Implementation of digital narratives to promote the productive skills of speaking in the case of the pandemic

Digital narratives has appeared over the last few years as a powerful teaching and learning tool that engages both teachers and their students. However, until recently little attention has been paid to a theoretical framework that could be employed to increase the effectiveness of technology as a tool in a classroom environment. The crisis, which brought the educational process into a remote mode, became a motive for revising the attitude to the means and tools of information technologies introduced into schools earlier. School websites, electronic journals and diaries have proved to be useful tools for organizing the educational process using telecommunications. A discussion of the history of digital narrative and how it is being used educationally in the case of the pandemic is presented in this article. Therefore this study was aimed at investigating the challenges faced by students of the secondary school in conducting online English learning during the pandemic. The qualitative method was used by involving twenty students of secondary level of education. The participants were chosen purposely by considering various criteria. An open-ended questionnaire was distributed through a digital platform. The data was then analyzed inductively. The researchers find some problems, namely in pronunciation, fluently, vocabulary and accuracy. When in e-learning process, students become embarrassed to speak and become lazy to speak English, which leads to a decrease in vocabulary, worsening in pronunciation and a decrease in students' speaking fluency and accuracy. Findings show that productive skills, including speaking and writing skills, become the most challenging skills to learn.

Introduction

It is known that during the COVID-19 pandemic, many universities and schools around the world switched to distance learning. This situation means that the teaching model in which the teacher is the only source of knowledge is outdated. The teacher in the 21st century needs to be a facilitator who can guide and help the student find a way to solve the problem, and the student must learn the material he or she needs. Lessons should not be conducted in an abstract way, but should focus more on developing critical thinking, interpreting the information obtained, and analyzing specific learning situations. It is very important to develop skills, competencies, the ability to express ideas. Many universities around the world have been offering online courses in a variety of curricula for over 20 years. Arizona State University, Purdue University, the University of Southern New Hampshire, and the University of Western Governors offer convenient and flexible online programs for obtaining a degree.

The purpose of the article is that it aims at supporting education decision making to develop and implement effective education responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The report explains why the necessary social isolation measures will disrupt school-based education for several months in most countries around the world. An intentional and effective strategy to protect opportunity to learn during this period is absent, this disruption will cause severe learning losses for students [21].

To organize an empirical study of the features of a personal learning of students, a research program was developed.

The object of study is the process of education in the content of distance learning.

The objectives of study:

 Identifying students’ learning status or problems for delivering adaptive learning by analyzing their learning behaviors or interactive content and providing personalized learning content and practices.

 Enabling policy-makers and administrators to have a global view of current educational policies or problems by analyzing large-scale educational data to identify important indicators for evaluating the educational status from local, regional, national or international perspectives.

 Enabling researchers or teachers to have insights into students’ interactions with courseware, peers and teachers by analyzing their behavior in-depth, such as raising a question with scientific conceptions, seeking information related to a specific issue, making observations and comparisons, proposing new ideas or submitting a correct answer [10].

Method of research

The author used such research methods as quantitative methods with a descriptive approach. From the research data, conducted by researchers, researchers notice many striking differences between students' speaking skill progress before pandemic and pandemic during the period [20].

Literature review

The proliferation of popular open online courses is helping to transform the higher education system through specially designed online platforms that expand global access to quality and free education. MOOC suppliers such as Coursera, EdX, and Udacity offer training programs for degrees and certifications. It is known that the effectiveness of any distance learning depends on four components: 1) the effective interaction of teacher and student; 2) pedagogical technologies used for this purpose; 3) the effectiveness of the developed training materials; 4) the effectiveness of feedback. In other words, the success and quality of distance learning depends on the organizational and methodological quality of the materials used, the management and skills of the teachers involved in the process.

Ganayem & Zidan [9] examined students' perceptions of the role of distance learning in the context of 21st Century learning skills. Studies like this have enriched learning by interdisciplinarity with the e-learning method and learning many different subjects. According to them, technology has penetrated the world and has made it possible to bring it to the world of education and even to informal education. It is a step forward in the modern world's multiple skills that educational administration authorities can take advantage of. This use of technology, such as podcasts during a pandemic, can make students manage the problem of being overwhelmed by learning when a prolonged pandemic hits them with podcasts.

