28681752 english-language-teaching-and-learning-in-bangladesh
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  • 1. ENGLISH LANGUAGE TEACHING AND LEARNING AT THE ALIM LEVEL IN THE MADRASHAS IN BANGLADESH: PROBLEMS AND POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS M. Phil. Thesis By Md. Enamul Hoque A thesis submitted to the faculty of Arts and Humanities ofJahangirnagar University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of M. Phil. in English Language (Applied Linguistics and ELT) Department of English Jahangirnagar University Savar, Dhaka Bangladesh June 2008
  • 2. 2ENGLISH LANGUAGE TEACHING AND LEARNING AT THE ALIM LEVEL IN THE MADRASHAS IN BANGLADESH: PROBLEMS AND POSSIBLE SOLUTIONS Researcher Md. Enamul Hoque M. Phil. Researcher Department of English Jahangirnagar University Savar, Dhaka Bangladesh Supervisor Dr. M. Maniruzzaman Department of English Jahangirnagar University Savar, Dhaka Bangladesh June 2008
  • 3. 3 DeclarationI, Md. Enamul Hoque, hereby declare that this thesis titled English LanguageTeaching and Learning at the Alim Level in the Madrashas in Bangladesh:Problems and Possible Solutions submitted to Jahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka,Bangladesh in partial fulfillment of the requirement for the degree of M. Phil. inEnglish Language (Applied Linguistics and ELT) is a record of my original andindependent research work done under the supervision and guidance of Dr. M.Maniruzzaman, Department of English, Jahangirnagar University, and it has not formedthe basis for the award of any degree/diploma/associateship/fellowship or other similartitle to any candidate at any university.Md. Enamul HoqueM. Phil. ResearcherDepartment of EnglishJahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • 4. 4 CertificateI am pleased to certify that the thesis entitled English Language Teaching andLearning at the Alim Level in the Madrashas in Bangladesh: Problems and PossibleSolutions submitted to Jahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka, Bangladesh in partialfulfillment of the requirement for the award of the M. Phil. degree in English Language(Applied Linguistics and ELT) is a record of the original study done byMr. Md. Enamul Hoque under my supervision and guidance. This thesis has not formedthe basis for the award of any degree/diploma/associateship/ fellowship or other similartitle to any candidate of any university.Dr. M. ManiruzzamanSupervisorDepartment of EnglishJahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka, Bangladesh
  • 5. 5 Acknowledgement First and foremost, I would like to thank Allah (SWT) for giving me theopportunity to carry out the study and for not losing my heart at any stages of myresearch. I would like to express my immense gratitude to my research supervisor Dr.M. Maniruzzaman, Department of English, Jahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka foropening the door of opportunity for me to do research under his sincere guidance. He isthe torch bearer of the march of my research. He lavishly spent his time to mould meand to better my academic activities. Without his efforts, it would not be possible tosubmit the thesis at this moment. I also gratefully thank him for having spent hisvaluable time, academically sharing views with me. I deem it a blessing from theAlmighty to have the right person for my research guidance. I would like to thank all the teachers and staff of the Department of English,Jahangirnagar University for their cooperation during this study. I am sincerely gratefulto Mr. Shamsad Mortuza, the chairman, Department of English for his sympathy andkindness in writing some letters to my authority for deputation. I specially thank Mr.Ahmed Reza, Associate Professor, Department of English, Jahangirnagar University forhelping me select the study area and the title of the present study. The deepest appreciation from the very core of my heart goes toMr. Abdul Mabud, Deputy Conservator of Forest, and the Director, Bangladesh ForestSchool, Sylhet for his all out personal as well as official cooperation for the successfulcompletion of my research. My fellow researcher Shahanaz Mahmud deserves thanksfor her inspiration at all levels. I express my profound gratitude to M H Nurunnabi and Afroja Hoque for theirample support in reviewing and checking the questionnaires of the present study.
  • 6. 6 I would like to acknowledge the very sincere support and assistance ofA. B. M. Shafiqul Islam and Md. Jahurul Islam, two able M. A. final year students ofthe Department of English, Jahangirnagar University in organising two seminars forme, without whose supports and cooperation, it would be impossible for me to presentmy two seminars through multimedia. I am thankful to the responding students and teachers of 24 madrashas whoeagerly came forward to help me answering the questions in the questionnaires. I, with all sincerity, record my sense of gratefulness to my family. I amextremely grateful to my sister- in- law Rawshan Ara Islam Shilpi and younger brotherEmdadul Hoque for their financial support when I was in financial crisis during thepresent study. I must record my deepest love to my two tireless daughters, Nuasiba andNabiha, who having missed me always showed their helplessness during the study. Last but not least, I am completely indebted to Afroja Islam Jasmin, my wife,who provided all sorts of support to stick to the study and kept me away from all thefamily chores and proved herself a constant source of inspiration all the time. She notonly gave me opportunity to work, but also encouraged me to complete the researchsuccessfully.Md. Enamul HoqueM. Phil. ResearcherDepartment of EnglishJahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka
  • 7. 7 AbstractThe role of English language as a lingua franca makes it a unique language in theworld. This distinctiveness does not only refer to the language itself, but also to theways it is taught as a foreign language. Learning a foreign language takes place step bystep in which a number of factors play a direct role. This study intends to shed light onthe state of “English Language Teaching and Learning at the Alim Level in theMadrashas in Bangladesh”. It tries to unveil the problems encountered by the Alimstudents (higher secondary), sketch a picture of teacher-student interaction and theirlinguistic behaviour in the class, and evaluate the level of performance of students inthe four basic skills of English language: listening, speaking, reading, and writing. Thestudy suggests certain remedial measures to overcome the problems or hindrances lyingin the process of teaching -learning activities. The investigation goes around some domains directly related to appliedlinguistics and ELT: textbook materials, syllabuses and curriculums, teaching methodsand approaches, status of teachers, teaching aids and equipment, perception of needs ofEnglish, preference of learning strategies, testing and assessment, etc. For the presentstudy, 1000 Alim students and 25 English teachers teaching English to the samestudents are randomly selected from 24 madrashas located in both urban and ruralareas. The data for the present study is collected through questionnaires: studentquestionnaire and teacher questionnaire. The findings of the present are presented in thepie charts and tables. The data is analysed in the descriptive and the contextualmethods.The study reveals that the major problems in English language teaching and learning atthe Alim level lie with the textbook materials, syllabus, uninteresting lessons, method
  • 8. 8of teaching, avoidance of practicing listening and speaking, poor quality of teachers,lack of physical facilities of the classroom, very poor quality teaching aids andequipment, etc. The study finds correlations between the teachers and the students on anumber of issues. Contradictions are also found between them on some points relatingto English language teaching and learning. A good amount of literature related to thecurrent study is reviewed to correlate and support the present study.The major findings of the present study suggest that cooperative learning helpssignificantly to enhance the learners’ oral communicative competence and theirmotivation towards learning English. On basis of the findings, a good number ofsuggestions for NCTB, Madrashas Education Board and English language teachers aremade for the further improvement of teaching and learning English in Alim classes.Finally, suggestions for future research are given. The present study, thus, claims tohave social vitality, reliability and validity as it provides enough insights into theEnglish language teaching and learning at the Alim level in the madrashas inBangladesh. List of Acronyms and Abbreviations Used Acronyms/ Expressions Abbreviations BISE : Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education BMEB : Bangladesh Madrasha Education Board BTEB : Bangladesh Technical Education Board CA : Communicative Approach
  • 9. 9CC : Communicative Competence :CLT Communicative Language TeachingDM : Direct MethodDSHE : The Directorate of Secondary and Higher Secondary EducationEFL : English as a Foreign LanguageEFT : English For TodayEL : English LanguageELTIP : English Language Teaching Improvement ProjectELT : English Language TeachingELLT : English Language Learning and TeachingENL : English as a Native LanguageESL : English as a Second LanguageESOL : English for Speakers of other LanguagesFL : Foreign LanguageGTM : Grammar Translation MethodHSC : Higher Secondary CertificateL1 : First LanguageL2 : Second LanguageLAD : Language Acquisition DeviceLP : Language PerformanceLSRW : Listening, Speaking, Reading and WritingMEB : Madrashas Education BoardMOE : Ministry of Education
  • 10. 10NCTB : National Curriculum and Textbook BoardODA : Government Oversees Development AdministrationS : StudentSL : Second LanguageSLA : Second Language AcquisitionSSC : Secondary School CertificateT : TeacherTEFL : Teaching English as a Foreign LanguageTESL : Teaching English as a Second LanguageTTC : Teachers’ Training CollegeUGC : University Grants Commission% : Percentage
  • 11. 11 Contents PageDeclaration ...................................................................... 3Certificate ......................................................................... 4Acknowledgement .......................................................... 5Abstract ............................................................................ 7Contents .......................................................................... 11List of Figures ................................................................... 18List of Tables ..................................................................... 21Chapter 1: Introduction ------------------------------------------1.1 Preliminaries ---------------------------------------------------------------------------1.2.1 First Language and Second Language ---------------------------------------------1.1.2 Foreign Language vs. Second Language -----------------------------------------1. 1.3 Acquisition vs. Learning ------------------------------------------------------------1.2 English Language Teaching (ELT) in Bangladesh-------------------------------1.2.1 Colonial Period -----------------------------------------------------------------------1.2.2 Pakistan Period------------------------------------------------------------------------1.2.3 Post Liberation Period-------------------------------------------------------------1.2.4 Statement of the Problem------------------------------------------------------------1.2.5 Significance of the Study------------------------------------------------------------1.2.6 Objectives of the Study--------------------------------------------------------------
  • 12. 12 1.2.7 Limitations of the Study------------------------------------------------------------- 1.2.8 Definitions and Terms Used in the Thesis----------------------------------------- 1.2.9 Outline of the Study----------------------------------------------------------------- 1.3 Conclusion---------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1.4 Works Cited---------------------------------------------------------------------------Chapter 2: English Language Teaching and Learningat the Alim Level --------------------------------------------------------- 2.1 Education Structure in Bangladesh----------------------------------------------- 2.2 Different Streams in Education--------------------------------------------------- 2.2. 1 General Education----------------------------------------------------------------- 2.2.1.1 Primary Education------------------------------------------------------------------ 2.2.1.2 Secondary Education--------------------------------------------------------------- 2.2.1.3 Higher Secondary Education------------------------------------------------------ 2.2.1.4 Higher Education-------------------------------------------------------------------- 2.2.2 Madrasha Education---------------------------------------------------------------- 2.2.2.1 Ebtadayee (Primary)Education --------------------------------------------------- 2.2.2.2 Dakhil (Secondary) Education ---------------------------------------------------- 2.2.2.3 Alim(Higher Secondary) Education---------------------------------------------- 2.3.2.4 Tertiary /Higher Education-------------------------------------------------------- 2.2.3 Technical Education---------------------------------------------------------------- 2.3 History of Madrasha Education--------------------------------------------------- 2.4 Madrasha Education after the Independence of Bangladesh----------------- 2.5 Madrasha Teachers’ Training Institute(MTTI)---------------------------------
  • 13. 132.6 ELT Policy in Bangladesh---------------------------------------------------------2.7 Place of English in the Madrasha Curriculum-----------------------------------2.7.1 Curriculum and Syllabus for Alim Class----------------------------------------2.7.2 Objectives of English Textbooks in the Madrashas----------------------------2.7.3 Syllabus Contents of English for Alim Class------------------------------------2.7.4 Layout of the Questionnaire------------------------------------------------------2.8 Evaluation of Textbook------------------------------------------------------------2.8.1 Types of Evaluation-----------------------------------------------------------------2.8.2 Textbook Evaluators----------------------------------------------------------------2.8.3 Methods and Procedures of Textbook Evaluation-----------------------------2.8.4 Evaluation of English for Today Book Eight for Alim Class-----------------2.9 Status of English Language Teacher---------------------------------------------2.9.1 Proficiency in English -------------------------------------------------------------2.9.2 Teaching Effectiveness-------------------------------------------------------------2.9.2.1 Classroom Management------------------------------------------------------------2.9.2.2 Psychological Elements an Personality of Teacher----------------------------2.9.3 Academic Qualification of English Teacher-------------------------------------2.9.4 Teaching Method/Approaches Used By the Class------------------------------2.10 Assessment and Testing System--------------------------------------------------2.10.1 Continuous Assessment------------------------------------------------------------2.10.2 Internal Examination---------------------------------------------------------------2.10.3 Alim Public Examination----------------------------------------------------------2.10.4 Format and Items of Alim Public Examination---------------------------------2.11 Teaching Aids and Equipments Used in the Class-----------------------------
  • 14. 14 2.12 Physical Facilities of the Class--------------------------------------------------- 2.13 Conclusion 2.14 Works CitedChapter 3: Literature Review--- 3.1 Objectives of Literature Review------------------------------------------- 3.2 Review of Related Literature----------------------------------------------- 3.3 Conclusion-------------------------------------------------------------------- 3.4 Works Cited------------------------------------------------------------------Chapter 4: Research Design and Methodology 4.3.2.3 Practicality------------------------------------------------------ 4.4 Data Collection Procedures----------------------------------------------- 4.5 List of Madrasha Selected for Investigation---------------------------- 4.6 Data Analysis--------------------------------------------------------------- 4.7 Conclusion------------------------------------------------------------------- 4.8 Works Cited-----------------------------------------------------------------Chapter 5: Presentation and Interpretation of Findings 5.1 Presentation and Interpretation of Findings----------------------------- 5.2 Conclusion------------------------------------------------------------------- 5.3 Works Cited-----------------------------------------------------------------
  • 15. 15Chapter 6: Conclusion and Recommendations 6.1 Findings of the Study in Brief ---------------------------------------------------- 6.2 Recommendations------------------------------------------------------------------ 6.2.1 Recommendations for NCTB----------------------------------------------------- 6.2.2 Recommendations for Madrasha Education Board (MEB)------------------- 6.2.3 Recommendations for Textbook and Syllabus--------------------------------- 6.2.4 Recommendations for Test and Assessment------------------------------------ 6.2.5 Recommendations for Teaching Aids and Equipment------------------------ 6.2.6 Recommendations for Teachers-------------------------------------------------- 6.2.7 Suggestions for Students----------------------------------------------------------- 6.3 Further Research-------------------------------------------------------------------- 6.4 Conclusion--------------------------------------------------------------------------- 6.5 Works Cited-------------------------------------------------------------------------
  • 16. 16List of Figures1.1 Relevance of syllabus viewed by the students -----------------------------------1.2 Relevance of syllabus viewed by the teachers------------------------------------2.1 Size of syllabus viewed by the students-------------------------------------------2.2 Size of syllabus viewed by the teachers-------------------------------------------3.1 Task enjoyment viewed by the students-------------------------------------------3.2 Task enjoyment viewed by the teachers-------------------------------------------4.1.1 Practice of listening skill viewed by the students---------------------------------4.1.2 Practice of speaking skill viewed by the students-------------------------------4.1.3 Practice of reading skill viewed by the students---------------------------------4.1.4 Practice of writing skill viewed by the students ---------------------------------4.2.1 Practice of listening skill viewed by the teachers --------------------------------4.2. 2 Practice of speaking skill viewed by the teachers--------------------------------4.2. 3 Practice of reading skill viewed by the students--------------------------------4.2.4 Practice of writing skill viewed by the students----------------------------------5.1 Role of Syllabus viewed by the students-----------------------------------------5.2 Role of Syllabus viewed by the teachers------------------------------------------6.1 Learning style viewed by the students---------------------------------------------
  • 17. 176.2 Learning style viewed by the teachers---------------------------------------------7.1 Role of the text book in learning language skills viewed by the students---7.2 Role of the book in learning language skills viewed by the teachers----------8.1 Interesting lesson viewed by the students----------------------------------------8.2 Interesting lesson viewed by the students----------------------------------------9.1 Difficulties with the lesson viewed by the students------------------------------ Difficulties with the lesson viewed by the teachers----------------------------9.210.1 Relevance of lesson viewed by the students------------------------------------10.2 Relevance of lesson viewed by the teachers--------------------------------------11.1 Activeness in the class viewed by the students-----------------------------------11.2 Activeness in the class viewed by the teachers-----------------------------------12.1 Explanation of text viewed by the students---------------------------------------12.2 Explanation of text viewed by the students--------------------------------------13.1 Teachers’ encouragement viewed by the students--------------------------------14.1 Explanation of vocabulary item viewed by the students------------------------14.2 Explanation of vocabulary item viewed by the teachers----------------------15.1 Teachers sympathy viewed by the students--------------------------------------15.2 Teachers sympathy viewed by the teachers --------------------------------------16.1 Use of the textbook viewed by the students-------------------------------------
  • 18. 1816.2 Teachers’ following the textbook viewed by the students---------------------17.1 Use of English by the teachers viewed by the students------------------------17.2 Use of English by the teachers viewed by the teachers--------------------------18.1 Teachers’ qualification and competence viewed by the students---------------18.2 Teachers’ qualification and competence viewed by the teachers---------------19.1 Teachers’ cooperation after class viewed by the students----------------------19.2 Teachers’ cooperation after class viewed by the teachers-----------------------20.1 Use of teaching aids and equipments viewed by the students------------------20.2 Use of teaching aids and equipments viewed by the students-----------------21.1 Correction of works viewed by the students-------------------------------------21.2 Correction of works viewed by the teachers--------------------------------------22.1 Correction of works viewed by the teachers--------------------------------------22.2 Correction of works by the classmate viewed by the teachers-----------------23.1 Self correction viewed by the students--------------------------------------------23.2 Self correction viewed by the teachers---------------------------------------------24.1 Needs of English viewed by the students-----------------------------------------24.2 Needs of English viewed by the teachers-----------------------------------------25.1.1 Evaluation of students listening skill viewed by the students-------------------25.1.2 Evaluation of students speaking skill viewed by the students------------------
  • 19. 1925.1.3 Evaluation of students reading skill viewed by the students--------------------25.1.4 Evaluation of students writing skill viewed by the students--------------------25.2.1 Evaluation of students listening skill viewed by the teachers-------------------25.2.2 Evaluation of students speaking skill viewed by the teachers-----------------25.2.3 Evaluation of students reading skill viewed by the teachers-------------------25.2.4 Evaluation of students writing skill viewed by the teachers--------------------List of TablesTable- 1 Education structure of Bangladesh ---------------------------------------------Table - 2 Teachers’ qualification ----------------------------------------------------------Table- 3 Number of madrashas, and students---------------------------------------------Table- 4 List of madrasha selected for investigation-------------------------------------Bibliography------------------------------------------------------------Appendix 1
  • 20. 20 Appendix 2 Teacher Questionnaire --------------------------------------------------------- Appendix 3 English Syllabus--------------------------------------------------------------- Items and Distribution of Marks-------------------------------------------- Appendix 4 Appendix 5 English Syllabus for Alim Examination------------------------------------ Appendix 6 English Question of Alim Examination 2007---------------------------- Appendix 7 English Question of Alim Examination 2008---------------------------- Chapter 1 IntroductionThis chapter briefly introduces the present study and discusses some issues of languagelearning which include preliminaries, definitions and differences between first, secondand foreign languages, chronological background of English language in Bangladesh,the statement of the problem, the significance of the study, the objectives of the study,the limitations of the study, the outline of the thesis, the terms used in the thesis, etc.1.1 Preliminaries
  • 21. 21Language is one of the most wonderful gifts given by God to humanity. It is with thehelp of language that a human can be able to communicate, solve a number of his/herproblems and make a lot of achievements in life. If there had been no language, itwould have been difficult for humankind to communicate his/her views to fellowhuman beings, there would have come no educational activity into existence, therewould have been no law making, no preaching, no lecturing and nothing like talking,singing, writing, and there would have been no books. This is why, it is very essentialfor every human to learn and use a language. Language enables people to express their feelings, ideas, wishes, and so on. Itis a tool through which the worldly knowledge is acquired and preserved. A particularlanguage is one of the indicators of the cultural identity of a linguistic community aswell as individual personality. However, it is not easy to learn a language. Everylanguage is a complex phenomenon, and one has to devote a number of years tolearning a language. Some learners are able to learn more than one language if theymake efforts. Sapir advocates “Language is a primarily human and non-human inbornmethod of communicating ideas, emotion and desires by means of a system ofvoluntarily produced symbols" (10). Jesperson says, "Language is a set of humanhabits, the purpose of which is to give expressions to thoughts and feelings” (12). Kleinsuggests “Language is the medium through which, the child acquires the cultural,moral, religious and other values of society” (6). Further, every language plays a crucialrole in maintaining social relationship between and among the people of the samelinguistic community and of the various cultures, customs and beliefs. Language is suchan important thing for a nation that people can sacrifice their lives. In 1952, a number
  • 22. 22of valiant people of Bangladesh sacrificed their lives for the sake of their mother tongueBengali.1.1.1 First Language and Second LanguageKlein opines that a language is first when no other language was acquired before;otherwise it is second (3). Thus, the mother tongue which is acquired first and foremostby a child when his/her language cells are empty is first language (L1); and thelanguage which is acquired / learnt in addition to the L1 is second language (L2). Inthis context, the term second language refers to any language that is learnt subsequentto the mother tongue. Bangladesh has over thirty tribes most of whom are in Rajshahi, Chittagong,Bandarbon, Rangamati, Khagrachori, Mymensingh, Tangail, Sylhet, Patuakhali andBarguna. Some 2-3 million tribal people speak in their own languages, which are calledtheir first languages. The well-known tribal languages are Chakma, Garo, Khasia,Magh, Manipuri, Munda, Oraon, and Santali. Other tribal languages are Kachhari,Kuki, Tipra, Malpahadi, Mikir, Shadri and Hajang. The tribal people also learn andspeak Bengali as their second language to communicate with the people of othercommunities. The main objective of the second language is to enable the speaker forrelatively wider participation in society and in the nation.1.1.2 Foreign Language versus Second LanguageThe phrase foreign language is used to denote a language that is learnt throughinstruction, and which is usually studied either for communication with foreigners whospeak the language or for reading printed materials in the language. Second language,
  • 23. 23on the other hand, is one that becomes another tool of communication along with thefirst language. Richards et al. suggest that “a foreign language is a language which istaught as a school subject but which is not used as a medium of instruction in schoolsnor as a language of communication within a country (...), a second language is asubject which is not a native language in a country but which is widely used as amedium of communication (…) and which is usually used alongside another languageor languages” (108). In Bangladesh, English is neither a native nor a second language; rather, it is aforeign language. In India and Pakistan, English is used as the second language.English started to be used extensively in Bangladesh after the British had come inpower. Since then, English has been being taught compulsorily in schools, colleges andmadrashas in Bangladesh as the main source of up-to-date knowledge and effectivemeans of information.1.1.3 Acquisition versus LearningThere are different opinions on the acquisition and learning of language. Krashen’sopinion is one of them. He distinguishes acquisition from learning. Acquisition refers tothe subconscious process of picking up a language through exposure, and learningrefers to the conscious process of studying it (4). According to this view, if a languageis internalised subconsciously through exposure in a natural environment, the processbecomes acquisition. In contrast, if a language is internalised consciously throughinstruction in classroom settings, the process becomes learning. When a language isinternalised subconsciously by a learner, he/she may not have grammatical competence,but he/she may have communicative competence in a particular context; and when a
  • 24. 24language is internalised consciously by him/her, he/she may have grammaticalcompetence, but may not have communicative competence. First language acquisition occurs when the learner is usually a child without alanguage so far, and acquires one anew. Second language acquisition stands in contrastto first language acquisition. It is learnt as an additional language after he/she hasacquired his/her mother tongue. Second language acquisition refers to all the aspects ofthe language that the language learner needs to master. Second language acquisitionsometimes contrasts with the second language learning on the assumption that they aredifferent processes in acquiring a language. The term "acquisition" is used to refer topicking up a language through exposure, whereas the term "learning" is used to theprocess of acquiring a language other than mother tongue in a structured means ortutored setting. It covers the development of phonology, lexical, grammar andpragmatic knowledge.1.2 Chronological History of English in BangladeshEnglish is a global language spoken and taught in many countries both as a native and asecond or a foreign language. It is taught in schools, colleges and madrashas in almostevery country in this world. This is a living and vibrant language spoken by over 350million people as their native language. Besides, millions of people speak it as a foreignor second language. It is estimated that more than 300 million people speak English asa second language, and about 250 million people use it fluently as a foreign language.In addition to that, about 1000 million people around the globe have more or lessknowledge of English. It is learnt almost everywhere of the world because knowledgeof English is considered as an international passport in terms of communication with
  • 25. 25the entire world. It is considered in Bangladesh as a stair of prosperity, a tool ofacquiring knowledge and as a sign of sophistication. In Bangladesh, English is taughtas a compulsory subject in schools, colleges and madrashas from the primary to thetertiary level (Bachelor degree). English is taught as a foreign language in Bangladesh(Open University Publication, English Unit-1, 19). The chronological history ofEnglish in Bangladesh has political as well as social background, which influence thelearning of English at every level of education.1.2.1 Colonial PeriodThe English Language in Bangladesh has a particular background. The language policyof the colonial power in British India was based on Lord Macaulay’s EducationMinutes of 1835. This policy aimed at forming “a class who may be interpretersbetween us ( the British) and the millions we (the British) govern, a class of personsIndian in Blood and color, but English in taste, in opinions, in moral and in intellect”(Macaulay 1835, cited in Aggarwal 11). Macaulay in his minutes in 1835 stressed the importance and necessities of theeducation that would be given to the natives through the medium of English. Heidentified some objectives of such education. The objectives were designed to serve theinterest of the master, not of the subjects. Thus, the primary objectives of teaching English in the Indian subcontinentwere to produce a class of people having the tastes and outlook of an English man. Theobjectives of teaching English are thus very clearly defined. Gupta says, “Theyattempted to prove that English language, culture, literature and people were superior toanything, and this was the primary purpose for introducing English as the medium ofinstruction and as a subject of study” (40).
