An Exploratory Study of the Epistemological Beliefs and Language Learning Beliefs of Singapore Secondary School Chinese Language Students
【作者基本信息】 复旦大学， 语言学及应用语言学， 2010， 硕士
【摘要】 新加坡的华文教师在谈及学生的学习情况时经常是归咎于“兴趣”。从学习者心理的角度而言,“兴趣”固然会影响学生的学习,但是单一归因却显示了教师其实对于学生的心理缺乏更深入的了解。本研究通过一次问卷调查,从个人认识论信念和语言学习两个平行却又不同的侧面去发掘学生的学习心理,同时对比他们对于本身语言能力的自我评估以及在学校里的测试成绩表现,以期找出一些关系,为华文教师在尝试理解学生心理开拓另一个渠道。本次研究由两所邻里中学的学生参与调查,所使用的认识论信念问卷以Schommer-Aikins等人(2000)中学版Schommer Epistemological Questionnaire(简称“SEQ”)为基础进行编制。通过因子分析,我们发现这群修读华文的学生的认识论信念展现了四个维度的特点,分别作：学习的能力(Ability to learn)、全知全能的权威(Omniscient authority)、知识的稳定性(Stability of knowledge)以及学习方法的多样化(Diverse approaches to learning)。当我们将之对比学生的语言能力自我评估时,就发现越是认为自己的华文水平佳的学生,就越对知识权威表崇敬,正好体现了儒家文化在亚洲传播所产生的影响(Chan & Elliot,2002);认为华文书写能力越强的学生则倾向于认为知识是稳定不变的。成绩方面,华文成绩越好的学生在学习上倾向于采取多样化的方式学习,但与此同时他们也倾向于认可知识的稳定性。语言学习信念问卷则主要以Horwitz (1988)的语言学习信念量表(Beliefs About Language Learning Inventory,简称"BALLI")为基础进行编制。通过因子分析,我们发现这群修读华文的学生的认识论信念展现了五个维度的特点,分别作：心系未来的华语学习者(Future-minded Chinese language learners)、学习语言的天赋(Innatelanguage learning ability)、稳定的华语知识(Stability of Chinese language knowledge)、专家对华语学习的影响(Influence of experts in Chinese language learning)以及华语学习与众不同(Chinese language learning is a different experience)。当我们将之对比学生的语言能力自我评估时,就发现学生对于自视华语能力越高的学生越是把学好华文将来能在职场上获益作为个人学习的推动力；自认华语能力不如其他同学的学生倾向相信学习语言需要天赋。成绩方面,我们有一些意料中的结果,例如越是觉得华语比英语容易学的学生,他们的华语成绩就越理想。但是有些意料之外的结果也挺有意思的,例如华语成绩越好的学生越是可能不觉得学习华语和学习英语有不同,反观英语成绩越好的学生有可能对两种语言进行区别等。当我们把纵观认识论信念和语言学习信念两者间的关系时就发现这两者皆由两条主线贯穿着,一是“权威”的作用,二是知识的“稳定性”问题。语言学习问卷维度中和认识论信念能直接起联系的因子多达三个,于是乎部分语言学习信念由认识论信念贯穿其中。本次研究无论在理论或是实践方面都做出了一些发现,为华文教师提供另一个侧面,使得我们对于学生心理层面的认识不再仅仅停留在“兴趣”之上,也为一线的教师提供了解学生心理的一套工具。
【Abstract】 Very often when asked how their students were learning the language, a typical Singapore Chinese Language (CL) teacher would relate to the students’performance to the students’interest level in the subject. From an educational psychological perspective, "interest" does possibly affect learners’learning. However, to provide this as a reason reveals how limited a teacher knows about the student’s psychology. This research attempts to study two psychological aspects of the learners, namely the epistemological beliefs and the language learning beliefs. A survey was conducted to capture the students’beliefs. The students’ examination results and self-evaluation of language proficiencies were used in a comparison analysis to reveal any co-relation that may exist.This research is conducted in two typical government co-educational secondary schools. A composite survey instrument was created by adopting various existing instruments. The questions for epistemological belief were mainly adapted from Schommer-Aikins et. al.(2000) Schommer Epistemological Questionnaire (SEQ) for middle school students. Through exploratory factor analysis, the results revealed four factors, namely:"Ability to learn", "Omniscient authority", "Stability of knowledge" and "Diverse approaches to learning"。When the factors were compared against the self-evaluation of language proficiencies, we discovered that students who proclaimed higher abilities in CL were found to be more respectful to the authoritative figure. This possibly reflects the effect of Confucianism on some Asians (Chan & Elliot,2002). When the factors were compared against students’examination results, results revealed that students with higher scores in CL tended to adopt varied methods in learning, as well as to believe that knowledge is stable and unchanged over time.The questions for the language learning beliefs were mainly adapted from Horwitz (1988)’s Beliefs About Language Learning Inventory (BALLI). Exploratory factor analysis revealed five factors, namely:"Future-minded Chinese language learners", "Innate language learning ability", "Stability of Chinese language knowledge", "Influence of experts in Chinese language learning" and "Chinese language learning is a different experience"。When compared against students’self-evaluation of language proficiencies, we discovered that students who perceived themselves as having higher abilities viewed the learning of CL to be useful in their future career. This translated into motivation for learning the language. For students who thought that their abilities are weak, they tended to believe that innate ability affected how well they learnt CL. When the factors were compared against students’ examination results, results such as students who scored better for CL examinations believed that CL is an easier language than the English language (EL) were much predictable. However, we also uncovered some interesting findings, such as students who scored better tended to believe that there existed not much difference in the learning of CL and EL. Students with better EL results believed otherwise, that a difference existed.Putting together the findings from the epistemological beliefs and language learning beliefs, we discovered that two major themes linked them together, namely:the effect of the authoritative figure, and the stability of knowledge.In conclusion, this research provided some insights for both research and practice. It highlighted a possible approach for CL teachers to gain more in-depth knowledge of our students psychologically when they were learning the language. It was hoped that this would allow teachers to improve on their instructions, and in turn lead to improved students’learning.
- 【网络出版投稿人】 复旦大学 【网络出版年期】2011年 03期