While there have been many studies on Task-Based Learning (TBL) and learning strategies as essential factors of effective foreign language learning, a few have been done to examine the use of learning strategies when TBL is implemented. This paper presents preliminary findings of a study on how TBL aimed at developing students’ oral communication skills shifted students’ employment of learning strategies. The study was of mixed design, quantitative and qualitative, involving multi-methods data collection with questionnaires and interviews. The subjects of the study were 23 non-English department students in Indonesia. The findings of the study reveal that a one-semester TBL class had a high impact on the oral communication strategies used. Higher use of learning strategies for coping with speaking and listening problems for all students of different oral proficiency levels was found, except for the low achievers who seemed to decrease their employment of strategies for coping with listening problems. Improvement of speaking strategies employment was also found to be higher than that of listening strategies, suggesting a more balanced use of both strategies. Furthermore, negative strategies were less used while positive strategies were increasingly used. As reported by students, reasons for shifting strategies used included covering anxiety and students’ self belief of their improved linguistic skills.
|Keywords:||Task-based Learning, Oral Communication Tasks, Oral Communication Strategies, Oral Proficiency Levels|
PhD Student, Faculty of Education, Monash University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
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