In this study, the author conducted a survey among Japanese university students with low English proficiency about their images of ideal English teachers. The findings indicate the following needs: (1) to teach English comprehensively for students' better understanding; (2) to know the degree of difficulty, progress and quality of learning to enhance students' self-efficacy in English learning; (3) to teach English in an enjoyable way; (4) to monitor each student; (5) to possess a high degree of tolerance toward low English proficiency; and (6) to have an active personality. It is underscored that these images of ideal English teachers are significant for teachers in not only understanding students' expectations from their English class but also to subsequently improve the class
Reading aloud textbooks is said to be an effective instruction in developing English performance. Some literatures point out that, for learners who are not good at reading aloud, it is difficult to memorize English words and they are less likely to be interested in English. Unfortunately, however, there seems to be a lot of high schools where few opportunities of reading aloud through textbooks are provided, because most of the class is focused on grammar translation. It seems that the number of college students who are not good at reading is increasing year by year. Therefore, we examined what kind of impact reading aloud had on learners' motivation toward English learning. Our research has shown that this instruction greatly enhanced their psychological desires such as self-confidence and relationship between students and teachers, and their extrinsic and integrated motivation. This result is caused by two kinds of instructions, the one that promotes learners to understand the meanings, and the other that leads learners to recite discourse. Reading aloud textbooks would be beneficial to high school students or university freshmen.
This paper examines the short essays of Japanese university students in their first and fourth years of study, concentrates on the content, shows the characteristics of essays with low evaluations, and considers why the evaluations do not improve. Three types of logical structure were seen in the essays with low evaluations. ・Missing-the-mark type: The apparent "essay structure" and content do not match. ・Derailed type: The argument deviates from the theme at some point. ・List type: Ideas are randomly listed, and the relationship between the assertions and grounds is unclear. The evaluations of the missing-the-mark types improved in the fourth year, but in some cases, improvements were not seen in the derailed types and list types even in the fourth year, and these essays continued to have the same problems. This was because, while there was consistency of content in the missing-the-mark types, the other two types lacked consistency or were unclear. Awareness of consistency of content leads to improvements, but improvements are difficult when it cannot be judged whether or not the assertions cohere with the grounds or when the content has not been brought together for consistency. The paper states that improvements require guidance based on characteristics.
This paper suggests one possibility of teaching English pronunciation in terms of intelligibility for international communication. Users of English are increasing more and more amid the rapid progression of internationalization. In order to meet the needs of the globalized international community, the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT) has introduced a policy to nurture Japanese students with spoken English ability. In spite of the policy, according to the survey, not all students receive pronunciation lessons before they enter university. Most of the lessons students have had don't seem to be concerned with the connection between communication and pronunciation. Learners need to become acquainted with the English sound system in addition to understanding how to read phonetic symbols. Now that there are so many more non-native speakers of English than native speakers, we need to be aware that there are a variety of models of English we should learn. With that in mind, this paper shows one proposal of the future direction of teaching English pronunciation.