The use of Chinese as the medium

In this subdivision, the principle of the research and the background of learning English at university degree in Mainland China are introduced. Furthermore, it provides the sum-ups of each subdivision. Nowadays, instruction and larning English drama important functions in the Chinese instruction system. In Mainland China, English has been a compulsory class which all pupils are required to take. As the Chinese instruction system is built up on the trial system, schools tend to engage native Chinese to be English instructors. They believe that English instructors, who are native Chinese talkers, can accommodate to the Chinese instruction system good and can assist pupils execute good in trials. Consequently, the huge bulk of English instructors in Mainland China are native Chinese talkers, although some native English talkers are employed as English instructors.

English instructors, who are native Chinese talkers, portion the same first linguistic communication ( hereafter L1 ) with pupils. For this ground, they have the option of utilizing Chinese as the medium of direction. There is a extremely controversial issue raised, whether Chinese as pupils ‘ L1 should be usage in English category. Furthermore, if Chinese as pupils ‘ first linguistic communication is used in English category, what the usage of Chinese as the medium of direction is and what factors in motivating instructors to utilize pupils ‘ L1 are. This survey investigates the interaction between instructors and their pupils in university English classes in Mainland China. It peculiarly focuses on instructors ‘ usage of Chinese as the medium of the direction.

Teaching English at University Level in Mainland China

English is being introduced into university schoolrooms in Mainland China for many old ages. Nowadays, university pupils in Mainland China are all required to hold English class in universities, after old ages of English acquisition in primary schools, secondary schools and high schools. For English classs, pupils are categorized harmonizing to their big leagues ; therefore, there are two groups of pupils. They are pupils whose big leagues are related to English and pupils whose big leagues have no relation with English. The university English class is designed for the non-English major pupils. In add-on, they need to go through English trial called College English Test, before acquiring their grades.

Ministry of Education of the People ‘s Republic of China ( 2007 ) produces a papers, called Teaching Requirements of University English Course, to all the universities as the course of study counsel. It contains learning intents, instruction demands, learning forms, course of study design, rating and teaching direction. In add-on, it does non supply any standard for utilizing the medium of direction in English category. Nevertheless, Ministry of Education of the People ‘s Republic of China ( 2007 ) shows a tendency in promoting instructors to utilize English as the exclusive medium of direction in linguistic communication instruction through supplying pupils with demands for English hearing ability that indicates all university pupils should be able to understand the English classs in which instructors merely use English as the medium of direction. Except for this papers, in Mainland China, there are no valid relevant researches or surveies in this country which instructors can utilize as the category counsel, although the medium of direction takes a important function in English category.

Overview of the Paper

Section One explains the principle of the survey and introduces the context of learning English in universities in Mainland China. Thereafter, it provides an overview of the paper by sum uping each subdivision.

In Section Two, the position on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 as the medium of direction, the usage of Chinese in university English instruction and the factors in motivating instructors to utilize pupils ‘ L1 will be analyzed and discussed.

Section Three makes recommendations to the instruction section and the university English instructors based on findings of the research. Finally, a decision of the whole paper will be provided.

Analysis and Discussion

This subdivision focuses on analysing and discoursing the position on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 as the medium of direction, the usage of Chinese as the medium as the medium of direction and the factors in motivating English instructors to utilize Chinese. Besides, the findings of the survey are shown in the terminal.

Positions on Using Students ‘ L1 as the Medium of direction

In the old subdivision, it has been mentioned that there is no counsel provided to university English instructors in Mainland China on how to utilize pupils ‘ L1 in the schoolroom. Nevertheless, Ministry of Education of the People ‘s Republic of China ( 2007 ) shows current tendencies of promoting instructors to utilize English as the medium of direction during category. That is to state, the position on utilizing pupils ‘ female parent lingua in English class is relatively negative in Mainland China. In the undermentioned paragraphs, some other positions on utilizing pupil ‘s L1 will be introduced and discussed.

