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Barriers to learning English as a second language in two higher learning institutions in Namibia

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dc.contributor.advisor Pretorius, F. J. (Francois Johannes), 1947- Frans, Thulha Hilleni Naambo 2016-05-17T12:42:43Z 2016-05-17T12:42:43Z 2016-01
dc.identifier.citation Frans, Thulha Hilleni Naambo (2016) Barriers to learning English as a second language in two higher learning institutions in Namibia, University of South Africa, Pretoria, <> en
dc.description.abstract The effectiveness of language requires that users of a language be provided with the right knowledge to cope with its complexity and demanding nature especially in the area of writing. In this sense, this thesis sought to draw attention to some of the important features of writing and speaking skills in the English language at two higher learning institutions in Namibia. English is a second language for students at these institutions. Articles 3 and 20 of the Namibian Constitution stipulate that the language policy must promote the use of English in schools (The Constitution of Namibia (1990). It is now 24 years since English as medium of instruction was introduced in schools and tertiary institutions, but some students’ English proficiency is still relatively poor, especially in writing and speaking communication skills. This study investigated the barriers that prevent students to write and speak English well at University A and University B. The writing and speaking skills were investigated through the lens of syllabi/study guides, and lack of practical teaching of oral communication and writing skills inter alia morphology and syntax. Fifty-seven respondents took part in the research, comprising Heads of Departments (Language, Communication and Language Centre), Course Coordinators, lecturers and students in the English field at the two institutions investigated. Students were deliberately selected for the questionnaire to illustrate the difficulties they face when writing and speaking English as a second language. The lecturers were also deliberately selected because they were the ones who were with the students in classrooms. This study used qualitative research to gather information through methods such as observation, interviews, open-response questionnaire items, document analysis and verbal reports. The following were the main findings. There was a lack of specific teaching objectives in oral communication and written skills in the syllabi, while the inability of students to write correct sentences, and the limited time allocated to these courses also played a role. The conclusion drawn from this study is that students’ communicative competency is very poor. Therefore, it is the opinion of this researcher that improvement is much needed regarding syllabi content, teaching approaches of speaking and writing skills, students’ admission criteria and the time frame allocated for the different courses. To answer the research question: firstly the time allocated to some of the English courses is short, there is lack of teaching and learning of oral and writing skills approaches and, the syllabi were planned and design in a way that do not enhance much the teaching and learning of the second language. There are not many activities in the study guides that could be used to enhance students’ communicative competency. Such activities should include subject and verb agreement, passive and active form, sentence construction, word-building using prefixes and suffixes, auxiliaries or activities which give the students a chance to practice a certain aspect of language. Also, since English is a second language for students in Namibia, the institutions must seriously look at the time allocated to the courses they offer so that lecturers can appropriately apply proper approaches to teach writing and speaking skills. en
dc.format.extent 1 online resource (ix, 203 leaves) en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.subject Barriers en
dc.subject English as second language en
dc.subject Cognitive factors en
dc.subject Syllabi en
dc.subject Syntax en
dc.subject Writing skills en
dc.subject Oral communicative skills en
dc.subject Bound and free morphemes en
dc.subject Students’ written work en
dc.subject Instructional methods en
dc.subject.ddc 420.7116881
dc.subject.lcsh English language -- Study and teaching (Higher) -- Foreign speakers -- Case studies en
dc.subject.lcsh English language -- Study and teaching (Higher) -- Namibia -- Case studies en
dc.subject.lcsh Learning ability -- Case studies en
dc.title Barriers to learning English as a second language in two higher learning institutions in Namibia en
dc.type Thesis en
dc.description.department Curriculum and Instructional Studies en D. Ed. (Curriculum Studies)

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