  • 26. 26 During the British rule, English was the instrument and language of the colonialpower. It was the medium for the colonial administration, education and commerce.The English language was established as the main vehicle of progress andenlightenment of the western variety. Thus, it becomes the common means ofcommunication between the rulers and the educated class of Indian subcontinent.English retained that position till the partition of India in 1947. The story of Englishlanguage proceeds during the later years of the colonial rule by establishing someillustrations such as the establishment of universities in Kolkata, Mumbai and Channaiin 1857 and Dhaka in 1921.1.2.2 Pakistan PeriodEnglish continued to occupy a significant position in government activities, educationand trade and commerce during the Pakistan regime. English was the only vehicle ofcommunication between the people of the then East Pakistan (Bangladesh) and the thenWest Pakistan (Pakistan). It was used widely in government, legislative, debates, courtsand higher education. English enjoyed the status of a second language and was taughtas a functional language in secondary schools and Madrashas in Pakistan (CurriculumCommittee 1962). During the Pakistan period, English played a very crucial role in all the sectorsof the Bangladesh society. It was studied as a compulsory subject in the secondary andpost secondary of education, and was the medium of instruction of higher studies. Thattime, English was extensively practiced in army, court and public administration.1.2.3 Post -Liberation Period (Bangladesh Period)
  • 27. 27After the independence of Bangladesh, English language suffered a serious negligencefor the first few years. It so happened because of the strong public sentiment in favourof the mother tongue Bengali. Consequently, English language teaching and learningcondition in our educational institutions suffered badly, and English lost its previousdominant status, though English was still a compulsory subject from secondary tohigher secondary levels. In 1974, an education commission was formed which madesome recommendations with regard to language teaching. Later, Ministry of Educationset up an English Language Teaching Taskforce to evaluate the state of Englishlanguage teaching in Bangladesh, and it made some recommendations for theimprovement of learning English. Teaching and learning of English in the schools,colleges and madrashas are not being done in the way what it should be done. In mostof the cases, the grammar learning has been given emphasis; the textbook contents aretaught and learnt without understanding. In 1974, an education commission was formedwhich made the following recommendations with regard to language teaching; 1. Instruction through the medium of the national language is more readily intelligible to the pupils as it helps them develop learners’ original thinking and imagination. We must therefore, use Bangla as the medium of instruction at all levels of education to make our educational schemes successful. 2. Bangla must be used as a compulsory language up to class XII. Textbooks at the higher stages of education, especially in the field of science and technology, professional and vocational education must be written in Bengali and translated from foreign languages at Government expenditure. 3. Even after the introduction of Bangla as the medium of instruction at all levels of education, the necessity will remain for English to be learnt as a
  • 28. 28 foreign language. It is not necessary to learn any language other than Bangla up to class V. From class VI to class XII, however, a modern and developed foreign language must be learnt compulsorily. For historical reasons and for the sake of reality, English will continue as a compulsory language (Bangladesh Education Commission 1974: 15). Though the report recognised the importance of English for higher studies, itdid not put forward any recommendation for the teaching of English at the tertiary levelon the ground that “it is unnecessary to make the study of any foreign languagecompulsory at the university level” (Bangladesh Education Commission 1974: 15). Later, in 1976, Ministry of Education set up an English Language TeachingTaskforce to evaluate the state of English language teaching in Bangladesh and maderecommendations for improving the conditions of classroom teaching. The reportshowed that the English proficiency of the students at the secondary level was lowerthan which was assumed by their text books. On the basis of the finding, the task forcemade the following recommendations: 1. English should be made compulsory from either Class III or Class VI. If English is made compulsory from Class III, English language training should also be made compulsory at each primary training institute, 2. Since the biggest obstacle in teaching English lay in the lack of competent teachers, large-scale short- and long-term training programmes should be undertaken for secondary school teachers, 3. At each level an appropriately graded syllabus should be introduced together with new textbooks related to the needs and capabilities of students,
  • 29. 29 4. The Secondary School Certificate (SSC) and Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) should text comprehension and writing skills in meaningful contexts and discourage rote learning.The government formed the National Curriculum Committee the following year in1976 to design syllabi for all subjects at different levels. Since the committee felt that agood foundation in English was necessary, it made arrangements for English to betaught from class III (National Curriculum Committee 1978: 265). It took four yearssince all materials had to be prepared and written for class VI onwards. The BengaliIntroduction Law of 1983 by the Bangladesh Government made it compulsory foremployees in government, semi government and autonomous institution to use Banglain inter-office memos, legal documents and correspondences except in case ofcommunication with foreign government, countries and organizations (Rahman: 20).The enforcement of this law made it mandatory for all to use Bengali in almost allfields of national life. It was immediately realized that Bangladesh should not neglectEnglish. There were 3 major reasons for that: the importance of English internationally,occupational purposes, and for cooperation and commerce with the outside world. A baseline investigation was carried out by the National Curriculum andTextbook Board in 1990 in connection with a British Government OverseasDevelopment Administration (ODA) project for the improvement of English languageteaching at the secondary level. The authority found that the majority of students didnot have the proficiency required from them by their class textbooks. The situation wasdoubly serious in non-government rural schools and madrashas. In 1990, the government took a decision to introduce English as a compulsorysubject from class I. It was implemented in 1992 with the new syllabus and new books(especially for class classes 1 –10). After 1993, English education has been
  • 30. 30reintroduced in the B.A., B.S.S., B.Com., and B. Sc. courses as a compulsory subject of100 marks. Yet, another change brought by the commission for the foundation ofEducation policy in 1997 would suggest that English should be taught from class III.Madrasha students are also to study English from classes 3-14 compulsorily. On thebasis of the world context, the government of Bangladesh in 1992 passed an act for thereintroduction of English at the tertiary level. It did this to enhance the employmentpotential of graduates and to cheek the decline of academic standard. The act came intoeffect two years later with a syllabus based on grammar. In 1995, a study conducted by the British Council on behalf of the UniversityGrants Commission (UGC) identified two major problems in the development ofEnglish language teaching, both of which were concerned with teachers. Recently, theEnglish Language Teaching Improvement Project (ELTIP) was launched by theGovernment of Bangladesh in collaboration with the Department for InternationalDevelopment (DFID). This is a network of resource centres whose purpose is toprovide in service training to ELT teachers as well as to prepare materials appropriatefor the learners. The national Education Policy 2000, which was presented in January 2001formulated a number of polices. One of the few references to the medium of instructionand language teaching is that English should to be taught as an additional subject in Iand II and from class III to be taught as a compulsory subject. The above scenario ofEnglish language teaching clearly displays that although there have been a number ofstray moves to improve the teaching standard, no definite, well-coordinated or wellconcerted effort has so far been taken to formulate a language teaching policy befittingthe country’s need. Now it is compulsorily taught up to graduate level of all streams of
  • 31. 31education. It is made compulsory to enhance the employment potential of graduates andto cheek the decline of academic standard. The first few years after the emergence of Bangladesh, English faced a serioussetback, in the recent past and at present due attention has been paid to Englishlanguage teaching and learning at all levels of all streams of education. New textbookswith communicative view of learning have been introduced since 2001 in the differentclasses, and newer approaches and policies are being adopted time to time for furtherimprovement of learning English. In 2001, the English textbook English For Today, For Classes 11- 12 ispublished and prescribed by the NCTB for the H.S.C. level in the general educationsystem and for the Alim level in the madrasha education system.1.3 Statement of the ProblemIt is bitter to notice that even though various efforts have been made by the governmentand educationists for the improvement of the English language teaching and learningcondition in the madrashas during the last few decades in Bangladesh, a sorry state ofaffair still exists in the achievement of English linguistic competence of Alim students.It is really important to identify the problems that the students encounter in the processof learning English. It is also necessary to evaluate their level of performance inEnglish. In the age of communicative approach, madrasha English teachers follow theGrammar Translation Method in teaching English. The teachers do not explain the textin English, the target language; rather, they prefer to stay in Bengali, the mother tongue.They show reluctance in practicing English language skills.
  • 32. 32 Though the text book (English For Today, For Classes 11-12) is written withcommunicative thought and ideas, and the syllabus is designed with communicativelanguage teaching contents and items, the language teachers are found unenthusiasticabout the guideline of the book. The English teachers hardly speak English in the class.The present researcher finds that majority teachers neither speak English in the classthemselves nor encourage their students to speak English with the classmates. It ispainfully observed that after long years of learning English, most of the learners cannotspeak English with necessary fluency, correctness of grammar, and pronunciation. The present researcher finds that teachers talk more in the class and remain busywhile students sit idle as inactive listeners. Problems are also found in the textbookitems and contents. Students feel bore in the class and show disinterest in the lesson andthe method of teaching. Sometimes, in the English language class students are taughttextbook contents rather than practicing English language skills. For all these reasons, alarge number of students fail in the English subject in Alim public examination, despitelearning English as a foreign language for 12 years. At present, 30% of the total students in Bangladesh have been studying in themadrashas (source: Madrasha Education Board, http://www.bmeb.gov.bd). So, inrespect of enrolment, the madrasha education system is the second biggest educationprovider in Bangladesh. In spite of huge enrolment in the madrashas, no formalresearch study has been conducted in this field till present time. The disinterest inconducting study causes slow improvement of teaching -learning situation at all levelsin the madrashas, particularly at the Alim level. English language research in themadrasha education system is treated as a barren field of study.
  • 33. 33 Language instruction has five important components: students, teachers,materials, teaching methods, and evaluation; therefore, research or investigation shouldbe carried out on the bases of these components, and research questions should beraised from them. Thus, the present investigation addresses the following researchquestions: 1. What kind of textbook materials do the Alim students study for learning English as a foreign language? 2. How much are the learners proficient in English language? 3. Which method do the teachers follow while teaching English? 4. Do the students practice the four basic skills of English language in the class? 5. Are the teachers qualified and competent enough to teach English in the Alim class? 6. Do the students know the importance of English?1.4 Significance of the StudyThis study is significant because it is the first study on English language teaching at theAlim level in the madrashas in Bangladesh. It has assumed greater significance in theglobalised context. Johnson points out “Industrialization and technological innovationare a major aspect of national development in many countries in Southeast Asia today,and educators are increasingly facing with the problem of how English teachingprogrammes can most effectively meet the challenge created by these changes”(61). Since the research on the English language teaching and learning is a globalphenomenon, a huge number of studies have been conducted around the world. A goodnumber of studies on ELT have also been carried out during the recent past underdifferent public universities in Bangladesh. But surprisingly, no study has been
  • 34. 34conducted on the madrasha education, particularly at the Alim level. So, there aresufficient scopes of study in this field. Therefore, the present study is very significantand a crucial demand of time. Furthermore, since the present study concentrates on the issues of teaching-learning of the four basic skills of English language, it presents a picture of Englishlanguage of Alim students. It talks about the process and nature of ELT at the Alimlevel; it also investigates the learning problems of the students. In Bangladesh context,the higher secondary education plays a crucial role which determines the students’further and future education. This stage of education constructs a strong foundation ofthe students, and therefore, the present study may play significant roles in improvingEnglish language education at the Alim level. The present study, therefore, gains asocial vitality and validity as it provides enough insights into the English languageteaching and learning at the Alim level.1.5 Objectives of the StudyThe increasing importance of English as a foreign language and as a global linguafranca has made English language teaching a research subject all over the world. Theunparalleled international role of English language has, or should have, somerepercussions on the way English is taught. Teachers are now facing a number ofchallenging questions, such as: ~ How should English be taught in the light of its role as an international language? ~ What kind(s) of English should we teach? ~ Does the teaching of English mean that we neglect the role of our L1 and our own local culture?
  • 35. 35 ~ Who is the best English teacher (e.g. native speakers or non-native speakers)?Thus, the study has two types of objectives: (i) general objectives, and (ii) specificobjectives.General objectives are; a) to sketch out a picture of English language teaching and learning at the Alim level in the madrashas in Bangladesh with a focus on the problems that Alim students face in the process of learning the four basic skills of English language, b) to put forward some suggestions and recommendations to overcome the problems or hindrances or at least lessen the severity of these problems,Specific objectives are; 1) to identify the problems encountered by the students in the process of learning English, 2) to evaluate the performance in English language skills of the Alim students, 3) to investigate whether the teachers arrange the practice of listening, speaking, reading and writing in the class, 4) to find out whether the English textbook material is fit and appropriate for the Alim students, 5) to investigate the teachers’ motivation, teaching method, teaching competence, and 6) to suggest recommendations for authority concerned for the improvement of the teaching and learning English at the Alim level.1.6 Limitations of the Study
  • 36. 36As the present study is confined only to the Alim level (Higher secondary) Englishlanguage education, the study revolves around some issues and areas of Englishlanguage teaching and learning. The study encounters some limitations andshortcomings with regard to unavailability of necessary data, information, literature andother relevant materials. The present researcher finds that no formal study or investigation is carried outon the madrasha education, especially on the teaching- learning English at the Alimlevel. So, the researcher faces difficulties in finding relevant resources to support andcorrelate the present study.The followings are some of the limitations of the present study: 1. The subjects involved in this study represent only Alim students of the madrasha education system. 2. The number of subjects is limited to: 1000 Alim students and 25 English language teachers; therefore, the results of this study cannot be generalised to all students and the teachers in Bangladesh, it is generaligible only to the Alim students and the English language teachers teaching English in the Alim class. 3. All learning problems are not investigated through the questionnaire; it is limited to the problems of teaching and learning English as a foreign language, 4. The questionnaires do not describe in detailed of the language teaching – learning issues in details. 5. The study makes no variable in the analysis of the findings in respect of gender, geographical region, and social condition.
  • 37. 37 6. Sometimes, the questions are translated into Bengali (if the researcher is asked) for the respondents to grasp the theme of the questions; therefore, it takes relatively longer time to answer the questions.1.7 Definitions of Terms Used in ThesisAcquisition: The term ‘acquisition’ is used to describe language being absorbedwithout conscious effort; i.e. the way children pick up their mother tongue. Languageacquisition is often contrasted with language learning. For some researchers, such asKrashen, acquisition is unconscious and spontaneous, and learning is conscious,developing through formal study.Acquisition Device: Nativist theories of language acquisition claim that each languagelearner has an acquisition device which controls the process of acquisition. This devicecontains information about possible universal grammars.Active Vocabulary: The words and phrases which a learner can use in his/ her speechand writing (contrasted with passive vocabulary).Aids and Equipment: Blackboard, whiteboard, overhead projector, realia, posters,wallcharts, flipcharts, maps, plans, flashcards, word cards, puppets, tape recorder, TVor video player, computer, CD Rom, language laboratory ,etc. are teaching aids andequipments. These are used to help and accelerate learning.Applied Linguistics: Applied Linguistics refer to the study of relationship betweentheory and practice.
  • 38. 38Aptitude: Aptitude refers to the specific ability that a learner has for learning a secondlanguage. This is separate from intelligence.Attitudes: Attitudes refer to some beliefs, thoughts, likings, disliking of learners aboutlanguage learning. They influence learning in a number of ways.Audio-Lingual Method: Audio-Lingual Method considers listening and speaking thefirst tasks in language learning, followed by reading and writing. There isconsiderable emphasis on learning sentence patterns, memorization of dialogues andextensive use of drills.Authentic Materials: Authentic materials refer to some unscripted materials whichhave not been specially written for classroom use, though they may have been edited.Examples include newspaper texts, TV broadcasts, etc.Authentic Task: Authentic Task involves learners in using language in a way thatreplicates its use in the real world outside the language classroom. Examples ofauthentic tasks would be answering a letter addressed to the learner, arguing aparticular point of view, comparing various holiday brochures in order to decide whereto go for a holiday, etc.Authentic Text: A text which is not written or spoken for language teaching purposes.A newspaper article, a rock song, a novel, a radio interview and a traditional fairy taleare examples of authentic textsCollocation: Collocation refers to the tendency for words to occur regularly withothers, such as; sit/chair, house/garage, etc.
  • 39. 39Communicative Approach: Communicative Approach aims at helping learnersdevelop communicative competence in a particular language (i.e. the ability to use thelanguage effectively). Communicative Approach emphasises that the goal of languagelearning is communicative competence.Communicative Competence: Communicative Competence indicates the ability to usethe language effectively for communication. Gaining such competence involvesacquiring both sociolinguistic and linguistic knowledge (or, in other words, developingthe ability to use the language accurately, appropriately, and effectively).Communicative Language Teaching: This is concerned with the needs of students tocommunicate outside the classroom; teaching techniques reflect this in the choice oflanguage content and materials, with emphasis on role play, pair and group work etc.Corpus: A bank of authentic texts collected in order to find out how language isactually used. Usually, a corpus is restricted to a particular type of language use, suchas; a corpus of newspaper English, a corpus of legal documents, or a corpus of informalspoken English.Course Book/ Textbook: A textbook provides the core materials for a course. It aimsat providing as much as possible in one book, and it is designed so that it could serve asthe only book which the learners necessarily use during a course. Such a book usuallyfocuses on grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, functions and the skills of reading,writing, listening and speaking.Dialect: Dialect is a regional variety of a language, differing from the standardlanguage, in grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation or idiomatic usage.
  • 40. 40Direct Method: This is one of the most common methods in TEFL, where language istaught through listening and speaking. There may be little or no explicit explanation ofgrammatical rules or translation into the mother tongue of the student. It introducesinductive learning rather than deductive.Discourse: Discourage is a unit of language relatively greater than a sentence.Foreign Language: A language which is not normally used for communication in aparticular society. English is a foreign language in Bangladesh; and Spanish is a foreignlanguage in Germany.Genre: Genre refers to a category of literary composition characterized by a particularstyle, form, or content (e.g., an historical novel is one fictional genre)Grammar Translation Method: A method based upon memorizing the rules and logicof a language and the practice of translation.Interference: According to behaviourist learning theory, the patterns of the learnersmother tongue (L1) get in the way of learning the patterns of the L2. This is referred toas interference.Interlanguage: The learners knowledge of the L2 which is independent of both the L1and the actual L2. This term can refer to: i) the series of interlocking systems whichcharacterise acquisition; ii) the system that is observed at a single stage of development(an interlanguage); and iii) particular L1/L2 combinations.Intonation: The ways in which the voice pitch rises and falls in speech.
  • 41. 41Language Acquisition Device: Language Acquisition Device refers to a term coinedby Noam Chomsky to explain an innate psychological capacity for languageacquisition.Language Laboratory: Language Laboratory refers to a place or room equipped withheadphones and booths to enable students to listen to a language teaching programme.Labs may be Audio-Active, where students listen and respond to a tape, or Audio-Active-Comparative, where they may record their own responses and compare thesewith a model on the master tape.Language Proficiency: The level of competence at which an individual is able to uselanguage for both basic communicative tasks and academic purposes.Learning: The internalization of rules and formulas which can be used to communicatein the L2. Krashen uses this term for formal learning in classroom.Learning Strategies: These account for how learners accumulate new L2 rules andhow they automatize existing ones. Learning strategies may include metacognitivestrategies (e.g., planning for learning, monitoring ones own comprehension andproduction, evaluating ones performance); cognitive strategies (e.g., mental or physicalmanipulation of the material), or social/affective strategies (e.g., interacting withanother person to assist learning, using self-talk to persist at a difficult task untilresolution).Learning Styles: The way(s) particular learners prefer to learn a language. Some havea preference for hearing the language (auditory learners), some for seeing it writtendown (visual learners), some for learning it in discrete bits (analytic learners), some for
  • 42. 42experiencing it in large chunks (global or holistic or experiential learners) and manyprefer to do something physical whilst experiencing the language (kinesthetic learners).Linguistic Competence: Linguistic Competence refers a term to describe the totalityof a given individuals language ability; the underlying language system believed toexist as inferred from an individuals language performance.Materials: Anything which is used to help teach language learners. Materials can be inthe form of a textbook, a workbook, a cassette, a CD-Rom, a video, a photocopiedhandout, a newspaper, a paragraph written on a whiteboard: anything which presents ofinforms about the language being learned.Materials Adaptation: Materials Adaptation means the changes to materials in orderto improve them or to make them more suitable for a particular type of learner.Adaptation can include reducing, adding, omitting, modifying and supplementing.Materials Evaluation: Materials Evaluation is a systematic appraisal of the value ofmaterials in relation to their objectives and to the objectives of the learners using them.Evaluation can be pre-use and therefore focused on predictions of potential value. It canbe whilst-use and therefore focused on awareness and description of what the learnersare actually doing whilst the materials are being used. And it can also be post-use andtherefore focused on analysis of what happened as a result of using the materials.Motivation: This can be defined in terms of the learners overall goal or orientation.Instrumental motivation occurs when the learners goal is functional (e.g. to get a jobor pass an examination), and integrative motivation occurs when the learner wishes toidentify with the culture of the L2 group. Task" motivation is the interest felt by thelearner in performing different learning tasks.
  • 43. 43Pair Work: A process in which students work in pairs for practice or discussion.Passive Vocabulary: The vocabulary that students are able to understand compared towhich they are able to use.Peer Group: Usually refers to people working or studying at the same level or in thesame grouping; ones colleagues or fellow students.Second Language: The term is used to refer to a language which is not a mothertongue but which is used for certain communicative functions in a society. ThusEnglish is a second language in Nigeria, Sri Lanka and Singapore. French is a secondlanguage in Senegal, Cameroon and Tahiti.Target Language: This is the language that the learner attempts to learn. It comprisesthe native speakers grammar.Text: Text indicates any scripted or recorded production of a language presented tolearners of that language. A text can be written or spoken and could be, for example; apoem, a newspaper article, a passage about pollution, a song, a film, an extract from anovel or a play, a passage written to exemplify the use of the past perfect, a recordedtelephone conversation, a scripted dialogue or a speech by a politician.1.8 Outline of the ThesisThe present study “English Language Teaching and Learning at the Alim Level inthe Madrashas in Bangladesh: Problems and Possible Solutions” attempts toaddress a number of issues related to Applied Linguistics and ELT. This thesiscomprises six chapters along with a bibliography and some appendixes at the end.
  • 44. 44 The first chapter briefly introduces the present study and discusses some issuesof language learning which include preliminaries, definitions and differences betweenfirst, second and foreign languages, chronological background of English language inBangladesh, the statement of the problem, the significance of the study, the objectivesof the study, literature review, the limitations of the study, the outline of the thesis, theterms used in the thesis, etc. The second chapter briefly discusses the present education system inBangladesh. The major issues presented in this chapter are; the different streams ofeducation, the Madrasha Education Board, the chronological history of madrashaeducation in Bangladesh, ELT policy in Bangladesh, English language education in themadrasha curriculum, the textbook materials, the status of English language teacher, theteaching aids and equipments, assessment and testing, the physical facility of the class,etc. The third chapter deals with literature review which includes; objectives ofliterature review, review of works on Applied Linguistics and ELT. The fourth chapter brings out the research design and methodology of thepresent study which describes the criteria of sampling, instrumentation, List ofmadrashas selected for investigation, data collection procedures and data analysismethods. The fifth chapter provides the major part of the thesis, which deals with thepresentation of findings and interpretation of data. During the interpretation of data ofthe present study, the findings of many other works carried out at home and abroad on
  • 45. 45the relevant area are documented. Large numbers of relevant expert views and opinionsare also highlighted to support the findings of the present study. The sixth chapter concludes the thesis with a brief presentation of the findings, anumber of recommendations for authorities concerned: NCTB, Madrasha EducationBoard, teachers, etc., for improving the teaching learning conditions at the Alim levelin of the madrashas of Bangladesh. Finally, suggestions for future research arerecommended. At the end of the thesis, a bibliography and some appendixes are placed. Chapter 2 English Language Teaching and Learning at the Alim LevelThis chapter discusses the present education system in Bangladesh. The major issuespresented in this chapter are: the education structure in Bangladesh, the differentstreams of education, the Madrasha Education Board, the chronological history ofmadrasha education in Bangladesh, English in the madrasha curriculum, the textbookmaterials used in the madrashas, the status of the English language teachers, theteaching aids and equipment, assessment and testing, the physical facilities andclassroom environment of the madrasha, etc. The chapter particularly highlights theissues of English language teaching and learning at the Alim level in the madrashas inBangladesh.
  • 46. 462.1 Education Structure in BangladeshEducation in Bangladesh has four major stages: primary, secondary, higher secondaryand higher education. The education system is categorized into two streams: primaryeducation which is (Class I-V) managed by the Ministry of Primary and MassEducation, and the other system is the post-primary education covering all other levelsfrom secondary to higher education under the administration of the Ministry ofEducation (MOE), Government of Bangladesh. The post-primary level of education isfurther classified into four types in terms of the curriculum: general education,madrasha education, technical-vocational education, and professional education. Thehigher education is imparted by the universities, and the University Grants Commission(UGC) is responsible for overseeing the activities of the universities concerned. In the general education stream, higher secondary education is followed bycollege/university level education through the Bachelor Degree (Pass/Honours)courses. The Master’s Degree is a one year course for Bachelor (Honours) degreeholders and two years course for Bachelor (Pass) degree holders. Higher education inthe madrasha education system starts after completing Alim level education. Alim isfollowed by the 2 year Fazil course, and Fazil is followed by the 2 year Kamil course.Engineering, agriculture, business, medical, and information and communicationtechnology (ICT) are the major technological education in Bangladesh.2.2 Different Steams in EducationPrimary level education is provided under two major institutional arrangements:general, and madrasha, while the secondary education has three major streams: general,
  • 47. 47 madrasha, technical and vocational education. Likewise, the higher education has 3 streams: general, madrasha and technology education. Technology education includes agriculture, engineering, medical, textile, leather technology, and ICT. Madrashas function parallel to the general stream of education (primary, secondary and higher education) with additional emphasis on religious studies. According to the Ministry of Education, the structure of education of Bangladesh is as follows; THE PRESENT EDUCATION STRUCTURE OF BANGLADESHAge Grade26+25+ XX Ph. D Ph.D(Medical) (Engr)24+ XIX Ph. D Post Ph.D MBBS Dipl (Education)23+ XVIII M.Phil M.Phil(Medical22+ XVII MA/MSc/MCom/MSS/MBA LLM M. B MSc(Engr) MSc.(Agr) M B A M.Ed & M MA(LSc) B S A(Edn) BDS21+ XVI Bachelor Masters (Prel) LLB(Hons) BSc.Eng BSc.Eng BSc B B A B.Ed BP ED Dip.(LSc) Kamil (Hons) BSc.Agr (Tech.Edn) &Dip.Ed BSc.Text20+ XV Bachelor BSc.Leath (Pass)19+ XIV Diploma Diploma Fazil (Engineering) in18+ XIII Nursing17+ XII Secondary Examination HSC HSC C in C in Diploma Alim Vocational Edu. Agri in16+ XI HIGHER SECONDARY EDUCATION Comm15+ X Examination SSC TRADE Certificate/ ARTISAN COURSE e.g. CERAMICS SSC Vocational Dakhil14+ IX SECONDARY EDUCATION13+ VIII JUNIOR SECONDARY EDUCATION12+ VII
  • 48. 4811+ VI10+ V PRIMARY EDUCATION Ebtedaie9+ IV8+ III7+ II6+ I5+ PRE-PRIMARY EDUCATION4+ Table – 1: Education of Structure Bangladesh (Source: Ministry of Education) 2.2.1 General Education The general education is the biggest stream of education in Bangladesh comprising four stages: primary education, secondary education, higher secondary education, and higher education. 2.2.1.1 Primary Education The primary level education comprises 5 years of formal schooling (class I - V). This stage normally begins in 6+ years of age. Primary education is generally imparted in primary schools. Nevertheless, other types of institutions like kindergartens and junior sections attached to English medium schools also impart primary education in Bangladesh. 2.2.1.2 Secondary Education The secondary education consists of (3+2+2) 7 years of formal schooling. The first 3 year (class VI-VIII) is termed as junior secondary; the next 2 year (class IX -X) is secondary. At this level, there are three streams of courses: Humanities, Science, and Business Education, which start at class IX, where the students are to choose their
  • 49. 49courses of studies. The Board of Intermediate and Secondary Educations (BISE)conducts the S.S.C. examinations. There are seven such boards at different places inBangladesh: Dhaka, Rajshahi, Jessore, Comilla, Chittagong, Sylhet, and Barisal. TheseBoards are responsible for holding S.S.C. examinations and issuing certificates forsuccessful candidates.2.2.1.3 Higher Secondary EducationThe higher secondary education consists of 2 years of formal schooling (class XI -XII).At this level, there are three streams of courses: Humanities, Science, and BusinessEducation. The Board of Intermediate and Secondary Educations (BISE) conducts theS.S.C. and the H.S.C. examinations. There are seven such boards at different places inBangladesh: Dhaka, Rajshahi, Jessore, Comilla, Chittagong, Sylhet, and Barisal. TheseBoards are responsible for holding H.S.C. examinations and issuing certificates forsuccessful candidates.2.2.1.4 Higher EducationThis stage of education consists of 3-6 years of formal schooling. H.S.C. certificateholders are qualified for admission to 3-year degree pass courses and 4-year bachelordegree honours courses at the degree level colleges or universities. Master degreecourse consists of one year for bachelor’s (honours) degree holders and 2 years forbachelor’s (pass) degree holders. Some Public universities offer M.Phil. and Ph.D.degrees in different disciplines.
