Oral or Visual English: Revisiting English Pronunciation Teaching in Nigeria

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Anyagwa, C.N.
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Tai Solarin University of Education
In Nigeria today, English is not only the language of instruction but also a teaching subject and a full course of study (in higher institutions). At the pre-primary and primary levels, the pronunciation aspect of the language is taught as ‘Phonics’. At the post primary level, it is taught as ‘Oral English’; while at the tertiary level, it is treated as “Spoken English” (phonetics and phonology in departments of English). These subject areas are, in principle, targeted towards enhancing the students’ listening and speaking skills, among others. However, observable trends show that in a good number of cases, neither of these skills is actually enhanced as both the teaching and testing methods tend to de-emphasize production and perception while focusing on symbol identification and recognition. Using data from a hundred first year students of English, the study reviews the students’ perception of the English pronunciation classes they had been exposed to as at their entry point into the university. Their assessment is then analysed vis-à-vis the goal of pronunciation teaching in the English Language Curriculum. The study draws attention to the need to revisit the current content and approaches, and further submits that the trend undermines the orality of Oral English.
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Oral English , Spoken English , Pronunciation teaching , Research Subject Categories::HUMANITIES and RELIGION::Languages and linguistics
Anyagwa, C. (2017), “Oral or Visual English: Revisiting English Pronunciation Teaching in Nigeria” in Ijagun Journal of English Language and Literature, Vol. 2: 106-114.