ERIC Number: ED395511
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996
Reference Count: N/A
Japanese Learners in Speaking Classes.
Dwyer, Eileen; Heller-Murphy, Anne
Edinburgh Working Papers in Applied Linguistics, n7 p46-55 1996
This project investigated the possible causes of and solutions to the reticence of many Japanese students attending General English courses at the University of Edinburgh Institute for Applied Language Studies (Scotland). It was suspected that students' reticence affected their rate of learning and personal improvement as well as the general dynamics of the multi-national classes they attended. Information was gathered in extensive guided, open-end question interviews for over 2 years; 19 students were interviewed intensely. Results suggest that certain socio-cultural factors were significant causes of reticence while activities involving an element of duty to others might encourage Japanese learners to speak more openly. Usefulness and coercion were found to be the two main concerns of students. It was also found that many Japanese students themselves did not feel that speaking was a priority, although it did appear to be a priority for their teachers, suggesting that perhaps the teachers need to adapt to more silence in the Speaking class. Suggestions for encouraging more speaking include role-playing, explicit requests to speak by the teacher, additional reading skills development, coercive-type activities that require speaking, and changing teacher expectations of students and self. (Contains 16 references.) (NAV)
Descriptors: Classroom Environment, Communication Apprehension, English (Second Language), Ethnic Groups, Foreign Countries, Group Dynamics, Higher Education, Intercultural Communication, Interpersonal Communication, Japanese, Second Language Learning, Sociocultural Patterns, Speech Communication, Student Attitudes, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Student Relationship
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Japanese People; University of Edinburgh (Scotland)
Note: For complete volume, see FL 023 856.