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Speaking problems encountered by the first-‎level English department students


‎ One of the English language skills a learner must master is the ‎ability ‎to speak. A common question for anyone who wants to ‎know a ‎person’s ability in a foreign language is whether he ‎speaks English or ‎not. In line with this, mastering the skill of ‎speaking is the most ‎important aspect of learning a second or ‎foreign language, success is ‎measured in terms of being able to ‎have a conversation in the ‎language, and asking people to ‎interact with each other.

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It is not just ‎about what is spoken and ‎the language used, also, a good speaker ‎must pay ‎attention to what the subject speaks and the language he uses ‎so ‎that the listener can easily understand it, and who is talking to ‎him. ‎Hence, speaking is a tool for communicating ideas that are ‎arranged ‎and developed.

This means that the speaker must strive ‎to ‎communicate his ideas clearly so that these ideas can be well ‎accepted, ‎consistent with what the audience wants. For most ‎English language ‎learners, speaking the target language is not ‎easy because learning to ‎speak English requires more than ‎knowledge of grammar and its ‎implications.

Borncart (1998) ‎explains that language learners need to ‎have three areas of ‎knowledge to speak which are elements of ‎language ‎‎(pronunciation, vocabulary) that emphasize the use of ‎correct ‎vocabulary in the correct order with the correct ‎pronunciation, ‎‎ language functions that deal with speaking ‎performance ( For ‎example knowing how to change information and ‎clarifying the ‎basic message), social and cultural criteria (such as ‎session – ‎speech taking, speech rate, length of pauses between ‎speakers, ‎the relative roles of participants, and in what ‎circumstances).

‎Moreover, English language learners must also ‎acquire ‎knowledge about how native speakers use the language in ‎the ‎context of organized personal exchange as effective ‎oral ‎communication is required for speakers to use the ‎language ‎appropriately in various social interactions.‎

In general, a variety of reports and research findings show ‎that ‎speaking is difficult. In dealing with this, the results of ‎their ‎research have shown that the competence of English ‎language ‎graduates is still far from sufficient. Although the ‎communicative ‎language teaching method that focuses on the use of ‎language in ‎real-life situations and social interactions has been ‎introduced ‎from high school to the university level, the result is far ‎from ‎satisfactory.

Besides, the speaking abilities of some high ‎school ‎teachers are still low because some of them only graduate ‎from ‎diploma programs for two or three years. He demonstrated ‎that ‎teachers ’proficiency in English is still low, which means ‎that ‎difficulties in learning to speak are not only perceived by ‎school ‎learners, but also English teachers with the same problem.‎

Statement of the Problem

The ability to make ourselves confident and to direct the ‎self-‎confidence that we must speak in English is a ‎difficult effort. To be ‎able to gain this ‎confidence, individuals need to make sure they ‎are ‎proficient in the language. We view the English ‎proficiency as a ‎major contributor to the teacher’s ‎contribution to student oral ‎communication in the ‎classroom and during the English language ‎teaching and ‎learning session.‎

The first problem that leads to the silence of the sample group ‎during ‎interaction and teaching in the classroom is because the level of ‎teacher proficiency for the student in the ‎English language, compared ‎to senior teachers and lecturers, is ‎relatively different. The sample ‎group had differences among ‎them in terms of proficiency in the ‎English language.

This ‎means that their level of competence, ‎especially in oral English, ‎differs from one another. Therefore, with ‎this problem, they ‎become more afraid of making mistakes if they ‎speak, thus ‎resorting to silence and avoiding any oral contact in ‎the ‎classroom with the teacher or the lecturer. Does this ‎problem ‎apply to the focus group of the research?‎

Based on practical experience in teaching, he also discovered ‎that the ‎same problem applies to students in class during lecture ‎sessions, many ‎remain reluctant to express opinions or ‎provide individual answers ‎during lectures. Therefore, I decided ‎to look into this problem and ‎come up with the necessary ‎solutions to this problem.‎

Based on the problems described above, this topic interests me a ‎lot as ‎I will benefit from the results of this research as I can use it ‎to ‎overcome any difficulties related to this problem to improve ‎my ‎education and my education as a teacher in the classroom.‎

The Research Questions ‎

The present study follows this knowing the problems of ‎students ‎studying the English language and how to ‎overcome them, and ‎knowing how they interact in the ‎classroom to overcome the ‎difficulties they face with an ‎emphasis on how different types of ‎grammatical errors. ‎

Five questions are addressed in this study:‎

  1. ‎Why do students studying English have problems?‎
  2. ‎How does the student overcome the problems he faces ‎when ‎learning English?‎
  3. ‎How do trained teachers teach English in the classroom, ‎and how ‎do they behave and interact during lecture hours ‎at the Teacher ‎Training Institute?‎
  4. ‎What are the difficulties in speaking English during ‎training and ‎class hours?‎
  5. ‎What methods can encourage trained teachers to speak ‎English ‎frequently in the classroom?‎

