Effects of question generation training on first year English major students' reading comprehension and question quality at college of education - Thai Nguyen University

Bài báo này nhằm nghiên cứu ảnh hưởng của việc dạy chiến lược đặt câu hỏi lên khả năng đọc hiểu và chất lượng câu hỏi của sinh viên chuyên nghành tiếng Anh năm thứ nhất tại Đại Học Sư Phạm Thái Nguyên. Nghiên cứu đã sử dụng phương pháp thực nghiệm. Công cụ nghiên cứu bao gồm một bài kiểm tra đọc hiểu và phiếu liệt kê câu hỏi. Kết quả nghiên cứu chỉ ra rằng việc dạy chiến lược tự đặt câu hỏi ảnh hưởng tích cực lên khả năng đọc hiểu và chất lượng câu hỏi của sinh viên. Những kết quả này gợi ý rằng chiến lược tự đặt câu hỏi có thể được dạy cho sinh viên chuyên nghành tiếng Anh tại Đại học Sư Phạm Thái Nguyên nói riêng và sinh viên học tiếng Anh nói chung nhằm nâng cao khả năng đọc hiểu của họ.

pdf7 trang | Chia sẻ: yendt2356 | Ngày: 03/12/2020 | Lượt xem: 71 | Lượt tải: 0download
Bạn đang xem nội dung tài liệu Effects of question generation training on first year English major students' reading comprehension and question quality at college of education - Thai Nguyen University, để tải tài liệu về máy bạn click vào nút DOWNLOAD ở trên
Nguyễn Thị Minh Loan Tạp chí KHOA HỌC & CÔNG NGHỆ 87(11): 111 - 117 Số hóa bởi Trung tâm Học liệu – Đại học Thái Nguyên 111 EFFECTS OF QUESTION GENERATION TRAINING ON FIRST YEAR ENGLISH MAJOR STUDENTS' READING COMPREHENSION AND QUESTION QUALITY AT COLLEGE OF EDUCATION - THAI NGUYEN UNIVERSITY Nguyen Thi Minh Loan * Foreign Languages Department - TNU SUMMARY This article aims to research effects of question generation training on first year English major students’ reading comprehension and question quality at College of Education – Thai Nguyen University. In this research, the author used experimental methods by applying a reading comprehension test and a worksheet with generated questions. Results revealed that teching questioning strategies had positive impacts on the students’ reading comprehension and question quality. These effects suggest that question generation techniques can be trained for English major students at Thai Nguyen College of Education in particular and learners of English in general in order to improve their reading comprehension ability. Key words: question generation techniques, reading comprehension, question quality, cognitive strategies, metacognitive stratgies.  INTRODUCTION Questions appear in all three stages of teaching reading: pre-reading, while- reading and post- reading. A conventional type of reading activity consists of a text followed by comprehension questions (Ur,1996).[13] Traditionally, it is often the teacher who initiates the question, the students respond to this and the teacher makes an evaluative comment or feedback to students (Westgate &Hughes, 1997) [14]. Although teacher questions and text posed questions are of value in reading and learning, they still have several disadvantages. First, students who follow along, answering when asked just play a passive, reactive role, fostering dependency and removing a sense of responsibility (Dillion, 1982) [6]. Another weakness of pre- posed questions, by the text or by the teacher, is that" students read to satisfy the teacher's purposes not their own" (p.171), which may result in loss of interest in reading. Through the analyzing the disadvantages of teacher- or text- posed questions, we realize a fact that that classroom interaction needs to be more learner- centred, and teachers need to  Tel: 01255 484142, Email: loantnu@gmail.com expose their students to the art of asking questions because student-led discussions resulted in more extensive and higher level discussions than teacher-led discussions. However, questions are so challenging to construct while reading texts because students are not often trained to generate them, and they do not have good models of questioning. Therefore, the researcher would like to conduct an experiment to find whether the question generation instruction affects positively the students' reading comprehension and generated questions. There are at least three reasons why the question generation strategy should be taught. The first reason is that question generation has been referred to as a cognitive strategy (Ciardiello, 1998)[3]. Ciardiello claims that this is because the process of asking questions enhances comprehension through a focus on main ideas (content). The second reason is that question generation strategy has been also referred to as a metacognitve strategy (Ciardiello, 1998) [3]. Ciardiello (1998) claims that question generation involves a kind of split focus (dual function) by getting the reader to concentrate on the material itself while constantly checking to see that one has performed the Nguyễn Thị Minh Loan Tạp chí KHOA HỌC & CÔNG NGHỆ 87(11): 111 - 117 Số hóa bởi Trung tâm Học liệu – Đại học Thái Nguyên 112 necessary processes (Ciardiello, 1998). Palinscar and Brown (1984)[10] describe the metacognitive process