Language Errors Produced by Teachers of English: A Study Based on the Teachers Pursuing a Bachelor of Education Degree in Sri Lanka

Anoma Abeywickremasinghe Gunawardana

Abstract


Errors are a reflection of competence level of language users. Therefore, with the purpose of understanding the competence level of teachers of English, the present study analyzed errors produced by twenty three non-native English speaking teachers pursuing a Bachelor of Education degree in Sri Lanka. Employing qualitative content analysis method, examination answer scripts and written compositions were scrutinized to identify, classify, describe and explain errors. The findings of the study revealed that these participants commit more errors than mistakes reflecting a lower competence in English. They require more improvement in grammar skills than other levels of English. Sub levels of language which need to be improved mainly are articles, prepositions, verbs, punctuation, compounds, lexical verbs and nouns and sequencing of words in sentences. Direct translations, inability to distinguish between formal and informal use of language and use of colloquial features of spoken Sri Lankan English in writing were three main reasons for producing errors and they were observed mainly in errors of articles, prepositions, lexical noun and verb phrases and sequencing of adverbial and prepositional phrases in sentences. However, the overall results of the study indicated that the participants commit errors due to interference from both first language and target language. Evaluation of overall errors produced by the participants showed that they produce more local errors which affect only the grammar of the sentences without affecting the understanding of the utterances produced. These findings mainly imply that these teachers of English still need to improve their knowledge of English and it is also possible that these errors could impact the competence level of their learners when learning the target language.

Keywords


Academic Writing, Competence, Errors, Mistakes, Non-Native English Speaking Teachers

Full Text:

PDF

References


Abeywickrama, R. (2010). An Analysis of Errors in English Writing of Sinhala Speaking Undergraduates. Sabaramuwa University Journal, 9(1), 97–114. https://doi.org/10.4038/suslj.v9i1.3737

Alhaysony, M. (2012). An analysis of article errors among Saudi female EFL students: A case study. Asian Social Science, 8(12), 55–66. https://doi.org/10.5539/ass.v8n12p55

Al-khresheh, M. H. (2016). A Review Study of Error Analysis Theory. International Journal of Humanities and Social Science Research, 2, 49–59. Retrieved from https://www.researchgate.net/publication/299456806%0D

Annual Performance Report. (2017). Battaramulla. Retrieved from www.moe.gov.lk

Braine, G. (2010). Nonnative Speaker English Teachers: Research, Pedagogy and Professional Growth. New York: Routledge.

Braine, G. (2012). Nonnative Speaker English Teachers: Research, Pedagogy, and Professional Growth. TESOL Quarterly, 46(1), 210–212. https://doi.org/10.1002/tesq.12

Brinton, L. J. (2000). The Structure of Modern English. Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company.

Brown, H. D. (2007). Principles of Language Learning and Teaching (5th ed.). New York: Pearson Education Inc.

Dornyei, Z. (2007). Research Methods in Applied Linguistics: Quantitative, Qualitative and Mixed Methodologies. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Ellis, R. (1994). The Study of Second Language Acquisition. New York: Oxford University Press.

Ellis, R. (1997). Second Language Acquisition. (H. G. Widowson, Ed.). Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Elo, S., & Kyngas, H. (2007). The qualitative content analysis process. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 62(1), 107–116. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2648.2007.04569.x

Gajadeera, S. R. (2006). An exploration of the challenges of sustainable and effective professional development for English as second language teachers in Sri Lanka. University of Wollongong. Retrieved from http://ro.uow.edu.au/theses/196

Gass, S. M., & Selinker, L. (2008). Second Language Acquisition: An Introductory Course. (S. M. Gass & L. Selinker, Eds.) (03 ed.). New York: Routledge.

Gunasekera, M., & Rajapakse, G. (2005). The Postcolonial Identity of Sri Lankan English. Katha Publishers.

Gunawardana, A. A. (2019). An Analysis of Errors in Writing of ESL Teachers (Unpublished MPhil dissertation). University of Kelaniya.

Hettiarachchi, S. (2010). ESL teacher motivation in Sri Lankan public schools. Eastern Michigan University.

James, C. (2013). Errors in Language Learning and Use: Exploring Error Analysis. (C. CANDLIN, Ed.). New York: Routledge.

Jayasundara, J. M. P. V. K., & Premarathna, C. D. H. M. (2011). A Linguistics Analysis on Errors Committed in English by Undergraduates. International Journal of Scientific and Research Publications, 1(1), 49–50. Retrieved from www.ijsrp.org › ijsrp-dec-2011-05

Johnson, L. (2016). Article Use in ESL Compositions: Strategies for Instructors. Linguistic Portfolios, 5, 60–65. Retrieved from http://repository.stcloudstate.edu/stcloud_ling%0Ahttp://repository.stcloudstate.edu/stcloud_ling/vol5/iss1/6

Karunaratne, I. M. (2008). Teaching English in Urban Sri Lanka. Colombo Review, 1(2), 1–16. Retrieved from http://archive.cmb.ac.lk:8080/research/handle/70130/1096

Kraichoke, C. (2017). Error Analysis : A Case Study on Non-Native English Speaking College Applicants ’ Electronic Mail Communications. Theses and Dissertations. University of Arkansas, Fayetteville.

Liyanage, I. (2010). Globalization: Medium-of-Instruction Policy, Indigenous Educational Systems and ELT in Sri Lanka. In V. Vaish (Ed.), Globalization of Language and Culture in Asia: The Impact of Globalization Processes on Language (pp. 206–225). New York: Continuum International Publishing Group.

Mayler, M. (2007). A dictionary of Sri Lankan English. Colombo: Michael Mayler.

Navaz, A. M. M. (2017). WRITING DIFFICULTIES : AN INVESTIGATION OF IRREGULAR MORPHEME ERRORS AMONG THE STUDENTS IN THE SOUTH EASTERN UNIVERSITY OF SRI LANKA. In Proceedings of 7th International Symposium, SEUSL (pp. 636–652). Sri Lanka: South Eastern University of Sri Lanka. Retrieved from http://ir.lib.seu.ac.lk/handle/123456789/3050

Perera, K., & Canagarajah, S. (2010). Globalization and English Teaching in Sri Lanka: Foreign Resources and Local Responses. In V. Viniti (Ed.), Globalization of Language and Culture in Asia: The Impact of Globalization Processes on Language (pp. 106–119). London: Continuum International Publishing Group.

Polio, C. G. (1997). Measures of Linguistic Accuracy in Second Language Writing Research. Language Learning, 47 (1)(March), 101–143. https://doi.org/10.1111/0023-8333.31997003

Premawathie, P. H. (n.d.). Enhancing Performance in Writing : An Action Research Conducted in WP / MT Weediyabandara Navodya Maha Vidyalaya. Ministry of Education. Retrieved from www.moe.gov.lk › writing_english

Richards, J. (1974). Error Analysis: Perspectives on Second Language Acquisition. (J. Richards, Ed.). England: Longman.

Rifamahroof, S. (2014). Article usage : a challenge for second language learners of English. In Proceedings of 7th International Symposium, SEUSL (pp. 31–33). Sri Lanka: South Eastern University of Sri Lanka. Retrieved from www.seu.ac.lk › symposium_fia

Samaranayake, M. (2017). University learners ’ performance in using the definite article in definite contexts versus the indefinite article in indefinite contexts. In Management, Social Sciences & Humanities. Sri Lanka: Library, General Sir John Kotelawala Defence University. Retrieved from http://ir.kdu.ac.lk/handle/345/1828

Sanmuganathan, K. (2017). Impact of L1 on learning ESL ( English as a Second Language ) grammar skills of the ESL language learners- An error analysis with special reference to the undergraduates of the University of Jaffna. International Journal of Social Sciences and Human Research, 1(1), 71–80. Retrieved from http://ijsshr.in/index.php/ijsshr/article/view/7

Sun, G. (2016). The Acquisition of English Articles by Second Language Learners: The Sequence, Differences, and Difficulties. SAGE Open, 6(1), 1–8. https://doi.org/10.1177/2158244016635716

The Teacher Education for English Project (TEE). (2018, March 05). ColomboPage News Desk, Sri Lanka.

Touchie, H. Y. (1986). SECOND LANGUAGE LEARNING ERRORS THEIR TYPES, CAUSES, AND TREATMENT. JALT Journal, 1(8), 76–80. Retrieved from https://jalt-publications.org/jj/articles/1571-second-language-learning-errors-their-types-causes-and-treatment

Vásquez, L. O., & Alberto, D. (2008). Error analysis in a written composition. Profile Issues in Teachers’ Professional Development, 135-146. Retrieved from https://revistas.unal.edu.co/index.php/profile/article/view/10619

Wijeratne, W. M., & Jeyaseelan, S. (2015). Error Analysis : An Investigation of the Writing of English as a Second Language. In Proceedings of the First International Conference on Linguistics in Sri Lanka, ICLSL 2015 (p. 38). Sri Lanka: Department of Linguistics, University of Kelaniya. Retrieved from http://repository.kln.ac.lk/handle/123456789/9313

Wijesekera, H. D. (2012). Dreams Deferred : English Language Teaching in Sri Lanka. Journal of Humanities & Social Sciences, 7–8, 16–26.

Yule, G. (2010). The Study of Language (4th ed.). New York: Cambridge University Press.


Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.




Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

2010-2022 (CC-BY) Australian International Academic Centre PTY.LTD.

Advances in Language and Literary Studies

You may require to add the 'aiac.org.au' domain to your e-mail 'safe list’ If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox'. Otherwise, you may check your 'Spam mail' or 'junk mail' folders.