The Learning Styles of Students with High Achievement Marks and Low Achievement Marks - Assignment Point
The Learning Styles of Students with High Achievement Marks and Low Achievement Marks
Subject: English | Topics:

Chapter 1

INTRODUCTION

Learning Strategy:

A learning strategy consists of mental or behavioral activity related to some specific stage in the overall process of language use. Strategy refers to both general approach and specific actions or techniques used to learn an L2.

Strategies are problem oriented. Learners are generally aware of the strategies they use.

Strategies differ from person to person. They involve linguistic and non-linguistic behavior. Linguistic strategies can be performed both in the L1 and L2. Some strategies are behavioral while others are mental. Thus some strategies are directly observable, while others are not.

Strategies contribute indirectly to learning by providing learners with the data about the L2 which they can then process. Some strategies may not contribute directly, e.g. memorizing strategy.

 What is Learning Style?

Learning style suggests or means the particular way in which a learner tries to learn something. In second or foreign language learning different learners may prefer different solutions to learning problems.

For example: some may want explanation for grammatical rules. Some may feel writing down wards or sentences help them to remember them. Others may find they remember things better if they are associated with pictures. These are called differences of learning style.

Every person learns differently. From kindergartens to postgraduate levels, only students can do the learning, and they do it in their own particular, individual learning styles. Some children pick something up the first time they hear it. Others may not grasp a concept until they’ve had the chance to see it in print, or to write it themselves. These people all use different learning
modalities.

Basic Ways of Learning:

There are four basic ways in which people learn.

i. Auditory learners gain information with the use of their ears.

ii. Visual learning takes place with the use of our eyes.

iii.Kinesthetic learning derives from the use of our muscles
and skin.

iv. Photographic learners use all their senses to obtain information.

Everyone gains information by all of these means, yet some people tend to favor one aspect over another, or rely more heavily on one combination. For example,writing down (kinesthetic) what we hear (auditory) combine two modalities or styles. A majority of people learn visually, so visual aids are a must.

When we speak of learning styles, we most often describe sensory modalities through which individuals receive, process, store, and communicate information. They categorize students as visual, auditory, or heptic (or kinesthetic) learners, while acknowledging that these labels indicate preferences and strengths rather than absolute descriptors.

For example, university students, studying the same challenging article, might use color to highlight and separate main ideas (visual), explain the main concepts to a friend (auditory), or manipulate ideas written on note cards to show relationships (kinesthetic). While these students approach the reading assignment differently, they share the experience of being actively engaged in the task.

Different Learning Styles:

It is always important for teachers to teach their students’ learning styles but this becomes crucial when teaching English language learners. ELLs(English Language Learner)  may be highly literate in their own language but experience difficulties when acquiring English because they are accustomed to learning through a different style. In any case, most ELLs(English Language Learner)  are visual or kinesthetic learners when they first learn English. Most teachers, especially in the upper grades, teach students with an auditory learning style. This can be very difficult for the ELLs (English Language Learner) in the class.

Auditory Learners

Students with this style will be able to recall what they hear and will prefer oral instructions. They learn by listening and speaking. These students enjoy talking and interviewing. They are phonetic readers who enjoy oral reading, choral reading, and listening to recorded books. They learn best by doing the following:

  • interviewing, debating
  • participating on a panel
  • giving oral reports
  • participating in oral discussions of written material

Visual Learners

Visual learners will be able to recall what they see and will prefer written instructions. These students are sight readers who enjoy reading silently. Better yet, present information to them with a video. They will learn by observing and enjoy working with the following:

  • computer graphics
  • maps, graphs, charts
  • cartoons
  • posters
  • diagrams
  • graphic organizers
  • text with a lot of pictures

 Tactile Learners

Students with this strength learn best by touching. They understand directions that they write and will learn best through manipulative. Teachers can try the Language Experience Approach (LEA) when teaching these students to read. These students will also benefit from whole language approaches to reading. They’ll learn best by:

  • drawing
  • playing board games
  • making dioramas
  • making models
  • following instructions to make something

 Kinesthetic Learners

Kinesthetic learners also learn by touching or manipulating objects. They need to involve their whole body in learning. Total Physical Response is a good ESL method for them. They remember material best if they act it out. These students learn best by:

  • playing games that involve their whole body
  • movement activities
  • making models
  • following instructions to make something
  • setting up experiments

 Global Learners

Global learners are spontaneous and intuitive. They do not like to be bored. Information needs to be presented in an interesting manner using attractive materials. Cooperative learning strategies and holistic reading methods work well with these learners. Global learners learn best through:

  • choral reading
  • recorded books
  • story writing
  • computer programs
  • games
  • group activities

Analytic Learners

Analytic learners plan and organize their work. They focus on details and are logical. They are phonetic readers and prefer to work individually on activity sheets. They learn best when:

  • information is presented in sequential steps
  • lessons are structured and teacher-directed
  • goals are clear
  • requirements are spelled out

The most important message in all these learning style classifications is that students’ knowledge of their particular learning styles can lead to more productive studying. Conversely, difficulties arise when there is a lack of self-understanding and appropriate study strategy development. (Levine, 1997)

Chapter 2            

 LITERATURE REVEIW

Second Language Learners

Interest and research in second language learning styles has focused on cognitive styles (with some behavioural applications) and on conscious learning strategies. Much of the work concerns the interaction of cognitive styles and affective variables with situational demands (Brown, 1974; Ely, 1986; Hatch, 1974; Heyde, 1977; Naiman, Fröhlich, & Todesco, 1975; Tarone, Swain, & Fathman, 1976; Tucker, Hamayan, & Genesee, 1976). Other studies have concentrated on the role of affective elements and cognitive styles in academic achievement (Abraham, 1983; d’Anglejan, Painchaud, & Renaud, 1986; Bassano, 1986; Bialystok, 1985; Chapelle & Roberts, 1986). Wong – Fillmore (1986) has studied the process of learning English in bilingual and ESL classrooms, in particular the role of cultural factors in second language acquisition. The conscious learning strategies of NNS students (e.g., practicing, monitoring, inference, memorizing, and self-directed learning) have also been investigated (Bialystok & Frohlich, 1978; Carver, 1984; Krashen, 1982; Oxford-Carpenter, 1985; Wenden, 1984, 1986a). Finally, recent studies have investigated culture-specific modes of learning (Scribner & Cole, 1981; Wagner, Messick, & Spratt, 1986).