  • 50. 50 Bangladesh Open University (BOU) conducts non-campus distance educationprogrammes. Bangladesh National University mainly functions as an affiliatinguniversity; it conducts examinations and awards degrees to the successful candidates.Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujib Medical University offers courses on medical education.2.2.2 Madrasha EducationThe madrasha education was introduced in this subcontinent in 1780 with theestablishment of Calcutta Madrasha. In the madrasha education system, one has to learnIslamic education along with the general education complementary to each other. Thegovernment sanctions financial grants to the teachers and employees of the non-government madrashas like other non-government schools and colleges. Madrashaeducation comprises four levels: Ebtedaie (Primary level), Dakhil (Secondary level),Alim (Higher Secondary level), Higher/Tertiary level (Fazil, Kamil)2.2.2.1 Ebtedaie (Primary level) EducationThe Primary level is called Ebtedaie education. This is equivalent to primary level ofgeneral education. The primary level of madrasha education comprises 5 years ofschooling (class I - V). Usually, children of 6+ years of age start in class I and finishesin class V at the age of 11. Ebtedaie education is provided in independent Ebtedaiemadrashas and Ebtedaie sections of Dakhil, Alim, Fazil and Kamil madrashas.2.2.2.2 Dakhil (Secondary level) EducationThe secondary level of madrasha education consists of 5 years of formal schooling. It iscalled Dakhil equivalent to higher secondary in general education system. Dakhil
  • 51. 51education is given in dakhil madrashas, and in dakhil level of Alim, Fazil and Kamilmadrashas. There are three courses: humanities, science, and business education. Thestudents are free to choose the courses of studies. Most of the madrashas provide co-education; however, there are some single gender madrashas in Bangladesh. TheBangladesh Madrasha Education Board is responsible for holding dakhil examination,and issuing certificates for the successful candidates.2.2.2.3 Alim (Higher Secondary level) EducationAlim is equivalent to higher secondary (HSC) education of general education system.Alim education is imparted in Alim madrashas, and in Alim level of Fazil and Kamilmadrashas. It is a 2 year programme, and has three courses: humanities, science, andbusiness education. The students are free to choose their courses of studies. TheBangladesh Madrasha Education Board (BMEB) holds Alim public examination andissues certificates for the successful candidates.2.2.2.4 Tertiary Level / Higher EducationThis level comprises 4 (2+2) years of formal schooling. Alim pass students arequalified admission to 2-year Fazil course. This level of education is provided in FazilMadrasha, and in Fazil level of Kamil madrashas. The Fazil course includescompulsory English subject of 100 marks, the Kamil course is based on the religiouseducation only. Fazil degree holders are qualified for admission to 2 year Kamilprogramme. There are four streams of courses in Kamil level education: hadis, tafsir,fiqh, and adab. Bangladesh Madrasha Education Board conducts Fazil and Kamilexaminations and awards certificates. The government manages three Kamilmadrashas, and other madrashas are managed by private bodies. Recently, thegovernment has decided to give equivalence of Fazil and Kamil to B.A. and M.A.
  • 52. 52respectively. The Kharizi Madrashas education certificates are also in the process ofgetting government’s affiliation with equivalence to other courses of study.2.2.3 Technical and Vocational EducationVocational courses start in class IX after completion of three years of schooling insecondary school. Recently, 2 year duration vocational courses have been introduced atthe higher secondary level in government managed vocational training institute(renamed as Technical School & College). Diploma courses prepare the diplomaengineers at the polytechnic institutes. This course spreads over 4 year duration afterpassing the secondary school certificate examination. There is a technical educationboard called Bangladesh Technical Education Board (BTEB), which grants affiliationto the technical institutes. It conducts examinations of the students completing differentcourses in different vocational and technical education, and awards certificates to thesuccessful candidates. Textile College and Leather Technology Colleges offer four yeardegree courses in Textile Engineering, and Leather Technology respectively.Professional education is also imparted in the medical colleges, engineeringuniversities, dental colleges, nursing colleges, homeopathic colleges, law colleges etc.2.3 History of Madrasha EducationThe word Madrasha is derived from an Arabic word darsun meaning lesson. In itspopular usage, the term refers to an institution specializing in the teaching of the Arabiclanguage and Islamic studies. The primary/Ebtedaie stage of madrasha was calledMaqtab or Nurani Madrasha or Furqania Madrasha (Furqan is derived from Al-Furqan). The first Muslim ruler of Bengal, Ikhtiaruddin Mohammed - Bin Bakhtiar -Khalji, built a mosque and madrasha in his capital ‘ GAUR’ in 1197, according to some
  • 53. 53historians, 1201 AD. Sultan Giasuddin I established a madrasha in 1212 AD. Later, hisdescendant Sultan Giasuddin II established another madrasha. These two madrashaswent by the name of Lakhnawti and Gaur Madrasha. Hussain Shah and his son NusratShah established a number of madrashas in Gaur. The ruins of many of these madrashas are still extant. In 1664 AD, with theinitiative of Subedar Shayesta Khan, a madrasha and a mosque were built on the bankof the river Buriganga in Dhaka. Nawab Zafar Murshed Ali Khan establishedMurshidabad Madrasha, which still exists. Munshi Syed Sadruddin al-Musawlestablished the Burdwan Madrasha at village Buhar in 1178 hijri, and appointedMaulana Abdul Ali Baharul Ulum of Lucknow as a teacher. During the nawabi period,government made extensive lakheraj or rent free lands towards the maintenance ofmadrashas. Government also disbursed allowances and scholarships to madrashateachers and students in the form of land grants called maadat-e-maash.2.3.1 Colonial PeriodMadrasha education took a new turn during the British rule. Most of the lakheraj landsgranted to madrashas, and to teachers, and the students were resumed to rental duringcompany period. Consequently, many madrashas were closed down in the earlynineteenth century. Governor General Warren Hastings established an officialmadrasha called Calcutta Madrasha in 1780. But, it was intended to produce a limitednumber of graduates for serving the colonial government as law officers. Beingdeprived of official support, madrasha education declined in the nineteenth century.Guided by the government and headed by the European, the Calcutta Madrasha set anew trend in the madrasha education in Bengal, which favoured teaching Muslim law
  • 54. 54and jurisprudence rather than all round education of the Muslims. The curriculaincluded the unani method of medicine, cottage industry, and technical training. Theperiod of studies under darse nizami was 9 years. The old darse nizami courses are still in existence in many self-supportedmadrashas in line with Dewband Darul Ulum Madrasha of India established in 1280hijri by Maulana Qasim Nanutabi. In many towns and villages of Bangladesh, there arebranches of Dewband model of madrasahs. These are locally called qaumi madrashaand are financed by subscriptions, sadiqa, zakat etc. Most imams, muazzins or teachersof nurani or furkania madrashas come from the qaumi group. Alia Madrasah wasestablished in the year of 1780 with the initiative of British government and formedMadrasha Education Board of Bengal. Madrasah education then started formally.Consequently, madrasha education was gradually reformed. In order to induce Muslims to English education a new type of madrasha wasintroduced by the colonial government in the 1890s. It was called New SchemeMadrasha. In its syllabi were included all Islamic subjects and vernaculars. Englishlanguage was made compulsory. All new scheme madrashas were government aided.New scheme madrashas had two streams, junior and senior. The junior madrashastaught up to class five and senior up to secondary level. Muslim students aspiring togovernment jobs and services were attracted to the New Scheme madrashas. There arethree systems of madrasha education in Bangladesh: the old darse nizami system, therevised and modified nizami system, and the Alia Nisab (higher syllabus) system. Thefirst two categories are popularly called quawmi or non-government madrashas.2.3.2 Pakistan Period
  • 55. 55Especially, Shere-E-Bangla A. K Fazlul Hoque, the then prime minister declared tospread out and modernise the madrasha education in this region. Following thecommitment of Shere-E-Bangla A. K Fazlul Hoque a committee named Moula BoxCommittee was formed for improving madrasha education in this region. Thiscommittee recommended establishing a university for madrasha students and settingsome proposals for developing madrasha education.After the independence of Pakistan in 1947 some committees /commissions wereformed for the development of madrasha education. Among the committees WestBengal Educational System Reconstruction Committee in 1949 and the ArabicUniversity Commission in 1963-64 are mentionable. Those committees/ commissionsrecommended various reforms for the improvement of madrasha education.2.3.3 Post - Liberation Period (Bangladesh Period)After the independence of Bangladesh in 1971 some steps are taken to modernise theeducation with creating scopes for employment for the madrasha educated people. Witha view to modernising the madrasha education system, Bangladesh MadrasahEducation Board was formed under an ordinance in 1978. Two major responsibilities ofthis board are to hold examination, and publish results of all public examinations ofmadrasha education system. The other duty is to formulate syllabuses and prescribebooks for all classes from Ebtedaie (primary) to Kamil class. The Madrasah Education Board started its activity independently in 1979. In1980, Fazil degree was given the equivalence of H.S.C. qualification. English languageteaching and learning got a momentum from then. In the process of developing andmodernising the education dakhil level was given equivalence to S.S.C. in 1985, and in1987 Alim level was given the standard of H.S.C. At present madrasha education is anintegral part of national education system. All categories of madrashas are entitled to
  • 56. 56receive government aid if they fulfil prescribed conditions set by the state authorities:the Bangladesh Madrasha Education Board, and National University of Bangladesh.The madrasha education degrees are equally accepted at all government and nongovernment sectors. During recent time, the revolutionary changes and development are brought inthe field of modern science and technology, and Bangladesh faces very strong andtough challenges. With a view to facing this challenge, English, humanities, science,business and technical education have been introduced to madrasha education.Meanwhile, in 2007 the government of Bangladesh has enacted an ordinance to giveequivalences Fazil and Kamil to B.A. and M.A. degree respectively. At present Englishis compulsorily taught up to Fazil level of madrasha education system. Alim students ofthe madrasha education system follow the textbook which is prescribed by the NCTBfor H.S.C. students of general education system. Steps are already taken to modernisethe existing curriculum. Madrasha Teachers’ Training Colleges is also established totrain up the madrasha teachers; to arrange in-service and pre-service training formadrasha teachers; to increase quality and efficiency of the madrasha teachers throughtraining; to increase quality and efficiency of madrasha teachers through training. Infact, the cherished desire of Shere-E-Bangla A. K Fazlul Hoque is going to bematerialised soon.2.4 Place of English in the Madrasha CurriculumEnglish is taught as a foreign language in our schools, colleges and madrashas. It istaught as an additional subject from class I and as a compulsory subject from class IIIto class 14 (Bachelor degree) in the general and madrasha education systems. In the
  • 57. 57primary level of madrasha education, English is taught as a compulsory subject of 100marks. The secondary level (Dakhil) of the madrasha education has an Englishcompulsory paper of 100 marks. The higher secondary (Alim) level of the madrashaeducation teaches one paper of compulsory English carrying 100 marks, though thesecondary and higher secondary levels of the general education teach two papers ofEnglish carrying 100 marks each. The present curriculum, after 2000, discourages theuse of books on grammar, translation and composition. The communicative languageteaching is introduced to both the general and madrasha education, and the curriculumbody suggests the detailed guidelines and instruction for textbook writers to furnishbooks to be appropriate for communicative language teaching. The following books areprescribed for different classes of the madrasha education curriculum: a) Beginner’s English Book One For Class-3 b) Beginner’s English Book Two For Class-4 c) Beginner’s English Book Three For class-5 d) Dakhil English For Today, For Class-6 e) Dakhil English For Today, For Class-7 f) Dakhil English For Today, For Class-8 g) Dakhil English For Today, For Classes 9 - 10 h) English For Today, For Classes 11-12The National Curriculum Committee attempts to establish a fit environment for thelanguage teaching by introducing new books displaying posters, charts, maps,advertisement, etc. The curriculum suggests that video and audio cassettes should beproduced along with the textbook so that the teachers and the students can be involvedin practicing listening and speaking in the class.
  • 58. 582.4.1 Curriculum of English in Alim ClassThe objectives of the English textbooks in the madrashas are designed in the worldcontext. English For Today, For Classes 11-12 claims that the textbook is written incommunicative view of learning. The preface to the book English For Today, ForClasses 11-12 claims that this new English textbook has been developed for classes 11& 12 by English Language Teaching Improvement Project (ELTIP) jointly funded bythe Government of Bangladesh and DFID of the UK Government, a team of writerstrained in the UK under ELTIP has written the book over a period of one and a halfyears. The whole process of writing, trialing, and evaluation the manuscript was carriedout by national and expatriate consultants of ELTIP in cooperation with NCTB. Thebook is based on the principle that has guided the writing of the English For Todaybooks from class 6 to onwards – the principle of learning a language be actuallypracticing it. This practice is carried out through the four language skills of speaking,listening, reading and writing, usually in an interactive mode, underlies thecommunicative approach to language learning. As the focus is on the communicativefunctions of language, the main aim of the textbook is to provide ample opportunitiesfor students to use English for a variety of purposes in interesting situations. The bookis divided into units. Each unit based on a theme, has several lessons that containreading texts and a range of tasks and activities designed to enable student to practicethe different skills, sometimes individually and sometimes in pairs or groups. Someliterary texts have also been included. However, the emphasis in such cases is not juston content but on the exploitation of the texts to trigger a variety of language activities.
  • 59. 59 The emphasis on the communicative approach, however, does not disregard therole of grammar. Instead of treating grammar as a set of rules to be memorised inisolation, the book has integrated grammar items into the lesson activities allowinggrammar to assume a more meaningful role in the learning of English. Thus studentsdevelop their language skills by practicing language activities and not merely byknowing the rules of the language. As mentioned in the preface to the book, the textbook follows thecommunicative approach to the teaching and learning of English in Bangladesh context.The book provides learners with a variety of materials such as reading texts, dialogues,pictures, diagrams, tasks and activities. Learners can practise language skills usingthese materials. They can actively participate in pairs or group or individual work. Thebook includes a wide range of topics from both national and global contexts. A unit onpopulation education has been appended to the book to raise awareness about theadverse effects of over population on the socio-economic conditions of the country. It isexpected that the new textbook will be an effective resource for the learning of Englishat this level. It is hoped that the topics are appropriate and interesting to the learnersthematically, culturally and linguistically. Adequate grammar elements are alsointegrated with language skills so that learners can transfer the elements in the real lifesituations. This opposes the memorisation of discrete grammar items.The objectives of the textbook are to; 1. introduce effective communicative language teaching techniques, 2. arrange adequate practice in four basic language skills : listening, speaking, reading and writing, 3. integrate grammatical elements with language skills so as to make the grammar genuinely functional and communicative, 4. adapt the existing topics so as to make them both more interesting and acceptable,
  • 60. 60 5. create more opportunities for interaction ( between teachers and students. and among students themselves), 6. introduce and integrated “work book “element in order to develop writing skills at an appropriate pace, and 7. suggest a clear teaching methodology within the framework of actual lessons, It is expected that the present textbook will meet the actual needs of the studentsand the teachers, and eventually, it will accelerate effective communicative teachingand learning of English language at the Alim level in the madrashas in Bangladesh.2.4.2 Syllabus of English in Alim ClassThe Madrasha Education Board (MEB) has prescribed the book English For Today,For Classes 11-12 published by the NCTB as the textbook for Alim class. The samebook is prescribed for higher secondary students of general education system. The Alimclass has only one paper of English carrying 100 marks, but the higher secondarystudents of general education system study two papers of English carrying 100 markseach. The book is taught during the 11-12 classes. The Alim English syllabus contains12 units comprising 79 lessons. After completion of the course in two years, the Alimpublic examination is held. The contents of syllabus for Alim class are;Unit- One : Families Home and AbroadUnit- Two : Learning EnglishUnit-Four : PastimesUnit-Six : Our EnvironmentUnit- Eight : Towards Social AwarenessUnit- Nine : Getting EducatedUnit- Thirteen : We and our Rights
  • 61. 61Unit- Fourteen : Human ResourcesUnit- Seventeen : Modes of CommunicationUnit- Twenty : Jobs and ProfessionsUnit- Twenty Three : Challenges of the New CenturyUnit- Twenty Four : People, People Everywhere2.4.3 Marks Distribution in the Alim ExaminationThe six broad items are included in the Alim public examination. The items and themarks allocated for each item are shown at the right hand margin.a) Seen Comprehension : 25 i) Objective questions :15 ii) More free questions : 10b) Unseen comprehension : 25 i) Objective questions : 15 ii) More free questions : 10c) Vocabulary: 10 iii) Cloze test with clues : 5 iv) Cloze test without clues :5c) Grammar: 10 i) Cloze test with clues :5 ii) Cloze test without clues :5d) Writing: 10 i) Guided : 10 ii) More free : 10
  • 62. 62e) Population Education( Unit 24) : 10 ______________________ Total: 100 marks2.5 Evaluation of TextbookLanguage instruction has five important components: students, a teacher, materials,teaching methods, and evaluation. Allwright argues that materials should teach studentsto learn, they should be resource books for ideas and activities for instruction/learning,and that they should give teachers rationales for what they do (5-18). Sheldon identifiesthree main reasons for using textbook. Firstly, developing classroom materials is anextremely difficult, arduous process for teachers. Secondly, teachers have limited timein which to develop new materials. Thirdly, external pressures restrict many teacherswith various dimension and they can not prepare class room materials for their own(237-246). EFL textbooks can play an important role in the success of languageprogrammes. Sheldon suggests that "textbooks represent the visible heart of any ELTprogram" (237). Textbooks provide the objectives of language learning; they function as a lessonplan and working agenda for teachers and learners. The EFL materials currently taughtat Alim class requires a deeper and more exclusive analysis and scrutiny. Hutchinsonand Water suggest that contents of English textbooks should be useful, meaningful andinteresting for students. Difficulty of materials, as a general rule, should be slightlyhigher in their level of difficulty than the students current level of English proficiency.Instructional issues of English textbooks should have clear instructional procedure andmethods, that is, the teacher and students should be able to understand what is expectedin each lesson and for each activity (120-121).
  • 63. 632.5.1 Types of EvaluationCunningsworth suggests that there are three different types of material evaluations.These are:1) predictive’ or ‘pre-use’2) ‘in-use’3) ‘retrospective’ or ‘post-use’ (reflective)He argues that the most common form is probably the ‘predictive’ or ‘pre-use’evaluation that is designed to examine the future or potential performance of atextbook. The other types of textbook evaluation are the ‘in-use’ evaluation designed toexamine material that is currently being used and the ‘retrospective’ or ‘post-use’(reflective) evaluation of a textbook that has been used in any respective institution (42-44). Dickins and Germaine refer two types of evaluation that can to be adopted tosketch out a picture of textbook materials. Types of evaluation are; 1) on page 2) in use evaluation (29) [Dickins and Germaine, refer the on page evaluation as to the ‘theoretical worth of thematerials’ as they are on the printed page, which has no reference to their actual use inthe classroom. According to the purpose of evaluation, such criteria as the followingare to be examined:1. Do the textbooks represent the authors’ claims?2. Are the textbooks appropriate for the level of students and the context?3. Do the activities seem to help the students with the basic elements of the fourlanguage skills?
  • 64. 644. Does the teacher’s guide help the teacher in how the tasks should be handled?5. Are there enough guidelines and hints?6. Is it possible for the students to use the textbooks on their own? (30-31).As attributed to the on page evaluation, material in use evaluation is evaluating thetextbooks as they work in real classroom situations to examine how they really workand detect any problems that may occur.Some other aspects can be examined such as:● students’ performance in the classroom,● students’ attitudes towards the new textbooks,● teachers’ approaches in relation to the use of the textbooks,● teachers’ attitudes towards, any new approaches that textbooks may present,Litz (2007) suggests that while evaluating any EFL textbook a number of mattersshould be considered: value, content, layout and design, activities and tasks scope ofpracticing language skills (7). In the present study, some methods are followed for the evaluation of EnglishFor Today, For Classes 11- 12. The checklists for evaluation of the textbook aredeveloped on the basis of suggestions of Cunningsworth (1995), Dickins Germaine(1992), and Litz (2007).2.5.2 Types of Textbook EvaluatorsAlderson and Scott suggest the following types of evaluators usually involved inevaluating textbook;
  • 65. 65 a) Insider Evaluator b) Outsider/ External Evaluator c) Global Evaluator (38)Alderson and Scott suggest that evaluation is strongly connected with outsiders in thesense that usually the action for an evaluation is issued “from above” and the insidershave to do the “donkey work” (38). The importance lies on the active involvement ofinsiders as well outsiders. They say that the “insiders” have the advantage that theythemselves are part of the teaching context and they are aware of, and fully involvedwith the students. It should be clear that what is referred to as an outsider or an insiderdepends on an awareness of the contexts and the students, the degree of involvementthat they have with the actual teaching process and the immediate contact with the newset of textbooks. The textbook evaluation can be performed globally through electronicmedia and publishing in the book/materials in the web pages (39-42). The presentresearcher has evaluated the textbook English For Today, For Classes 11-12 as aninsider evaluator, because the present researcher has awareness of the contexts,contents and the students, and has involvement in the teaching –learning activities.2.5.3 Checklists of Textbook EvaluationSheldon suggests that no general list of criteria can ever really be applied to all teachingand learning contexts without considerable modifications, most of these standardisedevaluation checklists contain similar components that can be used as helpful startingpoints for ELT practitioners in a wide variety of situations (247). Preeminent theorists in the field of ELT textbook design and analysis such as;Williams (1983), Sheldon (1988), Cunningsworth (1995), Rivers (1968) and Harmer(1996) all agree that evaluation checklists should have some criteria pertaining to the
  • 66. 66physical characteristics of textbooks such as layout, organizational, and logisticalcharacteristics. A number of textbook evaluation checklists and guidelines have been studied forthe present study to evaluate the English For Today, For Classes 11-12 . The presentresearcher browses about 10 checklists proposed by different authors and selected 13features which are common to most of these checklists to do the evaluation. Thepresent researcher scrutinises the textbook in the checklist one by one. The checklistswhich are followed are stated below;Checklist 1: Whether the layout of the book is clear, attractive, print is easy to read,Checklist 2: Whether lay out of the exercise and practice are clear,Checklist 3: Are objectives laid out in the introduction, and implemented in the material?Checklist 4: Opportunities of practicing language skills,Checklist 5: Are there sufficient vocabulary explanation and practice?Checklist 6: Whether appropriate visual materials available,Checklist 7: Whether the topics and tasks are interesting,Checklist 8: Whether the instructions are clear,Checklist 9: Whether the presentation is stereotyped and activity boring.Checklist 10: whether traditional grammar teaching is avoided,Checklist 11: Whether the lesson is relevant to day to day activities,Checklist 12: whether the activities are student centered or teacher centeredChecklist -13: Whether fluency dominates accuracy
  • 67. 672.5.4 Evaluation of English For Today, For Classes 11-12The English textbook has been written by English Language Teaching ImprovementProject (ELTIP) jointly funded by the Government of Bangladesh and DFID of the UKGovernment. A team of writers trained in the UK under ELTIP has written the bookover a period of one and a half years. The book is divided into units. Each unit based ona theme, has several lessons that contain reading texts and a range of tasks andactivities designed to enable students to practice the different skills, sometimesindividually and sometimes in pairs or groups. Some literary texts have also beenincluded. As claimed in the prefaces to the book, the book follows the communicativeapproach to the teaching and learning of English in Bangladesh context. The bookprovides learners with a variety of materials such as reading texts, dialogues, pictures,diagrams, tasks and activities. Learners can practise language skills using thesematerials. They can actively participate in pair or group or individual work. The NCTB claims that it includes a wide range of topics from both national andglobal contexts. Topics are appropriate and interesting to the learners thematically,culturally and linguistically. Also adequate grammar elements are integrated withlanguage skills so that learners can transfer the elements learned to the real lifesituations. This opposes the memorisation of discrete grammar items. The Textbook will be evaluated under some checklists whether the claims ofthe preface to the English For Today, For Classes 11-12 are genuine.
  • 68. 68Checklist 1: Whether the layout of the book is clear, attractive, print is easy to readMost often the paper of the textbook English For Today, For Classes 11-12 is of lowquality, and in some cases is more like papers which are used for daily newspapers. Thebook is acceptable regarding the orthographic beauty. However, it would be moreappealing if colorful pictures of real people and real environment were used. The wholebook consists of various units and each unit consists of lessons. Just after thepublisher’s page, it gives chronological list of the topics and themes. The book includesthematic area of each unit, topic of each lesson, language skills focused with functions,grammar elements or structures and new vocabulary that appeared in each topic hasbeen given in the book for Alim class. So, language skills, functions,grammar/structures and new vocabulary are presented in an integrated manner. The present study finds that the paper of the book is of low quality, and in somecases is more like papers which are used for daily newspapers. The printing and typingof the book is blurred, and the binding of the book is of poor quality. However, thebook looks good and acceptable for its clear layout, and orthographic beauty.Checklist 2: Whether lay out of the exercise and practice are clearThe lessons of the book have a presentation-practice-production format, which followsthe statement of the book as claimed in the preface to the book. The book createsscopes for sufficient exercise with clear destination.Objectives:Clear objectives of each lesson are mentioned at the beginning.
  • 69. 69Example: Objective – By the end of the lesson you will have  read two letters  discussed the contents of the letters  practiced using wh-questions  written a short letter to a newspaper (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit One)Presentation:Language items with functions have been presented through meaningful text. Differentlanguage skills have been integrated. For this, linguistic as well as paralinguistic meansof communication have been used. Students are asked to discuss with the pictures. Thepictures along with the written texts, which provide a pre-reading task, make the lessonmeaningful and natural.Example:A) Discuss with your partner and say what happens when the weather is very dry? Lookat the picture. What you see?Discuss the following questions in pairs. 1. What do you think is the cause? 2. What may it lead to? 3. Is there any way of prevailing this?(English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 3: Unit Seven)PracticeEvery lesson focuses language skills. Skills are always integrated. Before the practiceof language skill(s) learners do some pre-skill (i.e., pre-reading or pre-listening) tasks.In the above-mentioned lesson, for example, look at picture of Nazneen’s family, and‘guess the relationships between the people in the picture’. Thus the lesson gives thestudents a pre-reading task, which will engage them in the learning process. For
  • 70. 70language practice, students have to do a variety of activities. These include pair work,group work, working as whole class and solo work.Pair works:A good numbers of exercises for pair works and group works of different nature arepresented in the book. Followings are some illustrations;B. Read the two following letters taken from the problem page of a weekly English magazine. The Rising Sun, to identify the problems the two writers are facing. The Rising Sun The Rising Sun Wednesday 5 January Wednesday 12 January Dear Mita Apa, Dear Mita Apa, I’m a first year college student and my annual I read Nazneen’s letter published in your exams are close at hand. I need to study a lot. column on 5th January. I can understand However, conditions (…) shoulders. On top of Nazneen’s problems about living in a large that, my aunt (my father’s sister) has just and a family, but (…) the fence. From my new baby boy. He screams all (...) a lot on me experience, I know how awfully boring and so do my grandparents. It seems that I am life can be in a nuclear family. I’m also a at everybody’s beck and call. The house hasn’t college student like Nazneen. (…) with yet shed (…) family. I even have to share my their work. My only brother goes to room with my younger brothers and sisters university in the morning and comes back and at times, with my cousins, I wish I were in late in the evening. Everybody is too (...) a small family. Tell me what should I do? uncles, aunts, and cousins. I hope Nazneen realises that having a small family does Nazneen not necessarily make one happy. Aminpur, Sirajganj Zinnia Rajabazar, Dhaka (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit 1)Controlled and free practice of language
  • 71. 71Some activities involve practice of language skills controlled at varied degrees by theteacher. Some activities, on the other hand, involve more free practice of languageskills. Students involve in free production of language in some activities.Control exerciseEvery lesson contains control exercise; the following is an example of control exercise.The control exercises allow limited options for the students.Example:Here are some words and expressions from the letters that we use in daily life.Understanding their meaning within the context is important. Check yourcomprehension by matching the words/expressions shown in column A with theirmeanings in column B. A B envy - believing what others have is always better. awfully - small regular tasks that are done in the house scream - be in a position where you do things as ordered by others rosy - wish that you had someone else’s possessions, abilities chores - cry loudly festive - be always ready, be alert be on one’s toes - bright and cheerful, as in a celebration at somebody’s beck and call - happy wonderful the grass is greener on the - very, very much other side English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit OneNow fill in the blanks in each of the following sentences with an appropriateword/expression from column A of the above table. Change the form(s) if necessary.