According to Bozkurt and Sharma [7], remote education refers to spatial distance and an obligation, which means that we have to use different strategies and approach the case with different priorities. In a similar vein, according to C. Hodges, S. Moore, B. Lockee, N. Trust, & A. Bond [12], emergency remote learning/teaching is a temporary shift of instructional delivery to a substitute delivery mode due to catastrophe situations. It comprises the use of fully remote teaching solutions for instruction or education that would otherwise be delivered face-to-face or as blended or hybrid courses and that will return to that format once the crisis or emergency has abated. The principal goal in these conditions is not to re-create and design a vigorous educational ecosystem but rather to offer impermanent access to teaching and learning and instructional supports in a manner that is quick to set up and is reliably available during COVID-19 crisis. Emergency remote learning/teaching occurs outside of a physical classroom. Emergency remote learning/teaching, which appears to be identical with e-learning, takes place online. Remote teaching is naturally facilitated through technology, such as video conferencing software, discussion boards or learning management systems. Both students and instructors interact via two-way communication technologies. Instructors are separated from their learners in time and distance. This type of teaching may be synchronous, where students watch instructors deliver their lectures live, or asynchronous, where students watch lecture recordings at a later point in time. Best practices for remote teaching include providing ongoing feedback, making assignment guidelines clear, and making effective use of online resources. Teaching remotely obviously diminishes the number of interactions on campus and thereby significantly decreases the rate of transmission of COVID- 19 [16]. Emergency remote learning can ensure that students continue learning through a variety of avenues such as digital technologies, which can offer a wide set of capabilities for remote learning [28]. It enables learners to extend learning outside the boundaries of traditional learning institutions through informal and enriched learning experiences using online communities on new platforms such as social media and other social platforms [23]. It can essentially be as effective as face-to-face education when done right. When emergency remote learning is well-planned and well-structured, conducted in an appropriate learning management system and in the hands of skilled lecturers, it can provide a learning experience equivalent to face- to-face [25].

Amelia & Abidin [4] investigated students' perceptions of English as a foreign language, how the effect of using podcasts is improving storytelling in the English classroom. Podcasts have become a teaching method and approach using storytelling and learning English, which continues to innovate and develop the technology. It is believed that the integration of technology into learning will bring forward changes to foreign language learning, such as increasing the learning climate that is up-to-date, original, creative, and innovative based on digital technology.

Allen [2] argues that teaching with application of the podcasts, especially the narrative nonfiction lessons, is very prospective. His studies have proven how and why out-of-school and private secondary school educators adopt professional nonfiction podcasts run in out-of-school activities and complete class assignments. The study results show that teachers use digital narrative podcasts with positive results from the level of student participation and their responses to conveying disciplinary content knowledge, as the main reading for literary analysis, and as training material for listening literacy skills attention.

E-learning is very efficient, but on the other hand it has shortcomings and unfavorable effects on students first in the aspect of student speaking. Armasita [5] said that speaking is an activity used by someone to communicate with other. In the other definition, speaking is the skill to express ideas or thoughts in yourself that involve other people using words that can be understood and accepted by many people. Abdullah [1] said that learning to speak is obviously more difficult than learning to understand the spoken language. Having the skill in speaking means that someone is have courage or confidence. A student becomes confident when they have speaking skills, the student will be more active in the class when the educator asks something, it will be an additional score for the students who have the skill in speaking. Dhawan [8] also found that one of e-learning’s weaknesses is the lack of personal/physical attention. That is why the learning process could take a wrong direction, when the student's language development does not get optimal changes as when they learn face-to-face. The use of e-learning in the speaking aspect actually makes students less efficient in mastering the learning because students become less motivated to practice when there is no interaction that makes students to directly practice speaking skills in order to produce good results. Even so, it cannot replace actual class interactions as in conventional classrooms [15]. Similarly, a findings of Ichsan, Rahmayanti, Purwanto, Sigit, Kurniawan, Dewi, Wirdianti, Hermawati, and Marhento [13] also showed the same result in a different subject (Science). They found that there were various shortcomings and obstacles during applying e-learning strategy. It is common in universities and colleges to provide online resources to supplement traditional teaching methods in order to replace conventional classroom. Even UNESCO is aware that transitioning to online learning at such scale is a very difficult and highly complex undertaking for education systems [27]. Therefore, these institutions must understand what drives instructors and learners toward the e-learning system [3]. Based on this, it can be explained that the main phenomenon to be discussed in this case is a technical problem in e-learning. Since e-learning has begun to be carried out in all spheres of life, especially education, new problems and challenges will be faced by students., educators, and parents. This creates a dilemma that will have a negative effect on online learning. According to F.I.M. Salleh, J.M. Ghazali, W.N.H.W. Ismail, M. Alias, & N.S.A. Rahim [22], who also said that e-learning has a negative impact, such as lack of self-discipline and face-to-face interactions, lack of input from lecturers, good online learning is difficult, there are no facilities to support online learning, and the difficulties are hard to resolve.

