Chapter One Introduction
1.1 Background of the Thesis
1）Requirements of National English Curriculum Standards for Senior Middle School
National English Curriculum Standards for Senior High School (2020 Revision) gives requirements for senior high school students in reading. It puts forward that students need to learn different discourse, be familiar with the common discourse in the daily life, and grasp the specific structure, discourse features and expression way of different discourses. For the genres of English reading texts, it also proposes some requirements. The types of discourse to be learned in the required courses should reflect the basic and universality, including narrative, expository, practical writing, news report and other categories. Students should be able to extract the main information and ideas from the text, grasp the context of the main events in the text and grasp the key concepts and details in the text. What’s more, students are required to identify common cohesive markers in written discourse. And different discourse the requirements are different. For example, for the narrative essays, students need to predict the development of the story based on contextual clues, describe the characters or events, and express their own opinions. Therefore, it is very important for the teachers need to guide students to read different genres of texts and cultivate their genre awareness.
2) Existing Problems in English Reading Teaching
However, there are still some long-standing problems in English reading teaching, such as outdated teaching methods, test-taking tendency, monotonous teaching mode, students’ passive reading attitude, students’ lack of motivation and improper learning methods. The teachers always focus on the explanation of language points such as vocabulary and grammar, taking no account of the structure of the discourse and the theme behind the text (Huang, Mingjian). The whole class is totally dominated by the teacher, and the students are just the passive receivers of knowledge. And the passages are regarded as the carrier of knowledge. During the process, the teacher ignores the context, genre and the writing purpose of the passage, instead they attach great importance to the linguistic knowledge.
1.2 Purpose of the Thesis
The purpose of this thesis is to explore the teaching steps and effectiveness of genre-based teaching approach in English reading teaching in senior middle school based on genre analysis theory. To provide theoretical basis for its application in senior middle school English reading class, the author discusses the development of genre-based teaching approach at home and abroad. And the author takes interview, reading comprehension test and questionnaire as the research methods so as to get the reliable results that the students’ reading ability and efficiency can be improved with the application of genre-based teaching approach. Besides, the students can have a good awareness of specific structure and purpose of different genres. At the same time their reading interest, enthusiasm and confidence can be promoted.
Chapter Two Literature Review
2.1 English Reading Teaching
It is of great practical significance to research on English reading teaching. In traditional English reading teaching, the teachers mainly focus on the explanation of language point but ignore the overall mastery of the text, which leads to a negative effect to the students’ reading ability. Therefore, in order to improve such situations, the author reviews the English reading teaching at home and abroad so as to find a proper way to rectify such situation. This section introduces the relevant studies of English reading teaching at home and abroad.
2.1.1 Reading Teaching Abroad
Research on English reading teaching started in 1920s represented by Harold E. Palmer. Palmer (1917) points out that the students can utilize the language flexibly unless they have a good command of the skills of listening and speaking. He emphasizes the importance of the students’ listening and speaking. From 1960s on, researchers started to research on the models of English reading teaching. Generally speaking, there are following three reading teaching models, namely bottom-up model, top-down model, and interactive model.
2.2 Genre-based Teaching Approach
Genre-based teaching approach appeared in 1980s, and it caught the attention of researchers and the teachers immediately. This section introduces the relevant studies of genre-based approach at home and abroad, and the researchers will be presented accordingly.
2.2.1 Definition of Genre
Genre, originally derived from Latin, entered the field of linguistic research in the 1970s. And there are different definitions of genre among different researchers.
There are three schools of genre study abroad, they are Swalesian School, Australian School and New Rhetoric School. Among them, Swales and Bhatia are representatives of Swalesian School. Swales (1990) is the first one who introduced the concept of genre into the field of linguistic research, and he defines genre as a kind of communicative event with specific communicative purpose which will influence the structure and the content of the discourse. Thus, genre is the classification of communication. And then from cognitive psychology perspective Bhatia (1993) completes the definition, and he defines genre as a kind of special and recognizable communicative event which has specific rules when constructing discourse. From their definitions, there are something in common between them. They all agree that genre is a kind of communicative event with specific purposes. Martin and Eggins are representatives of Australia School. According to Martin (1984), genre has steps, aims and communicative purposes. In other words, if people want to achieve a kind of goal in a communication, he should orient the conversation with his purpose. However, Eggins (1994) gives different understanding, he defines genre as a type of activity in which the organization of language has certain steps and intentions. It can be seen that the Australian School’s understanding of genre has something in common. It is a kind of communicative tool which has certain purpose and steps. Miller (1984), the representative of New Rhetoric School, believes genre is a kind of social behavior, which can help students learn how to participate in social activity.
Chapter Three Methodology ............................. 24
3.1 Research Questions .............................. 24
3.2 Research Participants .................................. 24
3.3 Research Methods ........................... 24
Chapter Four Data Analysis and Discussion ............................ 43
4.1 Analysis of Reliability and Validity of Questionnaires ...................... 43
4.2 Effects on Students’ Reading Interests .......................... 43
4.3 Effects on Students’ Reading Strategies .......................... 46
Chapter Five Conclusion ...................................... 57
5.1 Major Findings of the Research ................................ 57
5.2 Implications for Teaching .......................... 58
5.3 Limitations of the Research ............................. 59
Chapter Four Data Analysis and Discussion
4.1 Analysis of Reliability and Validity of Questionnaires
After collecting the questionnaires, the author takes SPSS to analyze the reliability and validity of the collected questionnaires. The detailed reliability analysis is as following table.
As is shown in the table, the Cronbach’s alpha value is 0.940, which is more than 0.9, indicating that the reliability of the research data from the questionnaires is of high quality.
The analysis of validity through SPSS is shown as following table. According to the table, the KMO value is 0.858> 0.8, which suggests that the information shown in the questionnaires is valid to be extracted as research data. And p value (2-tailed) is 0.00>0.05, which shows that there is no significant relation between variables.
Chapter Five Conclusion
5.1 Major Findings of the Research
Through a three-month study, the author analyzes the results of questionnaire survey, pre-test, post-test and combined with interview analysis to verify the effectiveness of genre-based teaching approach. The following conclusions are drawn:
First, based on the analysis the data of pre-questionnaire and post-questionnaire. It can be seen that the students in A2 (experiential class) compared with the A1 class (controlled class) have more interests and confidence in doing reading under the guidance of genre-based teaching approach. For example, the students in A2 and A1 class are used to think that reading class is boring and difficult, and they just regard the passage as the tool of learning grammar and new words. However, the situation of the students in A2 class has changed greatly after applying genre-based teaching approach. They are more willing to have English reading class and doing reading test than they are used to be. They find the passage is not only the carrier of linguistic knowledge but also the culture and author’s intention, which keeps their reading interests and enthusiasm in participating in classroom activities.
Second, based on the analysis data of pre-questionnaire and post-questionnaire, the students in A2 class compared with the students in A1 class can apply different reading strategies to read the passage flexibly under the guidance of genre-based teaching approach. They are used to read the passage word by word in order to have a deep understanding to the passage. And they hold the wrong reading idea that they need to know the meaning of every word during the process of reading. But after the experiment, they can apply various reading strategies during the process of reading, such as predicting and skimming. For example, the students can skim the words that they have no idea and guess the meaning of the words according to the context.