  • 72. 72 1. Bangladesh has a ………………………. air during the month of Ramadan. 2. Things don’t look very ………………… for him in his present job. 3. She is …………………….. to help everybody in the house. 4. The peon in the office is at the Principal’s ……………….. 5. When she was the burglar, she ………….. in terror. 6. I’m …………………….. sorry for breaking your new pen.(English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit One)Free practiceAlmost each and every lesson contains free practice exercises. The most commondifferent kinds of exercises are; writing letter, writing paragraph, writing dialogues,narrating story, writing essay, etc.F. Write a short letter to “The Rising Sun” describing the type of family you like and why. (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit One) E. Write a newspaper article on the changes in clothes fashion among young peoplein Bangladesh over the past decade. (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson: 5: Unit Six)Checklist 3: Are the objectives laid out and implemented in the materials?At the beginning, the book contains a preface that attempts to clarify the intendedteaching objectives; however, there is a state of indeterminacy as to the goals towardwhich the teachers and the learners are to set out. The ultimate goals of the curriculumare clarified in the preface to the book. Likewise, the short term objectives are specifiedat the beginning of each lesson. But this is not satisfactorily clarified how the learnersshould be able to do to demonstrate that they have achieved the intended objectives at
  • 73. 73the end of each course e.g. at the end of each lesson. A good textbook should havelesson aiming at fulfilling some specific objectives. In the present English For Today, For Classes 11-12, at the beginning of everylesson some specific objectives have been targeted, though specific guiding principlesfor teachers on how to teach the lessons are not furnished. Although the curriculumdocument admits the necessity of such guide lines and says that such teacher guideswill be prepared and published, they are yet to come in light. Now it becomes theteacher’s responsibility to find out the way to attain the responsibility.ObjectiveExample: – By the end of the lesson you will have  read two letters  discussed the contents of the letters  practiced using wh-questions  written a short letter to a newspaper (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit One)Example: Objective – By the end of the lesson you will have  discussed the idea of communicating  understood what learning a language means  read a passage on the distinction between acquisition and learning  written a dialogue (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 2: Unit Three)
  • 74. 74Checklist 4: Opportunities of practicing language skillsThe preface to the book English For Today, For Classes 11-12 declares that the bookprovides learners with a variety of materials and activities. It claims that the practice iscarried out through the four skills of language: speaking, listening, reading and writing.Tasks in the book are so designed as to provide students with opportunities so that theycan participate in discussion, information gap activity and role-play etc. Pictures anddiagrams are not used just for decorative purposes rather they are accompanied by awide range of tasks and activities, which give learners opportunities to practiselanguage skills.Example:C. Think about a salesman and a customer in a Fruit/book/ shoe shop. In pairs write ashort dialogue between them to show how they interact (communicate) with each other.Then in pairs do roles play using the dialogue.(English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit Three)Checklist 5: Are there sufficient vocabulary explanation and practice?Each and every lesson provides scopes for practicing vocabulary through differenttechniques. Vocabulary is explained through defining the word or and providingsynonyms. The major techniques used in the book are: cloze test with clues, cloze testwithout clues, matching column, etc. The other type is attributable to the poorcontextualization of the new vocabulary in the New Words Sections. Some of the newvocabularies are more significant in carrying the semantic load of the related sentencehave been included in the margins of the Reading Comprehension passages with somesynonyms or definitions.
  • 75. 75Example:Here are some words and expressions from the letters that we use in daily life.Understanding their meaning within the context is important.Check your comprehension by matching the words/expressions shown in column Awith their meanings in column B. A B envy - believing what others have is always better. awfully - small regular tasks that are done in the house scream - be in a position where you do things as ordered by others rosy - wish that you had someone else’s possessions, abilities chores - cry loudly festive - be always ready, be alert be on one’s toes - bright and cheerful, as in a celebration at somebody’s beck and call - happy wonderful the grass is greener on the - very, very much other side English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit OneChecklist 6: Whether appropriate visual materials are availableVisual materials can be defined as the facilities that can be employed by teachers andlearners to enhance language learning in classrooms. They may range from simplehand-made realia, charts and pictures to electronic and digital materials. It isunfortunate that the textbook neither use any visual materials in the lessons nor provideany exercises that may require any visual aids, apart from related pictures the exercisesare to be done verbally and in written form. To teach a word, means to provideinformation, implicitly or explicitly, on these properties for the learners and also toprovide opportunities for them to rehearse the given words to store them in their minds.
  • 76. 76There are ample opportunities for practicing dialogues, but the textbook materials doencourage neither the teachers nor the students to use audio / tape recorder or any audio– visual aids.Checklist 7: Whether the topics and tasks are interestingThe topics of reading vary from factual to anecdotal ones, and sometimes are funnystories. It is difficult to judge on behalf of the learners whether those are interesting forthem or not, and it needs research. Nevertheless, it is found that some topics areattractive to the Alim students. However, it seems that it would be better if the topicsare updated to become more congruent with the taste of the new generation whichmight be a bit different from that of the authors who designed the books at least tenyears ago. It is also possible to include adapted and simplified versions of quotationsand sayings of scholars renowned for their wisdom and eloquence in line with higherculturally valued objectives of education such as trustworthiness, sacrifice, courage,punctuality, patience, honesty, etc, since the meaning and content of the materialstaught in English classes have strong and long lasting effects on the minds of thelearners. The textbook includes a good number of stories and articles on social , historical, educational, wonders, heritage, space, communication, challenges , profession, sportsissues etc. (such as; caring and sharing, email, looking for a job, etc), therefore, thetextbook may be termed as interesting fairly much. Many tasks of the lessons areenjoyable, which are culturally and historically known to the students such as; guess;match; discuss with the help of picture, cloze test with clues etc.Checklist - 8: Whether the instructions are clear
  • 77. 77The instructions given in the book English For Today, For Classes 11-12 are clear andeasy to understand for the learners. Even if, the learners might not be familiar with thestructures and the lexis used in the instructions, the models given for each group ofexercises provide contextual clues for the learners as to what they are expected to do.However, some of the instructions lack the required contextual information in terms oflinguistic contextual complexity.ExampleNow look at the picture of Mr. Fraser, Managing Director of multinational companysituated in Dhaka. What kind of a person do you think he is? Why? Discuss in pair (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 4: Unit Seven)Checklist -9: Whether the presentation is stereotyped and activity boringLearning takes place pleasantly if the lesson is interesting. New items should bepresented in realistic contexts and tasks and activities should be so designed as toprovide learners with as many new things as possible to practice. To ensure learning, itshould be confirmed that the presentation is not stereotyped. Stereotyped presentationmakes lessons uninteresting and activities tiresome. The textbook English for Today for Alim class should not be considered aswholly stereotyped and traditional, because different lessons are presented withvarieties type of practice exercises, though the evaluation reveals that many of thelessons of this book starts with a “Look at the picture” type activity.Examples: Lesson 1, Unit one: Our Family (Look at the picture of Nazneen’s family presented with eleven pictures)
  • 78. 78 Lesson 2, Unit One: A Myanmar family (Look at the picture below and exchange your views with your partners) Lesson 4, Unit One: Mr. Fraser’s family (Look at the picture what kind of person do you think he is? Discuss in pairs)Examples illustrated above show that each of the above lessons starts with a typicalactivity, i.e., looking at the picture(s). When most lessons start with such types ofstereotypical activities, learners as well as the teachers get in difficulty to carry outthem. They often feel bore. In the present textbook “Look at the Picture” (s) ispresented in most of the lessons sometimes it is in the beginning or somewhere else.Although some pictures are considerably different from others in terms of physicalcontexts, students are not provided with any linguistic context at the beginning. As aresult, these may often produce boredom among the pupils, and teachers may facedifficulty to arousing interest among the learners.Checklist – 10: Whether traditional grammar teaching is avoidedThe present English For Today, For Classes 11-12 does not include any topic onexplicit grammar. Implicit grammar is presented thoroughly in different items. There isno scope of traditional grammar practices in the lesson; rather, grammar items and theirfunctions are included within the text and discourse of varied types in each lesson in theimplicit manner. This point has been made clear in book map of the book. Each andevery lesson presents implicit grammatical exercises, such as; tenses, clauses, verbs,comparison, modals, direct and indirect speech, change of voices are presented in thelessons through various exercises i.e. identification, right form of verb, fill in the gapswith clues, fill in the gaps without clues etc.
  • 79. 79ExampleC. Use the appropriate forms of the given words to complete the following sentences.1. Global warming may have a----------- effect on life.2. Environmental pollution is a very big problem of ------------ developed countries.3. This problem should be ---------------------.4. --------- water is very bad for health.5. The greenhouse affect is a ------ phenomenon. (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 3: Unit Six)Checklist -11: Whether the lessons are relevant to day to day activitiesCulturally known lesson creates interest among the students; therefore, lesson should berelevant to the day to day activities of the learner. Many topics of the book are takenfrom the natives’ cultural, social, educational and historical background, though manylessons are extracted from students’ unknown arena of subject.ExampleE. Think about your own family. In pairs ask and answer questions about your families.e.g. How many members are there in your family? What do/does …….do? Does yourgrand father live with you? etc. (English For Today, For Classes 11-12: Lesson 1: Unit One)Checklist 12: Whether the activities are student-centred rather than teacher orientedLanguage teachers face a task of making professional decision to ensure effectivelanguage learning and rely to a great extent on learner-centeredness, learning-centeredness and communicative language teaching. Learner-centeredness means active
  • 80. 80involvement of learners in their learning processes. Learning-centeredness means thatlearners are able to decide what and how to learn. Communicative language teachinginvolves real communication, carrying out meaningful tasks and teaching meaningful(to the learner) language. In the communicative approach of learning, the students have to do most of thethings in the class. Teacher’s role is to help them carry out these tasks, as facilitator, asa guide. Teacher is no more a dictator who controls everything in the class. Sometimeshe/she is a co-learner, sometimes manager of the class. Therefore, it can be said thatEnglish For Today, For Classes 11-12 is student-centred. In all the activities, thelearners have to comprehend and/or produce language, i.e., they have to use language,“do the exercises either individually” or “in pairs or in groups”.Checklist -13: Whether fluency dominates accuracyCommunicative approach puts emphasis on fluency rather than accuracy. However,teacher should always be ready to correct errors, mistakes and lapses the learnerscommit in the process of learning. But correcting all the mistakes is discouraged. Thefocus is always on a specific linguistic or functional aspect. This point has been madevivid in the book map of English For Today, For Classes 11-12. The book introduceslarge number of student- cantered practices which encourage fluency over accuracy.2.6 Status of the English Language TeachersIt is taken as granted that teachers are the builders of nations. They are makers of theleaders and the significant figures in the society. They should be competent enough tohandle the students’ conduct as well as to teach his/ her students in the effective way of
  • 81. 81learning. Educational fitness, good teaching methods and approaches, experience, andtraining are the preconditions to be a successful language teacher. Prodromou presented a much longer list of characteristics valued bylearners; examples cited were friendly, gave good notes, played games, told jokes,did not push weak learners and was more like a comedian (2-7). Brosh identifiedthe desirable characteristics of the effective language teacher as perceived byforeign language teachers and students in Israel. The following five characteristicsemerged overall as those felt to be most desirable by the participants in this study:• knowledge and command of the target language;• ability to organize, explain and clarify, as well as to arouse and sustain interest and motivation among students;• fairness to students by showing neither favouritism nor prejudice;• availability to students. (125-138)2.6.1 Proficiency in the Target LanguageProficiency of the language teachers includes the teachers ability to understand, tospeak, to read and to write English; accuracy in pronunciation; knowledge of foreigncustoms, culture and cross-cultural communication; knowledge of linguistics and of theessence of language acquisition; and his/her ability to initiate, to sustain; and to presentbasic communicative tasks in an appropriate way. The present study finds that themadrasha English teachers are not proficient enough in English language, and they donot use English in the class for instruction; rather they prefer to stay in Bengali, themother tongue.2.6.2 Teaching Effectiveness
  • 82. 82Teaching effectiveness includes the teachers ability to prepare a lesson plan focusingon the teaching aim, administration and the management of the class, and to worktowards the aim with certain teaching strategies. The English teachers in the madrashasfollow the Grammar Translation Method of Teaching. They are not fully aware of andefficient in teaching in the communicative approach. They hardly use the targetlanguage in the class. The maximum students participated in the study blame that theirEnglish teachers are not qualified and competent enough to teach English at Alim level.2.6.2.1 Classroom ManagementClassroom management includes proper arrangement of seats, board, and time to fit forcertain activities. This also includes the teachers ability to be clear in the class, and tochange modes of presentation and types of questions. The teacher is also supposed tobe able to engage students in the learning process, to provide opportunities for feedbackand to use group and individual activities so as to bring students initiative into fullplay. The madrasha English teachers are to handle a big class, on the one hand; andthey have no training to tackle a class, on the other hand; so, most of the time theycannot maintain the class successfully.[2.6.2.2 Psychological Elements and Personality of the teachersThe teacher should have patience, confidence, imagination, enthusiasm, humour andcreativity. He/She should be friendly, sympathetic and on good terms with the students,and have an affirmative attitude towards the students and occasionally encourages themif necessary. The present study finds that the English language teachers in themadrashas are a little sympathetic and friendly to their students. The teachers hardly
  • 83. 83give extra time to their students after the class hour. The madrasha English teachersusually do not encourage their students to speak English with their class mate.2.6.3 Qualifications of Madrasha English TeachersThe present researcher visits some madrashas, and finds that at least 30% Alimmadrashas do not have English teacher of their own; therefore, part time Englishteachers hired from other madrashas and colleges take English classes in thoseinstitutions. If the part time teacher is not found, the teachers of other disciplines takeEnglish classes. The English teacher at Alim level requires M.A degree in English withgood results. To ensure better education, and to strengthen the teaching learningactivities, the government of Bangladesh has enacted the “Non Government TeacherRegistration and Certification Authority (NTRCA) Act 2005”. The National Parliamentof the People’s Republic of Bangladesh approved the bill on February 2005. Accordingto the act, the NTRCA will hold and qualifying test for intended teachers, and issuecertificates. The Directorate of Secondary and Higher Secondary Education (DSHE)formulated the guidelines, and prescribed qualifications for teachers of government andnon government institutions. According to the handout of DSHE and NTRCA thequalification of secondary & higher secondary level English teachers should be as thefollowing; SL Level of Education Qualification for Teachers Non government Government Institution Institution 1 Secondary Schools/ B.A. with English B.A, B. Ed. with elective English at Madrashas graduate level or M.A. in English
  • 84. 84 2 Higher Secondary M.A. (2nd Class) M.A (1st class) in English or B.A College/ Madrasha in English (Hons) M.A (2nd Class) in English 3 Bachelor Degree / M.A (2nd Class) M.A (1st Class) in English or B.A Fazil course in English (Hons) M.A in English with 2nd Class Table-2 Teacher’s Qualification (Source: DSHE and NTRCA)The madrasha management authority fulfils the criteria set by the government inappointing English teachers for the institutions. The English teachers teaching in theAlim class are academically fit, though they do not have required training in teachingEnglish in the communicative approach.2.7 Teaching Method/Approach Followed by the TeachersA teacher must follow a method while teaching in the class. Any good teaching methodmust take into consideration the teachers, the students and the language learningsituation. The teachers who have been teaching English at the different levels ofmadrashas education systems are educated themselves through the instructions ofmother tongue Bengali. They are not educated and trained up in the communicativeapproach of learning. Communicative language teaching is termed as ‘how’ rather than‘what’. For successful learning a language, it needs to be done in the way it is intendedto be done. Comenius recommends that new words should be introduced to the studentswith the visuals of objects or phenomena they represent. He asserts that “words shouldnot be learned apart from the objects to which they refer” (Comenius, cited inThirumalai: 8-9). In the subsequent centuries, several methods came to be used. Somemost common methods and approaches that are used in the classes are; GrammarTranslation Method, Direct Method, Audio Lingual Method, Communicative approach,etc.
  • 85. 85 In the age of Communicative Approach, the madrasha teachers in Bangladeshfollow Grammar Translation Method in teaching English in the class. The present studyreveals that the teachers do not explain the text in English, rather they prefer to stay inBengali, the mother tongue; they are found reluctant in practicing the teachingvocabulary items through explanation of the text. Though, the textbook English ForToday, For classes 11-12 is written on the basis of the communicative view of teachingand learning, and the syllabus is furnished with communicative language teachingitems, but the language teachers are still found reluctant in following the guide lines ofthe book; it is because, this approach is new to them on the one hand, and they do nothave experience and training in communicative language teaching on the other hand.They hardly speak English with the students in and out side of the class; the study findsthat the maximum percentage of teachers do not encourage their students to speakEnglish with their class mates. It is painfully observed that after 10/12 years of learningEnglish, most of the learners are unable to use it for communication; they cannot speakEnglish with necessary fluency, correctness of grammar and pronunciation. Even,learning English as a foreign language for ten / twelve years in the grammar- translationmethod, the students fail in large numbers in the Dakhil, Alim and Fazil examination.The study discloses that teachers are usually busy and talk more in the class, while thestudents sit idle as inactive listeners only. The class is teacher - centered rather thanstudents oriented, these all prove that the teachers follow Grammar Translation Methodin the class for teaching English.2.8 Assessment and Testing SystemLearning a foreign language is a step-by-step process, during which mistakes are to beexpected in all stages of learning. Fear of making mistakes prevents learners from being
  • 86. 86receptive and responsive. Overcoming fear of mistakes depends on the way mistakesare rectified. Language acquisition does not happen unless the learner is relaxed andkeen on learning. The assessment can be for self- improvement (self-awareness), or formeasurement. Harmer mentions that making mistakes is a natural process of learningand must be considered as part of cognition. Mistakes that occur in the process oflearning a foreign language are caused either by the interference of the mother tongue,or /and are part of the students interlanguage (99). Bartram & Walton suggest that mistakes are often a sign of learning and, as aresult, must be viewed positively. Teachers have to recognize a well known fact that“learning ability varies from person to person and all language learning is based oncontinual exposure, hypothesizing and, even with the correct hypothesis, testing andreinforcing the ideas behind them” (97). Testing aims at evaluating teaching and learning which have taken place withina certain language programmes, or in other words, it is to assess the knowledge andskills of an individual or a group during the course and/or after certain period of time.Traditional examinations differ from communicative language testing in severalrespects, the first being the purpose of testing.[[[2.8.1 Objectives of Assessment and TestingTraditional examination aims at promoting or detaining a student, or awarding adegree; the determination of knowledge and achievement is incidental. On the otherhand, the purpose of testing in communicative language teaching is to evaluate how farlearning and teaching are taking place, or in other words, how far the students haveattained the ability to use the language for communicative purposes. The English
  • 87. 87question paper of Alim examination consists of a number of items of different naturesto be attempted in stipulated 3 hours. The question paper in such examination isinequitable; it covers very small potion of the syllabus. In any case, it cannot includeeverything of the syllabus. It puts importance on accuracy rather than fluency, and doesnot measure any auditory comprehension skill or speaking ability of the students. Itdoes not address the ability to use language in real communication. On the other hand,in communicative language teaching, learners’ ability to use the language in real life istested, i.e., their communicative competence. It is materialised in two ways; continuousassessment and in terminal/annual or public examinations. Testing language skills includes testing learners’ ability to speak, to write, andlistening and reading comprehension. Testing communicative competence meanstesting the ability to use language for communication. This also includes the testing offour basic language skills; listening, speaking, reading and writing. However, this testshould not be something that promotes learners to memorise certain topics andreproduce them in the examination hall. These objectives are; i) to ascertain the extent to which students have attained the stated learning outcomes, ii) to identify students’ strengths and weaknesses for the purposes of guiding subsequent teaching and learning, iii) to motivate the students by giving them a regular sense of achievement and to make parents aware of their progress.2.8.2 Kinds of Tests
  • 88. 88Regular assessment all through the academic year is essential to any proper educationsystem. While continuous assessment serves the purpose of a Progress Test, allowingteachers and students to assess how they are performing during the course. ProgressTest measures the achievement per unit of time. This test enables the teacher to assesshow far learning is taking place in a stipulated time. Terminal or annual examinations serve the purpose of an Achievement Test,enabling teachers to sort out students in relation to the prescribed standard.Achievement test assesses to what extent one has mastered items and skills which onehas been taught in formal classroom setting. Diagnostic Test determines the strengthand weakness of individual learners within specific items or skills. Proficiency Testmeasures the ability to use language and is independent of any particular textbooks orclassroom teaching. In other words, proficiency test is the test of communicativecompetence. Aptitude test evaluates whether an individual would do well in a particularfield or area.The national curriculum recommends three types of evaluation. These are as follows; i) Continuous assessment ii) Internal examinations iii) End-course examinations – e.g. Alim examination, H.S.C. examination, etc.2.8.3 Continuous Assessment
  • 89. 89Present curriculum considers the continuous assessment as the central key to theevaluation system. This is considered as a means to see how far teaching and learningare taking place and teachers can use this as a mechanism to see whether the previousitem/lesson has been sufficiently understood and whether the class should move on to anew one. The present curriculum suggests the replacement of monthly test bycontinuous assessment. During the class hour teacher gives class works to judge andassess the students’ progress. The teacher assesses their progress and makes correctionif any mistakes committed. The teacher some times asks the students to check theirscripts each other. The students feel humiliated if they are rebuked in front of everyone.2.8.4 Internal ExaminationThe curriculum suggests that two or necessary number of terminal examinations in eachacademic year should be taken; the progress test will enable students and teachers tosee how they are doing, and the achievement test, which will enable teachers to sort outstudents in relation to standard and to see how far the students has attained learningduring the stipulated time on some particular area. Government and non-government madrashas usually arrange two terminalexaminations a year. Some private madrasha authorities find examination as means tocollecting fees, and so, they arrange three terminal examinations a year. The layout ofthe internal question paper varies from madrasha to madrasha, though most of themadrashas follow the style and format prescribed by the Madrasha Education Board.2.8.5 Layout of the Question Paper for the AlimExamination
  • 90. 90On the basis of the curriculum and syllabus, the Madrasha Education Board hasprescribed and formulated a guideline for setting up the question paper for Alimexamination. The prescribed format is as follows;Seen Comprehension : 25 marksThere will be a seen comprehension passage from the textbook followed by a choice ofquestions. The question type includes the following;a) Objective Type : 15 marks(1) Multiple Choice (2) True /False (3) Filling the Gaps with Clues (4) InformationTransfer (5) Making sentences from Substitution Tables (6) Matching Phrases/Pictures, etc.Note : Question will be set on any five of the above types. Each type will carry 3marks (3×5=15) and each question will carry 1 mark.b) More Free : 10 marks(7) Open Ended (8) Filling the Gaps with the Clues (9) Summarising (10) MakingNotes (11) Re-writing in a different form.Note : Question will be set on any two of the above types. Each type will carry 5marks (5×2=10) and each question will carry 1 mark.The question should test the student’s ability to comprehend / understand the passage asa whole. These are not to test their ability to copy sections/parts from it. Although, theseen comprehension passage will be from the set textbook, it will not, in any wayencourage memorization/note learning. The reason is that (i) the passage will be
  • 91. 91reproduced on the question paper and (ii) the question will not be from the textbook,rather these will be new.Unseen Comprehension : 25 marksThere will be an unseen comprehension passage followed by a choice of questions.This passage will be of a different type than that used in the seen compression .Thequestion type should include the following;a) Objective Type : 15 marks(1) Multiple choice (2) True /False (3) Filling the gaps with clues (4) Informationtransfer (5) Making sentences from substitution tables (6) Matching phrases/ pictures,etc.Note : Question will be set on any five of the above types. Each type will carry 3marks (3×5=15) and each question will carry 1 mark.b) More free : 10(7) Open ended (8) Filling the gaps with the clues (9) Summarising (10) Making notes(11) Re-writing in a different form.Note : Question will be set on any two of the above types. Each type will carry 5marks (5×2=10) and each question will carry 1 mark.Vocabulary : 5+5=10There will be question on vocabulary contextualized in the form of short cloze passageswith and without clues. In order to facilitate/provide more communicative contexts, the
  • 92. 92topics should be related to those already encountered by the students in the seen andunseen comprehensions.Grammar : 5+5 =10There will be question on grammatical items contextualized in the form of short clozepassages with and without clues. In order to facilitate/provide more communicativecontexts, the topics should be related to those already encountered by the students inthe seen and unseen comprehensions. There will not be any question to test thestudent’s explicit grammatical knowledge. Explicit grammatical terms will not be usedin the question paper. The questions will rather test the use of grammatical items withinspecific and meaning full contexts.Writing : 20 marksa) Guided : 10There will be a number of writing tasks; the following types of exercises should beincluded; i) Producing sentences from substitution tables ii) Reordering sentencesNote: There will be no alternative questions.b) More Free: 10 marksThe following types of exercises should be included; i) Answering questions about themselves ii) Continuing a passageNote: There will be no alternative questions.Population Education : 10 marks
  • 93. 93The unit 24 entitled “People, People Everywhere” is the compulsory unit for the Alimstudents. The students must answer the question set on this unit. The questions mayinclude multiple choices, filling the gaps, answering questions matching phrases,writing a short paragraph.2.8.5.1 Reliability, Validity, and Practicality of the Alim QuestionPaperThe Question paper of Alim public examination suffers from validity, reliability, andpracticality to a great extent in term of testing the four skills of English language:listening, speaking, reading and writing. According to the curriculum, the examinationaims at testing the four skills. But, it is observed that the question paper has reliability,validly and practicality in term of testing writing and reading skills only. The twoimportant skills: listening and speaking are not tested in the examination. In the existingsystem, the Alim question paper is designed to award certificates through theassessment of writing, and reading comprehension capability.2.9 Teaching Aids and Equipment used in the ClassIn the modern education system, teaching aids and equipment play a very crucial role.The communicative approach encourages use of as much teaching aids as possible inthe class for facilitating learning. The language classes should be equipped with thevarious types of modern teaching aids, though the present study discovers that theteachers use only the black board for teaching English as a foreign language. Somemodern teaching aids are;  Multi Media  The Overhead Projector
  • 94. 94  Audio –Visual Aids  The Tape Recorder  Video Films/Movies  Computer  Realia  Internet, etc.  Pictures and Charts  Black Board and White BoardVisual materials can be defined as the facilities, which can be employed by teachersand learners to enhance language learning in the class. They may range from simplehand-made realia, charts and pictures to electronic and digital materials. However, thecontent of the video films whose primary goal is assumed to help the users promotetheir language skills and enhance learning processes. A word, generally speaking, mayhave various properties, worthy of attention for a learner. These can be, namely,phonological semantic, syntactic and pragmatic properties. To teach a word, means toprovide information, implicitly or explicitly, on these properties for the learners, andalso to provide opportunities for them to rehearse the given words to store them in theirminds. During the present study the researcher finds that in the madrashas there are nomodern facilities and equipments for using in the class for ELT practice. Themadrashas in Bangladesh use only the blackboard as teaching aids. The black board isused for different purposes such as; writing, drawing, sticking something, etc. Besides,the English For Today, For Classes 11-12 is written on the basis of communicativeview of teaching and learning, so, it is imperative for the teachers to use modernequipments to facilitate and accelerate learning.
