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Investigate the various learning styles and strategies of second language learners.

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Introduction

There has been a major change within the field of language learning and teaching over the last twenty years, as greater emphasis was put on students and their learning habits rather than on teachers and teaching practices (Hismanoglu 2000). The intent of this paper is to investigate the various learning styles and strategies of second language learners. In recent years a number of educators have proposed that teaching would be more effective if teachers took account of differences in students learning styles and strategies. They realized that a method appropriate for most students may be ineffective for other students who could learn more easily with a different approach (McKeachie 1995). As a consequence an effective teacher varies techniques to find out the one that really fits his or her students' needs. Teachers need to help students develop the skills and strategies that can help them during the language learning process. Before, we are taking steps to find out our students' learning styles and strategies; we should understand what their roles are, and also what the difference is between them. As Oxford (1989) suggests, the term learning style is used to encompass four aspects of the students,: cognitive style, i.e., preferred or habitual patterns of mental functioning; patterns ...read more.

Middle

The procedure of filling in the questionnaire was done at my home. I thought it was more personal, than just sending them to fill in. I wanted to see their reactions to the questions. I thought I need to be there if they have any problem with understanding the statements. I gave them the sheets (see APPENDIX A) and asked them to work on it on their own and do not hesitate too much on one statement. I was curious about their first impression. According to Rose (1987) there are three kinds of learning styles: visual, auditory and tactile. He designed a questionnaire with which teachers are able to ascertain their students' learning style and I have used it as a basis of my research. The questionnaire examines ten aspects: 1. spelling (Rose 1987) 2. talking (Rose 1987) 3. concentrating (Rose 1987) 4. meeting someone again (Rose 1987) 5. contacting people (Rose 1987) 6. reading 7. doing something new in lessons 8. putting together a picture puzzle 9. need help with an activity 10. have problem with homework There are three possible answers to the questions: A, B or C, they have to choose the one from these that fits them the best. ...read more.

Conclusion

they need to do before starting a project, and they prefer those situation when they are given a goal to achieve in the lesson on their own. My colleagues who took part in the research have understood the necessity of being aware of the students' learning styles and strategies. Every student is a different character and our job is to help them find the way with which their learning process will be more effective. The students who were asked to fill in the questionnaire told that they had evolved learning strategies but this research will help them to develop it. The boy, for example, started to think about the possibility that he will write drafts before writing an essay in English. He said it may help him, because in the past he often scrambled his thought when writing an essay. As an opposite, the girl thought that she should not be so stiff, and should let herself to be more creative. As a conclusion, we can state, that good teaching need to involve more than telling the students about their mistakes all the time; a good teacher motivates students with their successes to continue learning and teaches them the skills and strategies needed for learning a foreign language. ...read more.

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