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Findings and suggestions
Problems Encountered During Research
5.6 Problems Encountered During Research
Some of the problems encountered by the researcher are listed here, which could be helpful to others who intend to conduct similar studies.
1. The data collected through the questionnaire, to analyses the needs of the learners as well as the present way of teaching and testing written English, had to be supplemented with interviews and report writing. The data did not give a complete picture of the present situation. Hence the teachers were personally interviewed and some of them wrote reports on the procedures they adopted in class. Even this interview and report writing, was found inadequate to draw conclusions and hence certain other procedures like – observations of classroom teaching, analysis of learners classwork notebooks and test papers were undertaken. The final picture obtained gives a fairly true picture of the present situation.
2. Equalisation of two groups for purposes of composition involved a number of problems. Inspite of the leveling test administered the intelligence level of the controlled groups in some schools were found to be better than that of the learners of the experimental groups. Besides a language test only shows the achievement level of the learners and not their interest and motivation to try new things. In all the school the controlled group showed more interest in finding out from the learners of the experimental group the new way of teaching they were being exposed to. Urged by a sense of being deprived of some new experience and a completive spirit they learnt a lot more than the experimental group, which was supposed to benefit from the new techniques. Relying too much on statistical analysis alone cannot tell us whether the new techniques have been effective or not. objective observation by the researcher or by a knowledgeable person should also be taken into account.
3. The plan of work needs to be written down in details when the experiment is to be repeated in different schools by different teachers. This plan should also offer guidelines as to how to begin the work, how to estimate the present level of achievement of the learners, which is important as the starting point for the gradual introduction of the tasks planned, and how to handle problems that might crop up in classroom interaction resourcefully.
4. The problems involved in getting the suitable classes to try out new techniques and materials have to be considered when trying to interpret results. In some schools the teachers do not approve of their classes being taught in a new way, which has some influence on the learners as well. Besides the researcher has to accept the classes givens to her by the school authorities and the procedure of equalization do not help to match the two groups with respect to their motivation, interest and competitive spirit.
These were just some of the problems faced by the researcher in this study.
This study has covered only certain aspects of written work in English and that too at the IX standard level. The field is however vast and several aspects of written communication can be studied. Some suggestions for further research are offered in the following section.