Testing Interactional English Conversation Skills in a University Speaking Exam

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William Collins, Nagasaki University


In this study I looked at ways to help learners develop conversation skills such as turn-taking, backchanneling, using clarifying cues to repair communication breakdown, and making comments. The study was conducted over 2 semesters and concerned the ability of students to use the skills in audio recordings under varying degrees of preplanning limitation. Students in both semesters took a speaking exam, then transcribed the recordings and self-evaluated their use of the different skills. The students in the second semester periodically did 2 reflective-listening exercises. The results suggest that the exercises had some positive impact on improving the students’ use of the conversation skills.

本論は、順番交替, 相槌、発言や理解に関わる問題の修復等の会話技能を学生に身に着けさせる方法に関する研究を報告する。1年間、2つのクラスの学生が会話を定期的に録音し、会話形式の期末試験では、ペアで4つの会話を録音した。それぞれの会話がだんだん、事前練習が制限されることで、本当の会話状況でどれだけその技能を使えたかを研究した。2学期目の学生グループが学期中反省的なリスニング学習をし、それが学生の試験結果にどのような影響を与えたかという点も本研究で報告する。