Of the republic of uzbekistan karshi state university foreign language faculty



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THE MINISTRY OF HIGHER AND SECONDARY EDUCATION

OF THE REPUBLIC OF UZBEKISTAN
KARSHI STATE UNIVERSITY

FOREIGN LANGUAGE FACULTY

THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE AND LITERATUREDEPARTMENT
COURSE WORK
Theme: Developing Speaking Skills in Foreign Language Teaching

Done by: Ergasheva Manzura

Scientific Adviser: To’rayeva Dilbar
KARSHI 2019

TABLE OF CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION……………………………………………………………3


Chapter І .Theoritical foundation of teaching speaking skills

1.1. What is ‘teaching speaking skills’?......................................................5

1.2. Disorganized nature of speaking……………………………………….7

1.3. Classroom implications: teachers’ expectations………………………11

1.4. Classroom implications: teaching materials…………………………...11

15. The types of communicative exchanges………………………………..16

1.6. Classroom implications: communicative tasks use…………………….17

1.7. Characteristics of conversation…………………………………………20

1.8. Communicative competence………………………………………………22

1.9. Individual aspects of teaching speaking skills: Fluency and accuracy……29



Chapter ІІ.The significance of classroom activities to promote teaching speaking

2.1. Activities to promote speaking…………………………………………………………….38

2.2. The role of the teachers in conducting activities

……………………………………………………45

Conclusion……………………………………………………………………

References……………………………………………………………………..58

Bibliography…………………………………………………………………...60

Introduction

It’s commonly known that CEFR is being gradually implemented in our faculty right after the adoption of the Presidential Decree Number 1875 which was signed on December 10, 2012. It has been more than a year that all educational places starting from primary schools and ending with higher educational institutions are busy with a hard work on enhancing the process of teaching and learning foreign languages. In these terms the approach of teaching English has been changed as well. Namely PRESETT program launched in all language institutions throughout Uzbekistan which is mainly based on communicative based approach. Thus, it means that the speaking skills of students are developed gradually.

It is undisputable that “face-to-face communication is the most fundamental mode of human language” and its training is naturally sought out by learners for a number of obvious reasons. On the other hand, this does not explain why so many learners frequently feel there is a lack of speaking skills practice in schools and courses. As it has been mentioned previously, on December 10, 2012 The Presidential Decree “On measures to further Improvement of the Learning of Foreign Languages” was issued. It was issued because there is a need of language usage rather than form, as some of the graduates from secondary schools, colleges and universities have the poor vocabulary and formal knowledge of grammar, it makes them unable to translate a foreign language text into their mother tongue without a dictionary; their communicative abilities are considered poor or teachers do not use enough audio-visual aids at their lessons, not enough dictionaries and literature in foreign languages is available.

The aim of qualification paper is to explore the students’ attitudes to developing speaking skills in English. Speaking is a productive skill which is difficult to master. The research method employed the questionnaire on learner attitudes to different speaking activities in the classroom. It was administered to the students who study psychology at tertiary level. The students were asked to indicate the degree of difficulty they had with the various speaking activities. The attitudes of students to different activities vary: they are more positive to short talks and discussions than to spontaneous speaking. The students will develop adequate speaking skills to communicate effectively to follow academic courses at university level.

Our objective of the research is the following ideas: students will

-identify main ideas, important details;

-distinguish more important ideas from less important ones;

-learn to use strategies to listen actively;

-learn strategies to take clear notes;

Identify wordsand phrases related to the topic;

-draw inferences relying on the context;

-express themselves fluently, with acceptable accuracy;

-participate in discussion;

-analyze and synthesize information presented in different sources.



Methods of the research: The results were obtained from two sources: 1) a survey completed by a group of students, who studied English and 2) students’ written self-assessment of speaking activities. Students’ self-assessments have been used as a means of encouraging learners to reflect on their learning experience, achievements and failures. Students’ weblogs contain their written self-assessments of performance in speaking activities such as making Power Point Presentation (PPPs), participating in discussions on professional issues, giving short talks and speaking spontaneously. The topics for PPPs covered the contents of the course book and included the key professional issues. Each student could choose a theme, prepare a PPP and deliver it in front of the audience in the classroom. Presentations were followed by peers’ questions and discussions and provided opportunities for each student to express his/her opinions and argue the points.

