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The Effects of Listening Skills Instruction on Students' Academic Performance

Description: Although it is widely assumed that listening is among the most important learning skills (Wolvin & Coakley, 1988), an examination of the literature indicates that it has been woefully neglected as subject matter in schools. Listening has also been neglected as an area of research. Surveys have been conducted to see if listening is being taught or can effectively be taught, but little evidence exists to suggest that effectively teaching listening improves students' academic performance. This study investigated the relationship between listening skills instruction and academic performance among university students. The purpose was to determine if teaching university students comprehensive listening skills improves their academic performance. It was assumed that listening can be effectively taught. The goal of the study was to compare 75 students who were enrolled in a listening course to a similar group of 75 students not enrolled in a listening course. The students were compared on the basis of grade point improvement the semester after the experimental group had completed the listening course. The t test was chosen because it can be used for testing the significance of the difference between the means of two independent samples. The grade point averages of the two groups were collected and the means and standard deviations of the two groups were determined. The t-value and the probability of rejection of the null hypothesis were also determined. The data showed little difference between the mean scores of the two groups or between the standard deviations of the two groups. The observed t-value did not support the hypothesis; therefore, there was insufficient evidence to reject the null, and the conclusion was that listening skills instruction has no impact on university students' academic performance.
Date: May 1993
Creator: Mangrum, C. W. (Clifton William)
Partner: UNT Libraries