The effect of planning time on the fluency, accuracy, and complexity of EFL learners’ oral production / Ebrahim Mohammed Bamanger, Amani Khalid Gashan
The provision of pre-task planning time for second language speech tasks holds some promise as a way to promote focus on form in tandem with meaning-focused instruction. This study explored the effect of planning time on EFL learners’ task-based oral performance. The participants were 52 Saudi high school students from Riyadh, divided randomly into experimental and control groups and asked to perform the task respectively with five minutes’ pre-task planning and without any planning time. The performances were recorded and transcribed to measure the fluency, accuracy and complexity of the speech production. T-test results showed that pre-task planning participants significantly outperformed the non-planners. Thus, this study indicated that when learners are given pre-task planning time they are able to produce more fluent, accurate, and complex language than those asked to start doing the task immediately, without planning time. The study did not find any evidence of trade-off competition between fluency, accuracy, and complexity. The study recommended that language learners need to be familiarized with planning time and teachers are required to be trained with planning time activities in order to get better gains. Overall, these results provided important pedagogical implications and suggested useful future research directions.
Keywords: task-based learning, pre-task planning, fluency, accuracy, complexity.