Omaggio (1978) and Cohen (1984) have indicated that NNSs can successfully identify and describe second language learning strategies. Other research includes Wong’s (1985) discussion of the “sensory generalist” learning style of limited English proficient Asian students and Wenden’s (1986b) overview of the successful language learner. This research in second language learning has revealed that individuals vary in the strategies they employ because of differences in learning styles, affective styles, and cognitive styles. There is no published research that describes the perceptual learning style preferences of NNSs. Preuniversity ESL students, with their variety of language and cultural backgrounds and their differences in age and previous education, often come together in intensive English language programs in which they are taught homogeneously by teachers who have little knowledge of learning styles. ESL instructors often use methods and materials that have been developed with the learning needs of native speakers of English in mind. In many cases, neither students nor teachers are aware that difficulty in learning class material, high frustration levels, and even failure may not rest solely in the material itself. The study reported in this article was designed to provide baseline data for future research on the perceptual learning style preferences of NNSs and to provide insights for the ESL classroom.

Individual Learner Differences

Individual learner differences refer to the differences in how learners learn an L2, how fast they learn, how successful they are. Research on variation between individual learners establishes the fact that second language learners vary on a number of dimensions. There are two basic possibilities regarding which aspects of SLA are affected by individual learner factors.

  1. differences in age, learning style aptitude, motivation and personality results in differences in the route along which learners pass in SLA.
  2. these factors influence only the rate and ultimate success of SLA.

The main purpose of studying individual learner’s differences is to see how the factors affect SLA. This involves two separate issues.

 a)      what the affects are

b)      how individual factors influence SLA.

A learner can learn in two ways,

a) Formal Instruction: learn through classroom teaching

b) Naturalistic Learning: learn from environment. In this way, students get information, exposure from all around.

 Learners’ Affective States

Learners, in particular classroom learners, react to the learning situations they find themselves in a variety of affective ways. For example, F.Schumann (Schumann and Schumann 1977) reports being unable to settle down to studying Farsi and Arabic (in Iran and Tunisia) until she had achieved order and comfort in her physical surroundings. Bailey (1980) discusses a ‘classroom crisis’ that occurred when her French teacher administered a test that the class considered unfair. One of the beginner learners of German that Ellis and Rathbone (1987) studied reported a period during which she was unable to learn any German because of a boyfriend problem. These and other studies testify to the complexity and dynamic nature of learners’ affective status and the influence these have on their ability to concentrate on learning. Learners, it seems, need to feel secure and to be free of stress before they can focus on the learning task-the importance of which is directly acknowledged in humanistic approaches to language teaching (see Moskowitz 1978).

It is, of course, not easy to study the role that affective states play in L2 learning in a systematic manner, if only because they are so individualistic and changeable. Some of the best work has investigated one particular affective factor anxiety.

Anxiety:

One particular affective factor is anxiety. Affective factors are related to emotion or feelings. On the basis of general psychology, anxiety can be of three types:

Situational anxiety:

This is resulting from sudden situations. According to this case, usually the learner is not like that, but for the sudden situation he behaves like that. His anxiety is unpredictable.

State anxiety:

This results from predetermined negative associations. It is predictable. It is experienced at a particular moment in time as a response to a definite situation.

Trait anxiety:

It comes by birth. Generally the learner is anxious by nature. It is permanent.

Effects of anxiety:

There can be two types of effects of anxiety.

  • Debilitating

This anxiety causes the learners to run away from the situation. The learner fails at the end. This anxiety ruins the general ability of the learners.

  • Facilitating

This anxiety motivates learners to face the situation. It prompts them to make extra efforts to overcome their feelings of anxiety.

Motivation:

Motivation means the urge to do something. SLA research views it as a key factor in L2 learning. According to the source, motivation is of two types:

Integrative  motivation: 

Integrative motivation occurs when a learner wishes to identify with the culture of the L2 group. When the work itself is of interest learners learn L2 to mix with people speaking target language.

Instrumental motivation:

Instrumental motivation occurs when task is done for another reason it suggest when the task is a mean to an end. For example:

  • Students of SSC level learn English to get a certificate.
  • Students of IELTS learn English to go abroad.

Language Learning Strategies:

Research into language learning strategies began in the 1960s. Particularly, developments in cognitive psychology influenced much of the research done on language learning strategies (Wiliams and Burden 1997:149). In most of the research on language learning strategies, the primary concern has been on “identifying what good language learners report they do to learn a second or foreign language, or, in some cases, are observed doing while learning a second or foreign language.” (Rubin and Wenden 1987: 19).

In 1966, Aaron Carton published his study entitled ‘The Method of Inference in Foreign Language Study’, which was the first attempt on learner strategies. After Carton, in 1971, Rubin started doing research focusing on the strategies of successful learners and stated that, once identified; such strategies could be made available to less successful learners. Rubin (1975) classified strategies in terms of processes contributing directly or indirectly to language learning. Wong-Fillmore (1976), Tarone (1977), Naiman et al. (1978), Bialystok (1979), Cohen and Aphek (1981), Wenden (1982), Chamot and O’Malley (1987), Politzer and McGroarty (1985), Conti and Kolsody (1997), and many others studied strategies used by language learners during the process of foreign language learning.

Learning Style:

The idea of learning style comes from general psychology. It refers to the characteristic ways in which individuals orientated to problem solving. Keefe (1979) defines learning style as:

“….the characteristic cognitive, affective and physiological behaviours that serve as relatively stable indicators how learners perceive, interact with a respond to the learning environment… learning style is consistent way of functioning that reflects underlying causes of behaviour.”

Learning style, therefore, reflects “the totality of psychological functions” (Willing 1987). And individual learning style is viewed as relatively fixed and not readily changed.  However, Little and Singleton (1990) argue that it is possible help adult learners to explore their own preferences and to shape their learning approach to suit the requirements of a particular learning task.

A number of leaning style distinctions have been made in cognitive psychology. Bruner, Goodnow and Austin (1957) distinguished “focusers” and “scanners”. The former tackle a problem by concentrating on one feature at a time, in a step by step process, while the latter deal with several features at the same time and allow their ideas to crystallize slowly. Pask and Scott (1972) distinguish “serialists” and “holists”, according to whether learners operate with simple hypotheses or complex hypotheses.  Other distinction which seem to reflect personality as much as learning style differences, include “impulsion” “reflexive” thinkers and “divergent” v. “convergent” thinkers.

In the mid- to late 1970s, paradigms began to be developed to identify the more external, applied modes of learning styles. Style refers to a pervasive quality in the learning strategies or the learning behavior of an individual, “a quality that persists though the content may change” (Fischer & Fischer, 1979, p. 245). Seminal research by Dunn and Dunn (1972) resulted in The Learning Style Inventory (Dunn, Dunn, & Price, 1975), a self-reporting questionnaire that enables public school students to identify their learning style preferences. Among the 21 identified learning styles, R. Dunn (1983) and Dunn and Dunn (1979) have reported on perceptual learning styles, a term that describes the variations among learners in using one or more senses to understand, organize, and retain experience.

