Author Ang, Mei Ling
Title Using corpus-based materials as a teaching resource for the teaching of prepositions in a Singapore primary school.
Institute Thesis (M.A.) (Applied Linguistics) National Institute of Education, Nanyang Technological University
Year 2007
Supervisor Doyle, Paul
Call no. PE1068.S55 Ang
A strong interest to incorporate corpus-based materials as a teaching resource for language teaching motivated this study. The use of concordances from corpus materials to teach prepositions in a primary school was carried out to compare the learning of prepositions through the common classroom practice and the learning of prepositions through concordances. This study also examined the acceptability of corpus materials in language learning by the pupils.

Both quantitative and qualitative methods were used in the investigation, including an experiment, a pupils’ interview and the teacher’s reflection in the teaching log. Phase 1 was the comparison of pre-test and post-test scores of an experiment group which learnt the 5 prepositions (at, by, in, of, to) through teacher’s slides and a control group which learnt the same prepositions through the study of concordances. Phase 2 included an interview of the pupil participants who had been introduced to corpus materials and concordances, and also reflections of a teacher in the teaching log.

The findings revealed that there was a positive impact on test scores when corpus materials were incorporated into classroom teaching. The qualitative results indicated that a rather large percentage of the respondents felt that learning through the analysis of concordance lines was difficult.

The results show that pupils score better when corpus materials are integrated in their learning whether they like or dislike learning through concordances, compared to the teacher’s coaching with the use of the PowerPoint slides. Teachers can entice pupils to study the concordances if the presentation of concordances on activity sheets is modified for pupils to read easily.