Science and Research Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Damavand Branch, Islamic Azad University, Tehran, Iran (email@example.com)
The ability to listen efficiently plays a key role in oral communication for ESL/EFL students. Scholars in the field have suggested many strategies and methods to improve listening comprehension. One of these methods is concept mapping. However, whether the students actually realize that concept mapping may improve their listening comprehension has not been explored. Therefore, the present study was designed to investigate the effect of applying concept mapping techniques on EFL learners’ attitudes towards using this technique in listening comprehension. To this end, 146 EFL students at the elementary level of language proficiency were selected, and they were randomly assigned to experimental and control groups. In the course of eight sessions, the experimental group went under an intervention of concept mapping, during which concept maps were introduced, and the listening paper of the KET was used as practice material. Descriptive statistics and a paired sample t-test that was utilized to analyze the data established that the two groups were significantly different in their listening comprehension ability. In order to assess the participants’ attitudes, before and after the treatment, the researchers administered a self-assessment questionnaire to the participants in the experimental group. The results indicated that the participants felt that using concept mapping strategies significantly improved their listening comprehension. The fact that the participants made this realization indicates that using concept mapping strategies raised the learners’ awareness regarding their listening, and may lead to learner autonomy.
Keywords: concept mapping; learners’ attitude; awareness; oral communication; quantitative survey