Research with U.S. school children (R. Dunn, 1983, 1984; Reinert, 1976) has demonstrated that learners have four basic perceptual learning channels (or modalities):

1. Visual learning: reading, studying charts

2. Auditory learning: listening to lectures, audiotapes

3. Kinesthetic learning: experiential learning, that is, total physical

involvement with a learning situation

4. Tactile learning: “hands-on” learning, such as building models or

doing laboratory experiments

5.Global Learning: group activities

6.Analytic Learning: work individually

The research findings of the Dunns(1972) and their colleagues verify that most students do correctly identify their learning strengths, particularly when an element is strongly preferred or rejected (R. Dunn, 1984). Dunn and Dunn (1979) found that only 20-30% of school age children appear to be auditory learners, that 40% are visual, and that the remaining 30-40% are tactile/kinesthetic, visual/tactile, or some other combination. Price, Dunn, and Sanders (1980) found that very young children are the most tactile/kinesthetic, that there is a gradual development of visual strengths through the elementary grades, and that only in fifth or sixth grade can most youngsters learn and retain information through the auditory sense. Carbo (1983), investigating the perceptual styles of readers, found that good readers prefer to learn through their visual and auditory senses, while poor readers have a stronger preference for tactile and kinesthetic learning.

Reid administered a questionnaire to 1,388 students of varying language backgrounds to investigate their preferred modalities. This revealed that the learners’ preferences often differed significantly from those of native speakers of American English. They showed a general preference for kinesthetic and tactile learning style (with the exception of the Japanese), and for individual as opposed to group learning. With regard to the latter, Reid comments:

‘Every language background, including English, gave group work as a minor or negative preference’.

Proficiency level was not related to learning style preference, but length of residence in the United States was- the longer the period, the more an auditory style was preferred, reflecting perhaps an adaptation to the prevailing demands of the American educational system.

In another survey, Willing (1987) investigated the learning styles of 517 adult ESL learners in Australia. Their responses to a 30 item questionnaire were analysed by means of factor analysis (a statistical procedure designed to discover if there were any combinations of items which afforded parallel responses).Willing (1987)  identified two major dimensions of learning style. One was cognitive and corresponded closely to that of field independence/dependence. The other was more affective in nature; it concerned how active learners were in the way they reported approaching L2 learning tasks.

Skehan (1991) suggested that the second dimension reflects a personality as much as learning style factor. Based on these two dimensions, Willing (1987) described four general learning styles. Willing’s study was interesting, but the result obtained. Willing’s study did not include sufficient numbers of subjects to permit a statistically valid analysis of many of the nationalities it sampled. Also, the subjects were not equally distributed into the four learning styles. Perhaps the most serious reservation concerned the validity and reliability of the questionnaire Willing used.

Cognitive Style

Cognitive style refers to the manner in which people perceive, conceptualize, organize and recall information. The dichotomy of cognitive style investigated that SLA is concerned about Field Dependence and Field Independence.

Main characteristics of Field Dependence and Field Independence: 

Field Dependence

  • Personal orientation i.e. reliance on external frame of reference in processing information
  • Holistic i.e. perceive a field as a whole, parts are fused with background.
  • Dependent i.e. the self view is derived from others
  • Socially sensitive i.e. greater skill in interpersonal or social relationship

Field Independence 

  •  impersonal orientation   i.e. reliance on internal frame of reference in processing information
  • analytic i.e. perceive a field in terms of component parts; parts are distinguish from background
  • Independent i.e. sense of separate identity.
  • Not so socially aware i.e. less skilled in interpersonal or social relationship

Two conflicting hypothesis that relate field dependence and independence to SLA learning:

1. Field Independence: It relates to successful classroom learning that involves mastering of exercises, drills, detailed activities and tasks.

2. Field Dependence: This type of people with their empathy for others, their dependence on the group and the help of others will be successful in communicating skills of L2.

Other approaches to investigating learning style in second language learners

Some of the other approaches for investigating learning style are more promising.

Willing (1987) has described four general learning styles:

1. Concrete learning style

  • Direct means of processing information
  • People oriented
  • Spontaneous
  • Imaginative
  • Emotional
  • Dislikes reutilized learning
  • Prefers kinesthetic modality

2. Analytical learning

  • Focuses on specific problems and proceeds by means of Hypothetical –deductive reasoning
  • Object-oriented
  • Independent
  • Dislike failure
  • Prefers logical deductive presentation

3. Communicative learning style

  • Fairly independent
  • Highly adaptable
  • And flexible
  • Responsive to facts that do not fit
  • Prefers social learning and a communicative approach
  • Enjoy taking decisions

4. Authority- oriented learning style

  • Reliant on other people
  • Needs teachers’ directions and explanation
  • Like a structured learning environment
  • Intolerant of facts that do not fit
  • Prefers a sequential progression
  • Discovery learning

Willing’s (1987) questionnaire was also used (in a slightly adapted form) by Gieve (1991) in a study of the learning styles of 156 first year female students at a Junior College in Japan. Gieve (1991) analysed the data using a variety of statistical procedures, the most revealing of which was cluster analysis (a procedure that groups people according to the similarity of their response profiles).

 Five clusters emerged, which can be identified as follows:

1. learners with instrumental motivation together with communicative orientation,

2. learners with no motivation

3. learners interested in general intellectual development

4. learners with a strong motivation but with clear aims, and

5. learners with integrative motivation interested in living abroad.

Most students fell into cluster 2.This analysis suggests that the strength and nature of learners’ motivation works as a major dimension of learning style. Gieve (1991) also makes the interesting point that the students’ responses reflected their environment at least as much as innate qualities, as shown by the fact that significant differences were found in learners’ responses depending on whether the questionnaire was administered by a Japanese or native speaker researcher. Again then, doubts are raised as to whether the results obtained by the questionnaire can be considered reliable.

Further evidence of differences in learning styles comes from product analysis of learner language. Researching L1 acquisition, Melson (1973) distinguishes ‘referential’ and ‘expressive’ learners. The former uses language to name things while the latter prefer to use it to indicate feelings, needs and social forms.

Peters (1977) suggests that some learners are ‘analytic’ (i.e. are word learners who progress incrementally through a recognizable sequence of stages of acquisition) and some are ‘gestalt’ (i.e. are sentence learners who begin with whole sentences which are used to perform functions that are important to them).In SLA research, somewhat similar types of learners have been identified.

Hatch(1974), for example, talks of ‘rule-formers’, who pay close attention to linguistic form, sort out the rules, and develop steadily, and ‘data-gatherers’, who show greater concern for communication and make extensive use of formulaic chunks.

Dechert (1984a) compared the styles of two advanced learners in a narrative reproductive task. One was ‘analytic’ (manifesting long pauses at chunk boundaries, few corrections, and serial processing) while the other was ‘synthetic”(manifesting shorter pauses throughout, more corrections, and episodic processing). The terms used to characterize the differences in language produced by different learners proliferate, but it is tempting to identify one general distinction that seems to under many of those mentioned above- the experiential, communicatively- oriented learner as opposed to the analytical, norm-oriented learner.