The difference of this study from previous research lies in the research method, in which we use audiovisual recordings by WhatsApp because by using audio-visuals we can provide more accurate results about the student’s speech. Listening directly to the voice of the student makes it easier for researchers to see the progress of students’ speaking skills and to get the results of comparisons of students' speaking while studying face-to-face and learning remotely.

The points above are also relevant to the learning process of e-learning, where the learning process in the student network is currently visible and visible to various parties such as teachers, students, or can have an effect on parents. That is why we see e-learning as not having a good effect on learning.

For this reason the researcher is interested in taking the title «Implementation of digital narratives to promote the productive skills of speaking in the case of the pandemic». This title attracts the attention of the writers because of the phenomenon that occurs nowadays making the students to experience difficulties in speaking using e-learning, and this is important to know and figure out how does e-learning affect students’ speaking skill progress and to figure out how is the students’ speaking skills progress is affected by the process of e-learning. Because the research [11] states that students perceived that the implementation of online learning during the COVID-19 period has been not fully effective.

Vocabulary is an essential basis for speaking. Speaking is the human ability to produce sound or voice orally and to share or express feelings and thoughts with others as a means of communication in life (with or without any particular gadgets) to fulfill human needs and emotion [17]. Without a sufficient vocabulary people will have difficulty in speaking English. Learners often find it difficult to use appropriate words to convey their thoughts because of their limited vocabulary [14].

This is why researchers think vocabulary is the most important aspect of assessing students' speaking skill. Researchers see the lack of vocabulary because many are lazy to memorize it, but a rich vocabulary is precisely that is necessary to speak English without faltering. This is why vocabulary is considered a major aspect of speaking. After vocabulary, the other necessary aspect is pronunciation. Teaching pronunciation is neglected in most of the classes though is an important aspect to focus on [26].

Pronunciation is a way of pronouncing words correctly. Pronunciation is needed in students' speaking assessment, because if someone speaks with the wrong pronunciation, the meaning of the word becomes different and makes the listener not understand the meaning the speaker tried to convey. Therefore, pronunciation is also very important to pay attention to so that the meaning of a sentence can be accepted by others and easily be understood.

Accuracy is the students' speaking accuracy in pronouncing words. Fluency and accuracy are inseparable, these are two factors that can determine the success of English for students. Accuracy can be said to be the ability to produce grammatically accurate sentences, while fluency is the ability the students must have to use a language easily, such as using correct punctuation, verbs, articles and prepositions. This aspect also needs to be considered in speaking, where it is also necessary to use proper punctuation so that the words we speak are not flat and make other people like to hear it. Tahir and Hanapi state that accuracy in speaking means that someone can produce correct sentences in pronunciation, grammar and word choice so it can be understood. If someone doesn't learn accuracy in speaking, then it will affects the students’ accuracy in speaking, because accuracy consists of the use of vocabulary, grammar and pronunciation through several activities, which fluency takes into account [19]. While fluency means expressing ideas clearly and continuously, English teaching is usually more concerned with accuracy than fluency [24].

However, that does not mean things that are underestimated cannot be mastered, because they are all related in achieveing good results in speaking. If this aspect of speaking is not mastered, then it cannot be said that a student is speaking properly and correctly, speaking can be opposed by the interlocutor. If speaking is not stiff and anxious, then in that situation students can speak properly and correctly, but so that this aspect can be mastered, students must practice a lot and try to achieve fluency.

Experimental

This study aims to answer the following research questions: does e-learning affect students’ speaking skill progress? How is the process of students’ speaking skill takes place in e-learning? This review covers a period starting from 14–15 January 2021 in an effort to capture the effect of e-learning on the progress of students' speaking skills which was carried out in seventh grade at school № 104 among 20 students in that class. The researcher used quantitative data from this research. The quantitative research is the process of collecting and analyzing numerical data. While using quantitative research methods the results obtained are more accurate and clear than of the research using qualitative methods, due to the ability of the numerical results obtained by quantitative methods to be verified, because they are achieved through accurate research.

