTWARE TO IMPROVE THEIR PRONUNCIATION AT A MEDICAL AND PHARMACEUTICAL UNIVERSITY IN VIETNAM (CÁC YẾU TỐ ẢNH HƯỞNG ĐẾN VIỆC SỬ DỤNG PHẦN MỀM ELL ĐỂ CẢI THIỆN KHẢ NĂNG PHÁT ÂM CHO SINH VIÊN KỸ THUẬT Y HỌC NĂM THỨ NHẤT TẠI MỘT TRƯỜNG ĐẠI HỌC Y DƯỢC Ở VIỆT NAM) Master thesis Major: English Language Teaching Code: 60140111 Superviser: PhD. Hoàng Ngọc Tuệ HANOI - 2017 DECLARATION I hereby state that I Nguyen Thi Hai Yen, being an MA candidate of the Faculty of Postgraduate Studies, University of Languages and International Studies, Vietnam National University, Hanoi, certify my authorship of the study entitled ―Factors affecting first-year medical technology students on using ELL software to improve their pronunciation at a medical and pharmaceutical university in Vietnam.‖ The thesis is the study of my own research and the substance of the thesis has not, wholly or in part, been submitted for a degree to any other universities or institutions. Supervisor‟s signature Student‟s signature PhD. Hoàng Ngọc Tuệ Nguyễn Thị Hải Yến i ACKNOWLEDGMENT I would like to express my special thanks to my supervisor PhD. Hoang Ngoc Tue for his constant guidance, suggestions, dedication and professionalism through my research. My deep gratitude goes to the lecturers of the Faculty of Postgraduate Studies, University of Languages and International Studies, Vietnam National University, Hanoi for their thoughtful and fruitful lectures which have inspired me to conduct this study. I am also indebted to the staff and students of the Department of Foreign Languages at Haiphong University of Medicine and Pharmacy for their support and participation in my research. I wish to acknowledge, in particular, my family and my best friends who have encouraged me while I was accomplishing this study. Finally, I would like to thank the readers who have patiently read and given valuable comments on this thesis. ii ABSTRACT It is crucial for a language learner to have a good pronunciation of the language. CALL accordingly has a great potential to teach and learn pronunciation. Through much research has been undertaken on CALL, there exist a gap in investigating factors affecting the use of CALL to improve English pronunciation in a medical and pharmaceutical university when language students face many medical terminologies, especially in Vietnamese context. In order to address such a gap, this study examines the use of a software program, students‘ motivation to use the program, the effectiveness of the program. This study seeks to contribute new understandings into using CALL to improve pronunciation and recommendations to use CALL effectively. The qualitative data are collected from students‘ learning sheets, classroom observation and students focus group, and content analysis is employed for the interpretation of the data. The results showed that the students agreed on a number of factors affecting the effective use of the software such as motivation, lack of training and policy climate. Keywords: CALL, English pronunciation, focus group, learning sheet, classroom observation, content analysis iii TABLE OF CONTENTS DECLARATION .............................................................................................. i ACKNOWLEDGMENT................................................................................. ii ABSTRACT .................................................................................................... iii TABLE OF CONTENT ................................................................................. iv LIST OF FIGURES ....................................................................................... vi LIST OF APPENDICES................................................................................ vi LIST OF ABBREVIATION ......................................................................... vii CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION ........................................................... 1 1.1. Statement of the problem ..................................................................... 1 1.2. Objectives of the study.......................................................................... 2 1.3. Methods of the study ............................................................................. 3 1.4. The significance of the study ................................................................ 3 1.5. Thesis outline ......................................................................................... 4 CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW .............................................. 5 2.1. Role of pronunciation in language teaching and learning ................ 5 2.2. Challenges of teaching pronunciation ................................................. 7 2.3. Benefits of using CALL software in EFL teaching and learning pronunciation. .............................................................................................. 8 2.4. Challenges of using CALL software in EFL teaching and learning pronunciation. ............................................................................................ 12 CHAPTER THREE: METHODOLOGY................................................... 17 3.1. Context of the study ............................................................................ 17 3.2. Description of the software program ................................................ 18 3.3. Research questions .............................................................................. 18 3.4. Research design ................................................................................... 19 3.5. Data collection ..................................................................................... 21 iv 3.5.1. Classroom observation .................................................................... 22 3.5.2. Learning sheet ................................................................................. 