Using project based learning to improve the students’ speaking skill an action research project at dong nai technology university

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VIETNAM ACADEMY OF SOCIAL SCIENCES GRADUATE ACADEMY OF SOCIAL SCIENCES Đinh Cơng Tính USING PROJECT-BASED LEARNING TO IMPROVE THE STUDENTS’ SPEAKING SKILLS: AN ACTION RESEARCH PROJECT AT DONG NAI TECHNOLOGY UNIVERSITY MA THESIS IN ENGLISH LANGUAGE HANOI, 2019 VIETNAM ACADEMY OF SOCIAL SCIENCES GRADUATE ACADEMY OF SOCIAL SCIENCES Đinh Công Tính USING PROJECT-BASED LEARNING TO IMPROVE THE STUDENTS’ SPEAKING SKILLS: AN ACTION RESEARCH PROJECT AT DONG NAI TECHNOLOGY UNIVERSITY Field: English Language Code: 8220201 Supervisor: Phạm Hữu Đức, Ph.D HANOI, 2019 DECLARATION BY AUTHOR I, the undersigned, hereby certify that the thesis entitled “Using Project-Based Learning to Improve The Students’ Speaking Skills: An Action Research Project at Dong Nai Technology University” is the result of my own research for the Degree of Master of Arts in English Language The substance of the thesis has not, wholly or in part, been submitted for any other degree to any other universities or institutions Except where reference has been made in the text, this thesis contains no material previously published or written by another person The study reported in this thesis was approved by Graduate Academy of Social Sciences Author’s Signature Đinh Công Tính Approved by SUPERVISOR Phạm Hữu Đức, Ph.D Date: ………………………… i ACKNOWLEGDEMENTS Although only one name appears as the author of this work, writing a thesis is indeed a collaborative effort I would like to express my sincere thanks to the many people who made it possible First and foremost, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to my M.A thesis’s supervisor, Phạm Hữu Đức, Ph D for his kind consultation, invaluable encouragement as well as thorough correction in the process of completion But for his helpful guidance, this study would not have been achieved Next, I would like to convey my sincere appreciation and thanks to Mr Đặng Nguyên Giang - Dean of the Department of Foreign Languages and the other staff at Graduate Academy of Social Sciences the Department of Foreign Languages, Graduate Academy of Social Sciences for granting me the honor of writing this thesis as well as their assistance and most valuable comments Especially, millions of my special thanks go to the lecturers and students at Dong Nai Technology University who participated in this study for their kind and patient co-operation and encouragement They helped provide me with valuable data for the study so that I could have a better view of activities in English speaking classes at Dong Nai Technology University in Bien Hoa city, Dong Nai Province Last but not least, I am deeply indebted to my family for their sympathy and support during all the time I was studying for M.A degree at Graduate Academy of Social Sciences Without their unconditional love and sincere contribution, I could not have overcome my difficulties and concentrated on my studies ii TABLE OF CONTENTS DECLARATION BY AUTHOR ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS ABSTRACT LIST OF TABLES LIST OF FIGURES & CHARTS LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS CHAPTER 1: INTRODUCTION 1.1 Rationale 1.2 Aims of the Study 1.3 Research Questions 1.4 Scope of the Study 1.5 Significance of the Study 1.6 Research Methods 1.7 Structure of the Study CHAPTER 2: LITERATURE REVIEW 2.1 Concepts of speaking 2.1.1 Definitions of speaking 2.1.2 Characteristics of speaking 2.1.3 Functions of speaking 2.1.4 The importance of teaching speaking 2.1.5 Principles of teaching speaking 2.1.6 Teacher’s roles in teaching speaking 2.1.7 Components of teaching speaking 2.2 Communicative Language Teaching iii 2.3 Project-based learning 2.3.1 Definitions of project-based learning 2.3.2 Types of projects 2.3.3 Key features of Project-based learning 2.3.4 Advantages and challenges of project-based learning 2.3.5 Process of Project-based learning 2.4 Previous studies 2.5 Summary CHAPTER 3: METHODOLOGY 3.1 Research Setting 3.2 Participants 3.3 Data Collection Instruments 3.4 Research design 3.5 Research Procedures 3.5.1 Phase 1: Planning 3.5.2 Phase 2: Action 3.5.3 Phase 3: Observation 3.5.4 Phase 4: Reflection 3.6 Data Analysis 3.7 Summary CHAPTER 4: FINDINGS AND DISCUSSIONS 4.1 Data Analysis from Tests 4.2 Data Analysis from Questionnaires 4.3 Data Analysis from Interviews 4.4 Summary CHAPTER 5: CONCLUSION iv 5.1 Recapitulation 5.2 Concluding Remarks 5.3 Implications 5.4 Limitations and Suggestions for Further Studies REFERENCES APPENDIX 1: Pre-test for students APPENDIX 2: Survey questionnaire APPENDIX 3: Post-test for students APPENDIX 4: Scoring Rubric for Speaking test APPENDIX 5: English Speaking Ability Evaluation APPENDIX 6: Interview questions APPENDIX 7: Post-trying out questionnaire APPENDIX 8: Sample lesson plan v ABSTRACT Nowadays, English becomes more and more important in almost aspects of life English is a global language, so it is a compulsory subject at schools and universities Communication is one of the most important skills in study, and work Being a lecturer at a university, I recognize that we should help our students find the better way to improve their speaking skills and feel confident when talking or speaking in front of the class or the crowded or making a conversation with foreigners After learning about some methods to help the students improve their speaking skills We chose Project – based Learning to apply for our speaking classes in experiment After doing this experiment, we found out two issues: (1) the students’ attitudes to using Project – based Learning in speaking classes; (2) the result of students in Speaking classes when applying Project – based Learning I randomly chose a Class with class code 0070133 to carry out my action research project with the participants: 30 the first-year students a Dong Nai Technology University We performed this study in 12 weeks and used questionnaires, pre- test, posttest and interviews for collecting data instruments The research findings us that the students has positive attitudes to using Project – based learning in speaking classes and PBL was a good way to help students improve their speaking skills With the result we got in the findings, both the lecturers and the students could find the own way for teaching and learning to achieve the best result in speaking skills in speaking classes vi LIST OF TABLES Table 1: Assessing Speaking Performance- Level B1 (CEFR) Table 2: Observation checklist Table 3: Procedures of the study Table 4: A comparison of Mean Score on Pre-Test and Post-Test by Three Raters Table 5: Mean score of tests Table 6: Changes after taking part in the lessons using PBL vii LIST OF FIGURES & CHARTS Figure 1: Action Research Cycle Chart 1: Students’ opinions of being afraid of speaking English in class Chart 2: Students’ frequency of speaking English Chart 3: Students’ difficulties of speaking English in class time Chart 4: Frequency of practicing speaking English in class Chart 5: The active activities of students in teamwork in English speaking lessons Chart 6: Students’ interest in English speaking activities Chart 7: Students’ opinion of using project-based learning in optional lessons Chart 8: Students’ opinions about the effectiveness of projectbased learning in improving speaking skills Chart 9: Students’ improvement for criteria after applying projectbased learning in improving speaking skills Chart 10: The students’ difficulties when carrying out the project for the first time viii V Grammar Vocabulary and ideas VI Total score VII APPENDIX 5: □Pre- test English Speaking Ability Evaluation □Post- test Student……………………………Rater……………………Date: ………… Category Behavior (Communication) Fluency and pronunciation Grammar Vocabulary and ideas Total score: …… VIII APPENDIX INTERVIEW QUESTIONS I am Đinh Công Tính, an English lecturer at Dong Nai Technology University I am carrying out my research of using Project-based learning to help the students improve their speaking skills Your participation in my study is highly appreciated After the PBL was applied in lessons, the researcher would like to know the students’ opinion, the students’ attitude to PBL method and the students’ improvement in speaking English Thank you very much for your kind cooperation! This interview is carried out to find out the opinion of the two English lecturers at Dong Nai Technology University who have been invited to join the pre-test and attend some optional lessons in class code 0070133 to the using of Project-based learning to teach speaking skills The interview is conducted after the lessons with Project-based learning and the post-test The questions are designed in the hope of finding out the lecturers’ opinions of the effectiveness of Project - Based Learning in developing students' speaking skills QUESTIONS a Do you usually use Project Based Learning in teaching English to your students? Why or Why not? b Are you satisfied with the students' performance in their post-test? c Do you think using Project Based Learning can develop students’ speaking skills? d Do you think about whether to apply Project-Based Learning to your English teaching? IX APPENDIX 7: POST- TRYING OUT QUESTIONNAIRE The researcher would like to have your cooperation in providing useful information for the thesis, M.A Please feel secure that your information will be kept strictly confidential Thank you for your cooperation Please give your answers: Full name: ………………………………………… Class: ………………………………………… Please tick the answer you think the most suitable What you think about using Project Based Learning in the optional lessons? A too difficult B challenging but interesting C normal D too easy Do you think using Project Based Learning in the lessons has helped develop your English speaking skill? A Yes B No Which criteria of speaking skill have you improved? You can choose more than one answer A fluency B vocabulary C grammatical accuracy D pronunciation E interactive communication What are your opinions of your own changes after taking part in the lessons using Project Based Learning? A strongly agree B agree C I don’t know X D disagree E extremely disagree The changes after taking part in the lessons using PBL Changes speaking English the lessons Ihave responsibility for my own learning skill speaking in front of the audience Which difficulties did you encounter when carrying out your projects? You can choose more than one answer A I was not familiar with group work B The duration of a project