Carroll (1978) defines general aptitude as “capability of learning a task”, which depends on

 “some combinations of more or less enduring characteristics of a learner.”

In the case of language aptitude the capability involves a special propensity for learning an L2. A person with high language aptitude can learn more quickly than a person with low language aptitude.

Carroll (1978) identified four factors in language aptitude.

1. Phonemic coding ability is related to perceive and memorize new sounds.

2. Grammatical sensibility is the ability to recognize the grammatical functions of words in a sentence.

3. Inductive ability relates to the ability to notice and identify similarities and differences to both grammatical and meaning.

4. Role learning ability relates to the ability of vocabulary learning

Importance of Language Learning Strategies in Language Learning and Teaching

Since the amount of information to be processed by language learners is high in language classroom, learners use different language learning strategies in performing the tasks and processing the new input they face. Language learning strategies are good indicators of how learners approach tasks or problems encountered during the process of language learning. In other words, language learning strategies, while no observable or unconsciously used in some cases, give language teachers valuable clues about how their students assess the situation, plan, select appropriate skills so as to understand, learn, or remember new input presented in the language classroom. According to Fedderholdt (1997:1), the language learner capable of using a wide variety of language learning strategies appropriately can improve his language skills in a better way. Metacognitive strategies improve organization of learning time, self-monitoring, and self-evaluation. Cognitive strategies include using previous knowledge to help solve new problems. Socio-affective strategies include asking native speakers to correct their pronunciation, or asking a classmate to work together on a particular language problem. Developing skills in three areas, such as metacognitive, cognitive, and socio-affective can help the language learner build up learner independence and autonomy whereby he can take control of his own learning. Lessard – Clouston (1997:3) states that language learning strategies contribute to the development of the communicative competence of the students. Being a broad concept, language learning strategies are used to refer to all strategies foreign language learners use in learning the target language and communication strategies are one type of language learning strategies. It follows from this that language teachers aiming at developing the communicative competence of the students and language learning should be familiar with language learning strategies. As Oxford (1990:1) states, language learning strategies “… are especially important for language learning because they are tools for active, self-directed movement, which is essential for developing communicative competence.” Besides developing the communicative competence of the students, teachers who train students to use language learning strategies can help them become better language learners. Helping students understand good language learning strategies and training them to develop and use such good language learning strategies can be considered to be the appreciated characteristics of a good language teacher (Lessard – Clouston 1997:3). Research into the good language learning strategies revealed a number of positive strategies so that such strategies could also be used by bad language learners trying to become more successful in language learning. However, there is always the possibility that bad language learners can also use the same good language learning strategies while becoming unsuccessful owing to some other reasons. At this point, it should be strongly stressed that using the same good language learning strategies does not guarantee that bad learners will also become successful in language learning since other factors may also play role in success.

Chapter 3

METHODOLOGY

 Objective of the Study:

The objective of the study is to assess the learning styles of students with high achievement marks and low achievement marks in English at the SSC level.

 Research Question:

Differences in the learning styles of students with high achievement marks and low achievement marks in English at the SSC level.

Hypothesis:

# The students with high achievement marks maintain a regularity in their study and their learning style is appropriate to improve their study.

# The students with low achievement marks do not maintain a regularity in their study and their learning style is not appropriate to improve their study.

Participants:

For conducting my research, I surveyed two colleges – one was a private college and another was a government college. Both of these were situated in Dhaka. I surveyed through questionnaire. I took 20 students from each college. These students were of different qualities. According to the grading they achieved in SSC exam, I divided them into two groups. In one group there were 20 students who got high marks in English and in another group there were 20 students who got low marks in English in SSC exam. The students had come from different social background. The answers of the questionnaire will help me to identify what type of learning styles the students are following.

Instruments:

The instrument used for this research was a questionnaire for students. As I have mentioned, I took two groups of students who got high marks and low marks in English in SSC exam. The questionnaire has 16 questions; almost all of them have three options, some have two and some have four options. Both groups of students have given answers of the same questionnaire. The questionnaire was organized in such a way so that it would bring out an effective result of the present research. Almost all the questions are open ended. I employed only quantitative methodology for my research.

Procedures:

The research needed to be conducted with the students of HSC level. For this, I selected two different colleges – one is PrivateCollege and another is GovernmentCollege. These two colleges are more or less popular in Dhaka. In two days I was able to collect the data. It was really difficult to find out different groups of students. No one wanted to tell their actual grading.

When I went to the PrivateCollege, it helped me to find out the two categories of students very easily, because they admitted the students by grouping them according to their grading in SSC exam. In group A there were students who had got grade 4-5 in SSC exam and group B there were students who got below grade 4 in SSC exam. In one day I could be able to survey in the private college. I talked to the Principal of the college. He received me cordially and allowed me to do my survey. He was very much enthusiastic about my survey. He himself showed me the classes and introduced me with the students of the class. While doing the survey, he himself was present and it helped me to handle the students easily.

When I went to the government college, at first I met the Principal. I explained her that what the purpose of my survey was. Then she told me to submit an application giving the details of my thesis and from where I have come. Besides this I had to show the concerned letter that was given by my department. Then she talked to the Vice-Principal and told me to contact with her. I explained her everything for the second time. Then she gave me a date and time to go to the college on the next week. I went to the college for the second time on the fixed date and time. The Vice-Principal took me to a class. I asked the students what grading they got in their SSC exam. They did not response frankly. Some were telling that they got A or A+, but actually they did not get, because other students were showing their face while they were telling a lie. Then I took an interview of the students to get the real answer and also matched it with their register copy. Through this interview I could make two groups who got high marks and low marks in English in SSC exam.

While doing the survey, I had to translate almost all the questions in Bengali. Most of the students also gave the answers in Bengali. While they started to write in English, they were making a lot of mistakes and could not express themselves clearly. Then I had to allow them to write in Bengali. In the meantime, I talked to them and got many ideas related to my questionnaire that helped me later to do the analysis and findings of my thesis. However, collecting data was overall very much interesting and it was really a new experience for me.

Data Processing:

After collecting the data I started to analyze every question of the questionnaire. The open ended questions helped me to find out the detailed picture of my required plot. From the analysis I also got the result of different types of learning styles and processes of different types of students. Some characteristics of learning processes of different students were matched that indicate what type of learning styles they follow. However, it took quite a long time to me to do the analysis and then to get the result.

Chapter 4

DATA ANALYSIS

The followings are the analysis of the questionnaire of the students. In the students’ questionnaire, there are 16 questions. In the questionnaire most of the questions are open-ended that helped me to find out the answers of the questions clearly.

Analysis of the Questionnaire

1. For me, the best way to read efficiently for my studies is:

a)  to sit at a desk and to make notes as I go along.

b)  to make recordings of my thoughts as I go along, and to discuss these with others.

c)  to use every minute to read, say, on the bus to university in the morning.