A novel methodology ‘Small talk’ is explored by J.Hunter, who suggests encouraging communicative language use and developing accuracy and fluency. This activity involves groups of students in the conversation on the chosen topic without teacher’s intervention. Teacher’s role is to observe the interactions and to suggest ways of their improvement. ‘Small Talk’ was found to be effective in increasing the students’ pragmatic competence. The level of error identification by different teachers ranged from 24% to 57%, i.e. on average of 40%. It is a consistent methodology for analyzing and responding to learner language, but it is time consuming and might be hard to implement within limited classroom time.

The idea of teaching spontaneous speaking through short talks was applied and specified in online article. It proved to be helpful as the first step to teaching presentations. Later more findings referring to good practice in teaching presentations were published, and students’ strengths and weaknesses in delivery of presentations were summarized. However, the problems in learning good speaking skills persist as new generations of learners arrive at university. It is essential for them to be able to speak fluently on professional issues. In order to achieve this objective, it is necessary to find out which activities are the most difficult in improving speaking skills. Current speaking activities focus on the communication issues and include discussions, spontaneous speaking.


CHAPTER I. THEORITICAL FOUNDATION OF TEACHING SPEAKING SKILLS

1.1.WHAT IS ‘TEACHING SPEAKING SKILLS’?

Rebecca Hughes makes an interesting methodological point that as far as teaching speaking skills isconcerned one needs to distinguish between ‘teaching the spoken form of a language’ and ‘teaching alanguage through speaking’. She also stresses the fact that unfortunately, when compared towriting, the spoken form is under-researched and that this may be one of the reasons why teachersmay feel more confident when using ‘stable written forms and genres’ in their lessons (Hughes2011).

At this point, we would like to argue that both of the above-mentioned concepts are interconnected.This may also be one of the reasons why they are rarely distinguished from each other wheneducators speak of teaching speaking. To explain, I have observed that teaching the spoken form ofa language is not very useful if it is not practiced through speaking. By analogy, it can be arguedthat teaching speaking if the data used comes from written genres cannot bring much of a result interms of progress in spoken fluency either. Therefore teaching the spoken form of a language usingsamples of spoken texts should be part of teaching speaking.On the same subject, the researcher believes that Rebecca Hughes’s statement that teachers may incline toward thewritten form of a language when teaching speaking is consistent with my main line of argument. Thatis, that one of the problems with teaching speaking skills in the traditional classroom setting isthat it is not the spoken but the written form of language and its characteristics that are taught.As a result, teachers do not meet their students’ needs when it comes to speaking skills trainingbecause in the end it is not speaking skills that are taught.What exactly is it then that the terms speaking skills and speaking skills teaching refer to? Thedefinitions of both these terms are closely knit together with the definition of speaking.Speaking has often been narrowly defined. When speaking skills are discussed, this often happens ina context of public speaking. Speaking, however, is much more than that. Broader views focus either on communication realized to achieve specific purposes, e.g. to inform, to ask for explanations,etc., or they describe speaking in terms of its basic competences used in daily communication suchas booking a room, giving directions, etc.

What these approaches have in common is that they view communication and speaking as an interactiveprocess in which individuals alternate in their roles as speakers and listeners and employ bothverbal and non-verbal means to reach their communicative goals. Consistent with this view, is Nunan’s description of what teaching speaking involves. According tohim, to teach speaking means to teach language learners to:

· Produce the English speech sounds and sound patterns

· Use word and sentence stress, intonation patterns and the rhythm of the second language.

· Select appropriate words and sentences according to the proper social setting, audience,situation and subject matter.

· Organize their thoughts in a meaningful and logical sequence.

· Use language as a means of expressing values and judgments.

· Use the language quickly and confidently with few unnatural pauses, which is called asfluency.(Nunan 2003)

Therefore, whenever the terms speaking skills and teaching speaking skills are mentioned in thispaper, they refer to all the above-listed aspects. It needs to be pointed out, however, that thescope of this paper does not allow a special focus on teaching phonetics and phonology. Since thistopic can easily be singled out and treated in a separate paper, the first two above-mentionedpoints will be excluded from further discussion. Nevertheless, it is clear that teaching speakingskills involves teaching these features as well.

Before some ways of teaching speaking can be discussed and compared to practices of teachers in the1st and 3rd faculties, it is important to understand what the main features of speaking are,as opposed to writing for example, and what skills are involved in the ability to speak a secondlanguage. These are the main points presented in this chapter.



