Dissertation > Culture, science,education, sports > Education > Secondary education > Subjects teaching methods, teaching aids > Foreign language > English

A Study on the Application of Category Theory to English Reading Teaching in Senior Middle Schools

Author HuangXiZuo
Tutor ZhuYaFu
School Guangzhou University
Course Subject Teaching
Keywords category theory English reading teaching senior middle schools
CLC G633.41
Type Master's thesis
Year 2011
Downloads 23
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The English Curriculum Criteria for Senior Middle School (2003 edition) indicates that the senior middle school students should focus on improvement of their reading competence. Reading is considered the ability to recognize and understand written language, that is, to translate text symbols into meaningful information. According to the Criteria, reading plays a most important role in linguistic competence as it is not only the means but also an objective for English learning and English teaching.In the current senior middle school English teaching, text reading is the most important part in daily classroom teaching. Texts are not only the carrier of the input of students’ English language, but also the first stage to practice students’ reading skills. However, both teachers and students are caught in a dilemma that no matter how much effort they spend on classroom teaching, the results of out-of-class reading comprehension are not satisfactory, especially in the abilities of guessing, predicting and inference. Besides, from what has been surveyed before we know that the incompetence of students’ reading comprehension mainly results from the insufficient vocabulary and unfamiliarity of the text materials.Language experts considered reading was characterized as an active process of comprehending and students needed to be taught strategies to read more efficiently, e.g. guessing from context, defining expectations, making inferences about the text, skimming ahead to fill in the context, etc. Therefore, the essay intends to carry out a research on how to improve senior middle school students’reading competence by utilizing texts reading in classroom.The textbooks of NSEFC (New Senior English for Chinese) cover topics of all kinds ranging from science to art, from cultures to natural phenomenon. Every learning unit covers a single topic, which we may regard as content within a cognitive category. Category theory is the basic psychological study and therefore is applied to the study of language acquisition in recent years. The author attempts to apply category theory in cognitive linguistic to English reading teaching in senior middle school and propose an experiment on reading teaching and reading learning. The thesis inquires into the reading comprehension efficiency under the guidance of category theory by putting forward a practical idea of English reading teaching. It is suggested that teachers should lead students to make full use of their individual cognitive categories and experience. By categorization students can predict and foresee the presence of textual vocabulary and textual structure, etc, while during the reading reconstruct and improve their own cognitive systems. Therefore, students may develop their reading strategies based on category theory and achieve the goal of textual reading comprehension.Based on category theory, an experiment is carried out in Guangzhou No.3 Middle School. The experiment lasts from the beginning of September in 2010 to the end of December in 2010. Two parallel classes take part, of which one acts as the Experimental Class and the other as the Control Class. This study aims at exploring the relation between categorization and reading comprehension in the EFL(English as a foreign language) reading instructions and proving the positive effect of category theory upon the EFL readers. Reading method based on category theory is adopted in the experimental class while traditional teaching method is used in the control class. After the experiment, the result is examined by questionnaire and reading standardization exam. Results of the experiment show that application of category theory to reading teaching is effective in improving senior one students’reading comprehension and it can help students improve reading habits. Besides, the application of category theory can promote the learning of vocabulary in textual reading. This study is of theoretical and practical value to reading teaching in senior middle school.

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