22 3.5.3. Focus group interview .................................................................... 23 CHAPTER 4. DATA ANALYSIS AND DISCUSSION ............................ 24 4.1. Data analysis ........................................................................................ 25 4.2. Results .................................................................................................. 26 4.2.1. Benefits of ELL .............................................................................. 26 4.2.2. The challenges of ELL .................................................................... 28 4.2.3. Motivation ....................................................................................... 29 4.2.4. Necessary improvements ................................................................ 30 4.3. Discussions and recommendations .................................................... 32 4.3.1. Teacher and student training ........................................................... 32 4.3.2. Motivation for Student Self-Discipline .......................................... 33 4.3.3. Policy Climate................................................................................. 35 CHAPTER 5. CONCLUSION ..................................................................... 38 5.1. Summary .............................................................................................. 38 5.2. Limitations of the Study ..................................................................... 39 5.3. Suggestions for Further Research ..................................................... 39 REFERENCES .............................................................................................. 40 APPENDICES ..................................................................................................I Appendix 1: The congruence of research questions, literature reviews, conceptual framework, data collection methods, data sources, and data analysis ...........................................................................................................I Appendix 2: Student Focus Group Interview .........................................IV Appendix 3: Student’s Learning Sheet ..................................................... V Appendix 4: Classroom observation .......................................................VI v LIST OF FIGURES Figure 1: Benefits and challenges of CALL ................................................... 16 Figure 2: Crotty‘s (1998) model of research design ....................................... 19 Figure 3: Data Collection Model .................................................................... 22 LIST OF APPENDICES Appendix 1: The congruence of research questions, literature reviews, conceptual framework, data collection methods, data sources, and data analysis ............................................................................................................... I Appendix 2: Student Focus Group Interview ................................................. IV Appendix 3: Student‘s Learning Sheet ............................................................ V Appendix 4: Classroom observation .............................................................. VI vi LIST OF ABBREVIATION CALL: Computer Assisted Language Learning CAPT: Computer Assisted Pronunciation-Teaching CAP: Computer Assisted Pronunciation EFL: Learning English as a Foreign ESP: English for Specific Purposes vii CHAPTER ONE: INTRODUCTION This first chapter consists of five sections. It begins with the statement of the research problem (section 1.1). Section 1.2 provides the objectives of the study and research questions. The section 1.3 and 1.4 present the methods of the study and the significance of the study. The last section in this first chapter (section 1.5) presents the thesis outline. 1.1. Statement of the problem In recent decades, due to the impacts of globalization, English is increasingly used as an international language (Jenkins, 1998). Pronunciation is becoming more and more important for successful communication (Stephens, Silbert, & Hasson, 2010). The use of spoken language to establish successful communication also becomes the general goals of language teaching (Kelly, 2006). This reality has realized a new level-headed discussion about models, objectives and especially, the techniques used for teaching speaking and pronunciation. Much research has dealt with teaching English pronunciation and problems learners confront in English pronunciation and the research proposed that the teaching and learning of English pronunciation take time (Levis & Grant, 2003; Sifakis & Sougari, 2005). As a matter of fact, communication may break down when individuals pronounce erroneously. Besides, students with great pronunciation are usually more capable speakers and more fruitful language students than those with poor pronunciation (Kelly, 2006). Understanding the roles of learning and teaching English pronunciation, the researcher has had great effort to help students pronounce English better, however, the job meets with many difficulties. Meanwhile, 1 students, from a medical and pharmaceutical university, have to deal with a large number of terminologies every lesson. Moreover, teaching English pronunciation is not included in the curriculum. In order to solve these problems, the researcher attempt investigate students‘ use of ELL software program to improve English pronunciation. To validate the problem of this study, the researcher did a pilot study of the previous semester class. The findings showed that besides it was a great software program and students had great motivation to study at first, they did not see significant improvements in their pronunciation. Learning about applying software to improve pronunciation, the researcher found that the successful software application