is too long C I had difficulty accepting the new role of the teacher as a facilitator XI APPENDIX 8: Lesson Plan SAMPLE LESSON PLAN TOPIC: HOBBIES Lecturer: Đinh Cơng Tính Textbook: I – discover Time: 40 minutes Class code: 0070133 at Dong Nai Technology University OPTIONAL LESSON + (PREPARATION) AIMS: After the five lessons, the students have to gain: - General knowledge of free time activities, kinds of hobbies - Vocabulary: words related to sports, entertainment, hobbies - Pronunciation: be able to pronounce vocabulary concerned about lesson well - Skills: speaking skill, presentation skill MATERIALS: projector or television, laptop, posters, pictures, textbook, speakers, microphones PREDICTING THE PROBLEMS: The students may get difficulties in:  Getting trouble in lecturing in front of class  Using the support tools for slide show  Composing words for Powerpoint STAGES: - The lecturers give some fields concerned about the topic for the students choose one of them: Sports, Music, travelling, vacation, films, eating and drinking - Each group must choose one and prepare for the presentation The students have to four steps: XII - Choose a suitable topic - Defining the objective of the presentation - Preparing for the presentation: Voting to choose a leader for the group Then distributing the work for each member in the group The leader is in charge of collecting and summing up the searching information of each member Next, discuss in group and design the powerpoint, and divide speaking task for each member - Lecturing in front of class: Each member is in charge of the presentation which was given And answering the questions concerned about the chosen Topic The lecturer gives some tips for getting a good presentation - + Greeting: * Good morning/ afternoon everyone * Hello, class/ Hello, everyone + Introducing the presentation’s topic: * Today, we are very happy to talk about * Today, we are going to talk about……………… ………… + Introducing the main contents Our presentation is divided into three parts * * Our presentation consists of three main parts The students can use one of these sample structure presentations: First, we are going to present… Then we will share with you… Finally, we will ask you to… * The next thing we will share with you is… * In the next section, we will show you… * Today we will cover these key points… * In this presentation, we will discuss the topic * By the end of this presentation, we will have……………… * XIII ► Asking the audience some Questions The students can use one of the following ways to ask the audience make some questions:  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask us  Feel free to ask any questions  There will be plenty of time for questions at the end  I would be happy to answer any your questions XIV OPTIONAL LESSON + + (PRESENTATION) During the next three optional lessons, six groups will make a presentation about the chosen topic in about 15 minutes Two groups will present their project in each optional lesson Each optional lesson is composed of four parts: + Warm-up + Presentation of each group + Asking and answering + Feedback and Evaluation from the lecturer SAMPLE LESSON PLAN TOPIC: HOBBIES OPTIONAL LESSON Lecturer: Đinh Cơng Tính Textbook: I – discover Time: 40 minutes Class Code: 0070133 at Dong Nai Technology University I Aim: to help the students master the skills for the presentation in front of the class, especially the speaking skills and persuading skills II Objectives Educational aim: After the lesson, the students can use the knowledge to communicate with others in English They should choose the good hobbies to have a good life Knowledge: - General knowledge: Students have the general knowledge of sports, music, film, art, free time activities, food and drink, and other entertainment - Vocabulary: Words related to hobbies XV Skills: - presenting in English - using body language - teamwork – skill - managing time skill - using computer/ laptop skill + Competence: searching, self-study; problem-solving; communication, cooperation, using language III.Materials: -Lecturer: Book, lesson plan, powerpoint, pictures, projector/ smart television, laptop, chalk, games, activities for speaking, etc - Students: Books, notebooks, pens, posters, power point file, etc IV Predicting the problems: Students need lecturer’s direction for using projector/ smart television in slide show V Procedure: Stages/ Time Warm-up (10 mins) XVI Presentation (20 mins) Asking and answering (6p) Lecturer’s evaluation (4 mins) E Homework (1’): - Students who haven’t lectured the presentation yet have to prepare at home for the next period XVII ... for speaking skills Then they can improve their English speaking skills with PBL day by day And someday, they will be good at speaking skills and daily conversation The last thing, to Dong Nai Technology. .. speaking skills at Dong Nai Technology University To gain the aim, the researcher must to reach the following objectives as: - Learning about the students’ attitudes to Project – based learning. .. Questions To achieve the above aims of the study, the researcher must find out the answers to the following research questions: What is the first-year students’ attitude to project- based learning at Dong
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