Cook ( 2001: 153 ) indicates that, “ Though the instruction methods popular in the 20th century differed in many ways, they about all tried to avoid utilizing the pupils ‘ first linguistic communication in the schoolroom. ” However, Cook ( 2001 ) says that the grounds for excepting pupils ‘ L1 are rarely mentioned. In other words, there is no converting grounds to turn out that utilizing pupils ‘ L1 has any defects in learning 2nd linguistic communication at present ( hereafter L2 ) . Cook ( 2001: 156 ) suggests that several learning methods, which include the usage of pupils ‘ L1, have successfully proved that pupil ‘s L1 has their ain value in English instruction:

the New Concurrent Method which allows systematic codification exchanging under the instructors ‘ control. Community Language Learningaˆ¦is an interesting discrepancy which uses interlingual rendition as a agency of leting echt L2 usage ; the 2nd linguistic communication is learnt in continual concurrence with the firstaˆ¦

In this sense, pupils ‘ L1 has been testified that it has an indispensable place in English instruction. What is more, this position can be applied to knocking the state of affairs in Mainland China to a big extent. In Mainland China, there are no specific course of studies provided to university English instructors, therefore their course of studies vary well. Besides, the medium of direction is seldom mentioned in their course of studies. However, most of them believe that English should be the lone medium of direction in English category. Even there is small relevant research carried out in this country. In other words, university English instructors blindly follow the tendency and there is no confirmation that utilizing English is better. On the contrary, the larning result of pupils in primary schools, in-between schools and high schools certifies that Chinese has its ain value in learning English. In Mainland China, English instructors in primary schools, in-between schools and high schools are required to utilize Chinese as the chief medium of direction, because of generalising Chinese. Under this instruction system, pupils ‘ English accomplishments are still improved. However, Cook ( 2001 ) wholly omits the disadvantages of utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in linguistic communication instruction. Unlike Cook ( 2001 ) , Macaro ( 2005 ) gives a relatively impersonal sentiment on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in linguistic communication instruction.

Macaro ( 2005: 63 ) gives a term, “ codeswitching ” , to depict instructor utilizing both pupils ‘ L1 and mark linguistic communication as the medium of direction. Furthermore, Macaro ( 2005: 64 ) indicates:

Codeswitching, by definition, is merely available to the bilingual teacheraˆ¦ the ability of the bilingual instructor to codeswitch is to be viewed as an plus, it besides brings with it a figure of jobs and issues.

This position shows a impersonal position on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in L2 category. It admits the usage of pupils ‘ L1 is valuable, but it besides acknowledges that there is drawback of utilizing pupil ‘s L1. Furthermore, there is a truly important point which points out merely bilingual instructors can this learning method. In Session One, it has been mentioned that most university English instructors in Mainland China are native Chinese talkers. Compared with English instructors who are native English talkers, this group of instructors can utilize pupils ‘ L1 as the medium of direction in university English category. Hence, utilizing Chinese in L2 instruction should be acknowledged as one of the English instructors ‘ virtues in Mainland China. In add-on, the downside of utilizing pupils ‘ L1 is besides acknowledged, but it will non be focused in this paper.

To sum up, the value of utilizing Chinese as the medium of direction have been demonstrated through the learning result of pupils in primary schools, in-between schools and high schools. On the contrary, in Mainland China, there is no grounds or relevant research which can turn out that utilizing pupils ‘ L1 has negative effects on English instruction. However, it does non intend that utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in linguistic communication instruction is a perfect attack. The disadvantages of utilizing pupil ‘s L1 are besides acknowledged in this survey, but they are non traveling to be discussed in this paper. Furthermore, under the Chinese instruction system which most English are native Chinese talkers, utilizing Chinese as the medium of direction should be an indispensable portion of the langue instruction.

The Use of Chinese as the Medium of Instruction in University English Class

After analysing and discoursing the positions on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in L2 category, it is found that the value of the usage of Chinese as the medium of direction should be acknowledge. Subsequently, the usage of Chinese in university English will be analyzed and discussed in the undermentioned paragraphs.

