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TSC Subjective Question set 1 (Lower Secondary English)

1.  This is the first part from Pedagogy Section

      1. What is communicative approach in language teaching? State the role of the teachers and the learners in the classroom in communicative approach.                                     5+5


Communicative language teaching (CLT) is an established approach to second or foreign language teaching which was emerged in 1960's It is popular with several terms such as communicative methodology, communicative approach, communicative and functional teaching activities and so on. This approach is the demand of the day. It is different than other approaches because it emphasizes on communication. CLT was developed by British applied linguists as a reaction against the audio-lingual method, and as an extension or the development of the notional functional syllabus. They saw the need to focus in language teaching on communicative proficiency rather than the mastery of structures. Thus, the origin of CLT is linked with the failure and inadequacies seen in the traditional approaches like Situational Language Teaching, Audio-lingual approach etc.


CLT centres on the essential belief that if students are involved in meaning-focused communicative activities, then language learning will take care of itself. It emphasizes interaction as both the means and the ultimate goal of study. CLT also places great emphasis on helping students use the target language in a variety of contexts and places great emphasis on learning four language skills - listening, speaking, reading, writing. Meaning is paramount in CLT. Communicative language teaching assumes that language is a means of communication and therefore it should be handled as a social phenomenon.


The primary concern of CLT is thus with spoken functions as much as with written grammatical and textual functions. The notion of when and how it is appropriate to say certain things is of prime importance in CLT. It is believed that plentiful exposure to language in use and plenty of opportunities to use it are vitally important for the development of L2 knowledge and skill. Activities in CLT typically involve students in real or realistic communication, when the successful achievement of the communicative task is an important as the accuracy of language use. Both fluency and accuracy are the goals of CLT, with a priority on fluency.


CLT is based on the theory of language as communication. The aim of language teaching is to develop communicative competence. There are some techniques of CLT. Larsen-Freeman suggests the following key techniques associated with communicative language teaching:

1.    1. Authentic materials

Authentic materials are those materials which are natural to native speakers of the target language. Authentic materials are newspaper articles, print, video, and audio materials students encounter in their daily lives, such as change-of- address forms, job applications, menus, voice mail messages, radio programs, and videos. The supporters of CLT gives emphasis on the use of such authentic language materials in the classroom. Sometimes, students cannot transfer what they learn in the classroom to the outside world. To overcome this typical problem, students should be exposed to natural language in a variety of situations. The use of language materials authentic to native speakers of the target language is one of them.

2.     2. Scrambled sentences

The students are given a passage (a text) in which the sentences are in a scrambled order. This may be a passage before they have worked with or one, they have not seen before. They are told to unscramble the sentences to restore them in their original order. This type of exercise teaches students about the cohesion and coherence. With the help of the feature like cohesion and coherence, language becomes natural and comprehensible. In addition to written passages, students might also be asked to unscramble the lines of mixed-up dialogue or to put the pictures of a picture strip story in order. They are asked to write the lines to accompany the pictures.

3.     3. Language games

Games make the students active, alert and attentive. Different language games are used frequently in CLT. The students find them enjoyable and have fun. If they are properly designed, they give students valuable communicative practice. Games that are truly communicative have the three features of communication which are information, choice and feedback.

4.    4. Picture/strip story

Many activities can be done with picture strip stories. One of the activities can be a problem-solving communicative task. Problem solving task work well in the communicative approach because they usually include the three features of communication i.e. information, choice and feedback. First, they don't know what the picture contains. They have choices to make prediction. They convey their prediction. Finally, they receive feedback on the content of the prediction. Moreover, they can be structured so that student share information together to arrive at a solution. This gives students practice in negotiating meaning.

5.     5. Role play

Role play is very important in CLT because it gives students an opportunity to practice communicating in different social contexts and in different social roles. Students are asked to play different roles in CLT. Role plays can be set up so that they are very structured or in a less structured way. Second one is very common in CLT because it gives the students more of a choice. Students also receive feedback on whether or not they have effectively communicated.


2.     2. What is receptive skill? Write about the methodological model for teaching   receptive skill as suggested by Harmer.                                                                                       4+6


Language is used for communication in terms of four skills. They are listening, speaking, reading and writing. The four language skills may rarely work in isolation. They are integrated to make communication meaningful and effective. The skills are often divided into two types: receptive and productive. Receptive skill is a term used for reading and listening from which the learner receives or perceives something. Meaning is extracted from the discourse from this skill. Productive skill is the term for speaking and writing, skills where students actually have to produce or generate language themselves. It is certainly the case that when we speak or write we are producing language, and when we listen or read, we are trying to extract meaning of what we have read or listened to. Listening and reading skills of language involve receiving messages so they are often referred to as receptive skills. The receptive skills involve active participation of the listener or reader.