in terms of comprehension- monitoring. The third reason is that Wong (1985) [16] suggests that the schema theory is another basis for question generation. Also, Olson et al (1985) [9] claims that ''there is a link between one's own knowledge or understanding of a topic and the ability to ask a question about it'' (p.129). In sum, researchers all consider questioning as one of the most useful strategies in reading comprehension. As a reading strategy, student questioning has been supported by strong empirical evidence that purports that instruction of question generation benefits reading comprehension (Palinscar &Brown,1984 [10]; Davey &McBride, 1986[4]; Raphael & Pearson, 1985[11]). METHODOLOGY Data collection instruments Reading Comprehension Test The reading comprehension test was adapted from Cambridge Preliminary English Test (PET)- Examination Papers from the University of Cambridge Local Examination Syndicate. Only the PET reading was chosen, and only a part in the PET reading was chosen. The reading comprehension test consists of three texts chosen from three different tests with one narrative passage and two book review passages and a total of 15 multiple- choice questions that were of three types of questions: right there, on my own, and think and search. In this study the researcher used the three types of questions in Raphael and Pearson's study (1985)[11]: Right there, Think and search, and On my own. Right there questions: The answer is in the text. The words used to make up the question and words used to answer the questions are found in the same sentence. Think and search questions: The answer is in the text, but you need to put together different pieces of information to find it. On my own questions: The answer is not in the text. The answer is based solely on your own experience and knowledge. The reason for this choice was that these questions refer specifically to reading comprehension and more importantly, they emphasize the relationship between the text and the reader (Raphael &Pearson, 1985)[11]. Worksheets The researcher had the students complete the worksheet with generated questions of the three types, answers, and explanation of their process after reading a text in the class. After every lesson, the researcher collected the students' worksheets in order to record their number and level of their questions. The inter- rating was done independently (see Appendix 2) and then after two days, the results of the coding questions were tallied. Final coding decisions rater discrepancies were resolved through discussion. The consistency of the coding was assessed by using Cohen's Kappa (Cohen, 1960)[2], which is one of the standard ways of expressing inter-rater reliability. Subjects of the study The participants of the study were 62 first- year English major students at ThaiNguyen College of Education. They were ranked at pre-intermediate level of English language proficiency. The subjects were already assigned in classes by the institution. There were two English major classes. One of the classes was randomly selected as the control group and the other class as the experimental group. The number of students in the control group was 31 (3 male and 28 female) and there were also 31 subjects (3 male and 28 Nguyễn Thị Minh Loan Tạp chí KHOA HỌC & CÔNG NGHỆ 87(11): 111 - 117 Số hóa bởi Trung tâm Học liệu – Đại học Thái Nguyên 113 female) in the experimental group, making a total of 62 students in two classes. The researcher was simultaneously the teacher of the class. Materials The subjects had the reading textbook, Concepts and Comments by Ackert (1986)[1]; however, the English teachers were allowed to use any textbooks and materials to teach. Therefore, the teacher (the researcher) selected 7 texts from ' Thoughts and Notions' by Lee & Bushby (2000)[7], which was at the same level as' Concepts and Comments'. The questions after each text were of three types: right there, think and search, and on my own questions. Data collection procedure The data collection procedure contained three stages: pre-test, question generation training, and post-test. Pre-test A week prior to the intervention, a reading comprehension pre-test was given to both groups in order to confirm the same level of reading comprehension competence in English between the two groups. Question generation training Both experimental and control groups were instructed for twelve sessions in roughly a six-week period (from 13 February to 24 March). The groups received two sessions a week. The sessions took place on Monday afternoon, and Thursday afternoon. Both groups received the same materials, but there was some difference in training. The control group received no training on the use of the strategy but only read the materials and then answered every question in the texts. The experimental group read the same materials; however, they did not have to answer any questions from the texts. Instead of that, they received explicit instruction on the strategy of question