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A Using the Student Teams Achievement Division (STAD) strategy to improve English language speaking accuracy among Iranian EFL learners

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One of the factors that contribute to unemployment among English language learners in Meshkinshahr even other Iranian cities today is their lack of proficiency in speaking skills. To overcome this, many language institutions has revised their
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  pg. 1A Using the Student Teams Achievement Division (STAD) strategy to improveEnglish language speaking accuracy among Iranian EF learners Islamic A!ad UniversityAhar "ranchFaculty o# Science Department o# English anguage and iterature  Department "y$ A!i! shahedi Email$ shahedia!i!%gmail.com Supervisor  $ Ali Amirghassemi (&h.D.) A'stract ne o# the #actors that contri'ute to unemployment among English language learners ineshkinshahr even other Iranian cities today is their lack o# pro#iciency in speaking skills.To overcome this* many language institutions has revised their curriculum in order to developspeaking skills among learners. any methods has 'een utili!ed 'y lecturers in teaching andlearning such as pro'lem+'ased learning* cooperative learning* colla'orative learning andothers in order to develop speaking skills among learners. The purpose o# this study is todetermine i# cooperative learning ,ill improve elementary learners- speaking skills 'y #ocuson Student Teams Achievement Division (STAD) may 'e impact learners- communicativeskill. The study conducted over an elementary level in English class in eshkinshahr*Arda'il* Iran ,ith t,o separate groups* ,ith a uasi+e/perimental design. The participants inthis study ,ere 110 male third grade senior high school students as #oreign language learnersat pre+intermediate level. The researcher gave the students a ET (ey English Test) test 'ychoosing listening and speaking section as a pro#iciency test to ensure the homogeneity o# thegroups English language level then an oral intervie, as a pretest administered 'y asking themto use the simple present tense in their sentences. 2hile the control group #ollo,s their normal traditional learning sylla'us* the e/perimental group e/posed ,ith treatment. A#ter seven ,eeks #or post+test* the researcher gave an oral intervie, semi like the pretest to reali!ethe impact o# STAD strategy on English language accuracy improvement. This researchindicates that the using o# Student Teams Achievement Division (STAD) model o# 3ooperative earning method can improve English language oral accuracy skill.  ey,ords$  material  5  cooperative learning  5  traditional teaching  5  high+ and lo,+achievers  5 accuracy. Introduction  pg. 0 The present study aims to provide an opportunity on enhancing students6 oralcommunication skills in high schools (i.e.* 7ear 18 to 19) in eshkinshahr* Iran. "y changingthe English te/t'ook6s structure in di##erent grade in educational system no chances made#or speaking skill improvement. The role o# the English language in communication as the,orld6s international language led to change methodology in English language skill speciallyspeaking skill that has a prominent place in language programs around the ,orld today. Intraditional system students had not stimulates and opportunity to interact ,ith otherstudents even ,ith their teacher 'ut this strategy create a condition to cooperating andsharing in#ormation and ackno,ledgment.As a teacher ,e have great possi'ilities in ,hat a teacher can do ,hit his or her students* interms o# teaching methods* seating arrangements* guidelines* etc. ,hit this #reedom inteaching* ,e have as ,ell an enormous num'er o# ne, ideas in creating activates to use inthe classroom situation. :Speaking; in traditional methodologies usually* meant repeatinga#ter the teacher* memori!ing a dialog* or responding to drills* all o# ,hich re#lect thesentence+'ased vie, o# pro#iciency prevailing in the audio+lingual and other drill+'ased orrepetition 'ased methodologies o# the 1<=>s. The emergence o# communicative languageteaching in the 1<9>s led to changed vie,s o# sylla'uses and methodology* ,hich arecontinuing to shape approaches to teaching speaking skills today. ?rammar 'asedsylla'uses ,ere replaced 'y communicative ones 'uilt around notions* #unctions* skills*tasks* and other non+grammatical units o# organi!ation. Accuracy and #luency 'ecame a goal#or speaking courses and this could developed through ,ith the use o# in#ormation+gap andother tasks that reuired learners to attempt real communication* despite limitedpro#iciency in English. In so doing* learners ,ould develop communication strategies andengage in negotiation o# meaning* 'oth o# ,hich considered essential to the developmento# oral skills.The mastery o# speaking skills in English is a priority #or many second+language or #oreign+language learners. 