Chapter One Introduction
This chapter is the introduction of this thesis which contains background,purpose and significance of the research. The outline of this thesis will followsubsequently. At the end of this chapter, the summary will be elaborated.
1.2 Background of the Study
Language is the foundation of communication. When people speak in public,language can help them express our ideas clearly and appropriately. Therefore,language plays an important role in our daily life. There should also be a proper sizeof vocabulary to make communication efficient and effective. Thus, when it comes tolanguage learning, vocabulary learning ranks foremost among other aspects oflanguage learning. In the process of English learning or studying, the most pervasiveissue is the insufficiency of vocabulary.Nowadays, researchers in English learning usually do not pay more attention tothe issue of English vocabulary learning in an independent college. With theincreasing expansion of college enrollment in China, some students with relative lowscores of National College Entrance Examination (hereafter NCEM) can be admittedinto independent colleges. These students' English foundation is generally poor andthey are usually short of confidence and learning autonomy (Yan, 2010). As far asEnglish vocabulary learning is concerned, independent college students have threeproblems. Firstly, students' English level is relatively low. Secondly, vocabularyteaching can not get the attention it deserves. In addition, these students' enthusiasmfor English learning is not high (Zhao, 2012). In order to solve these problems andprovide further vocabulary learning suggestions for independent college students, theresearcher intends to have English majors of independent college as research subjects.With the development of language learning research, language researchers beganto shift their focus from the study of teaching methods to the ways in which learnersacquire their language knowledge, from teacher-centered class to student-centeredclass, and from transmitting knowledge to encouraging learners to discoverknowledge. To be short, teaching a man to fish is better than giving him fish. "[T] tofish" here refers to use facilitative learning strategies. Helping learners developlearning strategies is better than only impart them knowledge, especially for languagelearners, developing positive language learning strategies can facilitate their languagecapability and boost their confidence. Oxford explained why learning strategieshave such great significance: "Strategies are especially important for languagelearning because they are tools for active, self-directed involvement, which isessential for developing communicative competence. Appropriate language learningstrategies result in improved proficiency and greater self-confidence (1990, p.1)."
Chapter Two Literature Review
This chapter presents definitions at first, which explain some crucial academicterms. After that, related empirical studies both at home and abroad will bedemonstrated. At the end, the researcher will put forward comments on theseempirical studies.
2.2 Definitions of TermsResearch on language learning strategies has been widely discussed for almostforty years both at home and abroad. For decades, the focal point of the study oflanguage learning strategies in foreign countries has undergone the resolution of goodlearners' learning strategies, the analysis of the factors that affect learners' learningstrategy choice and learning strategy training (Huang, 2009). For the definition oflanguage learning strategies, linguists have not proposed a clear definition so far.Different scholars have provided different definitions in the light of different angles."In our view, strategy is best reserved for general tendencies or overallcharacteristics of the approach employed by the language learners, leaving techniquesas the term to refer to particular forms of observable learning (Stern, 1983).""Learning strategies are strategies which contribute to the development of thelanguage system which the learner constructs and affects learning directly (Rubin,1987).""Learning strategies are techniques, approaches or deliberate actions thatstudents take in order to facilitate the learning, recalling of both linguistic and contentarea information (Chamot, 1987).""Language learning strategies are specific action or techniques taken by thelearner to make learning easier, faster, more enjoyable, more self-directed and moretransferable to new situation (Oxford, 1990).""Those processes which are consciously selected by learners and which mayresult in action taken to enhance the learning or use of a second or foreign language,through the storage, retention, recall, and application of information about thatlanguage (Cohen, 1998, p.4).""Specific actions, behaviors, steps, or techniques that students use to improvetheir own progress in developing skills in a second or foreign language (Oxford, 1999,p.158)."
Chapter Three Research Methodologies ........28
3.2 Research Approaches....28
3.3 Research Instruments ..........30
3.4 Subjects .....36
3.5 Research Procedure ......37
Chapter Four Results and Discussion .....39
4.2 Results of the Questionnaires.....39
4.3 Interview Analysis .........56
4.4 Answers to the Research Questions .........65
Chapter Five Conclusion .....75
5.2 Major Findings .......75
5.3 Implications of the study .....76
5.5 Recommendations for Further Research.......79
Chapter Four Results and Discussion
In this chapter, the researcher intends to elaborate the research results and discussthe answers to the research questions by analyzing the data collected from thequestionnaires and the interviews.
4.2 Results of the Questionnaires
As can be seen from the table, the total score of TEM-4 is 100. And themaximum score of the subjects' TEM-4 is 74.00, the minimum score is 30.00, and themean is 51.38, which indicate that most of the subjects have not passed TEM-4. Thetotal score of self-efficacy questionnaire is 5, which represents a high self-efficacylevel. Thereby, in the questionnaire of self-efficacy, score 4 means median-high leveland score 3 indicates median level. The mean of this questionnaire is 3.07, which is alittle higher than 3 and it indicates that the subjects' self-efficacy level is at the medianlevel. Similar to self-efficacy questionnaire, the total score of vocabulary learningstrategies questionnaire is 7, which signifies a high level of vocabulary learningstrategies. Consequently, score 5.5 implies median-high level and score 4 indicatesmedian level. The mean of vocabulary learning strategies questionnaire is 4.49, whichis a little bit higher than the median level. Thereupon, the subjects have a medianlevel of vocabulary learning strategies.
This chapter serves as a conclusion of the thesis. It contains five sections. Thefirst section is an introduction of this chapter. Then the researcher states majorfindings of the research. After that, implications of the study are described. The purpose of this research is to investigate what vocabulary learning strategiesthe English majors tend to use in their English learning and the correlation betweenEnglish major students' vocabulary learning strategy and self-efficacy and theirEnglish achievements. Based on the reliable data analysis of the results, two majorfindings are presented as following:
(1) The vocabulary learning strategies which the English majors often use intheir English learning are cognitive strategies. Cognitive strategy contains sixsubclasses: contextual guessing, dictionary strategy, note-taking strategies, rehearsalstrategies, encoding strategies and activation strategies. The strategies which are mostfrequently used by the students are dictionary strategy, contextual guessing strategiesand activation strategies.
(2) The correlation between English major students' vocabulary learningstrategies and their English achievements is positive and significant. There is alsopositive and significant correlation between English achievements and self-efficacy.In addition, vocabulary learning strategies correlates with self-efficacy positively andsignificantly.