Data presentation:

Table 1

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

11

55

5

25

4

20

Low Achievement Marks

4

20

12

60

4

20

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 1, we can come to know that almost half of the students who got high marks told that a) they sit at desks and make notes as they go along.  25 % of the students told that b) they make recordings of their thoughts as they go along, and discuss these with others. Only 20 % of the students told that c) they use every minute to read, say, on the bus to university in the morning.

On the other hand, 60% students who got low marks responded that b) they make recordings of their thoughts as they go along, and discuss these with others.20 % of them said that a) they sit at desks and make notes as they go along. Rest 20 % said that c) they use every minute to read, say, on the bus to university in the morning.

2. When I am writing an assignment in English, my first strategy tends to be to:

a)  plan the assignment carefully first, perhaps using a mind map.

b) discuss my essay plan first with my tutor and fellow students

c) write out the first draft of the assignment straight away.

Data presentation:

Table 2

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

8

40

8

40

4

20

Low Achievement Marks

4

20

4

20

12

60

 Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 2, we can come to know that 40% of the students who got high marks told that when they are writing an assignment in English, their first strategy tends to be to a) they plan the assignment carefully first, perhaps using a mind map.40 % of the students told that b) they discuss their essay plan first with their tutor and fellow students Only 20 % of the students told that c)   they write out the first draft of the assignment straight away.

On the other hand, 60% students who got low marks responded that c)  they write out the first draft of the assignment straight away.20 % of them said that a) they plan the assignment carefully first, perhaps using a mind map. Rest 20 % said that b) they discuss their essay plan first with their tutors and fellow students

3. If I am asked to use a new item of technology on my course, which I have never used before, I prefer to:

a)  see a demonstration given by someone else first.

b)  listen to a talk about how to use the equipment.

c)  try using the equipment myself, straight away.

Data presentation:

Table 3

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

7

35

5

25

8

40

Low Achievement Marks

8

40

4

20

8

40

 Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 3, we can come to know that 40% of the students who got high marks told that c) they try using the equipment myself, straight away. 35 % of the students told that a) they see a demonstration given by someone else first. Only 25 % of the students told that b) they listen to a talk about how to use the equipment.

On the other hand, 40% students who got low marks responded that a) they see a demonstration given by someone else first.40 % of them said that c) they try using the equipment themselves, straight away. Rest 20 % said that b) they listen to a talk about how to use the equipment.

4. When I am reading a piece of fictional literature (either for pleasure, or for my course of study) I generally:

a)  like detailed visual descriptions.

b)  imagine hearing the characters talking.

c)  enjoy the action and the interaction between the characters.

Data presentation:

Table 4

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

6

30

7

35

7

35

Low Achievement Marks

8

40

8

40

4

20

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 4, we can come to know that 35% of the students who got high marks told that b) they imagine hearing the characters talking.
Another 35% students said that c) they enjoy the action and the interaction between the characters. Rest 30% said that a) they like detailed visual descriptions.

On the other hand, 40% students who got low marks responded that b) they imagine hearing the characters talking another. 40 % said that a) they like detailed visual descriptions. Rest 20 % said that c) they enjoy the action and the interaction between the characters.

5. When I begin studying a new topic on my course, the first thing I usually do is to:

a)  make a diagram, mind map or outline of the key information.

b)  talk to my fellow students, then listen carefully to the first lecture on the topic.

c)  go off to the nearest library to start doing my own research.

Data presentation:

Table 5

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

4

20

14

70

2

10

Low Achievement Marks

4

20

16

80

00

00

 Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 5, we can come to know that most of the students who got high marks told that. b) they talk to their fellow students, then listen carefully to the first lecture on the topic. 20 % of the students told that a) they make diagrams, mind map or outline of the key information. Only 10 % of the students told that c) they go off to the nearest library to start doing their own research.

On the other hand, most of the students who got low marks responded that b) they talk to their fellow students, and then listen carefully to the first lecture on the topic. 20 % of them said that a) they make diagram, mind map or outline of the key information. No one of them said that c) they go off to the nearest library to start doing their own researches.

6. When I get feedback on my assignment, I find it best if:

a)  the tutor corrects my mistakes, and gives written feedback at the end.

b)  the tutor discusses my work with me for a few minutes, one-to-one.

c)  the tutor shows me where I have gone wrong (e.g. gives me books, sits at the computer with me, gives me a ‘hands-on’ tutorial, etc).

Data presentation:

Table 6

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

6

30

8

40

6

30

Low Achievement Marks

4

20

4

20

12

60

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no.6, we can come to know that 40% of the students who got high marks told that they find it best if  b)  the tutor discusses their works with them for a few minutes, one-to-one.30%  students said that a) the tutor corrects their mistakes, and gives written feedback at the end. Rest 30% said that c) the tutor shows them where they have gone wrong.

On the other hand, Almost half of the students who got low marks responded that they find it best if c) the tutor shows their where they have gone wrong. 20 % of the students said that they find it best if a) the tutor corrects their mistakes, and gives written feedback at the end. Rest 20 % said that b) the tutor discusses their works with them for a few minutes, one-to-one.

7. I feel that I am best able to develop my English language by:

a)  seeing patterns in reference books and learning them.

b)  communicating with others in English.

c)  going for walks around towns or cities and seeing what language I can pick up on my travels

Data presentation:

Table 7

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

5

25

13

65

2

10

Low Achievement Marks

4

20

12

60

4

20

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no.7, we can come to know that almost half of the students who got high marks told that they feel that they are best able to develop their English language by b)  communicating with others in English.25 % of the students told that by a)  seeing patterns in reference books and learning them. Only 10 % of the students told that by c) going for walks around towns or cities and seeing what language they can pick up on their travels.

On the other hand, 60% of the students who got low marks responded that they feel that they are best able to develop their English language by b) communicating with others in English.20 % of them said that by a) seeing patterns in reference books and learning them. Rest 20% said that by c) going for walks around towns or cities and seeing what language they can pick up on their travels.

8. When I am preparing for my exams, my preferred method of revising is to:

a)  read my notes and learn them by heart.

b)  talk about the topics with others in a study group.

c)  ensure that I get plenty of physical exercise, perhaps taking my notes with me.

Data presentation:

Table 8

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

15

75

4

20

1

5

Low Achievement Marks

16

80

4

20

00

00

 Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 8, we can come to know that most of the students who got high marks told that a) they read their notes and learn them by heart. 20 % of the students told that b) they talk about the topics with others in a study group.5% of them responded that c) they ensure that they get plenty of physical exercise, perhaps taking their notes with them.

On the other hand, 80% of the students who got low marks responded that a) they read their notes and learn them by heart.20 % of them said that b) they  talk about the topics with others in a study groups. No one of them talked about (c).

