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Student’s Self-perceived English Accent and Its Impact on Their Communicative Competence and Speaking Confidence: An Empirical Study Among Students Taking English 6 in Upper-Secondary School
University of Gävle, Faculty of Education and Business Studies, Department of Humanities, English.
2017 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

The English language plays an important role as a lingua franca in Sweden as well as in many countries across the European Union (EU). The ability to communicate well in English is highly valued and as a response to this, communicative competence has had an increasingly major part in the English language education and curriculums all over Europe, including the Swedish curriculum for English language education. (Rindal & Piercy, 2013; Swedish National Agency for Education, 1995; Tornberg, 2015). With communication as a primary goal of the Swedish curriculum for English, the importance of acquiring an inner-circle accent, an accent spoken by native speakers of English, has had to take a step back, without thoroughly studying the effect it has on the communicative competence and speaking confidence of the students.

The aim of this study is to investigate, with an empirical approach, if student’s self-perceived English accent impacts positively or negatively on their speaking confidence and communicative competence. The study was conducted using an empirical and descriptive approach, with a quantitative data analysis. The investigation was conducted in an upper-secondary school, using a web-based survey with 80 respondents from the second and third grade. The students took English 6, a course the students must pass to be eligible for further academic studies. The school and the respondents were chosen using a convenience sample.

The results were analysed, and the data was shown using figures to explain the results further. The results of the study concluded that students seem to think that having a native-like accent is overvalued and that communication is to favour over their perceived English accent. It is somewhat conclusive that most of the students value communication over perceived accent, and many of them say that they do not care how they sound as long as what they say is conveyed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. , 52 p.
Keyword [en]
Perceived accent, Communicative competence, English, Upper-secondary school, Students, Impact, Sweden
National Category
General Language Studies and Linguistics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-25351OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-25351DiVA: diva2:1146855
Subject / course
English
Educational program
no programme (freestanding course)
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2017-10-09 Created: 2017-10-04 Last updated: 2017-10-09Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard-cite-them-right
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • sv-SE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • de-DE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf