We will write a custom Research Paper on Saudi English Teachers’ Communicative Approach specifically for you
301 certified writers online
English has become the primary language of communication in the world, promoting the demand for language teachers, specifically in developing countries. Currently, English is widely used in media, scientific researches, and scholarly publications; its universal utilization offers access to a vast variety of data and knowledge (Flowerdew & Peacock, 2001). The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) is one of the countries that show high interest in the language; in its schools, English had officially developed into a separate school subject by 1958 (Al-Subahi, 2001). It proves that the demand for teachers and innovative approaches to education are very high.
It is necessary to point out that learning outcomes in students of Saudi Arabia are at a low level despite the current demand for English. The challenging aspects of learning include the lack of students’ motivation to study, poor educators’ performance, an ill-conceived learning environment, and deficiency of training programs for teachers (Al-Subahi, 2001). Indeed, individuals’ learning outcomes do not show promising results.
According to the research by Alabdualkarem (2007) that involved visits to Saudi public schools, children experience difficulties with listening tests and understanding simple sentences. Moreover, their scores in final examinations in English are lower than in other subjects.
The Saudi Ministry of Education has developed a teaching reform to improve the learning outcomes of students. For example, the textbooks for teaching English as a foreign language in KSA are adjusted according to the TEFL curriculum document to meet children’s needs for acquiring basic skills, including speaking, listening, writing, and reading, and improve their communicative competencies (Al-Hajailan, 2006).
The new learning materials are based on the communicative language teaching method. However, educators primarily rely on obsolete teaching systems that concentrate on memorialization, teaching grammar, and examination preparation (Al-Hajailan, 2006). Students’ results prove that such an approach to teaching does not improve their language skills. Liton and Ali (2011) also consider such practices as ineffective and insist that it is necessary to improve students’ communicative competencies. Saudi teachers’ perspectives on English lessons do not correspond with the efforts of the Ministry of Education, which aims to develop effective methods of teaching English as a foreign language.
This incompatibility suggests that educators may have personal reasons for eliminating the communicative approach and are resistant to implement more effective methods. It is crucial to study the aspects that prevent them from using the communicative language teaching method to improve education in Saudi Arabia.
The discussed problems explain the significance and applicability of the research. The study aims to identify the beliefs and attitudes of Saudi English teachers towards the communicative language teaching approach that prevent them from improving students’ communicative competencies. It will study the challenges they may encounter in their teaching practice and consider possible barriers to the implementation of more effective methods.
Alabdualkarem, M. (2007). Teaching English as a foreign language in Saudi Arabia. Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Obekan Press.
Al-Hajailan, T. (2006). Teaching English in Saudi Arabia. Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Aldar Alsawlatiah.
Al-Subahi, A. (2001). Evaluation of the English programme (ESA) at Saudi intermediate school. Journal of King Abdulaziz University, Educational & Sciences, 14, 3-86.
Flowerdew, J., & Peacock, M. (2001). Research perspectives on English for academic purposes. Cambridge, United Kingdom: Cambridge University Press.
Liton, H. A., & Ali, M. M. (2011). A diagnostic study of EFL courses at the community college of Jazan University. Language in India, 11(12), 108-128.