Impact of a Cognitively Modified Instruction on Vocabulary Acquisition of Second Language Users of Grade 2: A Study Conducted in a Private American School in Dubai (Published)
This experimental study was conducted to find the impact of modified instructional strategies on the vocabulary and reading comprehension skills of grade 2 (7 year old) students of English as second language. The main research question was that how will the cognitively modified instruction impact the vocabulary acquisition of grade two students with Arabic as first. The research hypothesis was that if the instruction in class is designed to help students acquire vocabulary skills while the cognitive load is reduced during the learning process, it will result in improved performance (Cooper 1998). To test the hypothesis, specific instruction was tailored using principles of split-attention effect, modality effect, and redundancy effect to reduce the cognitive load. The experiment group was exposed to modified instruction for four weeks, 50 minutes lesson each day. Deviation method was used to analyse the impact of modified instruction on students’ performance. Results on performance and mental effort tests of the experimental group indicated that reduced cognitive load helped increase the performance of students in vocabulary and comprehension acquisition. Efficiency metric showed that students in experiment group demonstrated better efficiency as compared to the control group. Lesson observations were conducted to validate the delivery of the instruction as per the design. The findings of the observation reflected a higher level of student engagement. The study concludes that modified instruction with reduced cognitive load results in increased performance of the learners of the English as a second language. The key theories consulted were theory of evolution, cognition, schema, and cognitive load theory.
The Challenges Faced By Instructors and Learners While Adopting Task-Based Instruction in the Learning of the English Language (Published)
This paper explores the existing challenges that hamper instructors’ and learners’ efforts while adopting task-based instruction in their contexts of learning the English language. Teaching and learning English as a second language continues to draw attention regarding the appropriate approach that instructors should adopt particularly in the case of Sudan where Arabic is the first language. A mixed method was embraced to answer research objectives of this study. In the study, questionnaires and interviews were administered to the research subjects who were recruited from the University of Khartoum using convenience sampling technique. Data from the study was analyzed using the SPSS software where descriptive and inferential statistics to test research objectives of the study. Results of the study indicated a correlation between the need to adopt the task-based instruction with 18% of the students interviewed attributing that task-based instruction approach failed to foster students’ speaking skills.
It has been claimed that learners of Turkish and English have different patterns of thinking about motion linguistically (Özçalışkan, 2005; Talmy, 1985). For instance, Turkish speakers’ expressions of path tend to occur with path verbs, while English speakers tend to occur with satellites (adverbs or prepositions) and verbs + satellites. This study investigates the applicability of the proposed distinctions of the typology proposed by Talmy (1985) to non-metaphorical extensions of motion events, in a comparison between English (S-language) and Turkish (V-language). Results reveal some similarities and differences between Turkish learners of English and English speakers about the expression of motion events in English