  • 95. 952.10 Physical Facilities and Classroom EnvironmentClass environment plays a significant role in teaching and learning process. Along withother factors, class arrangement draws concentration of the learners in the learningactivities to a large extent. Interior class design and set up should be properly made upto feel ease for the students. It is widely believed that success of ELT largely dependson the environment in which it is practiced. The government owned madrashas enjoycomparatively better structures and physical facilities than those of non - governmentmadrashas. Most of the non- government madrashas in the country are underprivilegedand poorly decorated, teaching takes place in the unhealthy and congested classrooms.The classrooms are clumsy since large number of students sit together and take lessons. In the government and non - government madrashas, a big number of studentssit together in a small classroom, and a single teacher alone conducts the large group ofstudents. Therefore, the class appears very noisy and chaotic. Neither the teacher northe students can concentrate on teaching and learning activities. Most of the teacherscomplain “it is very difficult to teach such a large class”. The classroom is toocongested for them to feel comfortable. Sufficient daylight and air can enter into theclassroom though most of the madrashas in the rural areas do not have requirednumbers of fans and other amenities. In this situation, the teaching and learning cannotbe carried out effectively. Sufficient furniture, eclectic and electronic facilities areextremely poor. Chapter 3
  • 96. 96 Literature ReviewRelated studies provide a researcher with the background knowledge and informationfor the research problem. For the present study, the investigator has collectedinformation from various sources: a good number of books, a number of dissertationsand journal articles, and information from internet sources. For this purpose, manystudies on English language teaching and learning are reviewed. The studies which arevery much related to the present study are presented in this chapter. This chapterdiscusses the objectives of literature review and review of relevant works. Theconclusion and a works cited list are added to the end of this chapter.3.1 Objectives of Literature ReviewReview of literature surveys dissertations, scholarly articles, books and other sources(e.g. conference proceedings, etc.) relevant to a particular issue, area of research, ortheory, providing a description, summary, and critical evaluation of each work. Borg &Gall state, “Although the importance of a thorough review of the literature is obvious toeveryone, this task is more frequently slighted than any other phase ofresearch(…).Often the insights gained through the review will save as much time inconducting the research as the review itself required.” (117).Hart (1999) argues that the dissertation literature review plays a central role in; 1. distinguishing what has been done from what needs to be done, 2. discovering important variables relevant to the topic,
  • 97. 97 3. synthesizing and gaining a new perspective, 4. identifying relationships between ideas and practices, 5. establishing the context of the topic or problem, 6. rationalizing the significance of the problem, 7. enhancing and acquiring the subject vocabulary, 8. understanding the structure of the subject, 9. relating ideas and theory to applications; 10. identifying the main methodologies and research techniques that have been used 11. placing the research in a historical context to show familiarity with state- of-the-art developments. (27)Leedy (1997) elaborates on eight specific benefits that can result from literature reviewefforts: 1. It can reveal investigations similar to your own, and it can show you how other researchers handled methodological and design issues, 2. It can describe methods of dealing with problem situations that may be similar to difficulties you are facing, 3. It can reveal to you sources of data that you may not have known existed. 4. It can introduce you to important research personalities whose work and collateral writings you may not have known, 5. It can help you see your own study in historical and associational perspective and in relation to earlier approaches to the same problem. 6. It can provide you with new ideas and approaches that may not have
  • 98. 98 occurred to you. 7. It can help you evaluate your own research efforts by comparing them with the similar efforts of others. 8. It can increase your confidence in your selected topic if you find that others have an interest in this topic and have found value in investing time, effort, and resources into its study (71-72).The present researcher has reviewed a large number of scholarly books, dissertations,articles and periodicals for the development of insights into the present study. Thestudy has reviewed the relevant literature for many other reasons, such as; researchmethods and techniques, new ideas and approaches, what needs to be done,relationships between ideas and practices, correlations, contradictions between thefindings of the present study and those of the reviewing studies, etc. While reviewingthe literature for the present study, Borg & Gall (1989), Hart (1999), and Leedy (1997)are considered to achieve the aims and objectives of reviewing literature.3.2 Review of Relevant LiteratureThere are many studies carried out in the field of Applied Linguistics and ELT aroundthe world. Some of the important works related to the present study are reviewed here. Hasan (2005) conducts a linguistic study on the “English Language Curriculumat the Secondary Level in Bangladesh - A Communicative Approach to CurriculumDevelopment” which reveals that students are aware of the importance of learningEnglish language. He finds that 59% students have disinterest in speaking English,because they like their mother tongue and there is an animosity towards English, as itis hard, as they perceive, to learn. He also discovers that the syllabus and the
  • 99. 99curriculum of education are examination oriented, which prevent them from acquiringthe language competence. He discovers 82% rural and urban madrasha studentscomplain that English is not sufficiently used in the class; on an average 68% teachersadmit that they do not arrange the practice of four skills of English language in theclass. Since the study (Hasan) deals with, use of English in the class, practice oflanguage skill, needs of English, text book materials, etc., it is directly relevant to thepresent study. Kavaliauskiene (2003)) carries out a research among the second year universitystudents in Lithuania which reveals that 65% students admit that the teachers havetendency to avoid speaking; and 57% students comment that listening practices are notdone in the class. Her study also reveals that 68% students are weak in listening; 73%students are weak in speaking; while 72% students’ reading status is satisfactory. Thestudy of Kavaliauskiene investigates the practice and performance of the students inEnglish; therefore, this study directly relates to the present study. Pande (2005) carries out a study among the teachers teaching English to thehigher secondary students in the Tamil Nadu state and finds that 72% teachers teachEnglish through the medium of Tamil, the mother tongue. She observes the clearinterference of the mother tongue in practicing English in the class. Her investigationdiscovers that teachers prefer practicing (74%) writing in the class. The study hasstrong relevance to the current study, because the present study also investigates the useof mother tongue in the class. Uzpaline and Galina (2003) carry out a study among the under graduatestudents in Lithuania. Their study reveals that 80% students are weak in listening and73% students are very weak in speaking. The investigation observes that 65% learners
  • 100. 100can read the English text correctly at satisfactory level and can express their opinionthrough written English. The findings establish that the listening and speaking are lesspracticed by the teachers in the class. This study has a relation with the current studybecause both the studies evaluate the performance of students in English. Johnson (2001) in his study on the secondary English language teachers inUkraine finds that the trained teachers are more efficient than non trained teachers inhandling English classes. Teachers who have a very good English medium backgroundare the best for teaching the students to acquire a language. He suggests that teachersshould avoid taking narrow steps for teaching English by giving clues. He finds thatonly 29% teachers at high school level are trained up, while 71% teachers do not havetraining in teaching. The present researcher finds relevance between Johnson’s studyand the current study because both the studies investigate the status of teachers. Kothainayaki (1994) has observed the interaction between the teachers and thestudents studying in the X, XI and XII standards. She has observed some of the patternsof teacher - students and student - student interaction both inside and outside of theclassroom. Further, she has investigated the errors in the use of articles, prepositions,particles, etc. Hence, she recommends that grammar teaching should have been startedright from the first standard and enforcing a lot of grammatical drills, which willenhance the students’ interpersonal communicative competence. Karthiyayani (1995) has studied the reading comprehension of the studentsstudying at the higher secondary level in Iran. She finds that the reading performance ofthe students in English is better when the answers are explicitly stated in the passage,and the students find difficulty if the answers scattered in the passage. Further, she hasobserved that the parental economical position and the student’s previous academic
  • 101. 101record play a crucial role in the performance of the students, but the gender andlocation of students play a less role in the performance of the reading comprehension ofthe students. Nisha (1995) investigates the problems in acquiring communicative competencein English, and the areas of incompatibility between the language syllabus, languageteaching and linguistic performance of the first year degree students in English in TamilNadu state. She has identified some of the communication strategies applied by thelearners when they encounter problems in the process of communication. Further, herstudy reveals that the socio- economic factors play less role, while the parentaleducation, situational and psychological factors play a crucial role in the advancementof the communicative competence of the learners. Malaka (1998) has explored the motivational problems in teaching - learningEnglish as a second language at the high school level with particular reference to 9th,10th, 11th standards in Brazil. This study reveals that the motivational problems arerelatively less in the higher classes than that of the lower classes. 55% 9th gradestudents and 52 % 10th grade students suffer from motivational problems. Furthermore,he has also identified that the quantum of vocabulary used in the text books alsodetermines the quantum of motivation achieved. Chandran (1999) has evaluated some techniques of teaching English, textbookmaterials used for the higher secondary students, and their performance in speaking andwriting. He has identified that the phonological, grammatical, and discourse basederrors are the major problems. Based on his finding, he suggests that the examinationshould test the mastery of the students over the four skills of language. He also suggeststhat test should be taken on spelling, word building, grammar, phonology, reading and
  • 102. 102writing comprehension. Furthermore, he recommends that the text should contain morelessons written by Indian writers and the poems should be minimised in the text. Jayanthi (2002) observes the classroom interaction of the higher secondarystudents in Punjab. Her study reveals that the factors like; smartness of the students,shyness, evaluative capacity, commitment, psychological conditions, observation ofworld knowledge, time factor, interactional awareness, interaction with text, etc., playvery important role over the effective and efficient interaction of the students. Further,she says shyness of the students, psychological conditions, especially past failures, etc.leads to the avoidance of the interactive performance and other factors enhance theinteraction of the students in English language teaching classes. Ramanian (2002) evaluates the linguistic skills of the graduate students inEnglish in Punjab. He evaluates all the four linguistic skills: listening, speaking,reading and writing. However, he has dealt with the details of the writing skill of thegraduate students. He identifies in his study the phonological, grammatical andorthographical errors in productive skills; and in the comprehension skills he identifiesthe recalling ability of words and sentences. His study finds that 68% graduate learnersinterested in correction of error in written production. Moreover, he recommends thatthe group discussion, language games should be encouraged in the class hours. Hebelieves that introduction of the audio-visual instrument for language teaching wouldbe good and wise at collegiate level. Sobana (2003) explores the communicative competence in written Englishamong higher secondary students in India. She evaluates the competence basedachievement of the students on the basis of the marks obtained by them to the giventests items like identification of sounds and letters, identification of word meanings,
  • 103. 103application of word meaning in sentences, letter writing and composition. Her studyreveals that the instruction and parental economical and educational background have adirect impact on the competence based achievement and ability to use written English. Francis (2006) looks at current state of knowledge regarding second languageacquisition/ learning among the 12th grade students in France. He finds that isolatedexplicit error correction is usually ineffective in second language (SL/L2) learning. Hesays that knowing a language rule does not mean that one will be able to use it incommunicative interaction or in writing. He suggests that, to become fluent in alanguage, one must practice using it; to become fluent in a language, one must receiveextensive L2 input. There are predictable sequences in SL acquisition; learners have toacquire certain structures first before they can acquire others as their interlanguagedevelops. The learners developing grammatical system, the interlanguage, is oftencharacterised by the same systematic errors as made by a child learning that languageas a first language. At the same time there might be systematic errors which appear tobe based upon the learners first language. Learners need to focus on the form in orderto develop a more complete grammatical repertoire in the second language. Rashid (1998) carries out a research on the strategies to overcomecommunication difficulties in the target language situation- Bangladeshis in NewZealand. He finds that some distinctive new features have emerged as to the difficultiesand the possible use of strategies in the target language communication. Majority of theinterviewees (85%) admitted that a great deal of anxiety, hesitation and inhibition playa negative role among those who are not relatively fluent in conversation. However, theresults show that the subjects have high positive motivation towards the target language
  • 104. 104and its culture which can give a renewed impetus to their communicative languageproficiency. The study of Stapa (2003) on learners perceptions on self- or peer-correctionfinds, only 36% of learners would not mind having their written work corrected bypeers, while a vast majority, 64% are against peer-correction. As far as self-correctionis concerned, 23% of respondents would not mind correcting their own work, while77% would mind rectifying their own mistakes Bada & Okan (2000) investigates the under graduate students at CukurovaUniversity, Turkey on the role of peer groups in correcting work each other, and findsthat 66% students appreciate correction by the peer group, while 36 students disagreewith them with regard to correction of written production. The research reveals that71% students prefer their work corrected by themselves. Ancker (2000) in her research finds that error correction remains one of themost contentious and misunderstood issues in the second and foreign language teachingprofession. His (Ancker, 2000) survey to the question Should teachers correct everyerror students make when using English? covers responses from teachers, teachertrainees and students in 15 countries. 25% (out of 802) of teachers and 76% (out of143) of students support this viewpoint, while 75% of teachers and 24% of students,respectively, are against such correction. Ancker’s T study correlates the present study,because both the studies deal with the correction and self correction of students’ writtenwork. Harmer (2001) opines that the best time to correct is as late as possible. Hegives three suggestions: the active involvement of students in the process of dealing
  • 105. 105with mistakes is important; it stimulates active learning, induces cooperativeatmosphere, and develops independent learners. Uzpaline and Kavaliauskiene (2003) reveal that grammar mistakes andinadequate vocabulary aggravate the quality of students written work and oralpresentations. Generally speaking, self-correction of written work is easier for studentsthan self-correction of oral presentations, because the former is less threatening tolearners and the latter requires note-taking due to shorter memory spans of retainingutterances. Shethi (2004) investigated a study among the students in the Loknath WomenCollege in Uttar Pradesh. She found that in a ‘one and a half hour’ English class withan interesting lesson, 125 out of 128 students remained active and stayed in the classuntil the class ended. Another day, with the 131 students of same class with the sameteacher with a considerably less interesting lesson, 21 students went outside with orwithout permission of the teacher, 9 students felt drowsy, 33 students remained busyamong themselves, 5 students were imitating the teacher’s lecture being out of notice ofthe teacher; and when the class ended after one and half hour there were only 37students in the class. Chidambaram (2005) carries out a study on the Learning Process of English byHigher Secondary Students with Special Reference to Dharamapuri District in Indiafinds that in the process of learning to speak, the students follow certain strategies intheir communication to conceal their linguistic inadequacy 62% of the students avoid totalk with the researcher in English and to speak on given topic due to the anxiety,language shock, cultural shock and the linguistic inadequacy. The learners follow the
  • 106. 106word-for-word translation from the native language (L1) to second (L2) language.Further, it has been observed that some of the students have invented certain new wordsin their oral communication, when they fail to find appropriate word or for the wordwhich is absent in their mental lexicon. In certain contexts, the students follow the codeswitching strategy. That is, they use certain L1 words in L2. Approximation is yetanother strategy in which the learners use the approximate items instead of correct one.However, these approximate words share near semantic feature. It is found that 49% of the students have answered correctly. 31% of thestudents have responded partially 17% of them answered incorrectly and only 3% ofthem understudy have skipped this test item. The reason for the good performance ofthe students in this test item is that the given dialogue is constructed with simple andfamiliar words which enable the learners to comprehend the given dialogues easily. Soit is inferred that the simple and familiar words facilitates the listening comprehensionof the students. Further, it is observed that the hard and unfamiliar vocabularies hinderthe students in understanding the concept. Chapter 4 Research Design and MethodologyResearch methodology refers to the techniques and procedures that are adopted to carryout a study. This chapter presents the methodology of the present study. Sampling,instrumentation, subjects, the data collection procedures, the list of madrashas forinvestigation, and the data analysis methods are discussed in this chapter. Theconclusion and a works cited list are also presented here.
  • 107. 1074.1 SamplingA sample is a subject chosen from a population for investigation. The way samples areselected is called sampling. The present study has followed random sampling whileselecting the respondents. In random sampling all populations have same chance to beselected in a study. Morris suggests that the advantage of random sampling is that it iseasy to apply when a big population is involved (17). Robert opines that randomsampling is inexpensive and less troublesome (103). Agresti suggests that sample mustbe large to give a good representation (23). Two types of samples are used for thepresent study: students, and teachers.4.1.1 SubjectsFor the present study, 1000 Alim students have been randomly selected from 24madrashas located both in urban and rural areas in Bangladesh. The students havealready received English instructions for 10 years from class 1- class 10. To collect datafor the study, 25 English language teachers teaching English to the same students arealso interviewed through questionnaire. The teachers are also selected randomly from24 madrashas. The teacher respondents have Master of Arts (M.A.) degree in Englishand have some experience in teaching English in Alim class.4.1.1.1 StudentsThe sample size for a survey is calculated by statisticians using formulas to determinehow large a sample size will be needed from a given population in order to achievefindings with an acceptable degree of accuracy. For the benefit of relatively accurateresults, a large population is selected for the present study. 1000 Alim students are
  • 108. 108randomly selected irrespective of age, gender and locations from 24 Alim, and Alimlevel of Fazil and Kamil madrashas in Bangladesh.4.1.1.2 TeachersFor the present study, 25 English language teachers teaching English in Alim class arerandomly selected; therefore, the sample teachers include variations in teachingexperience, gender, age, location, etc. More specifically, the samples includeexperienced teachers, semi-experienced teachers and newly qualified teachers.4.2 InstrumentationQuestionnaire is an inexpensive way to gather data from a potentially large number ofrespondents. Vaus reveals that survey is a popular research method for collecting datain the field of English language education research, and the most common surveytechnique is the questionnaire (3-4). Park points out that questionnaire is used inEnglish language education for a wide variety of purposes, for example; students’performance, practices of English as a Foreign Language (EFL), etc. (214). In the present study, two questionnaires are used to elicit information from therespondents on different issues towards teaching- learning English as a foreignlanguage: what they want to learn, how they want to learn, which textbook materialsthey like to follow for the English paper, etc. The contents of the questionnaires arecrucial for the present researcher because they have direct relations to the researchquestions and objectives. The present study is a quantitative research in nature, so thequestionnaire method is adopted for data collection. In the present study, data is collected through 25 item questionnaires adoptedfollowing the models of Brindely (1984), and Nunan and Lamb (1996) with slightlymodification in Bangladesh context. The models of Gardner (1985), Kenning (2001),
  • 109. 109and Maniruzzaman (2003) are consulted for validity, reliability and practicality of thequestionnaire. Each of the questions explores particular EFL topic. Couper remarks thatthe way items or questions are worded play an important part, in how they are answeredor understood (464-496). The items of the present questionnaires are straight forwardand the linguistic nature of each question is relatively easy and simple. Apart from theaddressing and the reference conventions, the questionnaires do not differ significantly. Weissberg et al. suggest that researchers can assess reliability by comparing theanswers respondents give in one pretest with answers in another pretest. Then, a surveyquestions validity is determined by how well it measures the concept(s) it is intendedto measure (19). To determine the effectiveness of the questionnaires, pretests havebeen given to the respondents before actually using it, because pretesting can help theresearcher determine the strengths and weaknesses of the study concerning validity,reliability and practicality. The internal reliability of the questionnaires is checked bythe supervisor of the present research, pre-tests are also applied to prove the validity,reliability and practicality of the questionnaires separately among the students, and theteachers.4.2.1 Student QuestionnaireA questionnaire is a powerful evaluation tool, and it should not be taken lightly. In thepresent study closed format questions are chosen. Except some ‘Yes/No’ questions, allare the multiple- choice questions which offer a number of answer options. Closedformat questions have many advantages in respect of time, efforts and money. In theclosed format questions the answers are restricted; therefore, it is easy to calculatepercentages and other statistical data over the whole group or over any subgroup ofparticipants. Modern scanners and computers make it possible to administer, tabulate,
  • 110. 110and perform analysis in a relatively short period of time. Closed format questions allowthe present researcher to filter out useless or extreme answers that might occur in anopen format questions. All the questions in the student questionnaire are clear, succinct, andunambiguous. Embarrassing questions dealing with personal or private matters areavoided. The quality of a questionnaire is judged by three major standards: (1) validity,(2) reliability, and (3) practicality. The student questionnaire consists of 25 itemscovering 25 issues on ELT and Applied Linguistics, such as; syllabus, textbookmaterials, practice of English language skills in the class, performance in English,teaching method and approaches, etc.4.2.1.1 ValidityHarris suggests that “two questions must always be considered: (1) What precisely doesthe test measure? and (2) How well does test measure?”(19). Validity reflects how wella test measures what it is intended to measure. Harrison points out that there are manydifferent kinds of validity, but only two are vital for the teacher setting his/her owntests: content validity and face validity (11). Walsh & Betz suggest "The extent towhich the test being used actually measures the characteristic or dimension we intendto measure" (58). The student questionnaire is highly valid with regard to content, construct, andcriterion validity because the questionnaire deals with the questions that directly matchthe investigation of the present study. It aims at measuring the status of Englishlanguage teaching and learning at the Alim level in the madrashas in Bangladesh. Thevalidity of the questionnaire has been proved through pre-testing.
  • 111. 111 Deobold suggests that a test cannot be exhaustive but must be selective incontent. Important decisions must be made about the method of content selection (52).Content validity is concerned with whether or not the content of the test is sufficientlyrepresentative and comprehensive for the test to be a valid measure of what it issupposed to measure. Kothari says content validity is the extent to which a measuringinstrument provides adequate coverage of the topic under study (71). To establishcontent validity of the questionnaire, the present researcher analyzes the content of thearea that the test is to appraise, and structures a representative instrument to measurethe various aspects of that content. Two senior researchers analyse the draft tool andidentify that the items are relevant to study “English language teaching and learning atthe Alim level in the madrashas in Bangladesh: Problems and Possible Solutions”. Harrison suggests that face validity is concerned with what teachers andstudents think of the test (11). Harris points out that the face validity means the way thetest looks- to the examinees, test administrators, educators, and the like (21). Ott,Larson and Mendenhall opine that face validity is defined as the use of appropriatewordings for the audience of interest, with an adequate focus on variables of interest(35). The student questionnaire is reviewed for content and face validity by a panel ofexpert reviewers selected by the supervisor of the present study. The supervisor of thepresent study has also checked and ensured the validity of the questionnaire. Thestudent questionnaire for the present study has strong face validity because thequestionnaire looks like a test and fulfils the criteria; therefore, the questionnaire isvalid. The questionnaire has also predictive validity and concurrent validity because thetest score of the findings are correlated. The questions in the student questionnaire havecorrelation with one another, thus, the student questionnaire proves its construct
  • 112. 112validity. Construct validity is further examined through pre- testing of thequestionnaire.4.2.1.2 ReliabilityReliability refers to the consistency of results achieved by a test. To establishreliability, a test may be given to the same group several times. If very similar resultsare obtained each time, the test may be considered highly reliable. Park states thatreliability is characterised by the stability, equivalence, and homogeneity of the test(119). Robert suggests that a test is said to be reliable if it gives same results when it isgiven on different occasions or when it is used by different people (243). The studentquestionnaire for the present study is reliable because the result of the test is consistent.The same sets of questionnaire are distributed among the students of Alim students, thequestions do not vary, and the students are of same category. Reliability of the studentquestionnaire is confirmed with a pre –test among the 5 Alim students of BaitulMamur Alim Madrasha, Dhaka. The reliability of the questionnaire is also checked bythe supervisor of the present research and two senior researchers.4.2.1.3 PracticalityPracticality involves the cost and convenience of the test. If a test requires too muchexpense or effort, it may be impractical. It also may be impractical if the results are toodifficult to interpret. Harrison suggests “a test must be well organized in advance. Howlong will the test take? What special arrangements have to be made? How many peoplewill be involved?”(12). Harris points out “a test may be highly reliable and validinstrument but still be beyond our means or facilities” (21). Carroll says “Aquestionnaire must be practical to be administered” (37).
  • 113. 113 The student questionnaire of the present study has high practicality because it isvery cheap to produce (economic); it takes about 45 minutes to answer all thequestions; the interpretation of the results is relatively easy; and it requires only theminimum numbers of personnel.4.2.2 Teacher QuestionnaireQuestionnaires are versatile, allowing the collection of data through the use of open orclosed format questions. The questions of the teacher questionnaire are close ended.The 25 item questionnaire is adopted following the models of Brindely (1984), Nunanand Lamb (1996).The models of Gardner (1985), Kenning (2001), and Maniruzzaman(2003) are consulted for checking the validity reliability and practicality of thequestionnaire. 25 English language teachers teaching English in the Alim class haveresponded to the questionnaire.4.2.2.1 ValidityThe teacher questionnaire is adopted following the models of Brindely (1984), Nunanand Lamb (1996) with slightly modification in Bangladesh context. The questionnaireis based on the questions that have been used by so many researchers in previousstudies. Certain degrees of validity: construct validity, predictive validity and contentvalidity are proved and checked by the previous researchers. However, in order toassess validity of the measure, the present researcher administers the questionnaire to 2English teachers at Baitul Mamur Alim Madrasha, Dhaka as part of a larger research.The present researcher has tested the validity of the questionnaire in a number of ways:pre- test, checking by the supervisor, reviewing by the two senior researchers.
  • 114. 1144.2.2.2 ReliabilityReliability means that two or more measurements or observations of the same eventagree with each other, that they are consistent. Davies suggests “If a yardstick is usedto measure the height of a chair it would expect to get the same result, represented incentimeters or inches, each time it is measured”( 19). This questionnaire has strongreliability, because it gives consistent results all the time. Furthermore, a pre-test iscarried on to two English teachers of Baitul Mamur Alim Madrashas, Dhaka.Moreover, the reliability is examined by the supervisor of the present study.4.2.2.3 PracticalityThe teacher questionnaire has practicality in terms of money, time, energy, and efforts.Bailey points out “the practicality of a test refers to how feasible a test is in terms ofmoney and person-power involved in developing, revising, administering, and scoring atest” (3). From the perspective of administering and scoring, the test appears to behighly practical due to the multiple -choice format of the test; it does not involve muchefforts and energy to score the test. Moreover, the test can be given at anytime of theyear depending on each madrasha or institutions decisions, and the scoring can be donewithout so much efforts. All of these convenient aspects of the questionnaire seem tocontribute to the establishment of the great practicality of this questionnaire. Thequestionnaire is pre-tested before it is finally administered. It takes only 20 minutes toanswer all the 25 questions.4.3 Data Collection ProceduresThe survey is carried out in different Alim, Alim level of Fazil and Kamil madrashasthrough questionnaires. The researcher visits 24 madrashas in urban and rural areas,
  • 115. 115and collects data from the Alim students. Data is also collected from the teachersteaching English language to the same students. The present researcher distributes thetyped questionnaires to the respondents and requests to provide informationspontaneously. Data collection takes place during March 2007---April 2007. For the convenience of comprehension and acceptance of the respondents, thethemes of the questions are defined to the students in the mother tongue Bengali if thepresent researcher is requested. All the questionnaires are administered in the face-to-face classes. The students take about 45 minutes and the teachers take 20 minutes toanswer all the 25 questions. Data collection takes place without any interference of theteachers or the researcher. Thus, the researcher guarantees the reliability of the results.When the data is collected the scripts are processed for analysis and interpretation.4.4 List of Madrashas Selected for InvestigationIn Bangladesh 2527 madrashas (1315 Alim, 1039 Fazil, and 172 Kamil) impart Alimeducation. According to the Bangladesh Bureau of Educational Information andStatistics (BANBEIS), the numbers of madrashas are; Type of Number of Number of Total Enrolment Madrashas Madrashas Teachers Alim 1315 25634 5,50,813 Fazil 1039 23336 5,29,952 172 Kamil 4792 1,33,693 Table: 3 Number of Madrashas, Teachers, and Students (Source: BANBEIS: 2007; http: www.banbeis.gov.bd.)
