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Intercultural communication in ESL - Assignment Example

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Intercultural communication in ESL Instructor University Name November 27, 2012 Communication between teachers and ESL parents presents significant barriers. These conflicts and occurrences of miscommunication have long had influence on educational policy (Yan, & Mohan, 2008, p 18)…
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Intercultural communication in ESL
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Intercultural communication in ESL November 27, Communication between teachers and ESL parents presents significantbarriers. These conflicts and occurrences of miscommunication have long had influence on educational policy (Yan, & Mohan, 2008, p 18). Yan and Mohan attempt to address the research problem through the examination of parental attitudes and beliefs. Knowing these will highlight the differences between parents who are immigrants and schools and also validate the fact that the ESL teacher-parent communication process is very problematic. ESL students through this process are often denied the support they need to succeed. Academic success is much more difficult for the ESL student in today’s public school system. Purposes of the research study were to determine several facts and insight into the communication process between ESL parents and teachers. Three separate views will be examined to explain conflict that occurred at the research location; parent night at Milton Secondary School. This study wanted to define how teachers approach parent night and why while also learning about how parent’s approach parent night. Milton Secondary School was chosen because of the diversity of the school, prior parent-teacher communication and the schools programs. Research subjects included 200, 160, and 120 students in three different years which was the duration of the study. Recent immigrants from Taiwan were included as well as immigrants from Hong Kong and China. The school had an ESL program designed specifically for these students. The program included non-credit courses that integrated the English language with standard academic teaching. 9 ESL teachers and 6 bilingual assistants participated in the study (Yan, & Mohan, 2008, p 22). The research investigators originally studied the process of home school communication and were introduced to parents and teachers as a researcher from Canada. The investigator primarily observed though did participate in some activities at the request of teachers. The researcher explained parent-teacher night by phone to some participants and interpreted Chinese parents at parent teacher night in order that they could communicate with teachers. Research methodology included naturalistic observations by the researcher, interviews and focus groups. Parent’s night was observed annually three separate times. ESL teachers were then interviewed allowing them to describe and reflect on their experiences and to express their opinions on ESL learning. The bi-lingual assistants were also interviewed and these interviews focused on the parent’s perception of ESL teaching, their special concerns and their means of handling obstacles. The observations were focused on the interactions between the teachers and parents and each of these events was recorded and transcribed. The focus group consisted of the teachers and assistants exchanging feedback regarding parent night and the communication barriers. The study was a qualitative research study and data analysis was ongoing. This helped to identify patterns that emerged and data was used to assist teachers in defining goals for parent night. Cultural differences were identified and implications of the research study were that parent night was an appropriate time to discuss the goals of the ESL program but was not the right time to resolve conflict with those parents who want their child to be removed from the ESL program. Graduate rates for these students are unacceptably low and the education system is unable in to support these students without some changes. High school policy and procedure must be changed as these problems are mostly out of the control of the teachers and assistants. Also new methods of teacher education could be helpful. It is suggested that parents and teachers must support lobbyist for ESL goals. ESL students should graduate high school at rates that are an accurate reflection of their abilities. Partnerships should be formed between ESL teacher groups and ESL parents at the school district level and higher in order to make progress. Research involving ESL student is important because these students have a much higher rate of drop out, inability to find employment and dependence on government programs which are often not adequate to support families. Communication barriers present a challenge in the student’s psychosocial development and social skills. These can be detrimental to the overall well-being of the student. Annotated Bibliography Yan, G., & Mohan, B. (2008). ESL Parents and Teachers: Towards Dialogue?. Language & Education: An International Journal, 22(1), 17-33. doi:10.2167/le731.0 This research study is a qualitative study using interviews, observation and focus groups to uncover barriers in communication and effectiveness of communication between ESL parents and teachers. It is shown that these programs are often ineffective and responsibility cannot lie with the individual teacher but instead should become a concern that is addressed by the district school board and well as State education systems. ESL parents must often use interpretations’ at teacher parent meetings while ESL students are placed in noncredit classes which incorporate the teaching of English along with other subjects. Read More
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