Thai Nguyen University
Socialist Republic of Vietnam
Batangas State University
Republic of Philippines
VU KIEU HANH
ORAL AND WRITTEN DISCOURSE ANALYSIS IN THE
PREPARATION OF INTEGRATIVE ACTIVITIES
FOR BASIC ENGLISH COURSE AT
THAI NGUYEN UNIVERSITY
Specialty: English Language and Literature
Ph.D DISSERTATION SUMARY OF LANGUAGE AND LITERATURE
THAI NGUYEN, 2014
The Dissertation was completed in:
THAI NGUYEN UNIVERSITY
Advisor: Dr. Matilda H. Dimaano
Reviewer No.1: .............................................
Reviewer No.2: .............................................
Reviewer No.3: .............................................
The Dissertation will be evaluated at the State Council held at:
At: hour ... date ... month ...year 2014
Dissertation can be found at the libraries:
- National library of Vietnam;
- Learning Resource Center - Thai Nguyen University;
- Library of International Training and Development Center;
- Library of Batangas State University, Philippines.
1.1. BACKGROUND OF STUDY
College English is one of the foreign language courses required
in the tertiary level curriculum to be taken by freshmen students.
This course is known in various titles like Basic English Course,
Basic College English, Freshman English or College Composition.
Discourse analysis is defined as the analysis of language beyond
the sentence. This type of analysis is different from those done by
modern linguistics, which mainly involves the study of grammar: the
study of smaller bits of language, such as sounds which include
phonetics and phonology, parts of words or morphology, meaning or
semantics, and the order of words in sentences or syntax. Discourse
analysis is concerned with larger chunks of language as they flow
together. This is exemplified by two sentences that when taken
together as a single discourse can convey meaning quite different
from the meaning conveyed by each sentence taken separately. The
difference in meaning arises from the context they were considered,
such that a frame analysis is a type of discourse analysis that would
be able to shed light on context that mediate this change in meaning.
Discourse analysis is important for various reasons. For the
linguists, it helps to find out how language works, to improve their
understanding of this important human activity; for the educators in
finding out how good texts work, so that they can focus on teaching
the students these writing and speaking strategies; and for the critical
analysts, to discover meanings in the text which are not obvious on
the surface such as analyzing a politician’s speech to see their
Considering the need of the students for a quality English
education, and evaluating the current curriculum for College English,
it would seem reasonable to evaluate and analyze the oral and written
discourse among the College students. These two aspects are
important to the development of oral and writing skills, one aimed at
developing the sentence to sub-sentence level of knowledge and
skills development and the other on the supra sentence
appealing to the intuitive sense of the individual.
As a college teacher teaching observe difficulties among college
student include writing effective sentences in a paragraph,
conceptualizing a topic in composition as well as difficulties in
accuracy, comprehension, vocabulary and phonological aspects in
oral discourse. This prompted the researcher probe deeper into the
learning aspects of the college students.
1.2. OBJECTIVE OF THE STUDIES
This study aimed to analyze the oral and written discourse of
college freshman students in basic English course at Thai Nguyen
Specifically, this study sought answers to the following research
1. What is the demographic profile of Freshman students in terms of
1.2 parent's educational attainment;
1.3 student's place of origin
1.4 type of school attended (high school); and
1.5 exposure to English media?
2. What is the level of oral and written discourse competencies of the
3. Are there significant differences between the students’
competencies and characteristics?
4. How do teachers assess the students' oral and written discourse
5. Is there any significant difference between the students' oral and
written discourse competencies and the teacher’s assessment in the
6. What integrative activities may be proposed to enhance students in
oral and written discourse competencies?
1.3. SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study will be useful to different individuals, administrator
and policy makers.
Students. They will benefit from the results of the study
particularly, the teaching learning materials that will be developed.
The students participating in this survey will have a chance to try the
test and assessment schemes.
Teachers. This will be significant to the teachers not only
because they will be participants of the study but they will also learn
something from the results and will have a chance to utilize the
developed teaching/learning material to their students.
Administrator. The administrators will benefit from this study
through insights gathered as this will guide them in what decisions
they will make regarding the student’ skills assessment.
administrators also will benefit from the teaching learning materials
that will be developed as they can implement them in the classes of
Policy-makers. The policymakers will be benefited from the
knowledge gathered in this study. This will aid them in formulating
policy/ specific and relevant laws that could influence the current
educational system as they will have a concrete basis for doing so.
