Tuesday, November 12, 2019

English Language Teaching in Gulf Essay

Zafar Syed’s assertions about the TESOL challenges in Gulf are subjective reflection over the issue and he is unable to provide any verified or verifiable data and findings. He places all responsibility on the structural constraints i. e. contextual framework, human resource development, system and standards, and research and knowledge and paid less heed to other relevant and important dimension f the TESOL i. e. the constraints on the art of the students. He relies too much on the secondary sources but those secondary sources are also related to education and teaching general and has taken into consideration English language teaching particularly. To some extent citation of these secondary resources is relevant e. g. citation of Mograby to provides facts and figures about the unprecedented quantitative growth in education in UAE . (338) He then generalizes that this unprecedented growth has adverse effect on the teaching of Language. He describes that this unchecked growth impacted the planning and implementation of English teaching patterns and policies. (338) In the following paragraph, he is unable to support he preposition by any solid line of arguments, research study or verifiable facts and figures. He is unable to demonstrate that how this rapid growth in education industry has affected the teaching of language. It is more important to provide a socio-cultural context as well that deter or propel the teaching and learning of a language. He describes that â€Å"local students see no concrete link between English ability and communicative requirements†. Mr. Syed is correct in saying this as communicative important of any language in general and English language in particular is related to exposure of the students to other medium of communications. If the socio-cultural context is conservative and does not allow a student to participate in activities involving other communities and people, he will be unable to use his acquired language capacity and thus will consider it meaning less and futile. This will restrict English language teaching to academic activity only. But Mr. Syed does not provide why such perception is created and this issue can be tackled. The next constraint that Mr. Syed takes into account is human resource development. This part of the study is most powerful and relevant as Mr. syed evaluates the role of English language faculty development and describes an array of issues related to it. He rightly point out the important of the local Arab English language teachers. The pool of English language teachers in the whole region are comprised of various expatriates groups that do not possess enough knowledge â€Å"about the local socio-cultural communities and languages† (339). Syed accurately concludes hat this lack of knowledge about local socio-cultural context breed problems like teacher-students gap and this gap endangers effect English Language teaching. Foreign teachers are not well-capacitated to anticipate and delve deep into the socio-problems of the learners and hence can suggest remedies to these. Grammar Translation Method also requires an understanding of the local language and context in order to effectively implement this methodology. (Chastain, 1971. p. 131) Mr. Syed concludes that this ad-hocism in the hiring of contractual foreign faculty hinders the way to implement a more effective and locally suitable system as these temporary teachers are less motivated to make an in-depth evaluation of the system. Here r. Syed has recognized the sole cause of the problem that triggers a cause and effect phenomenon leading to the deterioration of the English Language teaching system in Gulf. Only a motivated and well-informed teachers can recognize the contextual important and shortcomings of language teaching and hence can formulate policies to reduce or eradicate these contextual barriers. Mr Syed has further taken in to consideration the systems and standards but he is unable to realize that only senior and seasoned English language teachers and professors can help designing and executing a viable system and standard for English language teaching. It is not something independent in itself. He emphasizes on the importance of research but it must be noted that research only come through established systems and qualified academia. So first there is dire need to develop faculty and establish a contextually modified system of instructions. This will ultimately lead the faculty to conduct research on appropriate issues pertaining to every facets of English language teaching. Despite various defects in his theoretical framework, he provides some excellent insights into Gulf English language teaching. In addition to his content, he had certain serious flaws in the style of his expression. He only comments on a specific issue briefly and then goes on to comment on another challenges faced by the English Language Teaching without elaborating the first one. The very first sentence of the study indicates that it has nothing to do with primary research as conducting interview of the ESL teachers to locate the challenges faced by them. Further, Syed has limited his study to UAE with a little reference to Saudi Arabia here and there. So this not only limits the scope of the study but indicates that relying on a particular country in the region, generalizations have been made about the whole region. Chastain, Kenneth. The Development of Modern Language Skills: Theory to Practice. Philadelphia: Center for Curriculum Development, 1971.

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