ERIC Number: ED346729
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992
Reference Count: N/A
Foreign Language Learning and Nonlearning. Research Bulletin 82.
A study is reported that investigated whether the foreign language learning outcomes of the poorest performers in Finnish schools could be improved by intensive remedial teaching. An experimental approach was taken with a group of 12 sixth grade students in a suburban school in Helsinki. Four were poor, four were average, and four were good students. All the poor performers were of average intelligence but scored significantly lower than the average and good performers on Raven's Progressive Matrices test and on Hunt's Conceptual Level test. The first 15 lessons of remedial teaching for the poor performers were given in a mixed ability group during half a term. The remedial teaching doubled the number of lessons in Swedish. In testing at this point, the poor performers showed a significant improvement in comprehension but not in production. During the second half of the term the poor performers were given remedial teaching as a separate group, and they were given twice as many lessons as the good and average performers. Testing showed that three of the four poor performers improved significantly in production but not in comprehension. One year later the poor performers had lost all the gains from the remedial teaching, and even scored lower than in the initial test. It was noted that the poor performers had adopted less efficient learning strategies than the other students, showed lack of motivation and responsibility, and had a lack of academic ambition. In one of two later additional experiments, a lasting effect was found possibly due to an earlier start. A tentative conclusion is that intensive remedial teaching can improve learning outcomes, but the poorest performers probably need continuous extra help or well-structured teaching that systemically trains their reasoning abilities. Contains approximately 600 references. (Author/LB)
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Practicum Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Helsinki Univ. (Finland). Dept. of Education.
Identifiers - Location: Finland