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A Case Study of a Junior High School Student’s Initial Learning Experiences in a Late English Immersion Program
late immersion program
|Issue Date:||2014-07-01 12:01:37 (UTC+8)|
The present study explores a junior high school student’s initial learning experiences in a late English immersion program, and it discusses the learner’s learning process, the encountered difficulties, factors leading to the difficulties, and coping strategies.
A qualitative research method was employed in this case study. Data were collected through diary entries, interviews, and research notes. Results of the study indicate that the learner made rapid adjustment to the immersing context, and the finding suggests that factors like regarding English as a tool rather than a subject, having a high level of English proficiency, being familiar with the learning environment and the course contents, learning in an environment that matches the learner’s expectation are facilitative factors leading to the learner’s effective adjustment. On the other hand, the present study also finds that inadequate level of some non-language-course teachers’ English proficiency is hindering to the learner’s adjustment. For instance, the teacher’s accent and the ability to explain a concept through comprehensible language are two language problems hindering learning acquisition. In addition, the learner’s negative emotion toward homework also poses a threat to the learning. Nonetheless, the cooperative and collaborative interaction between the learner and the peers, and her high sense of self-efficacy coupled with her flexible learning strategies are influential in helping the learner overcome the above challenges. However, the mismatched expectation of the learner’s L1 development in the Chinese course remains a problem. The overlapped content in the textbook and the requirement of rote learning in teaching and testing result in the learner’s dissatisfaction of L1 development.
Lastly, implications and suggestions developed from the discussions were provided for students, parents, teachers, and curriculum designers to make immersion programs more fruitful for students.
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