The Use of Learner Development Activities in ESL Classrooms; the Correlation Between Learner Autonomy and Students' English Writing Proficiency
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This study focuses on the effort to foster learner autonomy in an Intensive English Program through the activities suggested in the three learners’ development stages promoting learner autonomy and its result in developing the students’ learner autonomy as well as their English proficiency level. The levels of perceived learner autonomy are measured by a questionnaire; while their levels of English proficiency are evaluated through the pre and post test of essay writing assessments. There have been quite a few definitions of learner autonomy suggested by different learner autonomy scholars and the one that this research project uses as a conceptual framework is that of Littlewood (1996, p. 428) who defines autonomy as “…independent capacity to make and carry out the choices which govern his or her action …” The findings indicates that despite the fact that there is no significant correlation between the students’ perceived learner autonomy and the students’ performance, the result of their post test indicates otherwise. The verification from their writing proficiency as well as teachers’ reflective journals indicates that the activities suggested by Scharle and Szabo (2000) do make a positive impact, with or without the recognition from the students.
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