generation right at the beginning of the course. Before the instruction, both groups were informed of the aim of the intervention. For the experimental group, each type of questions was trained alternatively following the same sequence: identifying, classifying, and generating questions. The first three sessions were for training the subject how to generate think and search questions, the next three sessions for training the subjects how to generate right there questions, the other three sessions for training the subjects how to generate on my own questions, and the other two sessions for independent practice in all three types of questions. The separated stages of identification, classification, and construction of questions converged during the independent practice phase. Rosenshire et al (1996) [12] call ''automaticity'' of the point at which enough guided practice has been given so that students' learning is firm, quick, and spontaneous. The subjects practised cooperatively in small groups of three. The instruction to the questioning group was to ask any questions that help them to comprehend the texts. The last session was for assessment of the subjects' questions. The researcher asked the subject to read a text and generate two questions for each type of questions (6 questions). The present study adapted TeachQuest model by Ciardiello (1998). Post-test After six weeks of the intervention, both groups were given the same reading comprehension test as the post-test. Then, the mean scores between the two groups and within each group itself at the beginning and end of the study were compared. Results and Discussion The students' reading comprehension in both groups improved. However, there was still a Nguyễn Thị Minh Loan Tạp chí KHOA HỌC & CÔNG NGHỆ 87(11): 111 - 117 Số hóa bởi Trung tâm Học liệu – Đại học Thái Nguyên 114 significant difference between the scores of the two groups. The experimental group outdid the control group in reading comprehension proficiency after the intervention. The finding yielded evidence that the intervention could have some impact on the students' reading comprehension. (see Appendix 1) This finding supports the studies by Palinscar &Brown (1984)[10], Davey &McBride (1986)[4], and Raphael &Pearson (1985)[11]. The findings of this study also support that the model used to teach the strategy of question generation was a practical and useful one. The training also did affect the student' questions. The number of 'think and search' and 'on my own' questions increased by sessions, which was affirmed by the comparison within the results of the two independent practice sessions and between those and the results of the assessment session. This suggested that the quality of the students' questions improved. According to the suggestion that when the quality of questions increased, the quality of reading comprehension improved, we could expect that the quality of the students' reading comprehension improved as a result of this. However, in general, the number of think and search and on my own questions was still less than the number of right there questions. The dominant number of 'right there' questions proved the fact that the students did not read the texts deeply. They only concentrated on the surface of the texts instead of analyzing them carefully. There were some explanations for these results. First, it is the students. They had difficulty comprehending the texts because of new words. Besides vocabulary, the students had difficulty in syntactic knowledge. In the current study, there were many instances of the direct copying of phrases from the original text, pointing to the students' lack of confidence or ability in summarizing, paraphrasing, and using complex grammatical structures. Another difficulty was that the students had some limitation in content knowledge. Many questions about the text will not be asked if a reader lacks the appropriate knowledge to be compared with the representation of the explicit text. Second, it is the teachers. Unfortunately, most teachers at ThaiNguyen College of Education are not particularly good role models for generating good questions. Besides, teachers' questioning is often intuitive. Nunan &Lamb's (1996)[8] research on questioning in language education reveals that over the years, teachers still pose questions in much the same way as always despite improvement in teaching materials, curricular, and methods of teaching. A common problem with many teachers' use of verbal questioning is a lack of knowledge about questioning (Wilen, 1982)[15]. It is because the teachers have never received any formal training in asking questions. The two reasons mentioned above may explain why the number of right there questions predominated the number of think and search and on my own questions. In sum, the study has again shown results that concurred with previous studies on self- questioning intervention. This is the positive effect of question generation strategy on the students' reading