Objectives of the Study

The purpose of this research is to study students, problems, ‎and ‎experiences in speaking English in the classroom. ‎By‏ ‏identifying ‎these three components; students’ perception, ‎difficulties, and ‎ways to overcome this issue, this study generally ‎focuses on how ‎to help students overcome the existing barrier. So, I ‎hope this ‎study helps them speak English during teaching periods and ‎in ‎the classroom. ‎

Specifically, research is conducted to achieve the ‎following goals:‎

To know the perceptions of the trained teacher speaking in ‎the ‎English language during the practice of training and ‎the ‎lecture hours in the classroom.‎

To know the difficulties experienced by the trained teacher ‎in ‎speaking the English language during the practice of training ‎and ‎the lecture hours in the semester.‎

Suggest suggestions on how to reduce or remove barriers ‎and ‎difficulties in speaking English in the classroom.‎

The Significance of the Study

This study was conducted to find out why students in ‎higher ‎education institutions do not know how to speak English. It ‎was ‎discovered that most students studying in higher ‎education ‎institutions, especially Majmaah University, lack the desire ‎to ‎speak English, especially outside of the classroom.‎

Since English is an important language nowadays, it is also ‎necessary ‎for teacher trainees like us to master the language. The ‎best way to ‎master this language is to use it in our daily ‎conversations. By using ‎English in our daily communications, ‎students can improve their ‎speaking skills during training as well ‎as during lecture hours.‎

Thus this study can be used to help students speak English as ‎well as to ‎help them be more confident in using the second ‎language. Aside ‎from that, this study is also able to help lecturers ‎tackle this issue. ‎Therefore, some measures will be taken in ‎terms of the contents of ‎the lesson and education used in the ‎classroom. For example, the ‎lesson implemented is more ‎interesting which requires students to ‎speak and contribute ‎more to the classroom. Also, the teacher should ‎organize ‎workshops focused on building the student’s self-confidence ‎to ‎speak English. This will encourage students to use English as ‎a ‎medium of communication. ‎


This study was conducted in the Department of English at ‎‎Majmaah University. The subjects of this study were all third-‎semester students in the English language section who had the ‎‎lowest scores in the speaking class. Many students in these ‎‎groups performed poorly in the speaking class. They were ‎‎taking the third word.

The study focused on 10 students, ‎‎chosen from 25 students. The choice was made using students ‎‎with a C score (lowest passing score) in the second speaking, ‎and ‎also based on information about students with low ‎performance ‎according to the lecturer. The said that students ‎are ‎considered to be low performers with some indications: ‎‎‎

  • fear of speaking,
  • lack of mastery of ‎grammar,
  • ack of ‎vocabulary.

There were ten vulnerable students in this class. ‎The ‎author chose the ten students because they were ‎performing ‎poorly in the speaking class. It was also based on ‎the researcher’s ‎initial research when he taught them in the ‎second conversation. ‎To collect data, this observational and ‎observational study was ‎used as the main tool conducted by ‎the researcher himself. ‎Interviewed to obtain key data. The ‎researcher reviewed ten out ‎of 25 students. Each student was ‎asked with three questions, ‎namely:

  1. What difficulties did ‎you encounter or feel in ‎speaking?
  2. What are the causes of ‎difficulties?
  3. What is efforts ‎have you made to overcome the ‎difficulties?

Additionally, the ‎researcher also noticed the ‎speaking category. The observation ‎was to check the problems ‎students encountered in speaking in ‎class. The observation was ‎made using the observation guide.

‎Perform the data analysis as ‎follows. After the interviews were ‎conducted, the data was ‎collected and translated into English. ‎Data were collected into ‎problems, causes, and solutions. Next, ‎the data was analyzed ‎based on the student’s difficulties in ‎speaking, the reasons for ‎the difficulty, and the student’s efforts ‎to improve speaking to ‎find the relationship of ‎problems, causes, and efforts to solve ‎problems.

Two ‎procedures were used to validate data in this ‎study. The first is ‎the researcher’s participation in research, ‎including study ‎preparation, data collection, data analysis, and ‎data ‎interpretation. The second is triangulation. In this case, ‎the ‎researcher compared the data from the interview with the ‎direct ‎observation. Trinity was performed to verify the data or ‎‎information that the writer obtained from the respondents by ‎‎looking at the data source repeatedly to obtain the same result.

‎‎In this sense, Hopkins (1993) asserts that the triangulation ‎‎technique can increase the validity of a category in data ‎‎validation. To support the data to be more correct, the author ‎‎clarified the answer of each student by asking them again ‎about ‎every question the author asked them, and to obtain ‎reliable ‎data, the author wrote the result of the interview as ‎soon as ‎possible, and not more than one day after the ‎interview. The ‎researcher did not use the tape recorder to ‎avoid the impression ‎of an official interview with the ‎respondents.‎

Finding and Discussions

‎Types of Student Difficulties in Speaking Among the ‎ten ‎respondents interviewed, it was found that there are ‎‎twelve types of difficulties encountered by students in ‎‎speaking. The most common problems felt by ‎respondents ‎were: lack of vocabulary, distrust of speaking, ‎non-use of ‎speaking in class, and difficulty expressing ‎words or sentences. ‎The difficulties students feel or feel in ‎speaking can be divided ‎into two types of problems: ‎language problems and no-‎language problems. There ‎were three difficulties related to ‎language problems.

