Task Based Method of Language Learning

The past decade has witnessed the introduction of task-based instructional strategies in different titles including problem-based learning, situated learning and case-based learning. Though mixed in names, they all seem to possess one thing in keeping; they get learners involved with jobs or problems as contrasted with an increase of traditional topic-centered curriculum approaches. (Merrill, 2007). Proponents of task-based learning believe learners associated with real-world problems form appropriate schema and mental models as they collaboratively solve problems and think about their experience. Task-based instructional approaches have been broadly adopted across a multitude of self-discipline areas including medical training, public work, design, and words learning. This paper will discuss the implication of the task-based method of second words learning where in fact the method has been ever more adopted and tried in many vocabulary classrooms around the world recently. In this paper, the impact of task-based vocabulary learning will be explored with special regard to adult learners whose distinctive characteristics make task-based strategies more plausible and beneficial.

Task-based instruction is a small, yet fast growing, tendency in modern day second language coaching. To give an example, the ERIC data source shows over 120 articles upon this issue since the beginning of this millennium. To be able to discuss task-based learning properly, it's important to understand what the word 'task' means. Job has been described by various researchers including Nunan (2004) who wrote that "an activity is a bit of classroom work which involves learners in comprehending, manipulating, producing or interacting in the mark vocabulary" (p. 9). Sooner than Nunan, Jane Willis (1996) defined task as "a task where the concentrate on language is employed by the learner for a communicative goal (goal) in order to achieve an end result" (p. 23). While explanations vary slightly among scholars, they all focus on that pedagogical task involves "communicative dialect use where users' attention is focused on meaning alternatively than grammatical form" (Nunan, 2006, p. 17).

Stemming from the constructivist theory of learning, task-based instructions has emerged in response to the limits of the traditional PPP (demonstration, practice and performance) paradigm (Ellis, 2003). As the PPP procedure is relatively straightforward and well-structured to be easily comprehended by both students and beginner teachers, it has also been criticized substantially for the attribute that it is far too teacher-oriented and over operated. Furthermore, the trend of globalization has urged educators and governments to improve communicative competence among second terms learners, and the PPP procedure is not effective in rewarding the mission. Brief, Harste & Burke argued that the behaviorist PPP approach in language instructions has gone to set up desired goals independently of the learners or the problem, present words in a structured and linear fashion, then attempt to reinforce the content through non-contextualized routines. Because of this, learners finish up knowing about the vocabulary but not how to utilize it (as cited in Abdullah, 1998). Instead of the PPP paradigm, task-based lesson was created around traditional and significant real-world jobs, which learners are asked to complete collaboratively as they communicate among the other person utilizing all available vocabulary resources they own. The strategy is based on the fundamental assumption that, as Jeon (2006) noted, dialect learning is a developmental process promoting communication and public interaction rather than a product acquired by practicing language items, and that "learners learn the mark language better when they are naturally exposed to important task-based activities. "(p. 193)

Task-based approach is recognized as an effective method of developing students' terminology output and connections. More student-centered learning environment helps learners exercise increased versatility in using words, develop linguistic fluency, and allows for meaningful communication. Authentic tasks carefully drawn from real-world situations could keep learners employed and motivated more easily, which will cause better learning. As Harrington, Oliver and Reeves (2003) have described, more contextualized exercises, as contrasted with academics and decontextualized vacuum, will generate a learning environment that will have learners immersed in problem solving within sensible situations. The strategy ultimately help educators bridge the gap between language pretty much used in real world and unnatural vocabulary used within the world of institution.

In spite of growing proof success, task-based education shows some limitations as well. One of many and frequently voiced criticisms is the fact the technique is not as effective or appropriate to lower level terms learners with limited prior linguistic knowledge as it is to raised level students. Because of the significant amount of cognitive burden it poses on learners, beginning vocabulary learners who are asked to complete a challenging activity in the target terminology often find the problem frustrating and, because of this, develop level of resistance to the training method. When asked to make use of all the vocabulary they can muster to express themselves, beginning terms learners who are unfamiliar with the learning framework may not feel safe or productive as if they are tossed to a profound sea when they cannot swim (Willis, 1996). In task-based learning classrooms, frustration is not only with learners but with educators as well. In his survey conducted among English as Second Words (ESL) professors in East Asian countries, Littlewood (2007) found out that key hurdles to implementing task-based instructional way in their classrooms were; 1) difficulties getting unmotivated students take part in tasks that usually require a higher-level of drive and excitement from learners, and 2) inability to manage classroom as students get easily sidetracked and become noisy as they take part in group relationship to complete duties collaboratively.

While these challenges tend to occur more conspicuously in classrooms including more radiant students, adult learners may gain more from task-based instruction. In general, adult learners illustrate distinctive characteristics that set them apart from youthful learners, and some of these learning characteristics make task-based procedure more plausible and appropriate for adult learners. Knowles (1990) developed adult learning theory of Andragogy predicated on the next assumptions: (1) Parents need to know why they have to learn something, (2) Individuals should try to learn experientially, (3) Individuals are life-centered (or task- or problem-centered) in their orientation to learning, (4) Parents become prepared to learn when their life situation develop a should try to learn, (5) People have a self-concept to be accountable for their own decisions, and (6) Parents are encouraged to learn by internal factors somewhat than external ones. Relating to these assumptions, adult learners are more motivated and more wanting to learn than youthful learners, have clearer goals and needs than youthful learners who often might be learning a words only since it is required, and take control of their own learning. Also, they are oriented towards problem-solving learning and they learn best when knowledge is shown in real-life context. Certainly, constructivist task-based instructional methodology and Andragogy talk about many aspects in common as they both stress ownership of the learning process by learners, experiential learning and a problem-solving approach to learning (Huang, 2002). Therefore, task-based approach can be seen as an ideal match for adult learners who generally are less likely to pose above mentioned concerns voiced by instructors.

As compared to traditional pedagogy, task-based instructional method demands increased competencies from instructors who will play an integral role in making task-centered terminology learning successful. As a facilitator, instructors need to infuse the soul of adventurism in the school to turn students into productive learners who are willing to take a risk. Additionally it is important that professors allow learners a chance to make gradual adjustment to the unfamiliar learning method, provide necessary encouragement along the way, and build self-confidence (Curran, Deguent, Lund, Miletto, & Straeten, 2000). Effective professors in the task-based learning environment should also be able to vary the amount of tasks to support the needs of novice or lower level learners in their classrooms.

Effective language class training strategies require greater than a simple knowledge of the significance of communication skills. To greatly help learners become energetic communicators, teachers should be able to employ instructional strategies that allow and support sufficient training of the terminology they have discovered. Task-based instructional strategy creates a learning environment where learners take control of their own learning and easily explore communicative skills focusing on jobs that are drawn from traditional real-world situations. Despite some restrictions, task-based approach is still an attractive method in neuro-scientific language learning. The strategy can be especially useful in classrooms affecting adult learners since their distinctive learning characteristics well match the constructivist elements of the task-based learning. With a multitude of learning options such as distance learning readily available to today's adult learners, the number of classrooms affecting adult learners has increased significantly in recent years. Although no single method fits all classrooms and learners in all contexts, task-based approach seems to be a highly viable option especially for adult dialect learners. Amidst more terms classrooms leaving traditional teacher-centered learning activities to student-centered learning surroundings, the tasks of instructors have become even greater in the instructional design process to devise enough strategies to guide learners towards successful learning.

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