1.4. SCOPE AND LIMITATION OF THE STUDY
This study analysed the responses of 200 first year English
language students from tertiary schools in Vietnam and 30 of their
respective English teachers. The students made to validate
grammatical and discourse analysis questionnaire while the teachers
were asked to answer to a student’s skill assessment questionnaire
where rating was based on their perception on the skill level of their
students. These two questionnaires served as the source of
quantitative data that would be analysed statistically. The study sites
were the tertiary schools in an urbanized area.
Demographic information was gathered from the students and
teachers through the questionnaires but their names were not
revealed. Stratification on the students and teachers responses were
done according to their demographic profile and the data were
consolidated. The respondents were enrolled in an English course.
The teacher respondents were the respective teachers of the
evaluated students for they would give their assessment of their
students’ cognitive skills. Statistical tools used include mean
t-test. correlation analysis. Demographic data were
presented in tables.
REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE AND STUDIES
2.1. REVIEW OF RELATED STUDIES
This section present of some literatures related to the topic.
2.2. RESEARCH PARADIGM
This study was used a systems approach to represent the flow of
the study. The components are grouped into input, process and
output as presented in Figure 1.
profile of students in
2. parent's educational
3.place of origin,
4. type of school
5. student's exposure to
B. Students’ level of
2. written discourse
of the students'
2. written discourse
Conceptual Paradigm of the study
This study made use of descriptive type of research. According
to Ariola (2006) descriptive research is used to describe data and
characteristics about what is being studied as well as present
behaviour or characteristics of a particular population where the data
are collected to describe persons, organizations, settings, or
phenomena. Descriptive-comparative method was also used in the
study to predict the significance and difference of the two variables
as well as to identify, analyse and explain their similarities and
This study made use of two types of questionnaires, the survey
questionnaire and teacher -made test. The subjects’ responses to the
questionnaire served as data subjected to statistical analysis.
SUBJECTS OF THE STUDY
The subjects of this study were the 200 first year English
students and at least 30 first year English teachers from tertiary
schools in an urbanized area. The students were enrolled in a first
course and demonstrate willingness to share their demographic
DATA GATHERING INSTRUMENT
The study made used of the following research instrument:
Teacher- made Test. This test was designed to assess the level of
oral and written discourse competencies of college freshman
Survey Questionnaire. This instrument was designed to assess
teachers’ perceptions as to the level of students’ oral and written
DATA GATHERING PROCEDURE
Two sets of questionnaire the teacher made test for the student
respondents and survey questionnaire for teacher respondents were
designed to assess the level of competencies of freshman students in
their oral and written discourses. The initial validation of the two sets
of questionnaire was performed. The student questionnaire were pilot
tested to first year college students not the respondents of the study
to determine the strength and weaknesses of the constructed test
while the survey questionnaire were submitted to twenty English
teachers of Batangas State University for comments and suggestions
and for the degree of appropriateness with the help of the research
As soon as the two sets of questionnaire were improved based
on the comments and suggestions in the initial validation, letters of
requests for content validations were sent to the members of the
panel and expert on the field. With the validated questionnaires,
letters of requests to administer the tests to the respondents to the
identified research environment were sent to the administrators for
When permission was secured the teacher -made test was
administered to student respondents and a short briefing was given to
all participants to explain the study’s objectives, procedures and the
importance of completing the questionnaires. The questionnaires
were administered to the subjects given a maximum of one-hour to
answer. Proper classroom conduct was observed the entire time of
testing. The completed questionnaires was then collected by the
examiner and compiled in sealed envelopes.
The survey questionnaire on the other hand was also given to
teacher respondents. Schedule for the test administration and giving
of survey questionnaire were set in order to have organization. As
soon as the conduct of the test and survey questionnaire was
accomplished, the test items for students were checked and both the
scores of the students and the items in the survey questionnaires were
tallied for analysis and interpretation.
STATISTICAL TREATMENT OF DATA
The data were subjected to the following statistical tools for
meaningful interpretation and analysis of the study:
Data were analyzed using the SSPS software.
Cronbach alpha. This was used to measure internal consistency
of the scores of the respondents.
Correlation. This was performed to determine the relationship
of the teachers’ assessment scores and the students’ skills.
Mean. This was used to determine the average score of the
students in the teacher -made- test
Percentage. This was used to determine the magnitude of the
frequency in relation to the whole responses.
This was used to determine the positional
importance of responses.
Standard Deviation. This was used to determine the variation
of scores of students in the teacher made-test results with respect to
the mean score.
T- test. This was used to find out the significant mean
difference of the treatment being compared.