A basic methodological model for teaching receptive skills as suggested by Harmer is presented below:

There are five different stages in the basic methodological model for teaching receptive skills. The procedure for teaching receptive skill generally begins with Lead-in then teacher directs comprehension tasks and so on. These stages are presented below:

1.     Lead in

In this stage the students and the teachers prepare themselves for the task. They familiarize themselves with the topic of the listening and reading task. In this stage we engage the students with the topic and try to activate their schema, a term which refers to our pre-existent knowledge of the world. Thus, lead-in activities provoke the learners' schema.

2.     T directs comprehension tasks

In this stage, the teacher makes sure that the students know what they are going to do. The comprehension tasks can be of two types: type 1 and type 2. Type 1 task is general text related/comprehension task which is general in nature whereas type 2 task is specific comprehension task. In the first phase, the type 1 tasks are directed by the teacher and then type 2 tasks can be directed.

3.     SS read/listen for tasks

In this stage, the students are engaged in listening and reading to a text to perform the tasks the teacher has set for them. The students can perform the tasks or do the exercises individually, or in pairs and in small groups.

4.     T directs feedback

In this stage the teacher helps ang gives feedback to the students. When the students have performed the tasks, the teacher helps them to see if they have successfully completed the task. The teacher also tries to find out how well they have done the work. The teacher gives feedback (explicit or implicit) to them. From this stage the teacher leads students towards two directions: first, to text-related tasks, and next, to type 2 tasks including comprehension tasks and listening/reading activities.

5.     T directs text-related tasks

When the students have performed both types of tasks, i.e. general or type tasks and specific or type 2 tasks, the teacher gives some more follow-up tasks which are related to the text. On the basis of their previous performance and teacher's feedback, the students perform on the text-related tasks.

The model can be presented in the following way

A basic model for teaching receptive skills.


3. Write about the basic skills of ICT for English Language teacher.                      10


Teachers should be updated according to the situation and changes of the world. The same teaching style shouldn't be used. It should be changed or reformed according to the innovation of the world. Therefore, teachers should have some skills of ICT which can be applied and used in teaching. ICT is the abbreviated form of Information and Communication Technology. It is a cry of the day. The successful integration of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) into the teaching and learning of English Language is largely dependent on the level of teacher's ICT competence. Virtual teaching is possible if the teacher has the knowledge of ICT. In this pandemic situation ICT plays vital role in teaching learning activities. The utilization of ICT in the language classroom depends on the competence of the teacher. There are some factors that challenge teachers to use ICT in language teaching.


ICT is taken as the most potential tool for teaching. It provides educational opportunities in both formal and non-formal ways. ICT's can increase motivation to the learner and they will be engaged in classroom activities. It gives opportunity to the learners to uplift the standard of digital literacy.

Some basic skills of ICT for English language teachers are given below:

a.      Computer literacy:

The teachers should be literate in computer. They should know how to use different soft wares in teaching. They should be able to operate useful computer programs, share common features and icons, which means and use basic programs (word, excel, powerpoint, one note, outlook, g-mail etc. They should be literate on using different search engines and download the materials.

b.     Ability to put the files in back-up:

The teachers should have the idea to back-up or restore the files and documents so that they can be used in future too. Computers are the store house where we can store the resources which are created. Sometimes they can be shared and saved on computers. If the teacher wants to protect the documents / files, he/she needs to know how to back-up their files.

c.      Ability to use online project work:

Most teachers as students to take part in group work at some point, but how often teachers do this type of work themselves. If you want to be able to really help your students, get involved in some projects that are run online - either in or outside of school. Your experiences will stand your students in good stead.

d.     Familiar with social networking skills:

Teachers should have a basic understanding of how online networks work. They should be familiar with different social sites. Because of social networking, they can easily get the excess to get and use materials.

e.      The benefits of teacher training:

In order to become a confident user of ICT in the classroom, teachers need to take part in ongoing training Teachers should understand the benefits of digital literacy. Teachers require extensive, on-going exposure to ICTs to be able to evaluate and select the most appropriate resources. However, the development of appropriate pedagogical practices is seen as more important than technical mastery of ICTs. One-off training is not sufficient, schools need to invest in and implement long term ongoing training and continuous professional development in order to keep up with rapidly evolving digital technologies.


