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Teacher's and learner's beliefs about the use of code-switching in English Second Language classrooms : a case of two secondary schools in Masvingo District, Zimbabwe

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dc.contributor.advisor Kaburise, P. K.
dc.contributor.advisor Klu, E. K.
dc.contributor.author Mareva, Rugare
dc.date.accessioned 2016-09-20T05:55:59Z
dc.date.available 2016-09-20T05:55:59Z
dc.date.issued 2016-09-23
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/11602/652
dc.description Department of English
dc.description PhD (English)
dc.description.abstract The study sought to investigate the role played by learners’ mother tongue, in the teaching and learning of English in secondary schools in Zimbabwe. Two secondary schools in Masvingo District were used as a case study. The study was informed by bilingualism, models of bilingualism and related theories such as Second Language Acquisition (SLA) and Communication Strategies. The selected communication strategy that was focused on is code-switching. This communication strategy reveals the important role that the learners’ L1 can play in learning English. The study, therefore, sought to gain insights into the beliefs of secondary school teachers and learners of English about the use of code-switching in the teaching and learning of English. The study also sought to investigate the ESL teachers’ perceptions on the relationship between code-switching and emerging varieties of English called New Englishes, as well as the teachers’ perceptions on the teaching of such local varieties of English. The inquiry adopted a qualitative research paradigm and focused on two purposively sampled secondary schools comprising one rural day, and one urban boarding school that also enrols day learners. It was the researcher’s belief that these schools would offer useful insights about the role of the learners’ L1 in the teaching and learning of English. The study employed three data collection tools, namely observation, interviews and focus group discussions. Ten Form One and ten Form Three English lessons were observed per school, to give a total of twenty lessons. The four ESL teachers whose lessons were observed at the two schools were interviewed. The researcher also held focus group discussions with a sample of a group of ten Form One and ten Form Three English learners per school. Thus, four focus group discussions were held. Data were analysed and presented qualitatively through identification of emerging themes, and through descriptions, narratives, direct quotes, and tables. Results show that the ESL teachers and learners who participated in the study code-switched from English to the learners’ L1 as a communication strategy and teaching and learning tool, mainly to foster understanding among learners and between the learners and their teachers, and for other communicative and social functions. Results also indicate that there was more code-switching at School B (rural day secondary school) than at School A (urban boarding secondary school), although the teachers’ and learners’ code-switching functions at the two secondary schools were by and large similar. It also emerged that the frequencies of the teachers code v switching differed from teacher to teacher, with Teacher A (urban boarding secondary school) code-switching moderately and Teacher B (urban boarding secondary school) code-switching minimally, while Teacher C and Teacher D (rural day secondary school) code-switched frequently. With regard to the learners, the study revealed that Class A learners (urban boarding secondary school) code-switched moderately during formal classroom exchanges with their teacher, but code-switched a lot among themselves. Class B learners (urban boarding secondary school), Class C and Class D learners (rural day secondary school), code-switched minimally during formal classroom exchanges with their teachers. However, as was the case with Class A learners, they code-switched a lot among themselves. The teachers were largely tolerant of their learners’ code-switching although they showed awareness of the possible negative effects of learners’ code-switching in the learning of ESL. As for the learners, the majority expressed an appreciation of their teachers’ code-switching but there were also negative sentiments against the teachers’ code-switching. The inquiry also revealed that there was unanimous agreement among the four teachers that there is a relationship between code-switching and New Englishes. In addition, two of the teachers expressed the view that there is nothing wrong with teaching the local variety of English in the schools, while the other two said they preferred the teaching of ‘standard’ English. In light of the findings, the study recommends that language policy planners revisit the English-only policy in the school and consider adopting the endonormative rather than the exo-normative model of English for the education system. The study also recommends that the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education should hold workshops to sensitise teachers on how code-switching may best be employed as a teaching and learning tool. Furthermore, the study recommends that ESL teachers be guided by the Postmethod pedagogy, a sense of plausibility as well as the notion of relativism in their decisions on code-switching. In addition, the inquiry recommends that the Zimbabwe Schools Examinations Council be sensitive to aspects of the local variety of English rather than set exo-normative models. Finally, the study recommends that further research be done on code-switching in school types which were not included in the sample for the present study. en_US
dc.format.extent 1 online resource (viii, 246 leaves : color illustrations; color map)
dc.language.iso en en_US
dc.rights University of Venda
dc.subject Bilingualism en_US
dc.subject Code-switching en_US
dc.subject Communication strategies en_US
dc.subject Mother tongue en_US
dc.subject New Englishes en_US
dc.title Teacher's and learner's beliefs about the use of code-switching in English Second Language classrooms : a case of two secondary schools in Masvingo District, Zimbabwe en_US
dc.type Thesis en_US


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