  • 116. 116Out of the 2,527 (Alim, Fazil, and Kamil) madrashas, 24 madrashas located both inurban and rural areas in Bangladesh have been randomly selected for the present study.The selected madrashas are; Serial Name of Madrasha Respondents No. S T 1 Madrasha-E- Alia, Dhaka 250 1 2 Tamirul Millaat Kamil Madrasha, Tongi 185 1 3 Shah Ali Kamil Madrasha, Mirpur 70 1 4 Kazi para Siddiqia Senior (Fazil) Madrasha, Dhaka 56 1 5 Madrasha –E- Baitul Mamur,Mirpur 40 2 6 Tangail Darul Ulum Alia Madrasha 35 1 7 Baitul Musharraf Senior Madrasha, Mirpur 31 1 8 Tongi Senior Madrasha ,Gazipur 28 1 9 Gopalpur Kamil Madrasha ,Tangail 30 1 10 Gangair Senior Fazil Madrasha, Madhupur 27 1 11 Chatar Alia Madrasha, Gazipur 25 1 12 Porabari senior Madrasha, Ghatail 24 1 13 Ghatail Alim Madrasha 23 1 14 Lauzana Senior Madrasha 23 1 15 Bauniabad Senior Madrasha, Dhaka 21 1 16 Islamia Senior Madrasha, Manikgonj 29 1 17 Baitul Amman Alim Madrasha 18 1 18 Hasheem Ali Alim Madrasha, 22 1 19 Bhuyanpur Alia Madrasha, 21 1 20 Ahashania Tarabia Alim Madrasha 16 1 21 Kanchaanpur Alia Madrasha 15 1 22 Sharishabari Alia Madrasha, Jamalpur 13 1 23 Madhupur Islamia Fazil Madrasha 11 1 24 Ghoila Hussein Senior Madrasha. 10 1 Table-4 : List of madrashas for investigation4.5 Data Analysis
  • 117. 117Research is a scholarly investigation or experimentation aiming at discovering newfacts and their correct interpretation. The science of statistics assists the researcher inplanning, analyzing, and interpreting the results of investigation. It provides accurateinformation about the problem that arouses one’s interest. The problems here are toexamine the status of English language teaching and learning at the Alim level in themadrashas in Bangladesh, and to explore the particular teaching – learning problems.The present investigator collects and analyses the data following appropriate statisticalprocedures. The data is first counted manually, and then the raw data is fed into thecomputer for statistical analysis. Aldridge and Levine (2001) describe three types ofanalysis: descriptive, analytical and contextual. The descriptive and the contextualmethods are applied for the data analysis of the present study. Survey results can bepresented in different ways: by text, in figures in charts, in tables, graphs, anddiagrams. In the present study, the results are presented in the pie charts and tables. TheUniversity of Reading (2000) provides guidelines for the presentation of the statisticalinformation, which are summarised below: 1. Tables and figures are useful methods to convey data when the reader or viewer is required to take in information while reading or listening, 2. Well presented tables and graphs/charts can describe larger sets of information. 3. Tables and graphs should be given a descriptive title, and columns and rows in tables and axes and lines in graphs should be clearly labelled, so that the reader can understand the information without referring back to the text, although important points in a table or graph should be highlighted in the text. 4. Graphs and tables should be presented as economically as possible.
  • 118. 118 The present researcher narrows down the context by interpreting the data forsubgroups: curriculum, syllabus, lessons, teaching methods and approaches, foreignlanguage, mother tongue, etc. Except some ‘Yes / No’ questions, the respondents are inthe most cases requested to tick (√) one out of 4/5 options. In a few cases they areasked to choose more than one options if they think fit and appropriate to the question.The responses of the subjects are generalisable to the entire population of Alimstudents. The findings and analysis of the data are presented in the succeeding pages.Item wise percentage of the score is calculated as follows:Score of the item (%) ===== Total responses x 100 Number of respondents4.6 ConclusionThe present study proceeds in an orderly and specific manner. The questionnaires areadministered aiming at investigating a number of issues on the ELT. The subjects of thestudy are the 1000 Alim students and 25 English language teachers. The systematicchecking or pretesting of a questionnaire is central to planning a good survey, sopretests have been given to some students and teachers before the normal study starts.The validity, reliability and practicality of the questionnaires are checked and testedinternally and externally. During the data collection process the researcher visits 24madrashas, and finds the students and the teachers interested in the present studythough a few teachers show their reluctance and tries to avoid the data collectionprocess. They are agreed to assist the process when they have been assured that thestudy would not be harmful either for the teachers or for the institutions. It is believedthat collected information can be viewed as impartial because the respondent are notinterfered or motivated to give particular response.
  • 119. 119 Chapter 5 Presentation and Interpretation of FindingsThis chapter deals with the presentation and interpretation of the findings of the presentstudy. Relevant data is presented in the pie charts and tables. At first, the findings of thestudy are graphically presented and then analysed in the descriptive and the contextualmethods. The findings of the relevant studies are also presented for the cross -check,agreement and disagreement with the current study. Expert opinions on the AppliedLinguistics and ELT are also generalised through discussion.5.1 Presentation and Interpretation of FindingsThe descriptive and the contextual methods are followed for the data analysis. The twomethods are applied in the data analysis of the present study because these methods areinexpensive, time saving and easily understandable. The findings of the present studyare shown in the pie charts and tables, and then narrative description is presented in thetext in a quantitative manner. Finally, the data is interpreted in the contextual and thedescriptive methods. The presentation of the findings of 25 questions is presented stepby step in the preceding pages. Student Item -1: Relevance of Syllabus
  • 120. 120 How much is the syllabus relevant to learning English? very much fairly much 13% 23% not at all 21% a little 36% Figure 1.1 : Relevance of the syllabus viewed by the studentsThe pie chart displays that 36% students consider their syllabus a little relevant tolearning English; 23 % students term the syllabus fairly much relevant; 21%respondents consider the syllabus not at all relevant; 20% respondents think that thesyllabus is very much relevant to learning English.The relevance of the syllabus is a precondition for the fruitful learning in the class. Theprimary purpose of a syllabus is to communicate to ones students what the course isabout, why the course is taught, where it is going, and what will be required of thestudents for them to complete the course with a passing grade. Yaldon reveals that syllabus designers should include the items of the four skillsof target language: listening, speaking, reading and writing while formulating thesyllabus (14-15). Richards and Rodgers suggest if assumption about the nature oflinguistics and language learning is one of “language as communication”, then asyllabus based around activities and tasks which promote real meaningfulcommunication will seem advantageous (69). Teacher Item 1: Relevance of Syllabus How much is the syllabus relevant for your students to learning English?
  • 121. 121 very much not at all 13% fairly much 20% 36% a little 40% Figure 1. 2 : Relevance of the syllabus viewed by the teachersThe above chart shows 40% teachers, the highest percentage, suggest that the Englishsyllabus is a little relevant to learning English; 36% teachers comment that the syllabusis fairly much relevant; on the other hand 20% teachers blame the syllabus not at allrelevant; though 4% teachers assess the syllabus very much relevant to learningEnglish. The information given by the teachers and the students has correlation withregard to the relevance of syllabus to learning English. The both groups of respondents(teachers and students) come up with almost the same percentage 40% (t) and 36 %( s)suggesting the syllabus a little relevant to learning English. Stein claims the more thesyllabus is relevant the more learning takes place (11). It is found that both the teachersand the students are aware of the fact that their syllabus is not very much appropriate inlearning English. This finding supports the statement of Osunde (2005) whileevaluating the higher secondary syllabus in Nigeria, they find that lack of teachers’attitudes towards innovation, the traditional content/knowledge oriented curriculum,and irrelevant exercises cause students’ poor performance in English language. Student Item 2: Size of Syllabus Do you think your syllabus is heavier than you need?
  • 122. 122 very much 13% fairly much 38% not at all 20% a little 22% Figure 2.1: Size of the syllabus viewed by the studentsThe students express different opinions about the size of syllabus. The results for theitem suggest that 38 % students consider their syllabus fairly much heavier; 22%students, the second highest percentage, consider it a little heavier than they actuallyrequire; whereas 20% learners term their syllabus very much heavier; the rest 20%students suggest the syllabus not at all heavier for them. It may be mentioned thatmerely the size of syllabus cannot impact a great deal in learning English, rathersyllabus with appropriate lessons/exercises and authentic materials can help studentslearning English. Littlejohn, suggests that selecting texts that are relevant to the life experiencesand culture of FL/SL can facilitate cognitive and language development (7). Accordingto Dudley-Evans, syllabus and contents of syllabus should be based on needs ofEnglish; otherwise, irrelevant syllabus hampers students’ progress in learning alanguage (4-16). According to White “A complete syllabus specification will includeall five aspects: structure, function, situation, topic, skills (92). The Alim Englishsyllabus contains 12 units comprising 79 lessons for two years of time which is not sobig at all. This view is reflected in the respondents’ opinions. Teacher Item 2: Size of Syllabus Teacher: Do you think the syllabus is heavier than your students need?
  • 123. 123 very much not at all 4% fairly much 33% 42% a little 21% Figure 2.2: Size of the syllabus viewed by the teachersIt is found that 42% teachers consider the syllabus fairly much heavier for the students;whereas 33% teachers think not at all heavier; on the other hand 20% teachers considerthe syllabus a little heavier; the rest 4% teachers term the syllabus heavier very much.On this issue, almost similar percentage of the respondents from both the teachers(40%) and the students (38%) agree that the syllabus is fairly much heavier;‘appropriate enough’ to study in two years. The statistics show that 20% students consider the syllabus very much heavier;yet, this opinion is supported by a small number (4%) of teachers. According to thehighest percentage of respondents (t & s), syllabus is appropriate in size and contents.Widdowson says syllabus should focus interim objectives (37). Krashen and Terrelsuggest that contents of syllabus should largely depend on the course duration and theobjectives of the course (19). Student Item -3: Task Enjoyment How much enjoyable do you find the task?
  • 124. 124 fairly very much much 7% 19% not at all 43% a little 31% Figure 3.1 : Task enjoyment viewed by the studentsThe above statistics reflect that 43% of the learners evaluate that the task is not at allenjoyable; while 31% students consider the task enjoyable a little; 19% learners suggestthe task fairly much enjoyable; whereas 7% learners acknowledge that the task is verymuch enjoyable. It is a very serious concern that the highest number of responding students(43%) consider the task uninteresting and boring. Learning takes place when thestudents find the task enjoyable and when it is presented by the teachers in coherent andsimple manners. Hutchinson and Waters suggest that contents of syllabus should be useful,meaningful and interesting for the students. While no single subject will be of interestto all students, materials should be chosen based, in part, on what students, in general,are likely to find interesting and motivating (23-24). Dougill expresses concern on theuse of subject matter that may be uninteresting (277) Teacher Item -3: Task Enjoyment How much enjoyable do your students find the task?
  • 125. 125 fairly very much much 10% 20% not at all 30% a little 40% Figure 3.2: Task enjoyment viewed by the teachersThe above pie chart depicts that 40% teachers think that the task is a little interesting;while 30% teachers consider the task not at all interesting; 20% teachers term the taskinteresting fairly much; and the rest 10% teachers evaluate the task very muchenjoyable. A considerable numbers of respondents of both groups (S= 31%, T= 40%)acknowledge that the task is a little enjoyable though the percentage is less than 50%.Here is a contradiction between the teachers and the students, because 43% studentstake the task as not at all interesting; while 40% teachers comment that the task is alittle enjoyable. Therefore, the authority should prepare and introduce enjoyable tasksfor the students to motivate effective learning. Spontaneous learning takes place if thelesson is interesting; therefore, new items should be presented in realistic contexts. Itneeds be ensured that the presentation is not stereotyped. Stereotyped presentationmakes lessons monotonous and activities uninteresting. Grimm suggests it is teachers’ responsibility to a large extent to make the lessoninteresting and efficient teachers who have training are mostly capable of doing so (17). Student Item- 4: Practice of English Language SkillsDo you exercise the four skills of English language (LSRW) in your English Class?
  • 126. 126 Listening Speaking Yes Yes 23% 31% No No 69% 77%Figure 4.1.1 Practice of listening skills Figure 4.1.2 Practice of speakingskillsThe above figure (Figure 4.1.1) displays that 77% students respond negatively withregard to listening practices in the class; while 23% students reply in the affirmative.As shown in the figure (figure 4.1.2) 69% students disclose the fact of not practicingspeaking in the class; whereas 31% students admit that they do practice speaking in theclass. Reading Yes 45% No 55% Writing No 28% Yes 72%Figure 4.1.3: Practice of reading skills Figure 4.1.4: Practice of writingskills
  • 127. 127In the above statistics (Figure 4.1.3), it is observed that 55% students disclose the factof not practicing reading in the class; 45% students suggest that they do practicereading in the class. As found in the pie chart, 72% students hold positive opinion withregard to writing practices; on the other hand 28% students comment negatively on thepractice of writing skill in the class. This grim reality of teaching learning conditioncomes out through their opinions. The preface to the book English For Today, For Classes 11-12 claims thatintegrated exercises are carried out for achieving the four skills: listening, speaking,reading and writing. But, in reality the study discovers that the most two importantskills: listening and speaking either neglected or avoided by the teachers in the class. This study supports Galina (2003) which reveals that listening and speakingpractices are avoided by the teachers in the classroom. Her study on the second yearuniversity students in Lithuania reveals that 65% students are with the opinion thatteachers have avoiding tendency in practicing speaking skill; and 57% students unveilthe truth of not practicing listening in the class. So, a strong correlation is observedbetween the findings of the present study and that of Galina (2003). Teacher Item - 4: Practice of English Language Skills Do you arrange exercise of four skills of English (LSRW) in your English class? Listening Speaking Yes 36% Yes No 46% No 54% 64%Figure 4.2.1: Practice of listening skills Figure 4.2.2: Practice of speakingskills
  • 128. 128The chart (Figure 4.2.1) indicates that 64% teachers confess of not practicing listeningin the class; while 36% teachers claim of practicing listening while teaching. This studydiscovers the truth that the teachers are reluctant in practicing listening. The figure(figure 4.2.2) displays that 54% teachers are unenthusiastic with regard to practice ofspeaking; whereas 46% teachers claim that they practice speaking in the class. Reading Writing No No 30% 12% Yes 70% Yes 88%Figure 4.2.3: Practice of reading skills Figure 4.2.4: Practice of writing skillsAs shown in the chart (figure 4.2.3) 70% teachers respond that reading exercises arearranged in the class; 88 % teachers claim (Figure 4.2.4) that they do arrange practiceof writing in the class. A large number of teachers (64%) and students (79%) commentthat listening practice is either neglected or avoided in the class. Therefore, a strongcorrelation exists between the teachers and the students with regard to practicing thelistening and speaking by the teachers in the class. Pande (2003) in her study on the teachers teaching English at the highersecondary level in Tamil Nadu state schools reveals that in the English classes theteachers speak Tamil frequently due to their inefficiency in English as a foreignlanguage. The study of Pande (2003) correlates the present study, because the presentstudy finds that teachers teaching English in the Alim class are weak in both listeningand speaking. Since the teachers themselves are not sufficiently fluent in listening and
  • 129. 129speaking, they feel reluctant and uncomfortable to speak English, and they avoidarrangement of practices of four skills of target language in the class. Student Item -5: Role of the Present Syllabus Which of following needs does the present syllabus meet? (You may choose more than one options)passing examination 99%understanding teachers lecture 21%using English with others 74%reading English books and newspaper 40%getting good job 32%using internet 9%watching TV programmes 42%writing letters 43% Table-5 : Role of the present syllabus viewed by the studentsThe above table states 99% students think that the present syllabus meets the need ofpassing examination ; 74% students answer that using English with other may bedone by studying the present syllabus; 43% students believe that the syllabus may helpthem in writing letters; 42% students choose watching TV programme option; 40%students mark reading English books and news paper option; 32% students suggestthat the syllabus may help them getting good job; while 21% students think that thepresent syllabus may help them understanding teachers lectures; 9% studentsmark(√) using Internet option. The fact is, the most of the students study the syllabus
  • 130. 130with a view to passing the examination, which is considered a hurdle in the way ofcareer formation; therefore, it is found that the teachings and learning in Alim class isexamination oriented. It is stated in the preface to the book English For Today, ForClasses 11-12 that the book provides opportunities for practicing the four skills ofEnglish language: speaking, listening, reading and writing, usually in an interactivemode, and the textbook is to provide ample opportunities for the students to useEnglish for a variety of purposes in interesting situations. Teacher Item -5: Role of the Present Syllabus Which of the following needs does the present syllabus meet? (You may choose more than one options) passing examination 92% understanding teachers lecture 38% using English with others 78% reading English books and newspaper 40% getting good job 82% using internet 11% watching TV programmes 33% writing letters 52% Table-5: Role of the present syllabus viewed by the teachersHere, 92% teachers believe that the syllabus helps the students passing examination;82% teachers assure that the syllabus may help them getting good job; 78% teachers
  • 131. 131think that the present syllabus can play the role of using English with others; whereas 52% teachers tick (√) the writing letters option; 40% teachers suggest that thesyllabus plays role in reading books and newspaper; 38% teachers claim that thesyllabus may help the students understanding the lecturer; 33 % teachers think thatthe syllabus helps the students watching TV programme. The students as well as the teachers think that the present syllabus can dovarious functions, and they have common opinions on the role of the current syllabus,98% students and 92% teachers think that the present syllabus aims at passing theexamination; teachers (82%) and students (74%) suggest that syllabus may help themgetting good jobs. Sysoyev (2001) reveals that designing a course syllabus should serve learners’interest and needs that should go into students’ analysis, formulations of goals andobjectives of the course, conceptualisation of the content, selecting the materials,course planning, evaluating the course. Student Item -6: Learning Style How do you like learning?
  • 132. 132 in small groups 11% in large group individually 8% 44% in pairs 37% Figure 6.1: Learning style viewed by the studentsThe results for this item suggest that 44%, students generally prefer learningindividually; 37% students prefer to work in pairs; On the other hand 11% of studentslike learning in small groups; while, 8% students prefer learning in a large group. The findings support the study of Zuhal Okan and Erdogun (2000) whichreveals that 50% students prefer learning individually, whereas 35% students preferlearning in pairs. The present study is also supported by the study of Januleviciene andKavaliauskiene (2005) which discloses that 33% students prefer learning individually,and another 33% students have a preference in learning in pairs; 20% students like tolearn in small groups. It may be mentioned that the above three studies present almostsame results indicating that students mostly prefer to learn individually; and in pairs.The data surprisingly contradicts the learner-centered approach which has been widelyadvocated by a number of English language practitioners, who are with the opinion thatpairs or small groups work is indispensable. Lately, pair work has been considered asthe most effective way of developing communicative skills in target language. Teacher Item -6: Learning Style How do your students like learning?
  • 133. 133 in small groups 14% in large individually group 42% 8% in pairs 36% Figure 6.2: Learning style viewed by the teachersThe above statistics suggest 50% teachers believe that students prefer learningindividually; and 42% in pairs; 6% in small groups; while 2% teachers think that theirstudents like to work in large group. Students prefer learning individually due to shyness in one hand, and poor levelof confidence on the other hand. The students do not like to disclose their weakness totheir fellow mates. This study correlate the investigation done by Zuhal Okan andErdogan (2000) their study reveals that 58% teachers find that the students preferlearning individually; besides, 35% teachers believe that their students choose to learnin pairs. The study finds a strong correlation between the teachers and the students. Thecorrelation indicates that the teachers are aware of their students preference in learningstyle. It is obvious that students do not like working in a large group, and their teachersare aware of that. This is a clear message to the teachers that students feel morecomfortable, productive and relaxed by working individually or in pairs, where theirvoices would be heard, and views listened to and valued. Student Item -7: Shyness in Speaking English Do you feel shy while speaking with others in English?
  • 134. 134 some times 10% yes no 52% 38% Figure 7.1 Personality style viewed by the studentsThe above statistics reflect that 52% learners feel shy in speaking English with others,usually they are introvert learners; another 10% learners feel shy in some contexts orenvironment, they also may be termed as introvert group; but 38% students are activeand lively in language behaviour and practice, they are extroverts and risk taker; theyusually not in fear in mistakes. Introverts are quiet, prefer to meeting close friends andusually avoid excitement. The introverts feel shy to speak with too many peopleespecially with the less acquainted. The extroverts are sociable, like parties, have manyfriends and need excitements; they are sensation-seekers and risk-taker, lively andactive. Teacher Item -7: Shyness in Speaking English Do your students feel shy to speak English with others? Some time s 21% No 11% Yes 68% Figure 7.2: Personality style viewed by the teachersThe statistics display that 68% learners are introvert, they feel shy in speaking Englishwith others; 21% students suggest that they sometimes feel shy but not always; 11%students claim that they do not feel shy at all. Ellis has hypothesized that extrovert
  • 135. 135learners are more likely to perform better in interpersonal skills. Ellis suggest that theintrovert learners are more likely to succeed academically in language learning (520). Despite these hypotheses regarding the characteristics of the differentpersonality types, it is suggested that teachers should depend upon their own evaluationin observing learners behaviours. Teachers’ motivations work very positively for thestudents to overcome shyness, and become good language learners. Student Item -8: Nature of Lessons Is your lesson interesting? very fairly much much 11% 18% not at all 19% a little 52% Figure 8.1: Nature of lessons viewed by the studentsThe statistics show that 52% students enjoy the lesson a little; while 19% studentsenjoy not at all; 18% learners enjoy fairly much; though 11% students term the lessonvery much interesting. As stated in the preface to English for Today For Classes 11-12,the book includes a wide range of topics from both national and global contexts. Itclaims that the topics are appropriate and interesting to the learners thematically,culturally and linguistically. Shethi (2004) investigated a study among the students in the Loknath WomenCollege in Uttar Pradesh. She found that in a ‘one and a half hour’ English class withan interesting lesson, 125 out of 128 students remained active and stayed in the classuntil the class ended. Another day, with the 131 students of same class with the sameteacher with a considerably less interesting lesson, 21 students went outside with or
  • 136. 136without permission of the teacher, 9 students felt drowsy, 33 students remain busyamong themselves, 5 students were imitating the teacher’s lecture being out of notice ofthe teacher; and when the class ended after one and half hour there were only 37students in the class. Thus, the study provides a vibrant picture of impact of interesting and less oruninteresting lesson. Lessons of English textbooks should be useful, meaningful,interesting and motivating for the students. Teacher Item 8: Nature of Lessons How much interesting the lesson is? very much fairly 10% much 20% not at all 18% a little 52% Figure 8.2 : Interesting lessons viewed by the teachersFrom the above chart, it is found that 52 % teachers consider the lesson interesting alittle; while; 20 % teachers tick for fairly much; whereas 18 % teachers find the lessonnot at all interesting; and the rest 10 % teachers find the lesson interesting very much.Surprisingly, the responses of the students strongly coincide with those of teachers,because the equal number of the teachers (52%) and the students (52%) consider thelesson a little interesting, and the both groups are largely aware of the fact that thelesson should be made interesting for better learning. Student Item 9: Difficulties of Lessons Do you feel any difficulties with the lessons?
  • 137. 137 fairly very much much 10% 20% a little not at all 21% 11% Figure 9.1: Difficulties with the lessons viewed by the studentsAs it is noticed in the chart, 45% respondents reply that the lesson is very muchdifficult; while 23% students comment fairly much difficult; 21% students find thelesson a little difficult ; on the other hand 11% students find the lesson not at alldifficult for them. It is usually assumed that lesson should be more difficult than thepresent stage of students; otherwise students will lose interest in learning. It is generally assumed that difficulty of materials, as a general rule, should beslightly higher in their level of difficulty than the students current level of Englishproficiency. Materials at a slightly higher level of difficulty than the students currentlevel of English proficiency allows them to learn new grammatical structures andvocabulary. Student Item 9: Difficulties of Lesson Do you feel any difficulties with the lesson in teaching English?
  • 138. 138 very muc h fairly muc h 8% 10% a little 28% not at all 54% Figure 9.2: Difficulties with the lessons viewed by the teachersWith the same issue, 54% teachers consider the lessons not at all difficult in teachingEnglish; 28% teachers suggest the lessons a little difficult; here, the responses show astrong disagreement between the students and the teachers. The highest numbers ofteachers (54%) consider the lessons not at all difficult; while the highest percentage ofstudents (45%) suggest that the lessons are very much difficult for them. If the teachers feel the lessons difficult to teach, they must practice the lessonsat first before they teach their students. For effective teaching, a teacher should be wellprepared and follow an appropriate lesson plan for teaching in the class. Student Item -10: Relevance of Lessons Are your lessons relevant to your day to day activities?
  • 139. 139 very much 13% fairly much not at all 37% 10% a little 40% Figure 10.1: Relevance of lessons viewed by the studentsFrom the above statistics it is found that 40% students consider the lessons a littlerelevant to day to day activities; while 37% students judge it fairly much relevant;whereas 13 % students term the lessons very much relevant to day to day activities;and the rest 10% students suggest not at all relevant to their every life. The information presented in the lessons should be correct and recent. It shouldnot be biased and should reflect background cultures of learners. Lesson should includeactivities of learners’ native day to day activities to help students understand themessage the lesson is conveying. Hutchinson and Water suggest that learning easily takes place if the subjectmatter of the lesson is familiar to the learners; therefore, it is important for the syllabuspresenter to formulate the lessons with the items from learners’ known activities (123). Teacher Item -10: Relevance of Lessons Are the lessons you teach relevant to day to day activities?
  • 140. 140 very much not at all 6% 14% fairly much 38% a little 42% Figure 10.2 : Relevance of lessons viewed by the teachersWith regard to the relevance of lessons, 42% teachers find the lessons a little relevant;38 % teachers think that the lessons are fairly much relevant to day to day activities;14 % teachers blame the lessons not at all relevant; though 6% teachers suggest verymuch. It is found that the highest percentage of the teachers (42%) and the students(40%) consider the lesson a little relevant to daily activities, and satisfactorily thesecond highest percentage of teachers (38%) and students (37%) think that the lesson isfairly much relevant to their day to day activities; therefore the opinions of studentsstrongly correlate the comments of the teachers. Brewster reveals that a foreign language is most successfully acquired whenlearners are engaged in meaningful use of culturally well-known corpora which createsinterest and of some values to the learner (53). Student Item-11: Activeness of the Teachers and the Students Who speak more and remain busy in the class?
  • 141. 141 students talk more 11% teachers talk more 89% Figure 11.1: Activeness in the class viewed by the studentsAs depicted in the above chart, 89 % students confirm teachers ‘exclusive involvementin the class; while 11% students ensure that students talk more in the class. This findingcontradicts the communicative views of learning, in which the learners are the activeplayers and teachers are merely guides and facilitators. Teacher Item-11: Activeness of the Teachers and the Students Who speak more and remain busy in the class? students talk more teachers talk 30% more 70% Figure 11.2: Activeness in the class viewed by the teachersThe chart depicts, 70% teachers reveal that the teachers speak more in the class; while30% teachers confirm the students’ involvement more in the class. In the study, it isfound that teachers speak more in the class and remain busy, but in the communicativeapproach, students should be more active in the learning process and the teachers’ roleshould be of facilitators. So, students’ involvement needs to be increased in theteaching- learning process.
  • 142. 142 According to the Communicative Approach to teaching and learning, learnersare more important than teachers, materials, curriculum, methods, or evaluation. As amatter of fact, curriculum, materials, teaching methods/ approaches, and evaluationtools should all be designed for learners and their needs. Students should be moreactive than teachers, and it is the teachers’ responsibility to ensure the students’involvement in the class. Student Item 12: Explanation of Grammar Rules How much does the teacher explain the grammar rules? very much fairly much 10% 22% not at all 28% a little 40% Figure 12.1: Explanation of grammar rule viewed by the studentsThe present study shows 28% students complain that the teachers not at all explain thegrammar rules in the class; 40% students acknowledge a little explanation; 22%students admit fairly much explanation; while 10% students suggest that the teachersexplain the grammar rules very much. Goodey suggests that explanation of grammarrules are necessary; grammar should be taught in the context of communication, not aspassive knowledge (7-8). Teacher Item -12: Explanation of Grammar Rules
  • 143. 143 How much do you explain the grammar rules? not at all very much 4% 8% a little 24% fairly much 64% Figure 12.2: Explanation of grammar rule viewed by the studentsThe chart depicts, 64% teachers claim that they explain the grammar rules fairly much;while 24% teachers for a little; 8% teachers claim very much explanation; whereas 4%teachers confess that they not at all explain the grammar rules in the class. This study reflects a disagreement and contradiction between the teachers andstudents with regard to explanation of grammar rules. 64 % teachers and 22% studentsagree that teachers explain the grammar rules fairly much in the class but the majorityof the students (not at all 28%, a little 40%) disagree with the teacher. Student Item 13: Encouragement by the Teacher How much does your teacher encourage you to speak English with your classmates?