RESULTS AND DISCUSSION
1. Demographic Profile of Students
As regard to gender profile of student respondents majority of
them are females comprising 91.5 percent or 183 of the 200 total
population. There were seventeen male respondents comprising 8.5
percent. This indicates the general pattern in most government
universities in Vietnam where gender-based population were
predominant, that is, either there was all male with little female
student population or all female with little male student population.
In parents’ educational attainment majority or 48.7 percent of
the students’ parent have educational attainment in the other level or
education higher than tertiary. This was followed by tertiary with
41.2 percent and lastly by secondary with 10.1% percent. There were
no parents that are of elementary level. This indicates the importance
given by the parents of the student respondents to education.
For place of origin majority or 21.0 percent
respondents came from others or different places in Vietnam,
followed by Ha Noi with 15.9 percent, then by Nam Dinh 14.6
percent, then by Vin Phuc with 13.9 percent, then by Thai Binh 11.7
percent, and the rest from the remaining 8 different places as shown
in the table. This indicates that the University campuses under study
cater to students coming from different places in Vietnam and
therefore handles a heterogeneous student population.
With regards to the type of high school attended, all of the
respondents came from public high school.. This indicates that the
public high schools are the main institutions catering to the students.
This could be because public high school is free in Vietnam and
supported by the government.
As to exposure to English media out of 200 students, 190 or 95
percent have had exposure to the English media. While the high
percentage of media exposure is good, it remains surprising that 5
percent remained unexposed to foreign media in spite of all the
advancement in technology such as the internet, the foreign movies
and television and considering the length in years of study as these
students have had post-secondary and early tertiary, specifically
2. Level of Oral and Written Discourse Competencies of
In the evaluation of the oral discourse competencies, the average
score of correct items for pronunciation and fluency is 2.77 with a
mean % score equivalent of 55.3 percent which is above 50 percent.
This value has a percentile rank of 43.6 percent and a verbal
description of average. This indicates that the level of pronunciation
and fluency competence of the students is average for this set of
For comprehension and vocabulary, the average score of correct
items is 2.76 with a mean % score equivalent of 55.2 percent and
above 50 percent. This value has a percentile rank of 41.6 percent
with a verbal description of average. This indicates that the level of
comprehension and vocabulary competence of the students is
In terms of grammatical accuracy, the average score of correct
items is 2.77 corresponding to a mean % score equivalent of 55.4
percent. This value is above 50 percent and has a percentile rank of
39.1 percent with an equivalent verbal description of average. This
indicates that the level of grammatical accuracy competence of the
students is average. Looking at the total performance of the students
for oral discourse, it can be observed that the average score is 2.77,
its equivalent mean % score is 55.3 percent and percentile rank of
41.4 percent and equivalent of average.
For cohesion and coherence of written discourses the average
score of correct items is 4.36 which has an equivalent mean %
correct score of 39.6 percent. This value is below 50 percent
indicating poor performance. The percentile rank is 67.8 percent with
an equivalent description of average. The percentile rank value
indicates the relative number of scores below the score of interest; in
this case, for the mean % score of 39.6 percent, there were 67.8
percent raw scores below it.
In the case of logical order, results show that the average correct
score is 2.04 with an equivalent mean % score 40.8 percent. This
value is below 50 percent and its percentile rank is 81.1 percent
corresponding to a verbal description of average. This means that the
students’ scores does not follow a normal distribution and are
skewed to the left as well. Furthermore, there were 81.1 percent
scores that are below the mean % score of 40.8 percent indicating the
poor performance of the students and the relative difficulty of these
For the student written paragraph, the average correct score is
3.04 with an equivalent mean % score of 60.7 percent. This is above
50 percent and has a percentile rank of 62.7 percent corresponding to
a verbal description of average. This indicates that in terms of
completeness of written paragraph, the students’ performance was
average for this given population..
In the aspect of logical order, the result shows a mean score of
2.93 with a corresponding mean % score of 58.6 percent which is
above 50 percent. This value has a percentile rank of 40.7 percent
and a verbal description of average. This indicates that the
performance of the students in insuring logical order of a written
paragraph is average for this population.
For unity and coherence, the mean score obtained was 2.96 and
a mean % score of 59.1 percent. This value is above 50 percent and
has a percentile rank of 34.3 percent corresponding to a verbal
description of average. This indicates that the ability of the students
to achieve unity and coherence in their written paragraph is average.
