Difficulties Facing Students in English Language Conversation

Alqahtani Mofareh A.


This study addresses the poor language proficiency of English language students, particularly in terms of their conversational skills and/or ability to achieve the desired standards of fluency in either the classroom environment or public sphere. The many factors which directly affect students' performance in speaking fluent English include the fear of making errors. The present study therefore aims to identify the perceived difficulties which language students associate with the study and utterance of English. To this end, the conducted research was descriptive in nature and sought to determine the various elements which are perceived as especially challenging for students and to devise effective solutions through appropriate teaching styles, methodologies and strategies which are driven and supported by the relevant contemporary technology. In addition to fear, certain factors relate to individuated student character and practices, and many students report feelings of shyness and potential embarrassment. Distrust also constitutes a significant obstacle, along with issues surrounding teaching methods, teacher inefficiency, and/or the lack of up-to-date pedagogies. To fully investigate this issue, a quantitative survey instrument containing multiple questions was undertaken in addition to a number of interviews with a random sample of students and teachers in order to elicit the main student challenge in speaking English. The results demonstrated that the majority of the students were unable to speak English either correctly or confidently. The percentages which varied between average, weak, and very weak, were attributed to a general weakness in English grammar, vocabulary, syntax, poor fluency in speech, low understanding  of overall grammar frameworks, and inaccurate pronunciation. In light of this, the present study sought to provide useful suggestions to resolve student conversational problems. To this end, the researcher elucidated the research problem, importance, objectives, hypotheses and methodologies, as well as drawing conclusions. Finally, the researcher outlined a number of recommendations directly relevant to resolving the complex issue.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5430/irhe.v4n3p51


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International Research in Higher Education  ISSN 2380-9183 (Print)  ISSN 2380-9205 (Online)

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