 9. If I am in a lecture and I do not understand an important word or phrase used by the lecturer, my preferred strategy is to:

a)  try to write the word down as it sounds, and look it up later.

b)  remember how the word is pronounced and ask the tutor (or another student) later.

c)  Use a dictionary that you have brought along to the lecture.

Data presentation:

Table 9

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

3

15

10

50

7

35

Low Achievement Marks

16

80

4

20

00

00

 Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 9, we can come to know that half of the students who got high marks told that b) they remember how the word is pronounced and ask the tutor (or another student) later. 35 % of the students told that c) they use dictionary that they have brought along to the lecture. Only 15 % of the students told that a) they try to write the word down as it sounds, and look it up later.

On the other hand, 80% of the students who got low marks responded that a) they try to write the word down as it sounds, and look it up later. Only 4 % of them said that b) they remember how the word is pronounced and ask the tutor (or another student) later. The students who got low marks no one of them responded c.

10. In a lecture, my preferred strategy is:

a)  to make my notes as visual and eye-catching as possible.

b)  to gain as much understanding as possible just by listening to the lecturer.

c)  to spend time during any breaks discussing the lecture material with other students.

Data presentation:

Table 10

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

5

25

13

65

2

10

Low Achievement Marks

12

60

8

40

00

00

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 10, we can come to know that almost half of the students who got high marks told that in a lecture, their preferred strategy is b) to gain as much understanding as possible just by listening to the lecturer. 25 % of the students told that a) they make my notes as visual and eye-catching as possible. Only 10 % of the students told that c) they spend time during any breaks discussing the lecture material with other students.

 On the other hand, 60% students who got low marks responded that a) they make their notes as visual and eye-catching as possible. 40 % of them said that b) they gain as much understanding as possible just by listening to the lecturer. The students who got low marks no one of them responded (c).

11. When I learn new vocabulary, I find it best to:

a)  read a list of words and learn them by heart.

b)  listen to the words on a cassette or CD and try to repeat them.

c)  use ‘post-it’ labels and stick them around the room.

Data presentation:

Table 11

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

13

65

3

15

4

20

Low Achievement Marks

16

80

4

20

00

00

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 11, we can come to know that almost half of the students who got high marks told that when they learn new vocabulary, they find it best b)  they gain as much understanding as possible just by listening to the lecturer. 20 % of the students told that c) they use ‘post-it’ labels and stick them around the room. Only 15 % of the students told that b) they listen to the words on a cassette or CD and try to repeat them.

On the other hand, 80% of the students who got low marks responded that a) they  read  list of words and learn them by heart.40 % of them said that b)  they listen to the words on a cassette or CD and try to repeat them. The students who got low marks no one of them responded (c).

12. Do you memorize things for exam purpose?

a)Yes

b) No

Data presentation:

Table 12

 

Yes

No

No.%No.%
High Achievement Marks

7

35

13

65

Low Achievement Marks

16

80

4

20

Presentation in Chart:

If yes, which ones of the followings do I memorize?

                                           a) Grammar rules

                                           b)  Paragraphs

                                           c)  Essays

Data presentation:

 

Grammar rules

Paragraphs

Essays

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

12

60

8

40

6

30

Low Achievement Marks

4

20

12

60

14

70

Presentation in Chart:

If others, write down the name of the topics.

In the response of the question no. 12, we can come to know that 35% of the students who got high marks told “yes” and 65% of the students told that they do not memorize things for exam purpose and said “no”. The students who voted for yes, 60% of them told that they memories grammar. 40% of them told that they memorize paragraphs and only 30% of them told that they memorize essay.

On the other hand 70% of the student who got low marks told that they memories essay, 60% of them memories paragraphs. Only 20% of them memorize grammar rules. Many of the students voted for more than one option. They also wrote that they memorize application, letter, dialogue writing, story writhing and many other items.

13. Do you read English aloud?                  

m Yes m No

If yes, why …………………………………………………………

If no, why ………………………………………………………….

Data presentation:

Table 13

 

Yes

No

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

8

40

12

60

Low Achievement Marks

7

35

13

65

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 13, we can come to know that 40% of the students who got high marks told “yes” and 60% of the students said “no”. On the other hand 65% students who got low marks told “no” and 35% told “yes”.

As the reason of “yes” some of the students told that they can give their full concentration in their study if they read aloud. Some of them told that reading loudly helps them to memorize quickly. As the reason of “no” some of the students told that they actually try to understand the text or answer. They think that, if they understand the text or answer it will help them to do the free hand writing. Basically these students do not like memorization, they like to write themselves.

14. Usually how do you learn a text?

 a) by memorizing the text

 b) by understanding and using them speaking and writing

 c) by doing partially both of them

Data presentation:

Table 14

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

4

20

8

40

8

40

Low Achievement Marks

12

60

4

20

4

20

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no. 14, we can come to know that 40% of the students who got high marks told that they usually learn a text b) by understanding and using them                        speaking and writing. 40 % of the students told that they usually learn a text c) by doing partially both of them, it means by memorizing the text and also by understanding and using them speaking and writing. Only 20 % of the students told that they usually learn a text a) by memorizing the text.

On the other hand, 60% of the students who got low marks responded that they usually learn a text a) by memorizing the text. 20 % of them said that they usually learn a text b) by understanding and using them speaking and writing.  20 % of the students told that they usually learn a text c) by doing partially both of them, it means by memorizing the text and also by understanding and using them speaking and writing.

15. When I speak English,

 a) I feel afraid or shy to talk and sit silently

 b) I feel shy and hesitate but try to talk

 c) I don’t hesitate and talk

Data presentation:

Table 15

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

3

15

2

20

15

75

Low Achievement Marks

16

80

4

20

00

00

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no.15, we can come to know that most of the students who got high marks told that when they speak English, c) they don’t hesitate and talk. 20% of the students told that they b) they feel shy and hesitate but try to talk. Only 15 % of the students told that when they speak English a) they feel afraid or shy to talk and sit silently.

On the other hand, most of the students who got low marks responded that when they speak English a) they feel afraid or shy to talk and sit silently. 20 % of them said that they  b) they feel shy and hesitate but try to talk. The students who got low marks no one of them responded (c).

16. What do you do usually in English class?

 a) Listen to teachers and sit silently

 b) Try to communicate with teachers

 c) Usually communicate with teachers

Data presentation:

Table 16

a

b

c

No.

%

No.

%

No.

%

High Achievement Marks

4

20

2

10

14

70

Low Achievement Marks

16

80

4

20

0

0

Presentation in Chart:

In the response of the question no.16, we can come to know that most of the students who got high marks told that in English class they  c) Usually communicate with teachers.20% of the students told that they a) Listen to teachers and sit silently. Only 10 % of the students told that they b) Try to communicate with teachers.

On the other hand, most of the students who got low marks responded that in English class they a) Listen to teachers and sit    silently. 20 % of them said that they b) Try to communicate with teachers the students who got low marks no one of them responded c.