3onseuently* learners o#ten evaluate their success in language learningas ,ell as the e##ectiveness o# their English course 'ased on ho, much they #eel they haveimproved in their spoken language pro#iciency. ral skills have hardly 'een neglected inEF@ES courses (,itness the huge num'er o# conversation and other speaking course 'ooksin the market)* though ho, 'est to approach the teaching o# oral skills has long 'een the#ocus o# methodological de'ate. Teachers and te/t'ooks make use o# a variety o# approaches* ranging #rom direct approaches #ocusing on speci#ic #eatures o# oral interaction(e.g.* turn+taking* topic management* and uestioning strategies) to indirect approachesthat create conditions #or oral interaction through group ,ork* task ,ork* and otherstrategies (ichards* 1<<>).any teachers in the ,orld o# education try to improve the uality o# the learning in 'oththe mastery o# the material and teaching methods. earning is an activity that teachers dothe teaching and learning activates conducted 'y the students. Interactions 'et,eenstudents ,ith students* interactions 'et,een teacher and students* as ,ell as interactions'et,een students ,ith learning resources are activates can 'e occur in classroom situation.The teaching+learning methods occupy a crucial position in education process as thesemethods speci#y a ,ay #or students 'eing passive or active learners. In active learning*  pg. B students con#irm their active participation in the learning process. According to Cung* Tan*and oh (0>>)* active learning is act o# learners 'ecoming responsi'le #or their o,nlearning during ,hich they are :actively developing thinking@learning strategies andconstantly #ormulating ne, ideas and re#ining them through their conversational e/changes,ith others; (p. B>).In the process o# active learning* learners are engaged in activecognitive processing during learning* such as attending to relevant in#ormation* organi!ingthe selected in#ormation into a coherent cognitive structure* and integrating thein#ormation ,ith e/isting kno,ledge (ayer* 0>>B).Active learning model characteri!ed 'ystudents6 more involvement in discovery learning or pro'lem solving than listening lecturesthat permit direct transmission o# #actual kno,ledge5 students6 involvement in multiplesmall group activities* higher+order thinking processes and students6 e/ploration o# theiro,n attitudes and values instead o# spoon+#eeding ("on,ellEison* 1<<15 eu &rice+om*0>>$ p. 1<).Among active learning techniues* cooperative learning is an instructional paradigm thathas numerous structures@ methods o# cooperative learning (Slaven* 1<<8) e.g. ST (studentteam learning)* STAD (student team achievement division)* T?T (Team+?ames+Tournaments)* igsa,* TAI (team accelerated instruction)* 3I3 (3ooperative Integratedeading and 3omposition) etc. Di##erent methods o# cooperative learning recommended #orspeci#ic su'Gects o# study. Co,ever* among di##erent cooperative learning methods* STAD iseasy #or teachers to apply and to teach a variety o# su'Gects #rom primary to university level.This strategy is more e##ective in cooperative learning methods #or improving students6 oralskill. There#ore* the purpose o# study is to introduce Slavin6s principles and techniues incooperative learning 'y #ocus on Student Teams Achievement Division (STAD) to EF class toincrease more opportunities* to acuire the skill o# conversation and to develop theirresponsi'ility #or their team then reach the common goal. Statement o# esearch &ro'lem Traditionally* English classes in the technological college ,ere rather teacher+centered andpro'a'ly did not contri'ute to students6 motivation and communication to o'tain Englishlanguage learning. In this ,ay* the little communication and interaction 'et,een studentsand teachers in the classroom ,as di##icult to enhance students6 English pro#iciency.ecently* many o# researchers 'elieve the e##ectiveness o# team ,orking and emphasi!e thismethod is 'etter than the traditional method. To enhance e##ective learning* teachersshould generate the greatest opportunity #or the learners to learn and manage instructionand increase language kno,ledge communicatively and e##ectively. "y cooperative learning*learners are a'le to help one another to learn in small groups. Co,ever* grouping studentsand telling them to ,ork together does not* in itsel#* produce cooperation and higherachievement 'ecause some students seek a so+called H#ree ride6 on others* ,hile high a'ilitystudents may take over in ,ays that 'ene#it themselves at the e/pense o# the lo,erachievers (ohnson and ohnson* 1<<>). For cooperative group ,ork to 'ene#it students*they should trust one another* communicate e##ectively* accept and support one another*and resolve con#licts constructively (ohnson and ohnson* 1<<>). This study aims todetermine ,hether the Student Teams Achievement Division (STAD) model o# cooperativelearning method is 'etter than individual ,orking method and can improves