An Investigation on English Learning-Styles of Senior Middle School Students in Rural Area
|Keywords||rural high-school students learning-style preferences investigation English learning English teaching|
As the quality-oriented education spreads, and the new teaching theory such as "learner-centeredness’ implements, more and more researchers draw their attention to the individual differences. Learning style as one factor of the individual differences also took the researchers’ attention, thus more related researches were done on the middle school’s students, but few researchers took the rural high-school students as their subjects. In order to identify the rural students’ learning styles and find out whether the rural students’ English performances could be significantly influenced by their style preferences. The author takes the rural high-school students as the subjects, who are from Wuhua, Meizhou, one of the poverty-stricken counties in Guangdong. In this reaserch, Reid’s (1987) self-reporting questionnaire of perceptual learning styles is indirectly used to get the information about the subjects’ learning styles.The questionnaire was translated into Chinese by Wang Churning. In order to make sure the subjects understand the expressions in the questionnaire, the author alters the Chinese questionnaire and takes the pilot study. The Chinese questionnaire is in appendixⅡ. The subjects of this research consist of 500 high-school students, including Senior One, Senior Two and Senior Three.200 of them are from Shuizhai Middle School (a key school) and 300 are from Mianyang Middle School (an ordinary school) in Wuhua, Meizhou. To reduce the experimental error,50 random samples of cases are selected by means of Select Cases in SPSS (Statistical Package for the Social Sciences) for each grade from the effective samples of each grade in each school. The total questionnaires for analysis are 300. The study is also based on the English final examination to see whether there is any significant correlation between the learning styles and the academic achievement.In this research, the findings are as follows:First, there is no significant difference in learning style preferences among the overall rural high-school students. Most high-school students have multiple styles, among which Tactile Style and Auditory Style are more preferred while Group Style is the least one. Besides, the students in key school also like Individual Style, while those in ordinary school tend to like Group Style.Second, there is no significant difference between girls group and boys group in the preferences for learning styles. Comparing the mean of each learning style in boys group with that in girls group, it indicates that girls tend to like Auditory Style while Tactile Style and boys prefer Individual Style.Third, as to the correlations between English achievements and learning styles, Tactile Style and Individual Style have positive correlation with English achievements, but Group Style has negative correlation with English achievements.Last, there are significant differences in the preferences to Tactile Style, Group Style and Individual Style among the students of different English levels. The good achievers tend to like Tactile Style and Individual Style; on the contrary, the poor achievers favor Group Style.As the main results are presented, some implications for teaching and learning are discussed and certain suggestions are given to the language instructors and students.