1.2. DISORGANISED NATURE OF SPEAKING

One of the basic features of speaking is that it takes place in real time. Due to the timeconstraints that allow speakers only limited planning time, speech production requires ‘real-timeprocessing’ (Thornbury 2005: 2). This is one of the main reasons why language learners, and this isnot only restricted to true beginners, tend to find speaking difficult. Strategies used to ‘buyplanning-time’ (Thornbury and Slade 2007) significantly shape the nature of speaking anddistinguish it from writing. Crystal and Davy also mention time as “the main factor whichdistinguishes written from spoken language” (1979: 87).

Consequently, ‘instances of disfluency’ (Thornbury and Slade 2007) like hesitations, wordrepetitions, false starts, unfinished utterances and repairs make speaking look less neat and tidythan writing when transcribed. Therefore one might assume that speaking is disorganized or eveninferior to writing. But this is not true in reality. As Holliday explains “the formlessness of speech is afact of the transcription”. If judged from the perspective of written texts,spoken language will always look chaotic on paper because first and foremost, “it wasn’t meant tobe written down”. (Holliday 1989: 77)

Burns and Joyce also state that “[...] speech, far from being disorganized, has its own systematicpatterns and structures – they are just somewhat different from those in written language” (Burnsand Joyce 1997: 7). For this reason, judging speech through the measures of writing means to denyto basic characteristics and the purpose for which it is used. Likewise if written texts likecontracts, articles and reviews are rendered in spoken form, they also sound unnatural. Moreover,they are difficult for listeners to follow because they were originally created to be used for adifferent purpose and through a different channel (Crystal and Davy 1979). An analogy, is also true for spoken texts.

As early as in 1989, Holliday argues that “the spoken language is every bit as highly organized asthe written, and is capable of just as great a degree of complexity. Only it is complex in adifferent way.” (Holliday, 1989: 87) In the book Spoken and Written Language, he also suggests thatunlike written texts, spoken texts are dynamic and tend to have a lower degree of lexical density.By dynamics he means the tendency of spoken language to represent experience as processes.According to his words, written language describes the world in terms of its products and makes agreater use of nominalization, e.g. improvement instead of improve. By contrast, when one talks,one says that “something happened or something was done” (1989: 81) and one therefore tends to usemore verbs.In reference to lexico-grammatical structures, Holliday states that written texts are lexicallydense and their sentence grammar is simple, whereas spoken texts having a lower level of lexicaldensity have a greater degree of grammatical intricacy. In conversation, however, this intricacy may be realized across turns.

Illustrating his view on a number of examples, he further explains that by grammatical intricacy humans the tendency to use a broader variety of tenses and aspects in speaking. According to him,spoken discourse makes a frequent use of clauses and employs a greater variety of both syntacticand semantic relationships. He says that “it is often thought that sequences of conversationaldiscourse […] are simply strings of ‘ands’. […] Rather, they are intricate constructions ofclauses, varying not only in the kind of interdependency (parataxis or hypotaxis) but also in thelogical semantic relationships involved.” (1989: 86)

On the same subject, in particular syntactic relationships in spoken texts, Crystal and Davy statethat “the most obvious continuity feature is simple addition of another structure, itselfgrammatically independent, using a conjunction” (Crystal and Davy 1979: 88), a view that Hollidayseems to find too simplistic as suggested above.

More than two decades later and building on the present research evidence, Thornbury reports that the ‘grammar’ of spoken texts is “constrained by how much information can be held in workingmemory at any one time” (Thornbury 2005: 4). As a result and as a way to compensate for limitedplanning time, speakers use the so-called ‘add-on strategy’ in places where written texts might useembedding or subordination. This strategy means that utterances, phrases or clauses, are added oneafter another and “glued together by the insertion of the appropriate grammatical markers” likearticles, auxiliary verbs and word endings (2005: 4). Thornbury therefore describes speech as notonly spontaneous but also as ‘essentially linear’. By linearity he means the fact that speech isproduced ‘utterance-by-utterance’. Thornbury and Slade also talk about “layering of phrase onphrase rather than forming sentence by sentence as in written texts” (2007: 13).