  • 144. 144 very much 12% fairly much 17% not at all 21% a little 50% Figure 13.1: Teachers’ encouragement viewed by the studentsAs found in the table, 50% students, the highest number, acknowledge the teachers’a little encouragement in speaking English with the classmates; while 22% studentsblame the teachers for not at all encouragement to speak English; though 12 % studentsadmit that the teachers encourage them very much. Larsen-Freeman states that the teachers with an internal locus of control areunder less stress and more successful in teaching (161). It is clear that teacher’sefficacy affects students directly. There is a tight correlation between teacher efficacyand students performance. Dörnyei states "Good enough motivator" (45) is such aconcept that a desired outcome by students can occur with the help of this certainteacher’s function. Teacher Item 13: Encouragement of TeacherHow much do you encourage the students to speak English with their classmates?
  • 145. 145 very much 40% fairly much 37% a little not at all 18% 5% Figure 13.2: Teachers’ encouragement viewed by the teachersAs the above pie chart displays, 40% teachers claim that they encourage their studentsvery much to speak English with others; whereas 37% teachers suggest that theyencourage their students fairly much; 22% teachers encourages a little; while 5%teachers confess that they not at all encourage their students to speak English withtheir classmates. Teacher’s encouragement and support are must for achieving thecommunicative competence. The highest percentages of teachers (40%) encourage thestudents very much, but the highest percentages of students (50%) think that theteachers encourage them a little. The study supports the investigation of Katayoon and Tahririan (2006), whichreveals that 59% students blame their teachers for not encouraging them in speakingEnglish in the class or out side of the class. There is a high correlation betweenmotivation and learning. Internal desire to educate people, to give knowledge and valueis always in teaching as a vocational goal. Lack of motivation may cause teachers to beless successful in teaching a foreign language. Without having intrinsic motivation,lack of success is inevitable. If there are not any factors for motivating students, theproductivity will decrease dramatically. Student Item 14: Explanation of Text and Vocabulary
  • 146. 146How much does the teacher explain the text and the vocabulary items in English? very muc h fairly 7% much 8% a little 21% not at all 64% Figure 14.1: Explanation of text and vocabulary items viewed by the studentsRegarding explanation of the text and the vocabulary items, 64% students respond thatteachers explain the text and the vocabulary item not at all; 21% students admit that theteachers explain a little; 8% students mark fairly much; and the 7% students suggestthat the teachers explain vocabulary item very much. There is a reciprocal relationship between vocabulary acquisition and readingcomprehension. The better the students vocabulary knowledge is, the better theyperform with reading comprehension tasks. Similarly, the more the students read usingthe appropriate skills and strategies, the more their vocabulary develops. The very grimand shocking news is 64% students blame that their teachers not at all explain the textand vocabulary items. This directly contradicts the communicative view of teaching. Teacher Item 14: Explanation of Text and Vocabulary How much do you explain the text and the vocabulary items in English?
  • 147. 147 very much 24% fairly not at all much 4% 42% a little 30% Figure 14.2: Explanation of text and vocabulary item viewed by the teachersIt is observed, 42% teachers claim that they explain the vocabulary items fairly much;30% teachers suggest that they do explain a little; on the other hand 24% teachers claimthat they explain the text and vocabulary very much; the rest 4 % teachers confess thatthey not at all explain the text and vocabulary items in the class. There is a clear disagreement between the teachers and the students with regardto explanation of the text and the vocabulary items. The highest numbers of thestudents (64%) suggest that the teachers explain the text and the vocabulary items notat all. Teachers (42%) claim that they explain the vocabulary fairly much. It is veryharmful and negative attitude from the teachers, which must impede the learning of thestudents. Gao Jiajing’s study (2005) in Beijing, on the students of Gulling Institute ofTechnology in China reveals that 72% learners prefer to develop their vocabularythrough reading the new texts with the explanation of text in the target language.Tozcu and Coady (2004) point out learning vocabulary is an important aspect of SL/FLacquisition and academic achievement, and it is vital to reading comprehension andproficiency, to which it is closely linked . Student Item 15: Teacher’s Sympathy and Friendliness How much is the teacher sympathetic and friendly to you?
  • 148. 148 very much fairly 11% muc h 12% not at all 34% a little 43% Figure 15.1: Teacher’s sympathy and friendship viewed by the studentsAs observed in the figure, 43% students consider the teachers a little sympathetic andfriendly; while 34% students express that their teachers are not at all sympathetic andfriendly; 12 % students suggest that teachers are fairly much friendly and sympathetic;and the rest 11% students confirm that the teachers are very much sympathetic andfriendly to them. The roles of teacher and student seem simple and straightforward, but to be asuccessful teacher, there are ambiguous areas in the relationship that he/she will need tomaintain. However, good teaching also requires the development of a personal interestin students, so teachers must balance detached professionalism with personalfriendship. Teachers should treat all students with courtesy and dignity, regardless ofgender, race, class, sexual orientation, religion, nationality, politics, or other personalattribute. Teacher Item -15: Teacher’s Sympathy and Friendliness How much sympathetic and friendly are you to your students?
  • 149. 149 very muc h 20% not at all fairly 6% muc h 38% a little 36% Figure 15.2: Teacher’s sympathy and friendship viewed by the teachersAs the above chart states, 38% teachers claim themselves fairly much sympathetic andfriendly to their students; whereas 36% teachers consider them a little sympathetic andfriendly; while 20% teachers claim that they are very much sympathetic and friendly.The rest 6% teachers confess that they are not at all sympathetic and friendly to theirstudents. It is widely believed that effective learning takes place when nice relationshipbetween the teachers and the students prevails. The statistics display that therelationship between the teachers and the students are not healthy enough in favour offruitful teaching and learning. Though 38% teachers claim that they are friendly andsympathetic to the students, but the students strongly disagree with them. Only 12%students admit that their teacher is fairly much friendly and sympathetic. The hugenumbers of students (43 %) suggest that teacher is a little friendly, and the secondhighest percentages of students (34%) disclose the fact that teachers are not at allfriendly and sympathetic to them, which obstructs the learning. Student Item 16: Use of the Text Book How much does your teacher follow the book in the class?
  • 150. 150 fairly muc h 24% very much a little 56% 19% not at all 1% Figure 16.1: Use of the textbook viewed by the studentsThe above statistics display 56% students assure that the teachers follow the text bookvery much; and 24% for fairly much; while 19% students suggest that the teachersprefer textbook a little; whereas the rest 1% learners certify that the teachers not at allfollow the textbook. Littlewood reveals that experienced teachers can teach Englishwithout a textbook, yet it is not easy to do it all the time, though they may do itsometimes. Many teachers do not have enough time to make supplementary materials,so they just follow the textbook (21). Teacher Item 16: Use of Text Book How much do you follow the book? not at all fairly much very much 50% 0% 40% a little 10% Figure 16.2: Use of the textbook viewed by the teachersTeachers express almost same opinion with regard to following the text book in theclass. Here, 50% teachers admit that they make use of the text book fairly much in theclass; similarly, 40% teachers confirm that they follow the book fairly much; on theother hand only 10% teachers suggest that they take assistance from the book a little.The both groups of respondents suggest that teachers use the textbook as an important
  • 151. 151tool of instruction for teaching English. Though, the linguists do not appreciate the useof text book too much. Sheldon identifies three main reasons for using textbook. Firstly, developingclassroom materials is an extremely difficult, arduous process for teachers. Secondly,teachers have limited time in which to develop new materials. Thirdly, externalpressures restrict many teachers with various dimension and they can not prepareclassroom materials for their own (237-245). Student Item 17: Use of English in the Class by the Teacher How much does your teacher speak English in the class? very much fairly much 6% 11% a little 23% not at all 60% Figure 17.1: Use of English by the teachers viewed by the studentsAs noticed in the table, 60% students disclose that their teachers speak English not atall in the class; while 23% students confirm that the teachers speak English a little forgiving instructions and explanations. On the other hand, 11% students say fairly much;and the 6% learners suggest that teachers speak English very much in the class. Bose (2001) suggests that English should be used in the class from thebeginning itself. Teachers should use English mainly in the activities such as:introducing the lesson, checking attendance, organizing where students sit, presentingnew vocabulary, introducing a text, asking questions on a text, correcting errors, settinghomework, etc.
  • 152. 152 Teacher Item 17: Use of English in the Class by the Teacher How much do you speak English in the Class? not at all very much 0% 12% fairly much 26% a little 62% Figure 17.2: Use of English by the teachers viewed by the teachersThe statistics reflect that 62% teachers confess that they speak English a little in theclass; while 26% teachers claim fairly much; whereas 12% teachers suggest that theyspeak English very much; and no teachers correspond to the not at all. It is found that there is a clear agreement between the teachers and the studentson the issue of using English in the class; the teachers (62%) confess that they speakEnglish a little, and almost same numbers of students (60%) support their confession.But, it may be mentioned that teachers necessarily should use English as much aspossible in the class. According to the communicative approach of language teaching,interaction must be done through the target language as much as possible. Karavas puts stress on using English, and discloses that there is great value inusing English in the class. If the teachers use English most of the time, it will give thestudents chances of practice of listening and responding to spoken English. This willhelp them pick up words and expressions beyond the language of the textbook.However, teachers may often need to use more complex language, for example, whenexplaining a new word or a grammar point, or explaining how an activity works. Insuch instances also, make your explanations as simple and clear as possible, so that thestudents understand (187-188). Student Item 18: Teacher’s Qualifications and Competence
  • 153. 153 How much is your teacher competent and qualified? very much fairly much 10% 19% not at all 25% a little 46% Figure 18.1: Teacher’s qualification and competence viewed by the studentsOn the issue of evaluation of the teacher quality, 46% students consider their teacher alittle competent and qualified in teaching English; whereas 25% students term theirteacher not at all qualified and competent; though 19% students appreciate that theirteacher is fairly much qualified and competent; the rest 10% students certify theirteachers competent very much. Stephen Krashen points out that the EFL teachers should have ability tounderstand, to speak, to read and to write English; accuracy in pronunciation;knowledge of foreign customs, culture and cross-cultural communication; knowledgeof linguistics and of the essence of language acquisition; and his/her ability to initiate,to sustain, and to close basic communicative tasks in an appropriate way; ability toprepare a lesson plan focusing on the teaching aim and to work towards the aim withcertain teaching strategies, should bear an open attitude towards foreign culture, sharewith students what he/she knows about how foreign culture differs from his/her own,and present them in teaching (50-59). Teacher Item 18: Teacher’s Qualifications and Competence
  • 154. 154 Do you think you are qualified and competent to teach English at Alim level? not at all very much 0% 44% fairly much 50% a little 6% Figure 18.2: Teacher’s qualification and competence viewed by the teachersIn self evaluation, 50% teachers claim that they are fairly much qualified andcompetent in teaching English at the Alim level; on the other hand 44% teachersevaluate themselves as very much competent; though very few number of teachers(6%) think that they are a little qualified and naturally no teachers tick not at all option.When the teachers claim that they are qualified and competent fairly much by 50%and very much by 44%, then the students give almost opposite views 46% studentssuggest that the teachers are a little competent and qualified; and 24% students opinethat the teachers are not at all competent an qualified. It is generally believed that learners are the best assessors of teachers.Therefore, many educational institutions have developed evaluation systems to beperformed by the students. The appointing administrations also make arrangement ofdemonstration class for the teachers to be recruited for the institution. Stephen Tchudi and Diana Mitchell (2005) in their book Explorations in theTeaching of English suggests that teacher’s responsibility includes proper arrangementof seats, board, and time to fit for certain activities. This also includes the teachers
  • 155. 155ability to be clear in the classroom and to change modes of presentation and types ofquestions. The teacher is also supposed to be able to engage students in the learningprocess, to provide opportunities for feedback and to use group and individual activitiesso as to bring students initiative into full play (127-129). The teacher should havepatience, confidence, imagination, enthusiasm, humor and creativity. He/She should befriendly, sympathetic and on good terms with the students, and have an affirmativeattitude towards the students and occasionally encourage them if necessary. Student Item 19: Teacher’s Cooperation after Class Does your teacher give you contact hours after the class? very much 11% fairly much not at all 13% 43% a little 33% Figure 19.1: Teacher’s cooperation after class viewed by the studentsAs the table displays, 43% students suggest that the teachers not at all give themcontact hour after the class; while 33% students disclose the fact that the teachers givea little contact hour; whereas 13% students suggest that teachers give fairly much timeafter the class and 11% students tick very much option.
  • 156. 156 It is a very disadvantageous situation that the most of the teachers do notprovide extra effort for the students to learn English. If the students miss the teacher ordo not have access to teachers beyond the class hour for long time, students’ progressmay seriously be hampered. Teacher Item 19: Teacher’s Cooperation after Class Do you give contact hours to your students after class? not at all very much 20% 6% fairly much 26% a little 48% Figure 19.2: Teacher’s cooperation after class viewed by the teachersThe displayed statistics show, 48% teachers confirm that they give a little time; while26% teachers claim that they give time fairly much; whereas 24% teachers favour notat all; on the other hand only 6% teachers suggest that they give time very much. It is found that the teachers are mostly reluctant in giving extra time to theirstudents; teachers in large numbers agree with the students that they do not givesufficient time. Surprisingly, though it is a fact, 43% students complain that the
  • 157. 157teachers not at all give time after the class hour, quite a good number of teachers (20%)confess the truth that they do not give extra time. Student Item 20: Use of Teaching Aids and EquipmentWhich of the following teaching aids and equipment are available in your classes? Audio Video 0% Overhead projector 0% 0% Blackboard 100% Figure 20.1: Use of teaching aids and equipment viewed by the studentsOn the issue of using teaching aids and equipment, the students provide surprisingresponse. The 100% students disclose that they use only blackboard in the teachinglearning activities, though they are asked to tick more than one option if they feel fit tothem. This is the reality that the students of madrasha education system are deprived ofthe modern teaching aids and equipment; even they are not acquainted with the modernbut familiar aids and equipment. Student Item 20: Use of Teaching Aids and Equipments Which of the following teaching aids are available in your teaching situation?
  • 158. 158 Audio Video 0% Overhead projector 0% 0% Blackboard 100% Figure 20.2: Use of teaching aids and equipment viewed by the teachersThe statistic displays that, like the students 100% teachers confirm that they use onlyblackboard in the class for teaching English. This information exclusively correlates theopinion given by the students. Materials include textbooks, video and audio tapes,computer software, and visual aids, these influence the content and the procedures oflearning. Modern technologies, such as Overhead Projector (OHP), slides, video andaudio tape recorders, video cameras, and computers support the learning and strengthenthe teaching learning activities. Student Item 21: Correction of Oral production When you speak do you want to be corrected by the teacher? later, at the en of immediately, the activityin infron of every front of every one one 6% 30% later, in private 64% Figure 21.1: Correction of speaking viewed by the studentsThe issue of correction seems to bother learners. It is found that 64% students prefer tobe corrected later, in private, and 30% students like to be corrected by the teacher
  • 159. 159later, at the end of the activity in front of every one; on the other hand 6% studentswould not mind to be corrected immediately, in front of every one. It is understoodthat students feel shy if their weakness is shown before other students in the class; onthe other hand they feel humiliated if they are corrected before their fellow mate. Teacher Item 21: Correction of Oral Production Do you correct your students when they speak English? immediately, later, at the en of infron of every the activityin one front of every 10% one 32% later, in private 58% Figure 21.2: Correction of speaking viewed by the teachersThe chart displays that 58% teachers dislike correcting their students publicly andprefer correction after the class is over; while, 32% teachers prefer to correct later, atthe end of the activity, in front of every one; and 10% teachers do not hesitate tocorrect their students before every one. Here, there is a very high positive correlationbetween the teachers and the students; teachers are aware of preferences of the studentson the matter of corrections. The present study supports the investigation of Daiva(2003) his study on the secondary students in Malaysia reveals that students do not liketo be humiliated being corrected in front of every one. His study discovers 80%learners prefer to be corrected later, in private.
  • 160. 160 Harmer (2001) opines that he best time to correct is as late as possible.Moreover, teachers have the problem of dominating students’; and therefore; suchcorrection can be counter-productive. Correction is done appropriately if it issupportive, offers insights and does not interrupt language learning / acquiringopportunities. Bartram & Walton, (1991) reveal you never correcta mistake, you always correct a person. Bartram & Walton, disclose three reasons, whythe active involvement of students in the process of dealing with mistakes is important:it stimulates active learning, induces cooperative atmosphere, and developsindependent learners Ancker (2000) describes that error correction remains one of the mostcontentious and misunderstood issues in the second and foreign language teachingprofession. His (Ancker, 2000) survey to the question Should teachers correct everyerror students make when using English? covers responses from teachers, teachertrainees and students in 15 countries. 25% (out of 802) of teachers and 76% (out of143) of students support this type of corrections, while 75% of teachers and 24% ofstudents, respectively, are against of each and every correction. Littlejohn (1999) agrees that error correction is an essential condition forsuccessful acquisition of any language, although they are at variance on ways ofconducting it. Learners must be given practice in self-correction of their own work eitherindividually or in pairs but only if they prefer peer cooperation. However, in myopinion, students definitely need training in rectifying mistakes independently, i.e.without teachers interference.
  • 161. 161Bartram & Walton, (1991) at the end of error self-correction activity, say teachersfeedback, is crucial and must be performed in a way to have a long-term positive effecton students ability to monitor their own performance. Student Item 22: Correction of Works by the Classmates Do you mind if other students sometimes correct your written work? No 32% Yes 68% Figure 22.1: Correction of works by the classmates viewed by the studentsAs can be observed 68 % students mind having their written work corrected by otherstudents, though 32% do not mind to be corrected by other students. Edge Julian in hisbook ‘Mistakes and Correction’ reveals that teachers have to be sure that they are usingcorrection positively to support learning. Actually students feel humiliated to becorrected by the class mate or by some one similar to his position (41-47). Teacher Item -22: Correction of Works by the Classmates Does your student mind if other students correct your student’s work? No 28% Yes 72% Figure 22.2: Correction of works by the classmates viewed by the teachers
  • 162. 162As shown in the table, 72% teachers suggest that the students mind correcting theirwork by other students; while 28% teachers tell that the students do not mind if otherstudents correct each other’s work. Here, teachers (72%) render a strong correlationpercentage regarding correcting students’ work. This correlation supports theinvestigation of Erdogun (2005), he investigates on the under graduate students inTurkey about the role of peer group in correcting work each other and finds that 66%students appreciated correction by the peer group. Stapa’s (2003) research on learners perceptions on self- / peer-correction. In thelatest research paper, only 36% of learners would not mind having their written workcorrected by peers, while a vast majority of 64% are against peer-correction. As far asself-correction is concerned, 28% of respondents would not mind correcting their ownwork, while 72% would mind rectifying their own mistakes Student Item 23: Self -Correction Do you mind if the teacher sometimes asks you to correct your own work? Yes 34% No 66% Figure 23.1: Self- correction viewed by the studentsRegarding correcting their own work, students by 66% indicate that they would gladlycorrect themselves without external intervention, while, 34 % students disagree withthem. The statistics correlate the study of Erdogun (2000) which reveals that 71%students prefer their work corrected by themselves. Harmer (2001) mentions thatmaking mistakes is a natural process of learning and must be considered as part of
  • 163. 163cognition. Mistakes that occur in the process of learning a foreign language are causedeither by the interference of the mother tongue or developmental reasons, and are partof the students interlanguage. Stapa’s (2003) research finds that 36% learners wouldnot mind having their written work corrected by peers; while a vast majority of 64% areagainst peer-correction. As far as self-correction is concerned, 28% respondents do notmind correcting their own work, while 72% students mind rectifying their ownmistakes. Kavaliauskiene (2003) reveals that grammar mistakes and inadequatevocabulary aggravate the quality of students written work and oral presentations.Generally speaking, self-correction of written work is easier for students than self-correction of oral presentations, because the former is less threatening to learners andthe latter requires note-taking due to shorter memory spans of retaining utterances. Teacher Item 23: Self -Correction Do your students mind if you ask them to correct their work themselves? Yes 22% No 78% Figure 23.2: Self -correction viewed by the teachersFrom the table, we understand, by rather high percentage which is 78% share this viewwith their students. Teachers are aware of students’ preference on self correction.Erdogun (2005) found that, teachers, by 78% shared this view with their students.Bartram & Walton (1991) suggest mistakes are often a sign of learning and, as a result,must be viewed positively. Teachers have to recognize a well known fact that learn
  • 164. 164ability varies from person to person and all language learning is based on continualexposure, hypothesizing and, even with the correct hypothesis, testing and reinforcingthe ideas behind them Littlejohn (1999) agrees that error correction is an essential condition forsuccessful acquisition of any language, although they are at variance on ways ofconducting it. Reconciliation of viewpoints might be secured by turning to self-correction. The prevailing opinion among some practitioners is that the teachers task ininitiating self-correction in written work is to indicate the mistakes, but not correctthem. Learners must be given practice in self-correction of their own work eitherindividually or in pairs but only if they prefer peer cooperation. However, studentsdefinitely need training in rectifying mistakes independently, i.e. without teachersinterference. Student Item -24: Needs of English Why do you need English? passing examination 81% understanding teachers lecture 22% using English with others 74% reading English books and newspaper 44% getting good job 85% using internet 6% watching TV programmes 37% writing letters 55% Table -7: Needs of English viewed by the studentsStudents’ attitude towards English and their realisation of why they need Englishdetermine how they will learn English. In response to the question “Why do you needEnglish?” 81% students think that they need English to pass the examinations; 74%
  • 165. 165the students need English to communicate with others. 85% students want to learnEnglish to get good job; 55% students need English for writing letters; 44 % studentssay that they need English to read books and English newspapers ; 22 % students saythat they need English to understand teacher’s lecture. This implies that teachers atleast sometimes use English in the class. 37% students need English for watchingtelevision programmes. The above statistics show that most of the students study English because it is acurricular subject, and they have to read it to pass the examinations. However, thenumber of students who realize the actual needs of English in practical life is not small. Teacher Item 24: Needs of English Why do your students need English? passing examination 85% understanding teachers lecture 32% using English with others 86% reading English books and newspaper 60% getting good job 91% using internet 11% watching TV programmes 25% writing letters 57% Table -7: Needs of English viewed by the teachersThe above table reflects 91% teachers highlight that the students need English forgetting good job; the highest 86% teachers lay emphasis on English for using it withothers; 85 % teachers express that students need English for passing examination. Onthe hand, 60% teachers think that learners need English for reading English books andnewspaper. 57% teachers suggest that English is needed for writing letters; 25 %
  • 166. 166teachers tick watching TV programmes and the rest of the teachers choose to tick usinginternet option. This study strongly supports the investigation of Galina Kavaliauskiene (2003)she carries out a study on the undergraduate students of Law University of Lithuania.Her study reveals that students study English for the various needs, 78% learners studyEnglish for better employment. Student Item 25: Evaluation of Students’ Language Skills Evaluate your different skills in English. Listening Speaking v. good good good 3% 6% v.weak v. good v.weak 10% 31% 7% 27% medium 16% medium 15% weak weak 44% 41%Figure 25.1.1: Evaluation of listening skills Figure 25.1.2: Evaluation of speaking skillsThe grim reality of learning a foreign language is revealed by the present study.Surprisingly, 75% learners evaluate themselves as either weak or very weak in listeningin English; while 16% students claim that their listening status is medium. The presentstudy discovers that 68% students are weak or very weak in speaking; only 15%students suggest that their speaking is medium in quality. The findings disclose thattheir listening and speaking qualities are so poor that they can hardly communicate withother people in English.
  • 167. 167 Reading v.weak weak good 2% 6% 32% medium 44% v. good 16% Figure 25.1.3: Evaluation of reading skillsWhile evaluating the reading skill, 44% learners claim that their reading skill ismedium; while 32% students consider them good at reading; though 16% studentsassess themselves as very good in reading. Writing v.weak good weak 7% 24% 12% v. good medium 20% 37% Figure 25.1.4: Evaluation of writing skillsWith regard to writing capability, 37% and 24% students evaluated themselves asmedium and good respectively. The findings of the study discover that the Alimstudents are relatively better in reading and writing than listening and speaking. Teacher Item 25: Evaluation of Students’ Language Skills Evaluate your students’ different skills in English?
  • 168. 168 Listening good v. good 6% 4% v.weak 30% medium 20% weak 40% Speaking v. good 2% good medium 0% 8% v.weak 49% weak 41%Figure 25.2.1: Evaluation of listening skills Figure 25.2.2: Evaluation of speaking skillsThe pie charts display the learners’ strength and weakness in English in order of rank indescending order. 70% teachers suggest that students are either very weak or weak inlistening; 90% teachers also reveal that the Alim students are either very weak or weakin speaking English. The students’ self evaluation and the teachers’ evaluation on theirstudents’ listening and speaking qualities have strong correlations; the teachers areaware of the weakness of their students’ listening and speaking.
  • 169. 169 Reading good v.weak 24% 18% weak v. good 16% 12% medium 30% Writing good v.weak 20% 12% weak 24% v. good 16% medium 28%Figure 25.2.3: Evaluation of reading skills Figure 25.2.4: Evaluation of writing skillsWith regard to reading skill, 30% teachers reveal that students are medium in readingEnglish; while 24% teachers which is the second highest percentage suggest that theirstudents are good in reading English. 28% teachers comment that their students aremedium in writing English, while 24% teachers certify them as good in writing. The charts reflect that students are comparatively well in reading and writingthan listening and speaking. It is also observed that there is high correlation betweenthe teachers and the students with regard to performance in English as a foreignlanguage. This correlation strongly agrees to the investigation of Bada (2000) whichreveal that 42% students are good in reading, while 38% students are medium inwriting. Uzpaline’s (2003) study reveals that more than 80% under graduate studentsare either weak or very weak in listening and speaking in Lithuania. Chapter 6 Conclusions and Recommendations
  • 170. 170The present study entitled “English Language Teaching and Learning at the AlimLevel in the Madrashas in Bangladesh: Problems and Possible Solutions” hasachieved its objectives. The study has identified some problems that the Alim studentsusually face while learning English as a foreign language. The study has alsodiscovered the teachers’ attitudes, behaviour, interaction with the students, teachingtechniques, etc. Here, in this chapter, the present researcher has summed up the wholethesis in a brief manner and places some recommendations to overcome the situations,enhance the quality of teaching-learning English language at the Alim level in themadrashas in Bangladesh. Further researches in the same field are also advocated inthis chapter.6.1 Findings of the Study in BriefThe present study unveils some lapses and mismatches between the expectations andthe existing conditions of English language teaching - learning at the Alim level.During the study considerable correlations as well as contradictions are observedbetween the students and the teachers on different issues on teaching – learning. Thefindings of the study are briefly presented below: 1. The present study finds that the existing syllabus of Alim class is not highly relevant to learning English language. Rather, it is a little relevant. There is a strong correlation between the teachers and the students on evaluation of syllabus. 2. Both groups of the respondents suggest that the lessons and tasks are not very enjoyable.
