The Effects of Advance Organizers and Listening Proficiency on EFL Students' Listening Comprehension

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Department of English, NTNU


This study investigates the effects of advance organizers and listening proficiency on student comprehension of information in an aural passage. The subjects in the study were 180 fourth-year students in the five-year program at a college in central Taiwan. On the basis of their scores on the GEPT listening test, subjects were divided into two proficiency levels: high and low. Subjects of each level were randomly assigned to one of the three experimental conditions: the Passage Only (PO), the Description Preview (DP), and the Question Preview (QP). In the PO condition, subjects listened to the text devoid of additional support. Subjects in the DP condition were presented with six descriptive sentences from major events in the upcoming passage; subjects under the QP condition were provided with written comprehension questions. The results showed that scores for subjects completing the question preview activity weresignificantly higher than scores for subjects in the PO and DP conditions. The mean scores between the PO and DP subjects, however, did not differ significantly. In addition. the findings also revealed that subjects with high listening proficiency performed better than subjects with low listening proficiency, irrespective of pre-listening treatments. Based on the above findings, the implications for aural instruction in the EFL classroom are discussed.