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A Preliminary Report on First Year University Students’ Knowledge of Basic Grammar: The Case of the University of Cape Coast, Ghana

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Author(s): William Kodom Gyasi | Theophilus A. Nartey | Wincharles Coker

Journal: Current Research Journal of Social Science
ISSN 2041-3238

Volume: 3;
Issue: 5;
Start page: 399;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Keywords: Action research | communicative skills | parts of speech | performance | students

ABSTRACT
Although current research in English for Specific Purposes places premium on sharpening learners’ skills in order to enable them to maximally function in the academic world and beyond, it is still felt that students are bereft of basic language concepts. This paper, therefore, reports a preliminary investigation of first year Communicative Skills students’ knowledge of parts of speech at the University of Cape Coast, Ghana in November, 2010. Three hundred and fifty (350) students were selected based on a multi-staged sampling method and were asked to respond to a two-pronged instrument. Using an action-driven research design, we examined whether students’ gender and programmes of study have an influence on their performance in parts of speech. Key results showed that students who offer Communicative Skills have an abysmal knowledge of parts of speech, and that there was no significant difference among students’ programmes of study and their performance in identifying parts of speech. We also found that there was no statistically significant difference between students’ gender and their performance on the test. Given these findings, we recommend that a second look be given to the Communicative Skills curriculum of the University of Cape Coast, while encouraging similar studies in other universities.

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