It was ‎‎’ lack of knowledge of grammar’, ‘ ‎lack of vocabulary,’ and ‎‎’poor pronunciation’, while the nine ‎difficulties that dealt ‎with non-linguistic language problems ‎were ‘ lack of confidence in speaking ‘ and ‘ lack of ‎courage ‎to speak ‘, ‎‎’fear’ From speaking ‘,’ fear of making mistakes ‘,’ ‎fear of ‎ridicule from friends ‘,’ not using ‎words in class ‘,’ ‎anxiety from speaking ‘, ‘confusing how words are used ‘, ‎and ‎‎’ difficult to express words or sentences ‘ Occasion. ‘‎

‎2.‎ Types of reasons for difficulty in speaking It was found ‎‎that there are 9 reasons for the difficulty faced by students ‎‎with language problems. They were ‘lack of vocabulary’, ‎‎‎’rarely memorized words,’ words that have more than one ‎‎meaning ‘,’ confused about how to use appropriate words ‎‎’,’ ‎lack of grammatical knowledge ‘,’ rarely read ‎grammatical ‎books ‘,’ bad pronunciation. ‘‎

Robin and Thompson (1982, mentioned in Brown, 2001) ‎note that there are 14 characteristics for successful language ‎learners in learning a second or foreign language. The 14 ‎characteristics of successful language learners suggested by ‎Robin and Thompson are all unique characteristics of ‎successful language learners.

From 22 kinds of the efforts that ‎were used ‎by the students to solve their problems, they only ‎used ‎‎3 out of the 14 characteristics namely ‘they make their ‎‎opportunity for practice in using language inside ‎and outside ‎the classroom’, ‘they learn certain production ‎strategies to fill ‎in gaps in their own competence’, and ‎‎‘they are creative, ‎developing a ‘feel’ for the language ‎by experimenting with ‎grammar and words’. Based on the results of the interviews, ‎many students said that their efforts did not fully meet their ‎expectations. ‎

Four difficulties that Taiqin found were ‘being afraid of ‎‎making errors’, ‘losing confident to speak’, ‘feeling ‎‎uncomfortable to make mistakes’ and ‘not having ideas ‎‎about what to say.’ In this study, the researcher found two ‎problems addressed in Taiqin’s discovery, namely ‘fear of ‎making mistakes’ and ‘distrust of speaking or loss of ‎confidence in speech. There’re some phrases that the students ‎started to describe ‎their fear in speaking such as ‘being afraid ‎of ‎speaking’, ‘being afraid of making errors, and ‘being ‎afraid ‎of being mocked by friends’. It needs to be ‎explored ‎furthermore because these deal with non-‎linguistic problems. ‎Other researchers should think about the factors that make ‎students afraid to speak to find the best solutions to deal with ‎problems.‎



The results of this study are that the problems associated ‎with teaching speaking skills can be addressed through ‎different approaches. The ultimate goal for teachers is to ‎develop students’ speaking skills and language proficiency that ‎includes: competence in social linguistics, grammatical ‎competence, strategic competence, and speaking skills.‎

Teachers should always apply a combination of these ‎methods simultaneously as problems are likely to arise when ‎teachers rely solely on a single teaching technique or strategy. ‎It can be important because it may enable classroom teachers ‎to identify students with problems with speaking skills.‎‏ ‏

Treatment Recommendations

Referring to the study results, the teachers indicated that there are ‎no established methods that can be adopted when teaching speaking ‎skills. Based on the results and discussion of this study, some treatment ‎recommendations were suggested that are believed to help avoid such ‎problems from recurrence in the future.‎

  1. ‎There may be a need to design a comprehensive curriculum ‎to encourage conversation between student activities.‎
  2. ‎Teachers may need training continuously.‎
  3. ‎At the university level, some additional classes may be ‎required to mitigate linguistic weaknesses among students. More focus ‎is needed on sentence structure, grammar, and spelling.‎
  4. ‎Students may need to be more active in improving academic ‎conversation.‎
  5. ‎Class size may need to be reduced to at least 25 students.‎

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Speaking problems encountered by the first-‎level English department students
Introduction ‎ One of the English language skills a learner must master is the ‎ability ‎to speak. A common question for anyone who wants to ‎know a ‎person's ability in a foreign language is whether he ‎speaks English or ‎not. In line with this, mastering the skill of ‎speaking is the most ‎important aspect of learning a second or ‎foreign language, success is ‎measured in terms of being able to ‎have a conversation in the ‎language, and asking people to ‎i
2021-09-28 02:20:22
Speaking problems encountered by the first-‎level English department students
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