TURKISH EFL LEARNERS READINESS FOR AUTONOMY IN RELATION TO SELF-ACCESS CENTER USE
Social Sciences University of Ankara (TURKEY)
About this paper:
Conference name: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2016
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:Over the last years, there has been a significant shift from traditional teacher-centered instructional approaches towards student-centered ones in language teaching. This shift has put much emphasis on the promotion of learner autonomy, which is harder to achieve through traditional teaching methods. The increasing necessity to foster autonomy in English learning has brought new perspectives to teaching profession. In this respect, self-access language learning (SALL) has become an increasingly important aspect of language instruction in all types of institutions in order to appeal to all kinds of learners with different needs (Gardner & Miller, 1997). Therefore, establishing these kinds of facilities to improve self-directed learning and language proficiency has become a priority at more and more institutions all over the world including Turkey.
Self-access center (SAC) provides learners with direct access to language learning resources and entails degree of learner decision making such as choices in mode, pace and content (Cotterall, 1995; Sheerin; 1989; Littlejohn, 1985). Since SACs are considered to be effective alternatives to supplement classroom learning, the factors that inhibit or promote learners’ use of SAC need to be investigated. In this respect, this study investigated the relationship between learners’ readiness for autonomy and frequency of SAC use (regular, infrequent and non-users). Specifically, it looked at four areas: EFL learners’ decision-making abilities in learning English, learners‘ perceptions of their own and their teachers‘ roles in learning English, learners‘ motivation level and their use of metacognitive strategies in learning English. The study was carried out with 250 Turkish EFL learners at Yıldırım Beyazıt University, School of Foreign Languages. In order to collect data, a learner autonomy readiness questionnaire was employed.
The finding of the study may be of benefit to administrators and the SAC coordinators and instructors by providing some suggestions. It may also be a guideline for curriculum and material development units of language programs about updating the content of the curriculum by integrating teaching strategies to help students study independently.
Keywords: Self-access language learning, self-access center, learner autonomy, independent learning.