The following is a table of rating categories (Table 1).

Table 1

Rating categories

Type

Feature

Scale

Result

1

2

3

4

Vocabulary

Not satisfactory

Limited vocabulary will make understanding difficult. If a student wants to say something without understanding enough words, it will be difficult to speak well

1–6

 

Sufficient

Students who often use the wrong words while speaking on simple topics because they have poor vocabulary

7–12

 

Nice

Sometimes many students use unclear and inaccurate terms about language because of inadequate vocabulary, so their speaking results are also not good due to

13–18

 

1

2

3

4

 

the lack of vocabulary

   

Excellent

Problems rarely occur, because students' vocabulary can be understood. Students have good vocabulary, listeners can also understand what students are talking about

19–25

 

Pronunciation

Not satisfactory

Students must understand sounds, accents, pitch, difficulty, stressing in order to be understood by listeners.

1–6

 

Sufficient

Basic pronunciation errors. Pronunciation is very important, so that the listener can easily understand what the students are saying

7–12

 

Nice

The mistakes that students make are only visible, there are not many mistakes students make in their pronunciation when speaking, which allows the listener to understand what the students are talking about a little easier

13–18

 

Excellent

Students' pronunciation can be understood and can be accepted well by listeners because students understand the pronunciation of vocabulary well

19–25

 

Accuracy

Not Satisfactory

Its use is clearly unsatisfactory, students need to rearrange a sentence more clearly or limit themselves to basic structures

1–6

 

Sufficient

Students' basic structural errors are sometimes obscured by grammatical errors or unclear pronunciation of the word when students speak

7–12

 

Nice

Occasional grammatical mistakes made by students that do not obscure the meaning or what students say even though it is not clear, but can still be accepted and understood by the listener

13–18

 

Excellent

Students make no more than two mistakes, the pronunciation of the vocabulary is accurate and the listener understands what the student is saying

19–25

 

Fluency

Not satisfactory

Fluency in students' speaking is below normal, longer pauses when speaking affect fluency.

1–6

 

Sufficient

Some students stumble while talking because they are nervous or lack adequate vocabulary, but the therapy students manage to repeat it well. And listeners can also accept these mistakes

7–12

 

Nice

Students’ speech must be natural, pronunciation errors are rarely found, because students already understand a lot of vocabulary, the accuracy of pronunciation is also good and the pauses when speaking are short

13–18

 

Excellent

Speaking students can be understood and accepted well, because of fluency and clarity of speech. Pauses when speaking are appropriate. Tone and emphasis are also correct and can be understood by the listener

19–25

 
 

Total result

100

 

In this study, researchers used instruments that could help them to collect data where the data was a result of determining the students' speaking progress. The researchers used documentation as an instrument where they assigned the seventh grade students of school № 104 to make audio recordings, in which they recounted their daily activities, and then sent it via WhatsApp. In the data collection process the researcher assigned several topics obtained through the English teacher, especially in speaking lessons given by the English teacher at school № 104 in the seventh grade during the e-learning process at school.

Table 2

Classification percentage

Classification

Average Percentage %

Vocabulary

25

Pronunciation

25

Accuracy

25

Fluency

25

Total

100 %

Form for counting students’ score: ^^^^^^^^^^40×100

In the process of carrying out the assessment in the field the researchers have several categories that will be assessed for each of these students, each criterion has 25 points, there are 4 categories to be assessed, namely vocabulary, pronunciation, accuracy and fluency.

The criteria are successful if > 75. The formula is used to calculate the criteria points discussed above, then these points will prove how the students' speaking ability during the e-learning process is increasing or decreasing. If < 75, then the student's points or score does not meet the criteria for success.

Table 3

Criteria of score

Percentage

Predicate

Excellent

75–100

Nice

69–74

Sufficient

59–68

Not satisfactory

49–58

Result and discussion

After the researchers got the material from the English teacher, they started the data collection process by verbally examining the students on the topics obtained from the teacher, which has been taught to students of school № 104 in seventh grade. The time to be given is 90 minutes. Overall, from the four categories it is possible to obtain 100 points. The researcher obtained the total of this research are the results of voice recordings. However, in collecting the sound recordings, there are several aspects that will be assessed from the data, like vocabulary, pronunciation, accuracy and fluency that can help researchers to assess the student's speaking progress.