Cook ( 2001 ) summarizes the usage of pupils ‘ L1 in the schoolroom. First, he indicates that pupils ‘ L1 can be used to explicate the significance and the grammar of the mark linguistic communication. Second, he says that instructors can utilize it to explicate undertakings. The first two maps of utilizing pupils ‘ L1 explain the intents the English instructors use it for. In Mainland China, even in universities, it is rather common for the instructors to utilize pupils ‘ L1 to explicate complicated English vocabulary or English grammar. Through utilizing Chinese, the account seems easier for pupils to understand. At the same clip, instructors can salvage clip and travel to the following cognition point. It is besides truly usual for instructors in Mainland China to utilize pupils ‘ L1 to give instructions of schoolroom undertakings. For case, English instructors may utilize Chinese to give pupils instructions when holding command during category. For this ground, these two maps of utilizing pupils ‘ L1 can be used to specify the usage of Chinese in the university English classes in Mainland China. Third, Cook ( 2001: 157 ) claims that utilizing pupils ‘ L1 is “ a manner of showing the schoolroom is a existent L2 state of affairs, non a bogus monolingual state of affairs. ” There is some uncertainty that whether utilizing L2 as the medium of direction makes the schoolroom a bogus monolingual state of affairs. Hence, this usage of pupils ‘ L1 is distrusted.

Besides the maps provided by Cook ( 2001 ) , there is another list which explain the usage of L1 in L2 category ( Macaro, 2000a, cited in Macaro, 2005: 69 ) :

constructing personal relationship with scholars ( the pastoral function that instructors take on requires high degrees of discourse edification ) ;

giving complex procedural instructions for transporting out an activity ;

commanding students ‘ behaviour ;

translating and look intoing apprehension in order to rush things up because of clip force per unit areas ( e.g. tests ) ;

learning grammar explicitly.

In this list, the 2nd and the 5th point are similar to the maps listed by Cook ( 2001 ) . In add-on, these two similar maps have been discussed in the state of affairs of learning university English in Mainland China. However, the first point, the 3rd and the 5th point show three more maps of utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in L2 category. Whether these three maps could be used to explicate the usage of Chinese in university English category in Mainland China will be discussed in the undermentioned paragraph.

First, instructors can utilize pupils ‘ L1 to construct up relationship with pupils ( Macaro, 2000a, cited in Macaro, 2005 ) . In Mainland China, university instructors ever have some little talk in Chinese with pupils before the existent instruction begins. This sort of little talk in Chinese could be used to construct up the relationship between instructors and pupils. The other intent of utilizing Chinese to do little talk could be warming up the category ; in this manner, pupils could mentally fix for the category. Second, pupils ‘ L1 can be used to keep the subject in the schoolroom ( ibid. ) . Nevertheless, English instructors in universities in Mainland China seldom usage pupils ‘ L1 to command pupils ‘ behaviour. The chief ground for non utilizing Chinese to keep the subject is the bulk of university pupils are grownups ; therefore, it is easy to do embarrassment for pupils and antipathy towards instructors. For this ground, Chinese is seldom used to command pupils ‘ behaviour in university English category. Third, pupils ‘ L1 can be use to salvage clip during the English category, if there are clip force per unit areas ( ibid. ) . In the practical instruction, clip direction plays a important function. As a effect, it is genuinely usual for English instructors to utilize pupil ‘s L1 straight, if there is non adequate clip.

Factors in Motivating English Teachers to Use Students ‘ L1

In Mainland China, there is a deficiency of counsel or correlate research on when to utilize pupils ‘ L1 in university English category. Hence, most of the clip, English instructors need to do the determination on whether to utilize pupils ‘ L1 by themselves. However, there must be some factors in motivating English instructors to utilize pupils ‘ L1.

Mitchell ( 1988: 30 ) ‘s research demonstrates that instructors would utilize pupils ‘ L1, “ if the ‘glazed expression ‘ appeared in their pupils ‘ eyes ” . That is to state, pupils ‘ reaction in the category could be one of the factors in motivating instructors to utilize pupils ‘ L1. For illustration, if the pupils show the confusion over a peculiar English vocabulary or English grammar, instructors may utilize pupils ‘ L1 to explicate it. What is more, if the pupils seem to lose their attending to what the instructor is stating, the instructor may exchange to pupils ‘ L1 in order to pull pupils ‘ attending and convey their head back to the category. Students ‘ reaction in the category can be the factor of the “ outside ” environment. Teachers could be besides influenced by the “ inside ” factors, which come from instructors themselves, such as instructors ‘ English speech production ability and instructors ‘ positions on utilizing pupils ‘ L1. For case, if a instructor ‘s spoken English is hapless, he or she may experience uncomfortable and unconfident to utilize English. In this instance, he or she may exchange to Chinese.