students6  pg.  learning and achievement in English language oral accuracy skill among the Iranian EF learners. esearch Juestion This study sets out to address the #ollo,ing uestions$1. Co, can student team achievement division(STAD) model o# 3ooperative earningmethod improve English language oral accuracyskillK 0.Is there signi#icant di##erence 'et,een the t,o groups o# students (I.e. team,ork groupand control group) in their English language oral accuracy skillK &urpose o# Study The purpose o# this study is to indicate the e##ect o# learning together 'y #ocus on StudentTeams Achievement Division (STAD) strategy 3ooperative earning method on students6English language accuracy. This study is an attempt to determine ho, STAD model o# cooperative learning method improves students6 learning and achievement in Englishlanguage oral accuracy skill. STAD emphasi!es having team goals and success dependent onthe learning o# all group mem'ers. Signi#icant (# Study This study is apparently the #irst attempt to study the e##ect STAD model o# 3ooperativeearning method on students6 learning and English language accuracy in eshkinshar*Arda'il* Iran. This study ,ill 'e providing in#ormation a'out the di##erence on learningmethods to,ards students6 learning and achievement. The results o# this research ,ill providein#ormation to the students and teachers ,hich method is more e##ective to students get goodresult in their #luency. imitation o# Study ne o# the key elements #or success#ul cooperative learning is developing the a'ility o# students touse social and small group skills such as con#lict management (ancaster and Strand 0>>1). Toolsthat can help students deal systematically ,ith con#licts can enhance group interaction incooperative learning in several ,ays. Un#ortunately con#licts can occur among team mem'ers #ordi##erent reasons5 some o# these con#licts may come #rom some team mem'ers not putting theirshare into the e##ort. This research proGect ,as limited 'y other num'er o# #actors includedlocation* time and class si!e. The implementation o# this proGect occurred in a secondarysocial studies classroom. Furthermore* this proGect ,as implemented over a = ,eek time period during the researcher-s student teaching. There#ore* time played a #actor to,ardslimitations as the researcher gathered data #or this time. In addition* another limitation that#aced the researcher ,as the large si!e o# the secondary classroom used in the proGect. The  pg. 8 researcher-s class si!e ranged #rom 1>+0> students* there#ore results #or a larger classroommay vary. De#inition o# Term 3ooperative earning3ooperative learning is a #orm o# active learning ,here students ,ork together to per#ormspeci#ic tasks in a small group. STAD model$ STAD is a cooperative learning method #or mi/ed+a'ility groupings involving teamrecognition and group responsi'ility #or individual learning.STAD is composed o# #ivecomponents$ (1) class presentations5 (0) ,ork in teams5 (B) ui!!es5 () individualimprovement scores5 and (8) team recognition.  Achievement$ Achievement is the act o# achieving or per#orming5 an o'taining 'y e/ertion5 success#ul per#ormance5 accomplishment5 as* the achievement o# his o'Gect. ITEATUEELIE2 Theoretical studies Scholars in student learning have sho,n a gro,ing interest in using Student TeamsAchievement Divisions (STAD) as a cooperative learning techniue in classroom teaching.Inthe past t,o decades maGor theoretical perspectives have 'een e/plored in cooperativelearning namely motivational and cognitivetheories on student learning (Slavin 1<9=).illen (0>>=) de#ines cooperative learning as aninstructional design that stimulates peerinteraction and learner+toMlearner cooperation ,ith the aim o# #ostering success#ul learning'y all.Lan 2yk (0>1>) reports that cooperative learning is a practical teaching strategy*o##ering students more learning e/periences* eual access to learning and a moresupportive social environment. oreover* Adams and Camm (1<<) state that cooperativelearning* as a teaching strategy has 'een a success story in the trans#ormation o# educationover the past decade.Student Teams Achievement Divisions as a cooperative learninge/periment ,as designed and researched 'y ohns Copkins University and is kno,n as:student team learning; (Sharan 1<<). esearch studies in the use o# STAD as a teachingtechniue applied ,ith great success in various research proGects (Slavin 1<9=5 Laughan0>>05 aco's et al. 0>>B5 van 2yk 0>1>).STAD (Students team achievement division) according to ai (0>>=) is one o# the manystrategies in cooperative learning* ,hich helps promote colla'oration and sel#+regulatinglearning skills. The reason #or the selection o# STAD is good interaction among students*improve positive attitude to,ards su'Gect* 'etter sel#+esteem* increased interpersonal skills.According to Cung* Tan* and oh (0>>)* active learning is act o# learners 'ecoming
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