depends on many factors such as the pedagogical requirements (Murray & Barnes, 1998; Pennington, 1999; Price, 1998; Warschauer & Healey, 1998; Watts, 1997), the age, motivation for learning second or foreign language as well as the amount of feedback and the smooth-run of the systems or of technical failures (Piske, MacKay, & Flege, 2001) and so on. At this point, this research attempts to find out the specific factors that affect the first- year medical technology students on using ELL software and make suggestions for the effective use of the software. The literature review showed that there exists a gap in Vietnamese context to identify benefits and challenges of using CALL to teach and learn English pronunciation. In this sense, the researcher would like to conduct the study ―Factors affecting firstyear medical technology students on using ELL software to improve their pronunciation at a medical and pharmaceutical university in Vietnam‖. 1.2. Objectives of the study Research objectives are the results found by the researcher at the end of the research process, i.e. what the researcher will be able to achieve at the end 2 of the research study. In other words, the objectives of a research project summarize what is to be achieved by the study (Clement, 2010). Objectives should be closely related to the statement of the problem. In this study, the objectives are to: - Identify the factors that influence students when they use ELL software to improve their pronunciation. - Give recommendations in using software to improve students‘ pronunciation more effectively. To achieve these objectives, the researcher observed the class and took notes of the teaching and learning procedures, asked students to write a learning sheet in every lesson, and at the end of the research project, students were divided into four focus group interviews. The research project lasted in 15 weeks in the first semester when the students – participants just entered the university. The participants were 28 first – year medical technology students. 1.3. Methods of the study This study is conducted as a qualitative approach. The reasons for the adoption was that qualitative design allows the researcher to obtain the way students use ELL software (Merriam, 2002) and the factors influence the students in using ELL software and give the commendations in order to improve their English pronunciation. Qualitative data were collected via a combination of different instruments namely classroom observation, learning sheet and group focus interview. Besides, the collected data from the research instruments were analyzed in the light of content analysis (O‘Dwyer, 2004). 1.4. The significance of the study There has been much research in teaching and learning pronunciation and teaching and learning pronunciation using technology. However, there exists a gap in which this study provides an overview about the factors that 3 influence medical and pharmaceutical students into the application of software to improve pronunciation to fulfil. The results of the study are beneficial for both institutions and teachers who are wondering whether to use the software to support their teaching more effectively and students who are in use of the software to improve their pronunciation. 1.5. Thesis outline This thesis is presented in five chapters. This introductory chapter describes the statement of the problem which explains why the researcher proposed this thesis. It introduces research objectives, the method of the study and the significance of the study. Chapter two reviews the literature focusing on role of pronunciation and teaching pronunciation, challenges of teaching pronunciation, benefits and challenges of using CALL to improve English pronunciation. Chapter three presents a detailed description of the research methodology. This chapter starts with a description of the context of the study, the research design. Then, the data collection methods and procedure are outlined. Chapter four reports the data analysis and discussions from the findings Chapter five summarizes all the main ideas expressed throughout the research, contributions and limitations of the study as well as suggests further research. 4 CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW In order to answer the research questions and identify necessary research issues, this chapter reviews the literature on the following areas. Section 2.1 presents the role of pronunciation in language teaching and learning. Challenges of teaching pronunciation are given in section 2.2. Section 2.3 identifies the benefits of CALL in EFL teaching and learning pronunciation. Sections 2.4 discusses the challenges of using CALL in EFL teaching and learning pronunciation. 2.1. Role of pronunciation in language teaching and learning There are some elements that help people be good at a language. Pronunciation is one of essential factors. It plays an important role in both teaching and learning language (Çakır & Baytar, 2014; Fraser & Perth, 1999; Levis & Grant, 2003; Sifakis & Sougari, 2005) In learning pronunciation, Sifakis and Sougari (2005) show two reasons of importance of pronunciation in language learning. First, pronunciation contributes to the establishment of their socio-cultural identity. Second, it helps make conversation in a certain setting among non-native speakers or between non-native speakers and native speakers possible. This will be performed by speakers' use of sounds which are easy to understand and prosodic features together with other aspects about language such as grammar, discourse, and so on. Besides, most language teachers agree that ―intelligible pronunciation is vital to successful communication‖ and most students see ―pronunciation as an important part of learning to speak...