Teaching Listening Understanding the Listening Process
Perspectives on Listening
Listening as a skill
Listening as a product
Listening as a process
Is there a difference between hearing and listening?
What does it involve? IMAGES WORDS SOUNDS CONCEPTS SYNTAX SCHEMA MESSAGE MEANING FEELINGS RESPONSE REMEMBERING INTERPRET VOCABULARY FOCUS GUESSING ATTENTION CONTEXT CHUNKS ATTITUDE
An Activity To Understand Language Processing Monitoring Your Own Listening Processes
OBSERVE and REPORT
How did you build your understanding?
What difficulties or problems did you face?
Were you able to solve these problems? How?
What thoughts / associations came into your mind?
Fixation on decoding sounds - can’t recognise words
Not chunking streams of speech - focusing on individual words - losing the idea paying attention to every word in a utterance.
Unfamiliar accent - speech becomes unintelligible - can’t parse sounds into words
Not drawing on schema or various sources of knowledge
Focused attention solely on perception of aural input - neglect next part - can’t keep up with rest of input
Parsing problem - not able to form a mental representation from words - connect what was heard earlier with later parts of input to construct a meaningful representation of what was heard
Inefficient use of memory - concentrating too hard on problems faced with perceiving sounds - forget what is heard
Not using knowledge of language ( eg grammar structure or familiar lexis) or background knowledge to predict or guess meaning and compare with schema
Christine Goh (2000), A cognitive perspective on language learners' listening comprehension problems(pp 8 of course pack)
What does it involve? Cognitive Processes
Is the model of ‘listener as tape recorder’ an accurate depiction of the listening process?
PHONEMIC UNIT WORDS PHRASES UTTERANCES Complete TEXT /ər / /ju/ / ˈ h ʌ ŋ.gri/ /Are/ /you/ /hungry/ YOU HUNGRY ARE YOU / HUNGRY ARE YOU HUNGRY? Is meaning ONLY ENCODED in the text? Is the process EFFICIENT?
What would be a more accurate model of the listening which includes both top-down and bottom-up processes?
But is this enough? Top-down processing involves the activation of schemata, to derive meaning from spoken discourse
Different schemata ( sources of knowledge)
Linguisitic knowledge:Phonology/lexical knowledge, syntax, discourse features (registers, cohesive markers etc)
Schematic knowledge: World Knowledge / Background Knowledge
Language processing involves “parallel, interactive processing” (McClelland and Elman, 1986, p. 119)
Understanding Top-down and Bottom-up Processing
QUIZ TIME: Go to your course website and look at Mini Quiz: Understanding Listening Processes at the bottom of the Lesson Page. Click See Assignment.
Listening as a Process
Cognitive Perspective - how aural input is processed
Perception / Parsing / Utilisation (p 8)
Top-down and Bottom-up Processing
Why is an understanding of cognitive processes important?
for understanding learners' listening difficulties - identify which phase of cognitive processing - comprehension can break down.
help us trace the source of learner’s problems and why they occur
guide our learners - strategies for coping with or overcoming some of their listening difficulties
Christine Goh (2000), A cognitive perspective on language learners’ listening comprehension problems, System 28, p 57)
What factors could cause difficulties in listening? Download a copy of Handout 1 from Lesson 3 in our course website. Read through the list of listening problems described by the students. Discuss in your groups and fill in column 2 and 3.
LEARNER DIFFICULTIES lN LISTENING 1.I have trouble catching the actual sounds. 2. I have to understand every word; if I miss something, I feel I am failing and get worried and stressed. 3. I can understand people if they talk slowly and clearly; I can't understand fast, natural native-sounding speech. 4. I need to hear things more than once in order to understand. 5. I find it difficult to 'keep up'with all the information I am getting, and cannot think ahead or predict. 6. lf the listening goes on a long time I get tired, and find it more and more difficult to concentrate. @ Cambridge University Press 1996
Listening as a skill
Purposeful Listening (pg 7)
Why is listening considered a complex skill? Does it involve just understanding what words mean?