Recommendations and Decision

In this subdivision, the recommendations to the ministry of instruction and the university English instructors in Mainland China will be provided. At the terminal, there will be a decision of the whole research paper.

Recommendations to the Ministry of Education in Mainland China

Nowadays, there is no correlate research or survey in the country of the medium of direction in Mainland China. Hence, the papers produced by Ministry of Education of the People ‘s Republic of China ( 2007 ) becomes the lone mention which teacher can utilize when constructing the class course of study. However, it merely shows the tendency towards utilizing English as the lone medium of direction in English class. Furthermore, one of the features of instruction system in Mainland China is the major group of university English instructors are native Chinese talkers.

For all the grounds above, the ministry of instruction in Mainland should straight confront the issue of utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in university English category. If there is a deficiency of relevant research, the ministry of instruction should promote experts to make more survey in this field. What is more, excluding the usage of students’L1 is meaningless, because it is still being used in L2 learning. As a standard theoretical account for schools and instructors to follow, the ministry of instruction should hold a impersonal position on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in English category which both advantages and disadvantages of utilizing Chinese as the medium of direction should be acknowledged.

Recommendations to the University English Teachers in Mainland China

Teachers are the concluding 1s who make up one’s minding whether to utilize Chinese or non. Normally, in the existent schoolroom instruction, instructors have no chances to discourse with others or inquire others ‘ sentiments. In other words, the determinations are made independently. Consequently, the instructors ‘ ain positions on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 are truly of import. Although there is the tendency towards utilizing English as the lone medium of direction in English category, instructors themselves should non follow the tendency blindly. What good instructors do is holding a impersonal position in head. That is to state, they know clearly about what are the upside and the downside of utilizing pupils ‘ L1 as the medium of direction. Finally, instructors should be confident with their concluding determinations. It has been verified by Mitchell ( 1988: 28 ) and Macaro ( 2005: 69 ) that most instructors feel “ guilty ” when utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in schoolroom instruction. The major cause of this sense of guilt is that instructors think utilizing pupils ‘ L1 is a sort of “ unprofessional behavior ” ( Mitchell, 1988: 28 ) . Macaro ( 2005 ) besides declares that it is an unhealthy consequence. If instructors believe themselves and their ain picks, this sort of unhealthy effect will diminish.

Decision

This paper investigates the interaction between instructors and their pupils in university English classes in Mainland China. It peculiarly focuses on instructors ‘ usage of Chinese as the medium of the direction. In the first subdivision, the principle of the survey and the background of learning English at university degree in Mainland China are introduced in inside informations. In the 2nd subdivision, the positions on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 are foremost analyzed and discussed. It is found that pupils ‘ L1 has its value in English instruction in Mainland China ; moreover, sing the features of Chinese instruction system, the value of pupils ‘ L1 should be acknowledged. Second, there is a treatment on the usage of Chinese in university English category. It is determined that there are assorted maps of utilizing pupils ‘ L1 in university English instruction, such as utilizing Chinese to explicate the complicated English vocabulary or English grammar and holding little talk in Chinese with pupils in order to construct up the relationship between instructors and pupils and to warm up the category. The 3rd point of the 2nd subdivision focuses on analysing and discoursing the factors which prompt instructors to utilize pupils ‘ L1. Students ‘ reaction during the category is defined as the outside environmental factor. Factors from instructors themselves are interpreted as the interior factors, for case, the degree of instructors ‘ spoken English and instructors ‘ ain positions on utilizing pupils ‘ L1 as the medium of direction. Last but non the least, the concluding subdivision of the paper provides the recommendations to the ministry of instruction and the English instructors in Mainland China. The ministry of instruction as the standard theoretical account for all the schools and instructors is encouraged to hold a impersonal position on utilizing Chinese in university English category. English instructors, who make the concluding determination on whether to Chinese, are suggested blindly following the tendency should be avoided. In add-on, instructors should hold a positive attitude and believe their picks, when utilizing Chinese in appropriate ways.