‖ (Levis & Grant, 2003). Kelly (2006) adds that it is crucial for a language learner to have a good pronunciation of that language. It has an important role in learners‘ speaking ability. Learners are good at grammar and vocabulary, but they still fail in 5 communicating effectively because of their poor pronunciation. Kelly also maintains that mispronunciation and misrepresentation of prosodic features make it difficult for listeners to understand and convey the speaker‘s meanings. Moreover, Gilakjani (2012) confirms that great pronunciation abilities do not only bring confidence to the speaker but also enhances their listening and understanding. A speaker with good pronunciation is also a good listener. That is the premise of a successful communication even though their grammar and sentence structures are not really appropriate. In teaching pronunciation, the objectives of pronunciation teaching ought not to be procuring native–like pronunciation but should be ―developing functional intelligibility, communicability, increased selfconfidence, the development of speech monitoring abilities and speech modification strategies for use beyond the classroom‖ (Otlowski, 1998).In this sense, Harmer (2003) additionally notices that students who produce "perfect" pronunciation appear to depend particularly on their attitude to how they talk and how well they listen. He goes on that various mental issues may influence how "foreign" a person sounds when they talk, thus teachers and students need to consider understandability as the prime objective of pronunciation teaching and learning. In order to make the objectives of teaching pronunciation clear, CelceMurcia, Briton and Goodwin (1996) justified the communicative approach to teaching. He proposed that teaching of pronunciation is dire and imperative in light of the fact that the non-native speakers need a certain level of pronunciation and ―If they fall below this threshold level, they will have oral communication problems no matter how excellent and extensive their control of English grammar and vocabulary might be‖. Besides, Murphy (1991) found that the vast majority of courses accentuate general oral communication over pronunciation, teachers must look for inventive routes to coordinate 6 pronunciation under talking - turned classes. He also said that pronunciation direction needs to be combined with extensive level of communication activities in which the speakers and listeners participate in a meaningful communication. In conclusion, pronunciation plays a vital role in teaching and learning a foreign language because the proper pronunciation contributes to create successful communication. If a speaker uses the right words, the right structures but he mispronounces or pronounces difficultly to hear, he causes misunderstanding, communication interruption or communication breakdown (Kelly, 2006). 2.2. Challenges of teaching pronunciation Teaching pronunciation has never been an easy task (Ross, 1992). In fact, it faces many challenges (Foote, Holtby, & Derwing, 2012 2012; Miller, 2000). ―Pronunciation can be one of the most difficult parts for a language learner to master, one of the least favorite topics for teacher to address in the classroom‖ (Gilakjani, 2012). The challenges of teaching pronunciation come from several factors: the timetable of teaching pronunciation, the student and the teacher. First, there is normally little or no time distributed to properly teach pronunciation and the greater part of lesson arrangement is dedicated to vocabulary and linguistic use (Baker, 1996). Actually, in any case, the obligation of the instructive framework for English spoken skill advancement is as much critical as its duty regarding concentrating on the written form of the dialect (Anderson & Pearson, 1984). As Kelly (2006) claims, when arranging a timetable of English lessons, teachers normally disregard to incorporate pronunciation issues and they put most concentration on the organization of grammatical structures and lexical syllabus. Educators do not have enough time in their lessons, which would be committed to 7 pronunciation, and if there is time consideration is typically given to drills which prompt disheartened both teachers and learners (Gilbert, 2008). Second, students do not pay attention on pronunciation as much as grammar. Pronunciation, in correlation with the grammar rules, cannot be just instilled in a student's mind (Laroy, 1995). Besides, psychological factors play a significant part in learning pronunciation since students are not as beyond any doubt about their pronunciation as they are about their insight into sentence structures and lexis. The most basic elements of speaking are deeply personal and our sense of community is bound up in the speech rhythms of our first language. These psychological challenges are usually insensible but they prevent speakers from improving the intelligibility (Gilbert, 2008).Third, many English language teachers show a tendency to avoid teaching pronunciation because they lack of skills, knowledge and confidence (Brown, 1992; Claire, 1993; Fraser, 2000; Yates, 2001). Furthermore, teachers themselves may feel more unverifiable about pronunciation than about grammar and lexis. Jim (2005) stressed that teachers do not have enough specialized information to help students properly so some teachers still do not pay enough attention to pronunciation. In conclusion, there are three primary reasons (the timetable of teaching pronunciation, the student and the teacher) why pronunciation is ignored in classes. They are also the challenges in teaching English pronunciation 2.3. Benefits of using CALL software in EFL teaching and learning pronunciation. There are two main roles of CALL software: as a learning aid and resource for reference (Barr, 2004). First, CALL software is as a learning aid. Barr (2004) states that a computer can be used to improve the learning abilities of students in numerous contexts of study, including language