n half of the conversation. Clearly, listening comprehension is a skill that the learner can improve it by better listening and productivity and the learner should avoid the conflict and misunderstandings as well as their ability to effect in their communication.
۱.۲ Theoretical Framework
In recent years, there has been a growing of research on the effects of speech modification on L2 listening comprehension. Speech rate research has not been able to precisely define the rate ranges by EFL listeners of different proficiency levels given the disparity among these ranges , according to Zhao (1997) has led to serious methodological flaws and inconsistent results that make the transferability of these conclusions to other contexts almost impossible. Griffiths (1992) studied the effects of speech rates (127, 188, 250 wpm) on the nonnative speaker’s listening comprehension and concluded that the slowest rate was the most comprehensible and the higher rates led to worse comprehension. Teachers and learners should take into account features of slow and natural speech rate and know that both have some advantages and disadvantages. Griffiths (1992) concluded that reducing the velocity of speech rate was positively related to high listening comprehension mean scores . Slow speech rate may be used as a short path practice for comprehending natural speech rate there for comprehending natural speech rate is the optimal objective . This study underlying psychological building block of application of Krashen’s Input Hypothesis (1985) which postulates i+1 input for the learner in the learning and teaching settings. Most of the previous studied about speech rate (e.g., Khatib, 2010; Sakaki, 1996)were carried out on high school in their English books and listening comprehension has been involve in syllabus. Therefore the researcher not only found it useful and practical to have a study in high school but also will compare listening comprehension at two different speech rate therefore main objective whether listening to normal versus slow rate effects on Iranian EFL learners listening comprehension ability or not and investigate the impact of speech rate on intermediate EFL learners’ listening comprehension ability.
۱ .۳ statement of problem
Nowadays, researchers have realized that listening comprehension is important part of language learning and teaching and need to worthy attention and research. One of the important skills in teaching and learning English is the listening comprehension. According to (Vandergrift, 2006) Unlike reading, listening needs to deal with spoken language that is often unplanned and typically exhibits short idea units. According to (Witkin, 1990) One of the chief problems in the field of listening research is the lack of consensus on the definition of listening. Joiner (1984) stated that one of the fundamental reasons listening has been so difficult to define is that it is a covert activity. Byrnes (1984) contended that although listening literature in the past decades has attempted to unify all components of listening found in related studies and to formulate a common base for a definition of a listening, the conceptualization of listening still needs more research since listening is a “high-complex problem solving activity” (p. 318) that can be broken down into a set of distinct sub-skills. Coakley and Wolv in (1986) said that the stem of the difficulty in defining listening is in part from the complex relationship between listening skills and thinking skills since “the emphasis on comprehension in the tests used to measure listening skills illustrates how closely listening skills are related to thinking skills” (p. 15). According to Hayati (2010) argued about listening or exposure to natural speech rate made a significant improvement in learners’ listening comprehension. Boyle (1984), Flower dew and Miller (1992) pointed that fast speech rate led to problem in listening comprehension Now a days, however, researchers have realized that listening comprehension is an important part of language teaching and learning and worthy of attention to speech and research. The researcher study the foregoing issue and probably fined a better way to help both the learners and teachers come over such a problem. This studies dealing with the effect of speech rate on listening can help teachers use speed modification in their classes provided differing rates of speech are worked on simultaneously. Providing listeners just with ungraded materials may not prove helpful. Another important basis for the current study is that some scholars (Boyle, 1984; Flower dew & Miller, 1992; Stenly, 1978) believe that there is a need to modify the natural speech rate into slow speech rate in order to be understandable for the EFL learners. It introduces way of speaking for easily understandable to contact with different interlocutor esp in the classroom for our teachers. According to Stenly (1978) argued about adverse effect of speech rate on listening comprehension. Chauron (1979) said that one of the important features of listening comprehension was the great speed according connected speech. Others believe that speech rate as one of the factors in listening comprehension has been the main subject of research lately main variables. Blau (1990) and Derwing and Munro (2001) the other researchers concluded that speed modification facilitates listening comprehension. According to Foulke (1968) in this study speeding up of recording up to 260wpm had no effect on comprehension but above that it began to crumble precipitously. Foulke and Stitch (1969) and Stitch (1971) concluded that the threshold for listening comprehension is 275 wpm after which comprehension declines rapidly. Friedman and Johnson (1971, cited by Griffiths, 1990) reported on the structurally spaced pauses into orally presented Russian sentences and significantly accurate recall. Some researchers believe that listening comprehension and speech rate are related together and if speech rate goes up listening comprehension will go down. Others contend that students had to expose to listening materials with normal speech rate right from the start. Slow rate of speech is generally believed to be usually easier to comprehend than natural speech rate; this gives the students enough time to process the stream of information at a slower rate of delivery. In other words, because comprehension is increased in slow speech rate, students should be exposed to slow rate. However; the question that remains to be answered is how students will perform in listening comprehension of their high school text book if exposed to slow rate? Although speech rate can it seems to play one of the major controlling roles in listening comprehension that has formed the main initiative for the development of this research. problems that most learners and teachers are heard complaining about is getting an unacceptable command of listening comprehension even after covering the courses concerning it .The purpose of this study tended to investigate the influence of speed rate on word identification and listening comprehension of Iranian EFL students. The underlying psychological building block of this study was the application of Krashen’s Input Hypothesis (1985) which postulates i+1 input for the learner in the learning and teaching settings .
۱.۴. Significant of the study
This study investigating the benefits of speech rate in FL context is hardly enough. Basically, speech rate is one of the main factors which causes difficulties in evaluating listening comprehension. Zaho (1997) claimed that speech rate needs more productive investigation. Limitation in FL learners’ working memory and time do not always permit them to process natural listening input (normal speech rate) and EFL listeners have no control over the stream of speech rate of listening comprehension. One of the major problems of most Iranian students is listening comprehension. Sakaki (1996) believes that there are some problems among Iranian high school student. This research show that Schmidt (1990), who has drawn attention to the role of noticing in language learning, asserts that we will not learn anything from the input we hear and understand unless we notice something about it. However, it is plausible that comprehension is prerequisite to acquisition speech. this research study examines the extent of effectiveness of reducing the speech rate of the audio taped native input .Speech rate ranges perceived to be ideal in facilitating listening comprehension are investigated from the view point of adolescent EFL learners who carry unique socio cultural and school backgrounds.
۱.۵. Research Hypotheses:
The current study aims to answer the following questions:
۱) Does slow speech rate have any effect on Iranian