  • 171. 1713. The current study reveals that the students are very weak in listening and speaking, because the practice of the two important skills is neglected or avoided by the teachers in the class.4. Majority of the students and the teachers suggest that the syllabus is examination oriented rather than achieving communicative competence.5. The students prefer learning individually and in some cases in pairs, and dislike learning in a large group. The teachers are also aware of the students’ preferences in learning English.6. The students blame that their prescribed textbook is a little helpful in learning English language.7. The highest numbers of students consider the lessons very difficult; while the highest number of teachers contradict with students and comment that the lessons are not at all difficult.8. The present study finds that both the teachers and the students are with the opinion that their lessons are a little relevant to their day to day activities.9. The investigation finds that the teachers remain active, busy and talk more in the class, while the students remain in the class as the inactive listeners. This situation directly contradicts the communicative views of teaching and learning.10. The present study finds that the syllabus is examination oriented, and the reading comprehension and writing skills are tested in the examination, on the other hand the two important skills: listening, and speaking are untouched.11. The present study discovers that the English teachers do not explain the grammar rules sufficiently in the class, though the majority of the teachers
  • 172. 172 contradict with the students and claim that they explain the grammar rules fairly much.12. The students blame their English teachers that they do not encourage them enough to speak English with the classmates, but the teachers strongly contradict with the students and claim that they encourage their students very much.13. The most of the students are with the opinion that their teachers do not teach and explain the vocabulary items in English, though the maximum teachers claim that they explain the vocabulary items in the class.14. It is found that the teachers are more or less friendly and sympathetic to their students.15. The current study reveals that the maximum teachers follow the text book in the class all the time.16. The study finds that the most of the English teachers do not speak English frequently in the class.17. The students comment that English teachers are not qualified and competent enough to teach English, but the teachers contradict with the students and claim that they are competent enough to teach English in Alim class.18. Most of the students disclose that their teachers do not give them extra time after class hour, though the teachers claim that they give enough time to their students after class hours.19. It is found that the teachers use only the black board as the teaching aids and equipment in the class. Modern technologies such as; overhead projector
  • 173. 173 (OHP), slides, video and audio tape recorders, computers, multimedia are totally absent in the class activities. 20. With regard to correction of oral production, students do not like to be humiliated before every one in the class. They like to be corrected at the end of the activity and later, in private. The teachers are aware of the preferences of learning styles of their students. 21. The present study reveals that the students mind if they are corrected by other students in the class. Students feel humiliated to be corrected by their class mate or by some one similar to their position. 22. Most of the students do not mind if they are asked to correct their works by themselves. 23. Majority of the students suggest that they need English for various purposes: for passing examination, for getting a good job, for communicating with others. The teachers also express almost same opinions with regard to needs of English. 24. The current study discovers that the Alim students are either weak or very weak in listening and speaking in English language. Their self assessment directly correlates the opinion of teacher, the both groups of respondents are aware of the weakness of the students. 25. The history of madrasha education reveals that the madrasha education passes a long unsmooth way of journey, day by day this stream of education is becoming inevitable in the society.6.2. Recommendations
  • 174. 174The present study is an attempt to sketch out a picture of English Language Teachingand Learning at the Alim Level in the Madrashas in Bangladesh. The present studyhas identified many of the teaching- learning problems. The findings and the analysis ofthe data have been presented in the preceding chapter (Chapter Five). This chapter veryshortly presents the findings of the present study and puts forward somerecommendations with a view to overcoming the existing problems or at least lesseningthe severity of the problems.6.2.1 Recommendation for the NCTB 1) Language instruction has five important components: students, a teacher, materials, teaching methods, and evaluation. Sheldon suggests that "textbooks represent the visible heart of any ELT program" (237). So, the NCTB should prepare textbook with a view to expediting English language teaching and learning. 2) While preparing the books, the NCTB should look in whether they have met the needs of the students. 3) English textbooks should be useful, meaningful and interesting for students. The NCTB should produce meaningful an interesting textbook for the Alim students. 4) As a general rule, materials should be slightly higher in their level of difficulty than the students current level of English proficiency. Materials at a slightly higher level of difficulty than the students current level of English proficiency allow them to learn new grammatical structures and vocabulary.
  • 175. 1755) English textbooks should have clear instructional procedure and methods, that is, the teacher and students should be able to understand what is expected in each lesson and for each activity.6) Authentic materials should be included in the textbook contents.7) Textbook should include original, retold and translated work of creative writers.8) Lessons should be interesting and lively. Littlejohn, suggests that selecting texts that are relevant to the life experiences and culture of FL/SL can facilitate cognitive and language development (7).9) Syllabus and contents of syllabus should be based on needs of English; otherwise, irrelevant syllabus hampers students’ progress in learning a language. According to White “A complete syllabus specification will include all five aspects: structure, function, situation, topic, skills (92).10) Text language should be presented in discourse manner. Opportunities should be created for oral interaction. There should be sufficient opportunities of practising different skills.11) The textbooks should include variety of topics and themes.12) Textbook should present all the four skills of English language. To make the students guess and understand personal and other variations there should be texts from different grounds.13) Supporting notebooks and guidebooks should be examined whether they are misguiding the teacher and student communities.14) The activities of coaching centres and private schools should be monitored. There should be a government body to look into this.15) Communicative grammar books should be written in English, and the writershould be trained up. Goodey suggests that grammatical rules and explanations are
  • 176. 176 necessary; grammar should be taught in the context of communication, not as passive knowledge (7-8). 15) Teacher’s book that has been promised in the national curriculum (report 1995 Vol. II), should be published and distributed to the teacher so that the teachers can get immediate help. And each lesson of this book should be vivid enough to give teachers clear idea on how to teach the lesson effectively.6.2.2 Recommendations for Madrasha Education BoardMadrasha Education Board (MEB) has been playing diverse responsibilities in themadrasha education system. It plays the role of sole authority in formulating andimplementing polices, required for enhancing the teaching learning activities. The MEBis responsible for preparing the textbooks in collaboration with the NCTB for differentclasses. The English textbook English For Today, For Classes 11-12 produced andpublished by the NCTB is prescribed by the Madrasha Education Board for Alim(higher Secondary) class. The following suggestions are strongly recommended for theMadrasha Education Board.6.2.2.1 Recommendations for the Textbook and Syllabus 1) The Board should ensure communicative way of teaching by playing active role. 2) The Board should arrange workshop, seminar, and training programmes for textbook writers to make them interpret its curriculum.
  • 177. 177 3) Programmes can be broadcast and telecast through print and electronic media. The writers and publishers must have some pre-qualifications, before they get approval for writing books and notebooks. 4) The writer should have background in applied linguistics and in modern teaching methods and approaches especially in communicative approach of teaching. 5) Just holding the public examinations and issuing the certificates should not be the sole responsibility of madrasha education board, rather they should have constant thought of improving the teaching learning condition. 6) The education board should investigate different madrashas and look into whether they have interpreted the curriculum and whether the teachers are teaching the students in the same way as planners intended. 7) Government should establish some teachers training institutions for providing training for the teachers.6.2.2.2 Recommendations for the Test and AssessmentThe Madrasha Education Board is entitled to holding all the examinations and issuingcertificates to the successful candidates. The following recommendations may beconsidered for further improvement of this stream of education: 1. Questions should be setup following the basis of the communicative approach. 2. All the skills of language should be tested through different items and activities.
  • 178. 178 3. Questions should not be set from any notebooks or guidebooks available in the market; rather, they should be anew. Students will answer them using their knowledge of English. 4. Question format should go on changes each year so as to encourage students to read to learn instead of memorising the textbook-content. There should have cohesion between the question paper and the syllabus items they practice. 6.2.3 Recommendations for the Teaching Aids and Equipment Teaching aids and equipment play very significant role in teaching and practicing English language skills. The modern technologies may be used as teaching aids and equipment for effective teaching. The present study finds that only the traditional blackboard is used in all 100% madrashas in Bangladesh. Teaching aids should have support for learning, which cover or expand on the content and make lesson easier and interesting. However, with the development of technology, photos, visual materials, and audio materials have become very important components of language teaching. Teachers need to learn how to find them, and how to best exploit these varieties. On the basis of findings in the present study the following technologies are recommended for teaching English and giving instructions in the English class:  a) Audio cassettes b) Video facility c) Multimedia d) Over head projector e) Computer f) Television g) Picture h) Realia h) Documentary
  • 179. 1796.2.4 Suggestions for TeachersTeachers are in direct contact with the students. They are responsible for the integrationof each work and activity in the class. With the changed view of language teaching theteachers should change their role in the classroom. They are no more the ruler of theclass. They have to act as learning partners of the students, and manage the class verytactfully so that leaning can take place in interesting manner. Teachers shouldunderstand the value of the English language in this world. On the basis of the findingsthe following remedies are suggested, it is expected that these remedies would eradicateor at least minimise the problems encountered by the learners while learning English. 1) It is the result of keen observation that while teaching grammar in the class the students blink and they forget it the next minute. To avoid this, oral test can be given. By this, they will be able to remember what has been taught in the classroom. 2) Teachers should create student - centered class, and take step to increase students’ involvement in the teaching learning process. 3) Of course, teachers must not depend on the education board in carrying out each juggling act in their class. They must have a relatively free hand in designing their class lessons. For this to happen, they must be acquainted with the approach and methodology. 4) It is clear that teacher efficacy affects students directly. There is a tight correlation between teacher efficacy and students performance. Dörnyei states "Good enough motivator" (45) is such a concept that a desired outcome by students can occur with the help of this certain teacher’s function
  • 180. 1805) Teachers should be friendly and sympathetic to the students in the all ways of learning.6) Teachers should take class in the target language and they ought to encourage the students to speak English in and outside of the class.7) New words should be introduced to the students with the visuals of objects or phenomena they represent. Words should not be learned apart from the objects to which they refer. While teaching, objectives of each lesson must be clear to the teacher. He/she should know what he/she is teaching to whom and why, and in which circumstances they will be using it.8) On the first hand, he/she must interpret what is intended in planning levels of the curriculum, and be able to use communicative language materials and books effectively.9) He/she should engage the students in the leaning process. The students should not be treated as empty vessel. Rather, they should be the most active participants in the class.10) Teacher is expected to come to the class with a pre-arranged plan and check before whether all the activities prompt learning among the students.11) While teaching, teacher should evaluate how far learning is taking place. After the completion of each lesson, he/she must measure the students’ achievement and make necessary changes with the findings of each class in the plan of the classes to come. 12) No one can learn a language if he/she does not use it. So, the teacher should create environment where students will use English. In the class, he/she should use English. Bengali can be used as a checking device only.
  • 181. 18113) Just adopting a communicative syllabus and textbooks, not certainly ensure effective teaching. If the teachers fail to use this in a proper way, everything will dismiss. So, a teacher development programme should be arranged at each madrasha, which will continue for a certain period.14) Development programmes can be taken at upzilla level. The experts from a higher authority can monitor these programmes. Self-development scheme can also help teachers to develop their teaching skills.15) Teachers can give clues to the students to remember the grammatical feature of the sentences.16) Teacher must get special training as how to make the students to learn grammar, without having disinterest towards the language.17) Teachers can also explain some of the grammatical categories in Bengali to make their students easily understand the grammar. Only grammar does not unable the students for acquiring a second language, continuous practice of language will help the students to steer the language.18) The Teachers should be well-trained in handling English classes.19) Teachers who have a very good English background will be best for teaching the students to acquire a language, and they should help other teachers in teaching English.20) Teachers should avoid taking narrow steps for teaching English by giving clues.21) Teachers should bring the students in a good manner, to make them read Newspapers, listen to broad casting in English. This would help them to receive proper pronunciation.22) There should be a classroom interaction between teachers and students in a good manner.
  • 182. 18223) Teacher should record the students’ reading skills the tape recorder can be played before them. It will help the students identify errors.24) Teachers should give proper exercises to the students as their home work and serious corrections should be done.25) Teacher should make them use dictionary to know the meaning of the hard words to enrich their vocabulary.26) The students should be taught language with appropriate illustrations. This will help the students produce correct sentences.27) The Teacher should use teaching aids not only to simplify his/her methods but also to explain the concepts. Before going to teach, Teachers have to plan what to teach, How to teach and how much to teach.28) The teachers only try to cover their syllabus within the stipulated time, so skill oriented / learner oriented teaching should be encouraged.29) To develop linguistic competence of the students, the language may be taught linguistically. That is, linguistic approach in teaching of English from the beginning would be helpful for the development of competence in English.30) Different types of conversational discourse may be taught, and the students should be given enough time for the development of conversational discourse in the school hours. The conversational discourse training will eliminate language shock and cultural shock. Further, that will help them develop communicative competence of the students.31) While teaching vocabulary of English, the grammatical functions and linguistic features of words should be taught. Further, the semantic value of words should be distinguished.
  • 183. 18332) The similarities and differences between Bengali and English as a foreign language should be taught.33) While teaching pronunciation of words the phonetic similarities and differences of the phonemes should be demonstrated in the class room, and practices should be given in this area properly. Further, the awareness about the interference of Bengali in the pronunciation of foreign sounds should be given timely to the learners.34) The students may be motivated to interact with teachers and peer groups in English at home front in addition to the school atmosphere. Further, watching English programs on TV, listening to radio, loud reading, reading dailies would help to develop the spoken language of English35) To avoid errors in writings, students may be practiced to write stories, and the errors in the written items may be spotted then the reasons for the occurrence of errors should be indicated to the students. Further, editing training should also be given to the students.36) To prevent Bengali interference on English sentence, various sentence types of both Bengali and English should be differentiated and distinguished and that should be demarked to the students.37) To avoid the overgeneralisation of verb forms and other grammatical items the regularity and irregularity of the language rules may be taught and reinforced.38) To prevent the agreemental problems, the relationship between words should be taught, and if the problems are due to Bengali structure, the relationship and variation between the Bengali and English as a EFL sentences may be indicated to the students.
  • 184. 18439) To avoid orthographical errors, appropriate pronunciation drills should be given to the students. By the preventing the Bengali sounds in their EFL pronunciation, the spelling errors can be minimized in the learner’s writings.40) Practice of differentiating the lexical and grammatical items, recognition of unfamiliar words and understanding of their literal and contextual meanings with the help of teacher or dictionary will enhance the reading comprehensibility.41) Practice of labeling parts of speech and recognizing the word endings and tense markers will develop the linguistic competence of the students. Further, that will be helpful for the enhancement of understanding ability of texts.42) Easy and simple vocabularies should be used in reading materials. Further, the hard and unknown vocabularies should be introduced in familiar contexts of the students. If it is unfamiliar context, both the context and vocabularies will make them trouble. So, use of unknown and hard words in familiar context of the students will increase the understanding ability of the students.43) Teaching of reading comprehension has to be introduced. That is, how to read, how to understand a text and how to understand contextual as well as literal meaning of words, will increase the reading ability of the students.44) Teaching listening comprehension should not be ignored.45) The tape recorded dialogues could be played before the students and they could listen to them, then the theme as well as questions may be asked on the basis of the dialogue. This type of practice will help the students understanding capacity as well as the communicative competence.46) Introducing the listening games, sound discrimination (k, g, kh, gh), Recognition of minimal pair (put, but), Recognizing morphemes (free and
  • 185. 185 bound morpheme) Recognizing syllables in words, Recognizing silent letters in words, Identification of parts of speech etc. will help to build up listening ability to discriminate SL/FL phonemes, morphemes and phonetic variation of sounds. 47) The students can be made listen different current vocabularies and allow them write synonymous and antonymous for those vocabularies. Further, practice of finding equal Bengali words for EFL as well as translation of sentences from English to Bengali and vice versa will help to develop the linguistic competence of the students. 48) Watching TV Programmes, films and listening to radio programs will certainly help students understand how the native and non-native speakers use the English language. It will help them also in understanding the dialectal variation of the language. 49) Observing public announcements (Railway announcement, corporation transport announcement) will help to strengthen the socio-linguistic knowledge and presence of mind.6.2.5 Suggestions for StudentsStudents need to be empowered by themselves in the learning activities. They shouldminimise the dependence on a single source (teacher) for learning. Students are in needof learning-while-doing with multiple options of learning resources. Students must beself-directed and life-long learners in order to survive tough expectations of jobmarkets. The change from process-oriented to product-oriented and change fromteacher-centered to student-teacher-centered curriculum are wish of every highereducation institutions. Some general suggestions for the students are:
  • 186. 186 1) While speaking English, students are able to make mistake, but they should not hesitate to speak whether it is correct or wrong. 2) Learning a foreign language is a step by step process and students should make habit of speaking English with others as much as possible, they should watch TV and English news bulletin to improve listening skills. 3) Students must develop their writing skills by writing summary, report writing. 4) Students should show interests in learning a foreign language.6.3 Further ResearchWith regard to enrolment, the madrasha education is the second biggest stream amongthe three such streams: general education, madrasha education, and technical andvocational education. At present madrasha education is not absolutely confined toreligion only, rather it spreads education on various fields: English, science,information technology, business study etc. Many general subjects are included in itscurriculum and syllabi during the recent past. After passing Alim examination thestudents can enter into any fields of study of knowledge; they are entitled to study atany public and private universities, medical colleges, engineering colleges, etc. Despite a major sector of education, no formal research is carried out in themadrasha education till today. The present study entitled “English LanguageTeaching and Learning at the Alim level in the Madrashas in Bangladesh:Problems and Possible Solutions” is the pioneer research in the field of Englishlanguage teaching and learning in the madrashas in Bangladesh. During the study thepresent researcher realises that exclusive study should be carried out on differentdomains of applied linguistics and ELT for the further improvement of the present
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  • 202. 202 Appendix - 1 STUDENT QUESTIONNAIREThis questionnaire has been developed for the purpose of research in the Department ofEnglish at Jahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka, Bangladesh. The questions here arerelated to English Language Teaching and Learning at the Alim Level in the Madrashasin Bangladesh. The researcher gives you full assurance that your responses to thequestions will be kept confidential.Thank you for your cooperation!Student’s Name: --------------------------------------------Madrasha’s Name: __________________________________Boy / girl: ___________________ Roll: ____________________Urban/ Rural: ______________________Father’s Profession: Govt. service/Nogovt.service/business/farmer/unemployed.Mother’s Profession: Govt. service/No govt.service/business/house wifeInstruction: Please tick (√) the right answer1) How much is the syllabus relevant to learning English? not at all a little fairly much  very much2) Do you think your syllabus is heavier than you need?
  • 203. 203 not at all a little fairly much very much3) How much enjoyable do you find the task? not at all a little fairly much very much4) Do you exercise the four skills of English in your English classes? Listening Yes No Speaking Yes No Reading Yes No Writing Yes No5) Which of following needs does the present syllabus meet? (You can tick (√ ) more than one box.) Passing examination Understanding teacher’s lecture Using English with others Reading English books and newspapers Getting good jobs Using internet Watching TV programmes Writing letters6) How do you like learning? individually in pairs in small groups in a large group7) Do you feel shy in speaking English?
  • 204. 204 Yes No Sometimes8) Is your lesson interesting? not at all a little fairly much very much9) Do you feel any difficulties with the lessons? not at all a little fairly much very much10) Are your lessons relevant to your day to day activities? not at all a little fairly much very much11) Who speak more and remain busy in the class? students teachers12) How much does the teacher explain the grammar rules? not at all a little fairly much very much13) How much does your teacher encourage you to speak English with your classmate? not at all a little fairly much very much14) How much does the teacher explain the text and vocabulary items in English? not at all a little fairly much very much15) How much is the teacher sympathetic and friendly to you? not at all a little fairly much very much16) How much does your teacher follow the textbook in the class? not at all a little fairly much very much17) How much does your teacher speak English in the class?18) How much is your teacher competent and qualified?
  • 205. 205 not at all a little fairly much very much19) Does your teacher give you sufficient contact hours after class? not at all a little fairly much very much20) Which of the following teaching aids are available in your classes? (You can tick √) more than one option) Black board Over head projector  Audio cassettes  Video facility Others (please specify)21) When you speak do you want to be corrected by the teacher? a) immediately, in front of everyone? yes no c) later, in private? yes no d) other (specify please)............................. 22) Do you mind if other students sometimes correct your written work? yes no23) Do you mind if the teacher sometimes asks you to correct your own work? yes no24) Why do you need English? You can tick (√ ) more than one option passing examination understanding teacher’s lecture
  • 206. 206 using English with others reading English books and newspapers getting good jobs using internet watching TV programmes writing letters 25) Evaluate your different skills in English. Tick (√) appropriate boxes. Very good Good Medium Weak Very weak Skills Listening Speaking Reading Writing Appendix-2 TEACHER QUESTIONNAIREThis questionnaire has been developed for the purpose of research in the Department ofEnglish at Jahangirnagar University, Savar, Dhaka, Bangladesh. The questions here arerelated to English Language Teaching and Learning at the Alim level in the madrashasin Bangladesh. The researcher gives you full assurance that your responses to thequestions will be kept confidential.
  • 207. 207 Thank you for your cooperation!Name______________________________________Designation___________________________________________Full Time / Part Time Teacher____________________________Male /Female __________________ Age ____________________Academic qualification ______________________________Name of Madrasha ____________________________________________________Urban/Rural _________________ Date_______________________________Instruction: Please tick (√) the right answer1. How much is the syllabus relevant for your students to learning English? not at all  a little  fairly much  very much2) Do you think English syllabus is heavier than your students need? not at all  a little  fairly much  very much3) How much enjoyable do you find the task? not at all  a little  fairly much  very much4) Do you arrange exercise of four skills of English language in your class? Listening Yes No Speaking Yes No Reading Yes No Writing Yes No5) Which of the following needs does the present syllabus meet? ?
  • 208. 208 Passing examination Understanding teacher’s lecture Using English with others Reading English books and newspapers Getting good jobs Using internet Watching TV programmes Writing letters6) How do your students like learning? individually in pairs in small groups in a large group7) Do your students feel shy in speaking English? not at all a little fairly much very much8) How much interesting the lessons are? not at all a little fairly much very much9) Do you feel any difficulties with the lessons you teach English? not at all a little fairly much very much10) Are the lessons you teach relevant to day to day activities? not at all  a little  fairly much very much11) Who speak more and remain busy in the class ? students teachers12) How much do you explain the grammar rules?
  • 209. 209 not at all  a little  fairly much  very much13) How much do you encourage the students to speak English with their classmate? not at all  a little  fairly much  very much14) How much do you explain the text and vocabulary items in English? not at all  a little  fairly much  very much15) How much sympathetic and friendly are you to your students? not at all  a little fairly much  very much16) How much do you follow the textbook in the class? not at all a little fairly much very much17) How much do you speak English in the class? not at all a little fairly much very much18) Do you think you are qualified and competent to teach English at Alim level? not at all a little fairly much very much19) Do you give sufficient contact hours to your students after class? not at all a little fairly much very much20) Which of the following teaching aids and equipment are available in your teachingsituation? You can tick (√) more than one Black board  Over head projector Audiocassettes Video facility Others (please specify
  • 210. 21021) Do you correct your students when they speak English? a) immediately, in front of everyone? yes no b) later, at the end of the activity, in front of everyone? yes no c) later, in private? yes no d) other (specify please).............................22) Do your students mind if they correct each other’s work? yes no23) Do your students mind if you ask them to correct their work themselves? yes no24) Why do your students need English? You can tick (√ ) more than 1 options. passing exam understanding teacher’s lecture using English with others reading English books and newspapers getting good jobs using internet watching TV programmes writing letters25) Evaluate your students’ different skills in English? (Tick (√) appropriate boxes)
  • 211. 211 Very good Good Medium Weak Very weak Skills Listening Speaking Reading Writing Appendix 3 English (Compulsory) for Alim classThe English syllabus of Alim class includes the following 12 units of the English ForToday, For Classes 11-12, published by National Curriculum & Textbook Board,Dhaka.Unit One : Families Home and AbroadUnit Two : Learning EnglishUnit Four : PastimesUnit Six : Our EnvironmentUnit Eight : Towards Social AwarenessUnit Nine : Getting EducatedUnit Thirteen : We and our RightsUnit Fourteen : Human ResourcesUnit Seventeen : Modes of Communication
  • 212. 212Unit Twenty : Jobs and ProfessionsUnit Twenty Three : Challenges of the New CenturyUnit Twenty Four : People EverywhereDistribution of Marksf) Seen Comprehension : 25 i) Objective questions :15 ii) More free questions : 10g) Unseen comprehension : 25 i) Objective questions : 15 ii) More free questions : 10c) Vocabulary: 10 iii) Cloze test with clues : 5 iv) Cloze test without clues :5h) Grammar: 10 i) Cloze test with clues :5 ii) Cloze test without clues :5i) Writing: 10 i) Guided : 10 ii) More free : 10
  • 213. 213j) Population Education ( Unit 24) : 10 ______________________ Total === 100 marks Appendix 4 Syllabus English (Compulsory) Alim ExaminationSeen comprehension : 25 marksAccording to the syllabus of the board there will be a seen comprehension passage fromthe textbook followed by a choice of questions. The question type includes thefollowing;a) Objective : 15 marks(1) Multiple choice (2) True /False (3) Filling the gaps with clues (4) Informationtransfer (5) Making sentences from substitution tables (6) Matching phrases/ pictures,etc.Note : Question will be set on any five of the above types. Each type will carry 3marks (3×5=15) and each question will carry 1 mark.b) More free : 10 marks
  • 214. 214(7) Open ended (8) Filling the gaps with the clues (9) Summarising (10) Making notes(11) Re-writing in a different form.Note : Question will be set on any two of the above types. Each type will carry 5marks (5×2=10) and each question will carry 1 mark.The question should test the student’s ability to comprehend / understand the passage asa whole. These are not to test their ability to copy sections/parts from it. Although theseen comprehension passage will be from the set textbook, it will not, in any wayencourage memorization/note learning. The reason is that (i) the passage will bereproduced on the question paper and (ii) the question will not be from the textbook,rather these will be new.Unseen Comprehension : 25 marksThere will be an unseen comprehension passage followed by a choice of questions.This passage will be of a different type than that used in the seen compression .Thequestion type should include the following;a) Objective : 15 marks(1) Multiple choice (2) True /False (3) Filling the gaps with clues (4) Informationtransfer (5) Making sentences from substitution tables (6) Matching phrases/ pictures,etc.Note : Question will be set on any five of the above types. Each type will carry 3marks (3×5=15) and each question will carry 1 mark.b) More free : 10(7) Open ended (8) Filling the gaps with the clues (9) Summarising (10) Making notes(11) Re-writing in a different form.
  • 215. 215Note : Question will be set on any two of the above types. Each type will carry 5marks (5×2=10) and each question will carry 1 mark.Vocabulary : 5+5=10There will be question on vocabulary contextualized in the form of short cloze passageswith and without clues. In order to facilitate/provide more communicative contexts, thetopics should be related to those already encountered by the students in the seen andunseen comprehensions.Grammar : 5+5 =10There will be question on grammatical items contextualized in the form of short clozepassages with and without clues. In order to facilitate/provide more communicativecontexts, the topics should be related to those already encountered by the students inthe seen and unseen comprehensions. There will not be any question to test thestudent’s explicit grammatical knowledge. Explicit grammatical terms will not be usedin the question paper. The questions will rather test the use of grammatical items withinspecific and meaning full contexts.Writing : 20 marksa) Guided : 10There will be a number of writing tasks; the following types of exercises should beincluded; iii) Producing sentences from substitution tables iv) Reordering sentencesNote: There will be no alternative questionsb) More Free: 10 marksThe following types of exercises should be included; iii) Answering questions about themselves iv) Continuing a passage
  • 216. 216Note: There will be no alternative questionsPopulation Education : 10 marksThe unit 24 entitled “People, People Everywhere” is the compulsory unit for the Alimstudents. The students must answer the question set on this unit. The questions mayinclude multiple choices, filling the gaps, answering questions matchingphrases/pictures, writing a short paragraph. M. Enamul Hoque Assistant Professor of English University of south Asia Bangladesh