learning. Computer software is as a tutor, "adopting the role of the teacher" 8 and as a tool to produce course materials. In addition, the role of innovation in CALL can be thought of in terms of ―the metaphors of tutor, tool, and medium‖. In the ―tutor‖ role, computers can give correction feedback, and tests in grammar, vocabulary, writing, pronunciation and different forms of assessments of language and culture learning. In the ―tool‖ part, computers provide prepared access to written, sound, and visual materials pertinent to the language and culture being studied. They additionally give reference tools, for example, online dictionaries, language structures and style checkers, and concordances for corpus examination. The Internet and databases can fill in as devices for improving pronunciation. In the ―medium‖ role, technology gives sites for interpersonal communication, sight and sound distribution, community participation, and identity formation (Kern, 2006). Second, CALL software can be a resource for reference in EFL teaching and learning. CALL software programs are accessible over the web which can likewise be directly downloaded. This gives teachers the chance to get prepared lessons using the appropriate projects with aims and targets of their lessons in some clicks. Besides, students are allowed to peruse the web for material or use CALL software to improve their pronunciation. In the era of globalization, applying technology in teaching language has never been more of interest (Bunnell, Yarrington, & Polikoff, 2000 2000; Chou, 2005; Eskenazi & Pelton, 2002; Giuliani, Mich, & Nardon, 2003 2003; Kawai & Tabain, 2000; Sfakianaki et al., 2001; Warnick, 2001) regardless of the significance of its application in teaching pronunciation. Computerassisted pronunciation (CAP) is based on the combinations of innovation for teaching and learning and the segmental and suprasegmental highlights of sound system. Rostron and Kinsell (1995) describe it as the use of digitized discourse for improving dialect articulations. CAP has been utilized as a part of teaching pronunciation to accomplish two purposes: diagnosing the 9 learner's deviation in articulation and helping him/her in correcting any such deviations (Kawai & Hirose, 1997; Machovikov, Stolyarov, Chernov, Sinclair, & Machovikova, 2002 Sinclair, &Machovikova, 2002; Najmi & Bernstein, 1996). Consequently, it cannot be denied that CALL software in particular and information technology in general plays a positive role in pronunciation learning. As such, software is a virtual instructor, a teacher's partner, a guide, an instrument, a teacher and a learning device which can promote learning in general and learning pronunciation in particular (Beatty, 2013). There are many studies about the benefits of using CALL and CAPT software. Neri, Cucchiarini and Strik (2002) confirmed that CAPT systems seem to meet the requirements of pronunciation training and offer a number of advantages: “First, they make it possible to address individual problems. Second, they allow students to train as long as they wish and in their own tempo. Third, by giving students a chance to train individually, these systems may lead to a reduction of foreign language classroom anxiety and thus indirectly favor learning. Finally, they offer the possibility to store student profiles in log-files, so that both the teacher and the student can monitor problems and improvements” (p. 3). Second, CAPT makes the invisible sound become visible and solid graphics show up in front of the foreign language students. The students learn how to articulate the sound by listening, mimicking and repeating, as well as through accepting feedback. Therefore, students may get feedback without anguish shame in front of other students (Bill, as cited in Boyd and Murphy, 2002). Third, when using CAP software, students can experience an environment of English. Boyd and Murphy (2002) has argued that ―one of the 10 most powerful uses of multimedia is to immerse the user in a learning environment‖. Besides, in the environment of CALL, Liou (2000) designated "Nowadays, technology has new potentials in multimedia or hypermedia-type courseware where students have considerable freedom to navigate in the environment ". Therefore, students can have improved contact with English pronunciation. Fourth, youthful and adult language students are difficult in taking another language. They need ―exceptional effort or motivation to progress‖ (Celce-Murcia et al., 1996). Besides, Pennington (1999) brought up that most adult learners will hardly be able to improve their productive and receptive competence of a new sound system without explicit instruction. Computer – aided or helped pronunciation with phonological systems can encourage adult and grown-up dialect students' beneficial and open ability in pronunciation of a target dialect. Moreover, CAPT ―provide stimuli to auditory, visual, and kinesthetic learners. It is known that animation can increase learner interest and motivation, provide metacognitive scaffolding and mental models, and promote visual stimuli to establish connections between the abstract and the concrete‖ (Dooley, Stuessy & Magill, as cited in Boyd & Murphy, 2002, p.37). Fifth, in comparison with the real teacher, Hardison (2004) adds four more effects of CAPT. Fist, CAPT is enthusiastic. Instructors basically cannot, at the same time, provide training and input required for a lot of students. Second, CAPT is steady. It is always dependable in its introduction of motivation material and in the sort of feedback given. Teachers regularly are not. Third, CAPT gives variety, both in the quantities of voices utilized as models and in opportunities for visual feedback, particularly in areas like pitch development. At last, CAPT offers the opportunity to meet fluctuated 11
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