In terms of the total performance of the students in written discourse,
the mean score obtained was 3.06 with a mean % score of 51.8
percent. This value has a percentile rank of 57.3 percent and a
corresponding verbal description of average. This indicates that in
general, the written discourse performance of the student respondents
3. Significant Differences between the Students’ Competencies
Among the 64 mean combinations being compared, 30 mean
combinations with significant differences involved the competency
items of the written discourse namely: cohesion and coherence,
logical order and completeness, all with respect to the oral discourse
competencies, pronunciation and fluency, comprehension and
vocabulary, and grammatical accuracy as well as the written
discourse competencies of order, and unity and coherence.
4. Teachers Assessment of the Students’ Oral and Written
All the items obtained an agree score of above 50 percent. The
oral disclosure competency item got a 100 percent agree response.
The same competency items were evaluated according to the
frequency they were observed to be practiced by students. The
frequency scores of the different competency items ranged from 3.20
to 3.97 with equivalent rating of sometimes to often respectively.
Majority of the items were oftenly practiced by the students. Twelve
of these are written discourse competency items. This indicates that
both competency items of the oral and written discourse are equally
well practiced by the students as perceived by the teacher
The competency items were evaluated by the teacher
respondents according to their degree of importance. The scores of
the competency items based on the degree of importance ranged
from 2.90 to 4.67 with equivalent ratings of slightly important to
very important respectively. There were 8 competency items
considered to be moderately important and 9 competency items
considered to be slightly important all belonging to the written
discourse classification. This indicates that in general, the teachers
perceived all the component competency items of the oral and
written discourse to be important.
5. Significant Difference between the Students’ Oral and Written
Communication and the Teachers’ Assessment on the same
The p-values of the majority of the different mean
combinations were less than or equal to 0.05 that is 142
combinations out of 152, indicating these means as significantly
different. This implies that these mean combinations such as oral and
written discourse performance of students x frequency of student
skill as perceived by the teachers are not statistically related.
Ten mean combinations have p-values above 0.05, indicating these
means are not significantly different indicating that these are statistically
related to each other. The ten items that show this pattern belong to the
written discourse classification particularly the student written
paragraph competency items namely: completeness, order, and unity
and coherence and their counterpart written discourse student skill
6. Integral Activities that may be Proposed to Improve the
Students’ Oral and Written Discourse.
A criterion was set in designing the appropriate integral
activities to improve the students’ oral and written discourse
especially for this population of Vietnamese students. These include
oral and discourse competency skills where the students showed poor
performance; and must have statistically significant relationship with
skills perceived by teachers to be frequently used by the students.
These integral activities are composed of exercises for students to
practice to achieve proficiency on the least rated areas in discourse
SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATION
This chapter presents the summary of findings, conclusions and
recommendation of the study.
This study aimed to assess Oral and Written Discourse Analysis
in the Preparation of Integrative Activities for Basic English Course
at Thai Nguyen University.
Specifically, this study sought answers to the following research
2. What is the demographic profile of Freshman students in
2.2 parent's educational attainment;
2.3 student's place of origin
2.4 type of school attended (high school); and
2.5 exposure to English media?
2. What is the level of oral and written discourse competencies
of the student’s?
3. Are there significant differences between the students’
competencies and characteristics?
4. How do teachers assess the students' oral and written
5. Is there any significant difference between the students' oral
and written discourse competencies and the teacher’s assessment in
the same areas?
6. What integrative activities may be proposed to enhance
students in oral and written discourse competencies?
The study made used of the descriptive method of research to
determine “Oral and Written Discourse Analysis in the Preparation of
Integrative Activities for Basic Course at Thai Nguyen University” There
were 200 students and 30 teachers who were the respondents of
the study. The statistical tools used were: Cronbach alpha,
Correlation, Mean, Percentage, Ranking, Standard Deviation and
Based from the findings of the study, the following conclusions
1. Majority of the student respondents are females, come from
different places in Vietnam, studied in the public school, with high
percentage or 95 percent media exposure and
educational attainment are higher than the tertiary level.
2. The level of oral and written discourse competencies of students
are all average.
3. There exist significant
differences between the student’s
competencies and characteristics.
4. Majority of the oral and written competencies were oftenly
practiced by students.
5. There is significant difference between the students’ oral and
written communication and the teachers’ assessment on the same
6. Proposed integral activities are comprised of exercises designed
based on least rated scores where students demonstrate poor
performance to improve their written proficiency.
From the findings of the study, the following recommendations are
1. Evaluation of the proposed integral activities by other English
teachers with expertise in instructional material development is
2. Utilization of the integral activities in the classroom by English
3. Conduct similar studies related to teaching oral and written