4.   4. What is action research in teaching? Why is it called 'a cycle of action'?               5+5

Action research is known as classroom research. It is propounded by Kurt Lewin. He introduced it in 1946 in order to bridge up between theoretical and applied research It is said that an action research a conducted to improve the action but not to prove any theory. As Lewin says. "Action research is the term which describes the integration of action (implementing a plan) with research (developing an understanding of the effectiveness of this implementation)". Action research is conducted to solve the problems that occur during our teaching. As the name suggests it is applied to take action regarding the immediate problem of classroom. Action research must be conducted by the practitioner, i.e. teacher in the case of teaching to solve any problem immediately that is seen in the classroom teaching. It is conducted to bring a change in the existing situation. Action research is applied to improve the existing situation. It is the most commonly recommended form of classroom research.

Stages/steps of action research Different scholars have different views on the stages of action research. The stages/steps presented by Burns (2015) is mentioned below:


1. Planning      a. identifying           b. informing         c. organizing

2. Acting         a. Trialing                b. collecting          c. questioning

3. Observing   a. analyzing             b. reporting            c. sharing

4. Reflecting   a. valuating              b. implementing    c. revising

Action research is cyclic in nature because the practitioner can follow its cycle. Those above mentioned four stages of action research are used again and again until they achieve the expected result. These steps are followed in cyclic order like in the following diagram.

First the researcher or the teacher in this context makes plan to solve the existing problem. Then s/he takes action according to his/her plan to bring changes. After that s/he collects, observes and analyses the data to find out whether there is change or not. If there is not expected change, the steps are again followed until good results are achieved. So, this research is also called the cyclic research or it is the cycle of actions.

5.    5. What is error analysis? Write the different techniques to correct errors.               4+6


It is human nature to make mistakes. The students also make mistakes when they are speaking and writing. Sometimes they create fun and merriment. Some mistakes can be easily corrected by them but some mistakes can be repeatedly done by them although we guide them several times. This type of mistake that is deeply rooted to the learner's interlanguage competence is known as error. Why is this so? Is there any difference between the mistakes made by a native speaker and those made by a learner? What kinds of mistakes there are? What are the things that are responsible for these mistakes? The answers to these questions are tried in error analysis. Describing the purpose and process of error analysis, Corder (1975) says, From the study of his errors we are able to infer his knowledge at that point in his learning career and discover what he still has to learn. By describing and classifying his errors in linguistic terms we build up a picture of the features of the language which are causing him learning problems. The purpose of error analysis is to find out the sources of error, that is why does a learner make particular kind of mistakes. This shows what features or areas of the language are causing him problems in learning. This knowledge, then is used to provide remedies. As to how error analysis is carried on can be seen as a series of successive steps. There are some steps of error analysis. The steps of error analysis are:

a) collection of data

b) identification / recognition of errors

c) description / classification of errors

d) explanation of errors

e) evaluation of errors

The main purpose of doing error analysis is to facilitate learning, Errors provide feedback to the teacher. They tell the teacher something about the strength and weakness of their teaching techniques: where their teaching was successful and where it was a failure. They enable them to decide whether they should move onto the next reaching item or concentrate more on the item they have been teaching.

There is no single best technique for correcting errors. A teacher should be flexible in her/his techniques of correction. It is also very important that she should be aware of the effect on each individual learner of correcting errors. Most teachers do not consider students' personality and the effect of their way of correcting these errors. Although they correct errors, they bluntly criticise the students for making them. As a result, students gradually lose interest in their lesson. So, a good teacher makes correction with positive comment and uses different strategies according to the kind of error, the ability and personality of the student, and the general atmosphere of the class. The correction can be made by the teacher her/himself (teacher correction), by the students themselves (student correction), or by both teacher and students (mixed correction).

There are some techniques of error correction. They are mentioned below.

a.     a.  Self-correction techniques:

Errors can be corrected by the students if we guide them again and again without pointing their errors. They should find out their errors themselves and correct them themselves. The errors which are corrected by themselves may not occur later because they find their error by themselves.  Sometimes teachers can correct the errors together with the students. It is mixed technique to correct the errors.

b.     b. Peer correction techniques

Errors can be corrected by their friends or peers. That is collaborative type of error correction technique. In this type of correction both of the students are active in learning. This type of correction is student centered too.

c.      c. Teacher correction techniques

We can correct the errors of the students. It is the easiest way to correct the errors but it is less supportive for learning. The objective of correction is not to show the students their ignorance and not to criticise them but to help and encourage them learning more. To achieve this objective a teacher has to be very careful in her/his correction techniques.

 For Second Part (Group B) you can click here

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