Speaking Difficulties Encountered by Low-Proficiency EFL Students at Ubon Ratchathani University

Abstract

In English as a foreign language learning contexts, speaking, as one of the productive skills, has been considered as a challenging skill to master due to the number of errors and mistakes it is mostly associated with. The purpose of this study is to find out the speaking difficulties encountered by five low-proficiency students of Ubon Ratchathani University who got 4 out of 10 in the final speaking test of English Oral Communication in the first semester of the academic year 2016. Using “Common Characteristics of Speaking Performance” highlighted in the communicative approach of teaching English, namely fluency and accuracy (grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation) as a research instrument, and the next-turn proof procedure (NTPP) used in conversational analysis as a research method, the recorded conversation of these five students with their native English teacher were then analyzed. The study reveals that most students have problems with fluency in the forms of long pauses, too much hesitations and unintelligible responses. In terms of accuracy, the major problem faced by the students is the inability of using appropriate grammatical structures and producing well-formulated utterances. The use of inappropriate selection of words during speaking and inaccurate pronunciation of words are also found to be the other accuracy problems.



Author Information
Kadek Ray Sulyantha, Ubon Ratchathani University, Thailand

Paper Information
Conference: ACEID2017
Stream: Languages education and applied linguistics (ESL/TESL/TEFL)

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