The paper " Effects of Listening Strategy Instruction on News Videotext Comprehension by Cross J" is a good example of an article on education. The research subjects were 15 Japanese advanced-level adult EFL learners. The participants were 3 males and 12 females who were between the ages of 26 and 45. All the participants were attending classes at an institution located in central Japan. There were two classes namely the experimental class and the comparison class. Since the participants were paying customers of the institution, they were not randomly assigned to a class but rather were allowed to select either of the two classes.
There were seven participants in the experimental group (2 males and 5 females) and eight participants (1 male and 7 females) in the comparison class. According to Mackey and Gass (2005, 312), there are important elements regarding the participants in research that should be provided. This information relates to the biographical details of the participants, information on the selection or assignment of the participants to specific groups, and whether confidentiality issues were taken into account. The research does not indicate the measures taken to address issues of confidentiality of the participants.
This is important because it addresses the ethical concerns of the research. Regarding the selection or assignment of the participants, there is no mention of how the self-selection of participants helped the research. There is also no justification for the imbalance between the male and female participants and whether such imbalance has any negative effects on the results of the study. Ethical Considerations Informed consent and respect for anonymity and confidentiality are some of the important ethical considerations that every researcher must make when conducting research (Koulouriotis 2011, 10).
The author has indicated that the participants of the study were adults which means that they have the capacity to give consent to participate in the research. Further, there are indications that they were well informed as to the nature of the research and everything it entails. This can be seen in the fact that they actually self-assigned themselves to the two groups used for the study. However, the author does not ensure confidentiality when it comes to the participants.
Koulouriotis (2011, 10) argues that confidentiality relates to the protection of the identities of the participants. In this research, the author has used the names of the participants which breaches the ethical responsibilities of the researcher. Data Collection All the participants attended one 10-week current affairs course for 3 hours every week where the materials were drawn from the BBC’ s internet news website plus a 2-3 minutes news videotext. There were pre-test and post-tests conducted for both groups to measure listening comprehension after a news videotext listening task. The pre-test and post-tests are consistent with many other second language studies to promote comparability of the participant groups before and after their treatment (Mackey and Gass 2005, 148).
The experimental class or group received strategy instructions before the listening tasks. The participants completed a questionnaire that was meant to provide background information on the news watching habits of the participants and any perceived comprehension concerns. In addition, each of the participants was also interviewed separately after the first week’ s pre-test to assess how they understood the news videotext (Cross 2009, 160).
The responses of the learners were then recorded and categorized as either reflecting a preference for using bottom-up or top-down processes. The data collected from the interview and the questionnaire were used to guide the strategy instruction and to give reasons for success or failure in the pre-test and post-test scores.
Cross, J. (2009). Effects of listening strategy instruction on news videotext comprehension. Language Teaching Research, 13(2), 151-176.
Thomas, P. (2010). Research methodology and design. University of South Africa Institutional Repository.
Dammak, A. (2015). Research paradigms: Methodologies and compatible methods. St. Clements University.
Koulouriotis, J. (2011). Ethical considerations in conducting research with non-native speakers of English. The Canada Journal, 5, 1-15.
Sham, D. (2011). Research methods in applied linguistics: Encouraging students to become researchers. International Conference on Doing Research in Applied Linguistics.
Mackey, A. & Gass, S. (2005). Second language research: Methodology and design. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers, London.
Griffe, D. (2012). An introduction to second language research methods: Design and data. TESL-EJ Publications.