This linear aspect of spoken texts is also dealt with in detail in A Grammar of Speech by DavidBrazil (1995). In this highly interesting and innovative book, the author analyses grammatical,syntactical, discoursal and intonation patterns that arise from the real-time processing demandsand the interactional character of spoken language. Expressing his dissatisfaction with the poorrepresentation of speech in conventional grammars, he suggests a new way of looking at thestructure of spoken grammar. Rather than thinking of words and other entities as “occurring atplaces in a hierarchically arranged structure”, he analyses spoken language in terms of “chains ofelements occurring in time” (1995: 47). On a systematic basis, he thus manages to demonstrate aclear structure of a spoken grammar dealing with its individual elements. Since this is rather aunique work, it would be desirable if more studies into the nature of spoken language emerged andalso if the link between spoken data and speaking skills teaching was further explored.

Going back to the subject of lexical density mentioned earlier in this section, advocatingHolliday’s notion, Thornbury and Slade say that “another characteristic of spoken language which isattributable to its spontaneity is the fact that information is relatively loosely packed.”(Thornbury and Slade 2007: 13) Therefore both informational (as in Thornbury and Slade 2007) and lexical (as in Holliday 1989) of spoken texts can be explained by the real-time processingand the time constraints speakers need to deal with.

In addition, it can also be observed that both these aspects of spoken language are inevitable fromthe listeners’ perspective as well because while written texts allow readers to read a text as manytimes as necessary, spoken texts do not (Burns and Joyce 1997). Consequently, listeners need enoughtime to process the content of the utterances. Should it be too packed with information or lexis,listeners would find it hard to absorb all that is being said. Moreover, should the situation alsorequire interaction from their part, it would be quite likely for such a conversational exchange toshatter.

In summary, the aim of this section was to show that spoken language “is structurally patterned and displays an orderliness that is neither chaotic nor random but, rather is tightly organized andcoherent” (Thornbury and Slade 2007: 27). The main point that has been presented is that speakinghas its own patterns and structures that are different from those of writing. For example, whencompared to writing spoken language uses more verbs and clauses rather than nominalization.Furthermore, in places where embedding or subordination might appear in a written text, speechfreely adds utterances one after another. In terms of its lexical and informational content, spokenlanguage is loosely packed–both to allow its audience time to process the content of utterances andas a result of real-time processing that a speaker faces.

All in all, speaking is dynamic and is operating under conditions that are substantially differentfrom writing. This means that it does not always involve using ‘grammatically complete andwritten-like sentences’ because while written texts can be redrafted, spoken texts are results ofone-shot production. (Burns and Joyce 1997: 14) All these facts have important implications for LT,which are to be presented in the section that follows.

1.3.CLASSROOM IMPLICATIONS: TEACHERS’ EXPECTATIONS

This section explores several important implications for classroom teaching arising from what wasmentioned above. Firstly, it is crucial for teachers to realize that spoken language is essentiallydifferent from the written one. Teachers therefore cannot expect their students to speak in fullsentences as if, in fact, they were producing written texts. Not only is this not the way peoplespeak in reality but also expecting and requiring such skills from learners, would place extremelyhigh pressure on their speech production for no reason at all. Such expectations might result inthe learners’ later reluctance or anxiety to speak.

Secondly, teachers should help their students understand the important differences between speakingand writing and instruct them in the ways to use this knowledge effectively when speaking. Forexample, learners may be less hesitant to express themselves if they are shown that speakers stringchunks of language together bit by bit without composing entire sentences in their minds beforethey start to speak. They may also find it useful to learn that repairs, hesitations,repetitions and vague language are acceptable in spoken language because without it speech production would be made impossible. Consequently, all these aspects can be practiced in classthrough the use of meaningful tasks. Because as Thornbury and Slade point out: “If thisorganization [meaning the organized nature of speaking] can be described in ways that areaccessible to teachers and learners, there are likely to be practical classroom applications. (Thisdoes not mean, of course, that one such application would simply be to ‘deliver’ the description tolearners without some form of pedagogical mediation.)” (2007: 27).