comprehension and students' questions. However, the number of low-level questions was still higher than the number of high-level questions. Despite that, students’ questions can diagnostic of their understanding. Even when questions are poorly formed they indicate an active, interrogative attitude that not only seeks appropriate information and opinion but also allows some determination of the worth of what is read or heard (Devine, 1987)[5]. Conclusion Nguyễn Thị Minh Loan Tạp chí KHOA HỌC & CÔNG NGHỆ 87(11): 111 - 117 Số hóa bởi Trung tâm Học liệu – Đại học Thái Nguyên 115 These findings suggest that questioning strategies can be taught, which will help EFL tertiary students improve their active processing of texts and their reading comprehension ability. From these conclusions, it is clear that teachers can teach strategic questioning techniques to students. It is not enough to teach them how to ask questions but to ask significant questions. It is intended that the preliminary procedures outlined in the study serve as a starting point for future Vietnamese researcher who wish to investigate the effects of self-questioning. REFERENCES [1]. Ackert, P. (1986). Concepts and Comments. Orlando: Holt, Rinehart &Winston, Inc. [2]. Cohen ,J (1960). A coefficient of agreement for nominal scales, Educational and Psychological Measurement, 20, 37–46. [3]. Ciardiello, A.V. (1998). Did you ask a good question today? Alternative Cognitive and Metacognitive strategies. Journal of Adolescent & Adult Literacy: 42,3; ProQuest Education Journals. [4] Davey, B & Mc Bride, S (1986). Effects of Question Generation on Reading Comprehension. Journal of Educational Psychology, 78, 256-262. [5]. Devine, J. (1987). General Language Competence and Adult Second Language Reading. In J. Devine, P. Carrell, & D. Eskey (Eds.), Research in Reading in English as a Second Language (pp.75-86). Washington, D.C.: TESOL. [6]. Dillion, J.T (1982). The multidisciplinary study of questioning. Journal of Educational Psychology, 74, 147-165. [7] Lee, L & Bushby, B. (2000). Thought and Notions. Canada: Heinle &Heinle Publishers. [8] Nunan, D., &Lamb, C. (1996). The Self- Directed Teacher: Managing the Learning Process. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [9]. Olson, G.M., Duffy, S.A., Mack, R.L. (1985). Question- asking as a component of text comprehension. In Graesser, A.C. &Black, J.B (Eds). The Psychology of Questions. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum. [10]. Palinscar, A.S & Brown, A.L. (1984). Reciprocal Teaching of Comprehension-Fostering and Comprehension-Monitoring Activities. Cognition and Instruction, 2, 117-175. [11]. Raphael, T.E & Pearson, P, D (1985). Increasing Student Awareness of Sources of Information for Answering Questions. American Educational Research Journal, 22, 217-237. [12]. Rosenshire, B & Meister, C & Chapman, S (1996). Teaching students to generate questions: A Review of the Intervention Studies. Review of Educational Research, 66, 2, 181-221. [13]. Ur, P (1996). A Course in Language Teaching. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. [14]. Westgate, D & Hughes, M. (1997). Identifying ''Quality'' in Classroom Talk: an Enduring Research Task. Language and Education, 11 (2), 125-139. [15]. Willen, W.W. (1982). Questioning Skills for Teachers: What Research Say to the Teacher. Washington, DC, National Education Association. [16]. Wong, B.Y.L (1985). Self- questioning Instructional Research: A Review. Review of Educational Research, 55, 227-268. TÓM TẮT ẢNH HƯỞNG CỦA VIỆC DẠY CHIẾN LƯỢC ĐẶT CÂU HỎI ĐỐI VỚI KHẢ NĂNG ĐỌC HIỂU VÀ CHẤT LƯỢNG CÂU HỎI CỦA SINH VIÊN CHUYÊN TIẾNG ANH NĂM THỨ NHẤT TẠI TRƯỜNG ĐẠI HỌC SƯ PHẠM – ĐẠI HỌC THÁI NGUYÊN Nguyễn Thị Minh Loan Khoa Ngoại ngữ - ĐH Thái Nguyên Bài báo này nhằm nghiên cứu ảnh hưởng của việc dạy chiến lược đặt câu hỏi lên khả năng đọc hiểu và chất lượng câu hỏi của sinh viên chuyên nghành tiếng Anh năm thứ nhất tại Đại Học Sư Phạm Thái Nguyên. Nghiên cứu đã sử dụng phương pháp thực nghiệm. Công cụ nghiên cứu bao gồm một bài kiểm tra đọc hiểu và phiếu liệt kê câu hỏi. Kết quả nghiên cứu chỉ ra rằng việc dạy chiến lược tự đặt câu hỏi ảnh hưởng tích cực lên khả năng đọc hiểu và chất lượng câu hỏi của sinh viên. Những kết quả này gợi ý rằng chiến lược tự đặt câu hỏi có thể được dạy cho sinh viên chuyên nghành tiếng Anh tại Đại học Sư Phạm Thái Nguyên nói riêng và sinh viên học tiếng Anh nói chung nhằm nâng cao khả năng đọc hiểu của họ.  Tel: 01255 484142, Email: loantnu@gmail.com Nguyễn Thị Minh Loan Tạp chí KHOA HỌC & CÔNG NGHỆ 87(11): 111 - 117 Số hóa bởi Trung tâm Học liệu – Đại học Thái Nguyên 116 Từ khóa: chiến lược tự đặt câu hỏi, đọc hiểu, chất lượng câu hỏi, chiến lược nhận thức, chiến lược siêu nhận thức. Nguyễn Thị Minh Loan Tạp chí KHOA HỌC & CÔNG NGHỆ 87(11): 111 - 117 Số hóa bởi Trung tâm Học liệu – Đại học Thái Nguyên 117

Các file đính kèm theo tài liệu này:

  • pdfbrief_32944_36775_278201294254effectsofquestiongenerationtrainingonfirstyearenglishmajorstudents_781.pdf