Chapter 5

FINDINGS AND DISCUSSION

The study aims to explore the perception of the students, who are learning English, getting high marks and low marks, how they are learning, focusing on their style of learning.

The major findings of the surveys will now be discussed in details:

Findings

In the students’ questionnaire, there are 3 points in each question. Each of these 3 options refers to 3 different learning styles.

 Learners with high achievement marks:

Auditory Learners:

I found that in case of students who had got high marks in English, point (b) had got the highest votes in 7 tables. They are table-5, 6, 7, 9, and 10 and in table 2 both (a) and (b) together and in table 4 both (b) and (c) together got the highest votes.

The questions and options of these tables are:

Table 5:Q. When I begin studying a new topic on my course, the first thing I usually do is to:

Option: b) talk to my fellow students, then listen carefully to the first lecture on the topic.

Table 6:Q. When I get feedback on my assignment, I find it best if:

Option: b) the tutor discusses my work with me for a few minutes, one-to-one.

Table 7:Q. I feel that I am best able to develop my English language by :

Option: b) communicating with others in English.

Table 9:Q. If I am in a lecture and I do not understand an important word or phrase used by the lecturer, my preferred strategy is to:

Option: b) remember how the word is pronounced and ask the tutor (or another student) later.

Table10:Q. In a lecture, my preferred strategy is:

Option: b) to gain as much understanding as possible just by listening to the lecturer.

In Table 2 both (b) and (c) together and in Table 4 both (b) and (c) together got the highest votes.

Table 2:Q.  When I am writing an assignment in English, my first strategy tends to be to:

Option: a)  plan the assignment carefully first, perhaps using a mind map.

Option: b)  discuss my essay plan first with my tutor and fellow students

Table 4:Q.   When I am reading a piece of fictional literature (either for pleasure, or for my course of study) I generally :

Option: b)  imagine hearing the characters talking.

Option: c)  enjoy the action and the interaction between the characters.

All of the points which are inside (b) are referring to the characteristics of auditory learners. So, most of the students who got high marks in English are auditory learners.

If anyone has an ‘auditory’ learning style, this means that he likes to learn by ‘listening’ and ‘hearing’. They engage well with discussion and also in ‘discussions with the self’ (e.g. he may learn by repeating words and phrases to himself, or recording them onto a cassette). If anyone is an auditory learner, he may well be able to pick up words just by listening to conversations or the words to a song after one or two listening. However, there may be a need for him to systematize his learning and to work more on his structural accuracy.

Visual Learners:

Among these questions (a) has got second highest votes in case of students who had got high marks in English,. In Table 1, 8, and 11 it has got highest votes and in Table 2 it has also got highest votes with (b).

The questions and options of these tables are:

Table 1:Q. For me, the best way to read efficiently for my studies is:

Option: a) to sit at a desk and to make notes as I go along.

Table 8:Q. When I am preparing for my exams, my preferred method of revising is to:

Option: a) read my notes and learn them by heart.

Table 11:Q. When I learn new vocabulary, I find it best to :

Option: a)  read a list of words and learn them by heart.

In Table 2 it has also got highest votes with (b).

Table 2:Q.  When I am writing an assignment in English, my first strategy tends to be to:

Option : a)  plan the assignment carefully first, perhaps using a mind map.

Option : b)  discuss my essay plan first with my tutor and fellow students

All of the points, which are inside (a), are referring to the characteristics of visual learner. If anyone has a ‘visual’ learning style, this means that he likes to learn by ‘seeing’, often through written language, such as reading and writing. He is likely to remember very well what has been written down, even if he only reads a particular item once. A strong ‘visual’ learner may find it easier to read, write or learn grammar than to develop speaking skills, so he needs to be prepared to try new strategies to help him to develop these. He may needs to try to use subtitles or other visual materials to help him to work out what others are saying.

Kinesthetic Learners:

I found that in case of students who had got high marks in English, (c) has got highest votes only in 2 Tables. In Table 3 it has got highest votes alone and in Table 4 it has got highest votes with (b).

The questions and options of these tables are:

Table 3:Q. If I am asked to use a new item of technology on my course, which I have never used before, I prefer to:

Option: c) try using the equipment myself, straight away.

In Table 4 it has got highest votes with (b).

Table 4:Q. When I am reading a piece of fictional literature (either for pleasure, or for my course of study) I generally:

Option: b) imagine hearing the characters talking.

Option: c) enjoy the action and the interaction between the characters.

All of the lines which are included inside (c) are referring to the characteristics of kinesthetic learners. If anyone has a ‘kinesthetic’ learning style, he enjoys moving around and engaging in physical activities. He will learn well through breaks and participate well in active learning. He enjoys the ‘hands on’ learning experience and ’learning by doing’. He will also be very good at ‘multi-tasking’ – that is, doing more than one thing at the same time. Primarily kinesthetic learners will sometimes find it hard to concentrate when learning in more ‘traditional’ learning situations, but these disadvantages can also be strengths, depending on the particular learning situation he is in.

Learners with low achievement marks:

Visual Learners:

On the other hand, the students who had got low marks in English, they had chosen option (a) in 6 Tables. The Tables are 8, 9, 10, and 11 and in Table 3 both option (a) and (c) and in Table 4 both (a) and (b) had got the highest votes together.

The questions and options of these tables are:

Table 8:Q. When I am preparing for my exams, my preferred method of revising is to :

Option: a) read my notes and learn them by heart.

Table 9.Q. If I am in a lecture and I do not understand an important word or phrase used by the lecturer, my preferred strategy is to:

Option: a) try to write the word down as it sounds, and look it up later.

Table 10.Q. In a lecture, my preferred strategy is:

Option: a) to make my notes as visual and eye-catching as possible.

Table 11.Q. When I learn new vocabulary, I find it best to :

Option: a) read a list of words and learn them by heart

In Table 3 both option (a) and (c) and in Table 4 both (a) and (b) had got the highest votes together.

Table 3.Q. If I am asked to use a new item of technology on my course, which I have never used before, I prefer to:

Option: a) see a demonstration given by someone else first.

Option: c) try using the equipment myself, straight away

Table 4.Q. When I am reading a piece of fictional literature (either for pleasure, or for my course of study) I generally:

Option: a) like detailed visual descriptions.

Option: b) imagine hearing the characters talking

All of the points, which are inside (a), are referring to the characteristics of visual learner.

Strategies that are likely to help visual learners in learning are:

  • Using drawing, diagrams and pictures to help you to remember.
  • Taking lots of notes.
  • Making lots of outlines, summaries, etc.
  • Copying material and information from the board.
  • Using lists, charts and tables.
  • Using color coding for vocabulary records.
  • Using highlighter pens to emphasize important points.

Auditory Learners:

I found that in case of students who had got low marks in English, Option (b) had got second highest vote among all of them. In Table 1, 5, 7 it has got highest vote alone and in Table 4 it has got highest vote with option (a). All of the points which are inside option (b) are the characteristics of auditory learners.