The next point is that teachers involved in their own course design, may find it useful to maketheir teaching more data-driven and consult further literature dealing with detailed description ofspoken language and its use of lexico-grammatical structures. There has been a significant rise inresearch in this area in recent years and books like Longman student grammar of spoken and writtenEnglish (Bieber et al. 2004) or preferably Longman grammar of spoken and written English (Biber1999) provide quite detailed accounts of spoken language use based on corpus research. Another bookdealing with spoken grammar in an unconventional way, which has already been mentioned, is AGrammar of Speech (Brazil 1995).Furthermore, teachers may also find it beneficial to make use of spoken language corpora that areaccessible on the Internet. They may even choose to teach corpus-based techniques in classroom forthe benefit of their learners. Conrad reports that even though “there is little empirical researchinto the effectiveness of corpus-based techniques for language learning, […] there are a variety oftheoretical reasons for using them and many reports by teachers of student interest andimprovement” (Conrad 2008: 402).Finally, it is essential for teachers to seek ways to give their learners enough systematictraining in the relevant skills, the full scope of which is to be discussed at a later stage ofthis paper.



1.4.CLASSROOM IMPLICATIONS: TEACHING MATERIALS

As has been indicated, spoken texts are not normally placed out of context in real life. The samefact should be reflected in the classroom setting. Structures and vocabulary should be viewed intheir immediate context. Longer stretches of spoken discourse can prove extremely useful indemonstrating how different elements combine and work together to create a successfulconversational exchange.

Consequently, teachers should consider if materials and textbooks they use reflect the features ofspoken language both in their recorded and transcribed forms. If not, they may want to considersearching for other samples of spoken language which can be transcribed for a later systematictraining in class. Recordings are more accessible nowadays than they used to be and it is notdifficult to find desirable samples online. More high-tech teachers may even consider recordingtheir own spoken texts. In fact, this is something which can be done quite easily, e.g. while onholiday chatting with your friends or asking your native-speaking colleagues to talk on a certaintopic, using specific language, etc. I personally have good experience with both using recordingsfrom the Internet and working in class with my own mp3 recordings and I have seen both techniquesbeing used with a few other teachers, too.More than thirty years ago, Crystal and Davy (1979) complained of the tendency of textbooks not tobe real:

People in textbooks, it seems, are not allowed to tell long and unfunny jokes, to get irritable orto lose their temper, to gossip (especially about other people), to speak with their mouths full,to talk nonsense, or swear (even mildly). They do not get all mixed up while they are speaking,forget what they wanted to say, hesitate, make grammatical mistakes, argue erratically orillogically, use words vaguely, get interrupted, talk at the same time, switch speech styles,manipulate the rules of the language to suit themselves, or fail to understand. In a word, they arenot real. All these features are still deliberately being omitted from LT and simplified and unauthenticmaterials are used. According to Burns and Joyce (1997), inauthentic materials create a falseimpression of speech presenting them with ‘unrealistic models of spoken interactions’ (1997: 87).Burns and Joyce (1997) claim that:

If the overall aim of language programs is to prepare students to use spoken language effectivelyin social situations, then teachers need to present students with authentic spoken texts in theclassroom. This may include the use of recordings and transcripts of authentic discourse. Teachersneed to know how authentic texts differ from scripted and semi-scripted texts and how to use this

knowledge to assist second language learners to develop speaking skills. (p. 85)



Furthermore, even though the authors recognize some of the potential benefits of scripted dialoguesespecially at the beginning stages of learning, they warn against their exclusive use and point outthat:

(...) if students are restricted to scripted dialogues they will develop an unrealistic view of thefeatures of spoken language and will not be prepared for their role as participants in spoke ninteractions in social contexts. For students to be able participate in spoken interactions outsidethe classroom, the teacher will need to introduce authentic discourse gradually into the classroom.Authentic spoken texts are more difficult for students to deal with and how and when students areintroduced to authentic discourse will depend on their level of language and their goals. Burns and Joyce report that to eliminate the big discrepancies between unscripted and scripted texts, some material writers choose to use semi-scripted texts that are created by presentingseveral people with a particular spoken language to be used in their interaction. In asemi-scripted interaction, the context, purpose for interaction and specific authentic language tobe used are identified beforehand. Burns and Joyce conclude that “these texts are a good transitionbetween scripted and authentic texts because they introduce students to the feature of authenticspeech in a controlled way” (1997: 88).Even though it is up to teachers when and how they introduce authentic materials into theirteaching, it is important that these are gradually made part of LT. One of the tasks of LT is tohelp learners cope with real operating conditions and real language. If authentic materials andlanguage are not used at all or rarely, the learners’ picture of English language is idealistic butnot real. Therefore authentic language and materials should become an integral part of tuition inorder to help students on their way to autonomy. Learners who are taught mainly through simplifiedmaterials may feel more confident about their English while in class but the minute they encountera native speaker and experience English used under real life conditions they are bound to failcommunicatively because they are unprepared for it.What must be made clear is that using authentic materials and/or work with transcripts of spokendata is not to be applied exclusively or exhaustively. Similarly to others, my experience is thatadapted materials help learners progress faster from beginning to intermediate levels. However,this advantage should not be misused at the expense of excluding real language from classrooms – apractice that might make a language classroom a safe and secure island for learners and teachersIt is clear that such a procedure would not be desirable for learners in the long term. Along thesame lines, Nunan (2010) states that “learners should be fed as rich a diet of authentic data aspossible, because, ultimately, if they only encounter contrived dialogues and listening texts their learning task would be made more difficult” (2010: 27)As Nunan further explains, one of the advantages of using authentic materials in reference tocontext is that learners encounter target language in the contexts where they naturally occur notwhere the textbook writer uses them. In the end, this will help learners because they canexperience how language is used in relation to other closely related grammatical and discourseitems.My final point on the use of materials from textbooks is that teachers should be careful not to usetextbooks as cookery books in which all ingredients are used exactly as instructed. As Tomlinson(2008) reports, “there is evidence that what teachers and learners actually do in the classroom isdetermined principally by what the coursebook tells them to do” (2008: 143). Textbooks have theirgreatest potential if they are used thoughtfully as resource books rather than a prescriptivemanual and adapted both to the learners’ needs and the socio-cultural context they are used in.Similarly, if the teachers’ aim is to teach speaking, they need to consider if the currentmaterials correspond with their aims and to make necessary alterations where desirable. If theyfind that the books include content that is contradictory to their aims, they should substituterelevant parts with more suitable resources or ideally, opt for a better suited coursebook, if theyhave a choice. If this is not an option, they can grab this opportunity as a challenge to includesome more authentic materials in their lessons.

1.5.THE TYPES OF COMMUNICATIVE EXCHANGE

Having discussed the question of context, let us concentrate on the types of communicativeexchanges that can be identified within certain communicative contexts. Based on a communicativesituation and its purpose, two main types of communicative exchanges can be classified:transactional and interactional.

Bygate suggests that conversations are comprised of predictable routines. He distinguishes betweeninformation routines (called transactional by other authors) and interactional routines (Bygate1987). Both types differ in their purpose and structure. Information routines consist of a numberof highly predictable language structures. Their purpose is mainly to transact goods and services,therefore transactional (Nunan 2010). They include service encounters such as buying a trainticket, booking a room or negotiating a loan. By contrast, interactional routines are notproduct-oriented. They are social interactions and fulfill a emphatic function, i.e. they signalfriendship and establish social relationships within groups (Thornbury and Slade 2007).

Nunan (2010) illustrates different functions of both types of exchanges in the followingconversational extracts:

Extract 1:

Store attendant: Morning.

Customer: Morning.

Store attendant: Nice day.

Customer: Uh-huh. Can you give me two of those?

Store attendant: Sure.

Customer: Thanks.

Extract 2:

Father: Morning, Darling.

Daughter: Morning.

Father: Sleep well?

Daughter: Uh-uh. The thunder woke me up.

Father: Loud, wasn’t it. And the lightning . . . . What are you doing?

Daughter: I’m going to finish watching that . . .

Father: Well, don’t have it on too loud. Jenny’s still asleep.(p. 228)

Although it is self-evident that the purpose of the first situation is transactional, there is aninteractional element in the first part of the exchange. Similarly, while the second extractfulfils mainly an interactional function, the last line of the dialogue is clearly transactional(Nunan 2010). Nevertheless, even though “many speaking situations can be a mixture of interactionaland transactional purposes” (Burns and Joyce 1997: 5), Nunan reports that “Bygate’s routinesfacilitate communication for first language speakers because they make the interactions morepredictable” (Nunan 2010: 229).

Finally, citing Brown and Yule (1983), Thornbury and Slade add that “primarily interactionallanguage is primarily listener-oriented, whereas primarily transactional language is primarilymessage-oriented” (Thornbury and Slade 2007: 20). Viewed from this perspective, one can come to arealization that listener-oriented interactions will tend to be freer in terms of their structure.This is mainly because interactional conversational exchanges can easily deviate from their primaryfocus reflecting the listener’s personal involvement. On the other hand, message-orientedconversations will be more clearly structured, as evidence shows, pursuing their ultimate objectiveto deliver a message.


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