27 August 2020 at 10:34 pm #2737adminKeymaster
I quite liked Widdowson’s quote about proficiency. It certainly is thought-provoking, as I’d never seen it in the way he describes it. When one says “proficiency” what normally comes to mind is sounding like a “native” speaker, and proficiency tests like TOEFL, Cambridge etc. that measure your level of language use and put a label on it. While these are important as they are used for university and employment purposes, I don’t think that they should dictate how well someone can use the language. Like the course said, passing these tests makes one a good test taker but not necessarily an efficient language user, communicator. These follow certain strategies that a test taker can learn to apply, but are quite rigid and do not allow for any creative use of language. I agree that when a speaker takes hold of the language they are using and confidently uses it for successful communication, then they can consider themselves proficient, why not? When you “submit to the dictates of its form” you cannot help but monitor your accuracy and I think that with that you lose fluency and perhaps communicate less effectively than you truly are able to. “Native” speakers hardly speak with 100% grammatical accuracy (as expected from a standard-English perspective), so asking this of an L2 speaker seems rather ridiculous.
English inside and outside the classroom
In terms of in-class activities that might be adapted to the way learners learn outside the classroom, I think it would be helpful to bring the outside inside the classroom. Some ways might be: creating blog posts and actively responding to classmates’ posts as they would in their daily life; watching TED talks from varied speakers of English both as L1 and L2 (already heavily practiced) — I have heard many times that it was hard for learners to understand what the speaker was saying because he/she had a British and not an American accent — and using them effectively in class; reading from actual newspapers etc.; using corpora to access authentic speech from different varieties of English; giving learners the opportunity to step out in the real world during class and use the language; listen to different types of music and discussing its message and thus the language it uses; watch TV show episodes with focus on vocabulary.
Would love to hear more ideas and/or comments.
To view past replies go to: https://changingenglishes.proboards.com/thread/19/unit-3-reflections
- This topic was modified 1 month, 3 weeks ago by admin.
18 October 2020 at 3:42 pm #3268Sahar AmerMember
Let’s have a look first at what proficiency is and how it is measured. Here in Saudi Arabia, it’s measured by the ability to communicate effectively in English and pass a standardized exam. Is it looked upon in the same way in all countries? I don’t think so
18 October 2020 at 9:48 pm #3273Ayman Mahmoud MohammedMember
Good speakers of English should have the ability to communicate with native speakers easily . They must understand that practice makes perfect .using English daily gives you an opportunity to master it and widens your mind and knowledge.
24 October 2020 at 9:42 am #3416Ayman Mahmoud MohammedMember
Proficiency tests are designed to measure the test taker level of proficiency . Even the native speakers take the test , Ielts to measure their levels . Some people believe that the score you get depends on many factors like stress management , time management self confidence , culture and proficiency . I had the test one day and it has helped me a lot to grow professionally and to improve myself.
Students are advised to use English inside and outside the classroom . Inside the classroom, they are encouraged to communicate in English with the classmates . They must use the language in real life situations. They should play a fundamental part during the English course to master the target language
Outside the classroom , they should use the social media to communicate their native speakers of English . They are advised to make the best use of their free time to learn English better.
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