s 80 up to 100 words per minute, average with about 120 words, and fast if she/he talks 140 up to 160 words per minute. There is speak training efforts that is the part of speech rate: A persuasive speech: Hostile audience? ?Fast up tempo; Friendly audience? ? Slow to Average; An informative purpose: Technical and/or slide show? ? Slow; Learning environment? ? Slow to Average; Narratives, repetition, easy descriptions and educational or scientific explanations ? Fast; Other speech topics: Graduation? ? Average to Fast , After dinner setting? ? Average to Fast, Key note address? ? Slow to Average.
Table (4):Showed different speech rate (ideal speech rate)
۲. ۲۰ Modified speech rate and listening
Listening is the essential skills for developing second language acquisition (SLA).Although second language learners notice the listening as the most difficult language but is a highly complex problem-solving skill that requires connecting meaning to the steam of speech sounds that is influenced by various factors. According to Rivers (1966,p.196)” speaking does not of itself constitute communication unless what is being said is comprehended by another person” and that ”Teaching the comprehension of spoken speeches is therefore of primary importance if the communication aim is to be reached”(p.204).According to Griffiths (1990) slower speech rate, when aided with other simplifications in syntax and rhetorical structure, will improve ESL (English as a Second Language) learners? listening comprehension. On the other hand, Blau (1990) has found that simply reducing speech rate from faster to slower do not improve the listening comprehension of intermediate and advanced level EFL learners. According to Goh (2001) contended lack of recognition of the familiar words to the learners as their second major problem after forgetting what is heard. According to Berne (1998, pp.169, 170) said about the fact of L2 listening comprehension :a) Familiarity of passage content facilitates L2 listening comprehension. b) Lower proficiency L2 listeners attend to phonological or semantic cues, whereas higher proficiency L2 listeners attend to semantic cues, and so on. Berne also said that analyzing the survey of language instructors she added there are gaps between L2 listening pedagogical theory and practice, and between L2 listening research and practice Comprehensible input in receptive skills was put forth by Long (1981) who endorsed the role of comprehensible input in conversational modifications. According to Krashen (1985) the most theoretically-based advocate of comprehensible input who postulates the linguistic input directed to L2 learners is a little above their current level of linguistic competence. According to Choi, Won _Kyung (2013) study of the effect of English Speech Rate on Elementary Students’ Listening Comprehension. The purpose is the effect of different degrees of English speech rate on low intermediate students’ listening comprehension. The average of speech rate of low intermediate school e-books is 130 wpm (word per minute), which is considerable slower than the natural speed of native speakers (about 160-190 wpm). The average of speech rate of the Nationwide Standardized Achievement Test is also around 128.2 wpm which can be regarded as the barometer of the textbooks. In the EFL setting, however, it is very important to be exposed to the authentic English. It attempts to determine their listening comprehension on three different speech rates according to their English proficiency. As a result showed that there is no significant difference between groups, on every proficiency level. Therefore said about two conclusions: First, it is necessary to present the real-life speed of native English speakers for effective language comprehension for elementary students. It also insists that the concept of speech rate should be in the national English curriculum.
This chapter presented the theoretical foundation of the study. In this study clarified the nature of the different speech rate that L2 learners, in particular, experience while performing the listening tasks, and explained how added processing different rates of speech is crucial for these learners due to go up or go down automatized listening comprehension processes. Then the construct of the appropriate rate was discussed in the light of Zhao’s (1997) subjective definition. In the study choose the SR reduction and techniques and “Short Path” Approach the exposure to different SRs were highlighted. The efficacy of different rate reduction techniques was reviewed in the LC research.
As it is said earlier in the previous chapter the present study was conducted to ameliorate the pedagogical and practical effect of speech rate on listening comprehension. So this part aimed at paying attention to the methodology of the research as follows: the design of the study, participants of the study, materials, procedures and the statistical analysis.
۳.۱ Design of the study
The design of present study is quasi-experimental design, which is a pre- post test design. The rationale behind using such a design lied in the fact that there was no random selection of subjects throughout the high school, and the study supposed to be conducted in one high school. So the participants were from Iranian Intermediate at Behnia high school in Rasht. The schematic representation of the design of the current study has been illustrated diagrammatically as follows:
Figure1.1 the Diagram of the Design of the Study
So the schematic representation of the design of the study showed that there has been four stages for the design of this study. At the first stage, an OPT test was administered to the participants. The purpose of such a test was to explore the proficiency level of the learners and make them homogenous and assign them into two groups, control and experimental. In the second stage a pre-test of listening comprehension was administered to the participants in both groups, control and experimental. The purpose of such a test was to assess the initial subject knowledge of learners’ listening comprehension ability. In the third stage of the design, the experimental group received treatment based on slow (special) speech rate while the control group received no treatment and approached the normal speech rate. And finally in the fourth stage, a post test of listening comprehension was administered to both groups to assess the effectiveness of the specific treatment program.
The participants of the study were selected from first grade high school students at -Behnia school in Rasht, a city in the north of Iran. The participants were 44 female students studying English at Behnia school. The age range of the participants were 14 to 18 years old. The subjects participated for an oxford placement test (OPT) in order to assess their proficiency level. So those learners whose scores were about 35 were selected and placed as intermediate learners. Having being homogenize by an OPT test, they were assigned into two groups, control and experimental. Both groups participated for pretest of listening comprehension to assess their subject knowledge of listening ability. Then the experimental group received treatment based on slow speech rate while the control group received no treatment and approached the existing method of teaching listening in normal speech rate. Finally both groups sat for the post test of listening comprehension in order to assess the effectiveness of the specific treatment program
This research scheme takes advantage of three types of tests for the sake of data collection. An OPT test not released and publicized in order to measure the subjects’ current status of proficiency level. The test covered the areas of reading, grammar, and vocabulary proficiency and writing questions. This test includes 50 multiple choice questions of grammar and vocabulary from simple to difficult and from elementary to intermediate. (See Appendix A). The subjects in both groups were screened and equated as far as their proficiency levels were concerned. A pre-test of listening comprehension was administered to the subjects in order to measure their initial subject knowledge of listening comprehension. The listening test includes 20 multiple choice items and fill in the blank selected from 4 tracks of Let’s Go. This study determined to use only audio stream of lectures as listening texts.
the material used for the treatment program were video(taped)