The questions and options of these tables are:

Table 1.Q.    For me, the best way to read efficiently for my studies is:

Option: b) to make recordings of my thoughts as I go along, and to discuss these with others.

Table 5.Q. When I begin studying a new topic on my course, the first thing I usually do is to :

Option: b) talk to my fellow students, then listen carefully to the first lecture on the topic.

Table 7.Q. I feel that I am best able to develop my English language by:

Option: b) communicating with others in English

In Table 4 it had got highest vote with option (a).

Table 4.Q. When I am reading a piece of fictional literature (either for pleasure, or for my course of study) I generally:

Option: a) like detailed visual descriptions.

Option: b) imagine hearing the characters talking

Strategies that are likely to help learners in learning are:

  • discussions with tutors and fellow students.
  • listening to cassettes in the language laboratory or at home.
  • lots of repetition when you hear things being said.
  • using word association to remember.
  • recording lectures, conversations, etc.
  • reading out loud where you can.
  • watching lots of videos.
  • recording your notes after you have written them.

Most of the students who got low marks in English told that they usually learn a text by memorizing the text in table 14 and they also memorize things for exam purpose in table 12.They also do not like to read loud. So, here again we found that the students who got low marks were Auditory Learners.

Auditory Learner Characteristics

  • Is not afraid to speak in class.
  • Likes oral reports.
  • Is good at explaining.
  • Remembers names.
  • Notices sound effects in movies.
  • Enjoys music.
  • Is good at grammar and foreign language.
  • Reads slowly.
  • Follows spoken directions well.
  • Can’t keep quiet for long periods.
  • Enjoys acting, being on stage.
  • Is good in study groups.
  • Likes to read to self out loud.

From the above characteristics of auditory learners we also come to know that the learners who are following auditory learning style, they are not afraid to speak in class. They Enjoy music, they are good at grammar and foreign language they Enjoy acting, being on stage. In Table 16 and 17, option (c) refers to auditory learners. Most of the students who got high marks vote for option (c).

The questions and options of these tables are:

Table 16.Q. When I speak English,

Option c)   I don’t hesitate and talk

Table 17.Q. What do I do usually in English class?

Option c) Usually communicate with teachers

Kinesthetic learners.

In Table 2 and 6, option (c) has got highest votes in case of students who had got low marks in English,. And option (c) refers to kinesthetic learners.

The questions and options of these tables are:

Table 2.Q. When I am writing an assignment in English, my first strategy tends to be to :

Option c)  write out the first draft of the assignment straight away.

Table 6.Q. When I get feedback on my assignment, I find it best if:

Option c) the tutor shows me where I have gone wrong (e.g. gives me books, sits at the computer with me, gives me a ‘hands-on’ tutorial, etc).

Strategies that are likely to help learners in learning, as a ‘kinesthetic’ learner, are:

  • Studying in short bursts and taking frequent breaks.
  • Taking part in role playing.
  • Traveling and participate in cultural activities.
  • Studying in study groups.

Chapter 6

RECOMMENDATIONS

The students who are following a certain learning style and getting low marks, it shows that this process is not effective for them. If they change their learning style, it can be beneficial for them .They can progress, they can get good marks in their English exams. For example , A student is learning through listening but in the exam h is getting low marks, in this case, he can change his way of learning an observe if he gets good marks or not. After changing his way of learning, if he gets a good score, I prove that, this new way of learning suits with him.

The students who got low marks can do group discussion with the students who got high marks to know that how they are learning different topics of English language. From the findings I got that the students who are getting low marks are totally dependent on memorization. So they should be come out from this dependency try to write themselves. They should use their creativity. The students who got high marks also should be co-operative and helpful towards the students who got low marks. But the problem is that students will not always understand which learning style they will follow. In this case, parents and teachers can help them.

There have been certain limitations to my research.

I was unable to collect data from many collages as well as many students. If I had collected data from many students, it would have been cleared to me to get the ways of learning styles of different students clearly and distinctively.

Another major limitation was not having adequate time and access too many schools to conduct a questionnaire survey which I believe would have enabled me to generalize my findings.

Sometimes respondents hesitated to answer correctly because they thought it would disclose their fear of English. Again they were afraid that if their teachers came to know that what they were answering, it would create a great problem for them. Moreover, for data collecting session I had to provide the meaning of some questions in Bengali and some of the respondents filled the questionnaire in Bengali.

It is very difficult to identify the students who got low marks in English especially in government institutions. They feel shame to tell their real score .To find out the real score of the students, I need to go to the office and see the registration copy. The activities and working process of the government institution was very slow.

Chapter 7

CONCLUSION

The way a person prefers to learn is called his/her learning style. There is no right or wrong/good or bad learning style. It has nothing to do with intelligence or skills. There is no “right” approach to learning. It has everything to do with the way a person’s brain works to learn and store information efficiently. Anyone achieves his learning style by born. Since everyone learns differently, understanding learning styles can help a student to get a good score.

By examining learning styles, a student who got high marks and who got low marks in English will become aware of how each person’s brain learns best. This awareness gives him the chance to study effectively to the student who cannot able to get a good score in English. There are many different types of learning styles. From my research, I got three most common learning styles – visual (people with a visual learning style user lists to organize their thoughts and recall information by remembering how it was set on a page), auditory (people with an auditory learning style like dialogues , discussion and plays and use rhythm and sound as memory aids), and kinesthetic (people with a kinaesthetic learning style learn best when they are involved or active adn ). To learn, we depend on our senses to process the information around us. Most people tend to use one of their senses more than the others.

Language learning styles and strategies are among the main factors that help determine how and how well our students learn a second or foreign language.  In the developing countries, like Bangladesh, a second language is a language studied in a setting where that language is the main vehicle of everyday communication and where abundant input exists in that language. A foreign language is a language studied in an environment where it is not the primary vehicle for daily interaction and where input in that language is restricted.

Language learning strategies, being specific actions, behaviors, tactics, or techniques, facilitate the learning of the target language by the language learner. All language learners, needless to say, use language learning strategies in the learning process. Since the factors like age, gender, personality, motivation, self-concept, life-experience, learning style, excitement, anxiety, etc. affect the way in which language learners learn the target language, it is not reasonable to support the idea that all language learners use the same good language learning strategies or should be trained in using and developing the same strategies to become successful learners. So, they can use different learning styles to find out which one actually suits with him/her. Teachers and parents can help them to find out the appropriate style of learning English.

Bibliography

Rod Ellis, (1985). Understanding Second Language Acquisition. OxfordUniversity Press

Rod Ellis, (1994). The Study of Second Language Acquisition. OxfordUniversity Press

RM Felder. (1995). Learning and Teaching Styles

www4.ncsu.edu/unity/lockers/users/f/felder/public

Learning Styles

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