Why is it important to consider the different purposes for listening?
Social / Interpersonal Purpose Transactional Purpose A beginner driver listening to instructions given by instructor. Listening to a friend sharing her problems
Listening Comprehension Skills
Listening for details
Listening for gist
How to develop listening skills?
Through teaching students listening strategies - LEARNING to LISTEN
important that they learn to adopt listening strategies that can assist or enhance their comprehension
Cognitive, Metacognitive and Social-Affective strategies
Cognitive strategies - act directly on the input to make sense of it
Metacognitive strategies - manage cognitive processes and difficulties during listening
social strategies - involve other people in achieving understanding
Affective strategies - manage unproductive emotions during comprehension.
Why Teach Strategies?
AWARENESS of difficulties - to think about how their cognitive processes could be affected and WHEN comprehension could potentially break down - develop greater responsibility for own learning and in long-run greater independence and autonomy
Help them SEE that difficulties encountered CAN BE solved or dealt with in a systematic way - develop their self-confidence, problem-solving behaviour and right attitude towards learning difficulties and problem-solving - stop blaming difficulties on task
Why Teach Strategies?
increased metacognitive awareness about their learning processes - take a more active part in overcoming some of their listening difficulties, rather than accept all their problems as unavoidable and insurmountable ( avoid LEARNED HELPLESSNESS )
How to raise learners’ awareness about learning to listen?
set aside lesson time for discussion and reports about listening problems and useful strategies
encourage students to `think aloud' soon after they have completed a listening task
provide opportunities for individual reaction through listening diaries
extend the scope of pre-listening and post-listening tasks to include metacognitive tasks.
Christine Goh (2000), A cognitive perspective on language learners' listening comprehension problems ( pp 73)
Listening as a Product
Outcomes (p 11) - what listeners can DO
Verbal or non-verbal / Multimodal
Why is this important?
Listening - invisible process
Product - evidence of learning
Provide feedback for T and S - AFL - progress made - diagnose problem areas and help T design follow-up lesson and for S to set learning goals - develp strategies to overcome problem
EL SYLLABUS 2010 Teaching Listening and Viewing Implications for Teaching: Outcomes, Focus Areas and Aims
What should teachers strive to do?
To develop competent and critical listeners:
Model positive listening attitudes and behaviour . (DISPOSITION)
Guide pupils in constructing meaning from a variety of spoken, audio and visual texts, beginning with the perception and recognition of sounds and words in context. (SKILLS/STRATEGIES)
Help pupils develop active listening and viewing skills , that is, to listen/ view for details and listen for the gist, make inferences, make predictions and listen selectively. (SKILLS/STRATEGIES)
Scaffold and Model the learning of critical listening and viewing skills through the use of strategies and activities. (SKILLS/STRATEGIES)
Provide opportunities for pupils to listen to and view a variety of spoken, audio and visual texts for appreciation, enjoyment and personal development (EXTENSIVE VIEWING / LISTENING)
Learning and Teaching Principles
Effective listening must be AUTOMATIC and EFFICIENT - fast, natural speech esp interactive / reciprocal listening ( eg conversations)
Listening to understand meaning is NOT about understanding what words and sentences mean - UNDERSTAND what SPEAKERS MEAN - PRAGMATIC/SOCIAL meaning - INFERENTIAL PROCESS
PURPOSE for listening also affects the processes / sources of knowledge we use.
Learning and Teaching Principles
Knowledge about Language ( eg what word means or whether it is noun or adjective) is important BUT knowing HOW TO USE this knowledge of language ( eg quickly access meaning of word) to develop INTERPRETATIONS is MORE important.
Listening is an active, purposeful process of making sense of what we hear. It requires appropriate listening and viewing attitudes and behaviour and applying appropriate strategies and skills to process meaning from texts.