Effect Of Mother Tongue Interference In The Study Of English Language In Secondary School

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Effect Of Mother Tongue Interference In The Study Of English Language In Secondary School


Abstract


The topic of the study is the effects of mother tongue in the study of English language in secondary school in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State. The aim is to know how the mother tongue affects the learning of English language in Secondary school especially in four selected schools in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State. The targeted population for the study was 500 but collection was questionnaires. The questionnaires were distributed to the four schools selected in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State. The data were analyzed using percentage. The following were the researchers findings. That teachers of English language in Enugu North do not have teaching aids in their various schools visited. That students are hardly fluent in English language. That most of the English language teachers are not qualified that students are hardly buy books in English language. That most students are very poor in understanding some of the English language vocabularies. In view of the above, the researcher recommends that teachers should be made to make use of correct teaching method in teaching of English that mother tongue should be restricted as stipulated by the national policy on education 4th edition.


Chapter One


Introduction

1.1 Background of the Study

Language is a creation which every human being is endowed with or blessed; a unique gift of language is used naturally as one tool of expression consisting of different sub skills.

The English language is the official and native language of Britain, Ireland, North America, Australia, America and most of the British colonies, (for the colonies, it is regarded as the official language rather than native). It is commonly divided by periods into Anglo-Saxon, or old English (about 450-1100 Bc), Middle English (about 1100 to 15Bc) and modern English (from 1500 to date).Mother tongue is one’s native language. A language besides being the major distinguishing phenomenon between man and other creatures is evidently the most enduring of every people’s cultural heritage. It reflects the culture of a people and it is in extricable bound up with it. Language is an important tool that enhances human communication and interaction. It is a vital instrument in cultural transmission and preservation of a social group. It is in a fundamental sense, a crucial tool in the preservation and propagation of the human species. An examination of the linguistic content of a particular speech community can provide information about the life style, occupation etc. of a given people. The English language beings the national official language for the British colonies of which Nigeria is among makes it our second language. Hence, our respective mother tongue exists before colonization. This has necessitated the teaching and learning of the English language and its consequent interference in our mother tongue in various study points nationwide. It is therefore, glaring to state that, Nigeria is a linguistically complex society by the mere fact of the history of its creation. It is estimated that there are between 250 and 400 language spoken in Nigeria (INTER NET).

This linguistic heterogeneity promotes the continued use of English in Nigeria. Ethnologic include English amongst its list of Nigeria language this hardly supervising since the role of English language in Nigeria diverse and ubiquitous, especially as a means of intra and international communication. It is as a result of the negative effects which the mother tongue had caused the study of English language on the educational structures of the attempt to determine the effect of the use of mother tongue on the teaching and learning process in secondary schools


1.2 Statement of the Problem

Before the advent of British traders, missionaries and colonialists, indigenous Nigerian language defined every aspect of the speech community from its religious, cultural, political, Economic, social to whatever else that can be through of the language functioned effectively to deal with everything relating to the day existence of the people.

The arrival of the British, concomitant with the English language provided a language contact situation with an attempt to a language shift in the population. New sets of ideas, concepts and values were introduced to the system where indigenous local language had previously been self-sufficient, rendering them inadequate to deal with the new concepts introduced by the British, particularly in the areas of formal education, Western law etc. the result was the initial subtle and later blatant intrusion & influence of English language on domains that were the exclusive preserve of indigenous language. Now, the English language is generally an accepted language which was introduced into Nigeria through colonialism and missionary activities is now spoken, thought and learned in Nigeria.

Where English language sentence are made, they are characteristically uttered with variation in pitch often referred to as intonation. This is often an area of difficulty for second language, users of English language who have tonal? Language as their first language. This is one of the major problems encountered by learners of English language. Other areas of problem encountered are’, Sentence and word stresses, vowel sounds and English suprasegmental of pitch. The study intended to identify the effect of mother tongue in the study of English language in senior secondary schools in Enugu North Local Government Area of Enugu State.


1.3 Objective of the Study

The objectives of the study are;

  1. To find out the level at which mother tongue can interfere in the learning of English language in secondary school.
  2. To investigate the qualifications of English teachers in secondary school in Enugu North.
  3. To know how teachers makes use of correct methods in teaching of English language in secondary school in Enugu North

1.4 Research Hypotheses

For the successful completion of the study, the following research hypotheses were formulated by the researcher;

  1. H0: mother tongue do not interfere in the learning of English language in secondary school
    H1: mother tongue interfere in the learning of English language in secondary school
  2. H02: English language teacher do not make use of correct teaching method.
    H2: English language teacher make use of correct teaching method.

1.5 Significance of the Study

This study will help to expose the numerous factors that influence the interference of the study of English language by the mother tongue or native languages. It will also identify the effects of this interference on other study area that are based on the use of the English language as the basic communication. This study will enable teachers to identify their problems in English language. This study will also enable student to understand how to make use of English words especially in pronunciation, intonation and phonetics. It will also enable the teachers to make more research on the use of English language. Since English language has been used as a second official and sometimes even as a foreign language in Nigeria for a long time and give the inescapable behaviour of language in contact, it is normal to expect it to have factors which can identify it as bonafide subject, dialect, variely or idiom of world English. These may be seen as research findings relating to interference, derintation and creativity as are seen to obtain among speakers. In Nigeria, English is now the term Nigerian English is used to refer to the subject of English spoken or written by Nigerians, it is commonly known that the features of Nigerians English language, like those of other new English, are essentially inherent particularly at the early stages of learning by the mother tongue features.


1.6 Scope and Limitation of the Study

This research is the effect of mother tongue interference in study of English language among secondary school students in Enugu North Local Government Area.It is based on the available result gotten from continuous assessment and summative examinations of schools such as West Africa Examination Council, the national examination council and examination development centre for senior school certificate examination all in English Language. The researcher encounters some constrain which limited the scope of the study;

a) Availability of Research Material:

The research material available to the researcher is insufficient, thereby limiting the study

b) Time:

The time frame allocated to the study does not enhance wider coverage as the researcher has to combine other academic activities and examinations with the study.

c) Organizational Privacy:

Limited Access to the selected auditing firm makes it difficult to get all the necessary and required information concerning the activities


1.7 Definition of Terms

It is imperative to properly define the terms that make the heading of the research topic under study. This will go along way at giving direction to the research work.

These include:

Mother Tongue:

The native language one first learns to speak before other language.

Interference:

In this context, interruption of a language by another especially in pronunciation and intonations.

Anglo-Xason:

A person whose ancestors were English. (2) An English person of the period before the nor man conquest.

Fundamental:

Serious and very important affecting the most central and important parts of something. (2) Foundation of reality.

Heterogeneity:

Consisting of many different kinds of people or things (2) Uniformity/Alike.

Ethnological:

The moral ideas and attitudes that belong to a particular group or society (2) peculiar to a race or nation.


1.8 Organization of the Study

This research work is organized in five chapters, for easy understanding, as follows

  • Chapter one is concern with the introduction, which consist of the (overview, of the study), historical background, statement of problem, objectives of the study, research hypotheses, significance of the study, scope and limitation of the study, definition of terms and historical background of the study.
  • Chapter two highlights the theoretical framework on which the study is based, thus the review of related literature.
  • Chapter three deals on the research design and methodology adopted in the study.
  • Chapter four concentrate on the data collection and analysis and presentation of finding.
  • Chapter five gives summary, conclusion, and recommendations made of the study

Chapter Five


Summary, Conclusion and Recommendation

5.1 Introduction

It is important to ascertain that the objective of this study was to ascertain effect of mother tongue interference in the study of English language in secondary school

In the preceding chapter, the relevant data collected for this study were presented, critically analyzed and appropriate interpretation given. In this chapter, certain recommendations made which in the opinion of the researcher will be of benefits in addressing the challenges of interference in the study of English language in secondary school


5.2 Summary

This study was on effect of mother tongue interference in the study of English language in secondary school. Three objectives were raised which included: To find out the level at which mother tongue can interfere in the learning of English language in secondary school, to investigate the qualifications of English teachers in secondary school in Enugu North, to know how teachers makes use of correct methods in teaching of English language in secondary school in Enugu North. In line with these objectives, two research hypotheses were formulated and two null hypotheses were posited. The total population for the study is 200 students of selected secondary schools in Enugu north local government of Enugu state. The researcher used questionnaires as the instrument for the data collection. Descriptive Survey research design was adopted for this study. A total of 133 respondents made up principals, vice principals adm, senior staff and junior staff were used for the study. The data collected were presented in tables and analyzed using simple percentages and frequencies


5.3 Conclusion

Mother-tongue has been identified as a panacea for the acquisition of L2 in Nigeria, which for majority secondary school student it is English language. Therefore, its importance should not be underestimated. This paper recommends that teachers of English language should be dedicated and patient in handling students in developing their speaking skill as a foundation.


5.4 Recommendation

Teachers should make effort in designing student’s friendly activities in class as regards to remedial drills in correcting errors transferred from mother-tongue according to the need of the ethnic group of an environment. This is in line with what Oglan 1997 cited in Oluwole (2008) stressed that an activity classroom where learners especially at the secondary school, aiming to make learning fun should be encouraged.


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