Table 4

The students’ speaking skill score table (before pandemic)

No

Name

Score

Percentage

1

2

3

4

1

Student 1

78

Excellent

2

Student 2

75

Excellent

3

Student 3

70

Nice

4

Student 4

72

Nice

5

Student 5

70

Nice

6

Student 6

70

Nice

7

Student 7

72

Nice

8

Student 8

75

Excellent

9

Student 9

72

Nice

10

Student 10

76

Excellent

11

Student 11

72

Nice

12

Student 12

75

Excellent

13

Student 13

75

Excellent

14

Student 14

80

Excellent

15

Student 15

72

Nice

1

2

3

4

16

Student 16

72

Nice

17

Student 17

72

Nice

18

Student 18

72

Nice

19

Student 19

72

Nice

20

Student 20

72

Nice

The table 4 shows the results of tests given to students before pandemic. The students were checked in 4 categories like vocabulary, pronunciation, accuracy and fluency.

Table 5

The students’ speaking skill score table (pandemic period)

No

Name

Score

Percentage

1

Student 1

82,5

Excellent

2

Student 2

75

Excellent

3

Student 3

65

Sufficient

4

Student 4

25

Not satisfactory

5

Student 5

47,5

Not satisfactory

6

Student 6

20

Not satisfactory

7

Student 7

52,5

Not satisfactory

8

Student 8

52,5

Not satisfactory

9

Student 9

42,5

Not satisfactory

10

Student 10

67,5

Sufficient

11

Student 11

65

Sufficient

12

Student 12

60

Sufficient

13

Student 13

60

Sufficient

14

Student 14

65

Sufficient

15

Student 15

60

Sufficient

16

Student 16

60

Sufficient

17

Student 17

52

Not satisfactory

18

Student 18

32

Not satisfactory

19

Student 19

45

Not satisfactory

20

Student 20

22

Not satisfactory

From the Table 5 we can see that during the pandemic, there were 2 students in excellent category, no students in nice category, 8 students in the sufficient category and 10 students in the not satisfactory category. From the data above, it could be concluded that e-learning does not produce a good effect and is not recommended to be used in learning media for speaking skills. This happens because there are several difficulties found in students where students cannot do the practice directly to hone the speaking. We can see that in the language before the pandemic, students’ pronunciation is good, but during the pandemic it has decreased greatly, their vocabulary is insufficient. Pronunciation is incorrect and makes the listener confused in interpreting it. Another factor is vocabulary, which was good before the pandemic, but after it has greatly decreased, because students become less motivated to practice at home. Speaking practice is usually done directly in the classroom, students are more interested in learning vocabulary that way. It means that there is a decrease in students' skill in using vocabulary during e-learning compared with face-to-face learning in the classroom. Therefore using a suitable is one of the ways to improve students speaking skill and it is important to apply and alternative strategy in teaching [18].

The difficulties experienced by students are the lack of pre-media facilities to support the process of implementing e-learning, such as students who do not have gadgets to be able to carry out e-learning, in addition, many students have not mastered electronic media or lack the knowledge of ICT (Information Communication Technology) so it can affect performance in online-based learning. Apart from technology, the difficulties that can be found in the e-learning process are due to the lack of seriousness of students in participating in the e-learning system because many students feel bored participating in e-learning by sitting and paying attention to their cellphones or laptops to follow learning.

Conclusion

To summarize, the study was aimed to explore whether online learning has an effect on communication between instructors and students in a negative way, if online learning affects students’ productivity levels, as well as to evaluate and suggest ways of improving effective communication between instructors and students in online courses. The data was collected by using an online survey, which was distributed to a random sample of 20 students from the school № 104. As mentioned in the results above, students become less motivated to practice at home. Speaking practice is usually done directly in the classroom, students are more interested in learning vocabulary that way. For this reason the only thing that can make students improve their speaking ability is speaking exercises or the learning process face-to-face with other people. This is what really helps students' speaking to develop and get good results. We all need to understand what if the distance format lasts any longer, the consequences can be even more negative.

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Year: 2021
City: Karaganda
Category: Pedagogy