within a professional preparation program.
In a comprehensive study of inclusion in 18 elementary and 7 middle schools, Walther-Thomas (1997) found that the lower student-teacher ratio that resulted from the presence of co-teachers in normal-sized classrooms led to strong academic progress and enhanced student self-confidence. Murawski and Swanson (2001) in a meta-analysis of six co-teaching studies, found that co-teaching is a moderately effective procedure for influencing student outcomes and that it has the greatest impact on achievement in the areas of reading and language arts.
In an experimental study on the effect of co-teaching on students’ achievement, Hadley et al. (2000) illustrated that students who were co-taught made significantly greater gains than those received the traditional classroom instruction. Conderman and McCarty (2003) described their use of learning centers, a parallel co-teaching approach, in an education course. They believed that their implementation of learning centers allowed previously disengaged students to become more engaged in the content of the course. Because the learning centers were modeling different ways to teach the same subject, students were able to learn by direct experience how they might implement a differentiated instruction technique.
As already elaborated in the first chapter, this study was an attempt to see the effect of alternative -teaching model on EFL learners’ grammar achievement.
In this chapter, the participants, procedure, instrumentation, design, and statistical analyses of the study are discussed in detail. To begin with, the participants section details the sample from which the participants of this study were selected. The number of the participants and the procedure by which they were selected is described in this section too.
Subsequently, the steps undertaken by the researcher to achieve the goals of the study are elaborated in the procedure section documenting fully what was done and how it was done therein. This section is followed by the instrumentation section, which describes all the instruments used in this study. The design section describes the general plan employed in this research. Moreover, toward the end of the chapter, the statistical analyses which were implemented in this study in order to respond to the research questions and verify the hypotheses are presented.
To accomplish the objectives of this study, 90 junior high school EFL learners studying English at Bentolhoda School in Ilam were given a KET test for the purpose of ultimately selecting 60 students who were adequately homogeneous in terms of their language proficiency. This test had already been piloted among 30 learners with almost the same English proficiency level as the target sample.
After administering the proficiency test, the 60 students whose scores fell one standard deviation above and below the mean were selected as the participants of the study. They were randomly assigned to control and experimental groups. Then, they sat for a grammar ability test, to make sure that there was no significant difference among them regarding their grammatical knowledge at the outset of the study. A t-test was run between the mean scores of the two groups on the grammar achievement test prior to the treatment to check the homogeneity of the two groups in this regard.
In this study, two female English teachers (the teacher-researcher and her colleague) both aged forty taught the participants. Both of these teachers had MA degree in Teaching English. They had gained a good experience in teaching English in EFL contexts for about sixteen years.
A number of tests, teaching materials, and course books in addition to the rating scale and marking codes were used in this study described below.
To fulfill the purpose of this study, the researcher used three tests: two tests for homogenizing the subjects at the outset and one for evaluating the participants’ grammar achievement after treatment towards the end.
3.3.1. Language Proficiency Test
A Cambridge Key English Test(KET) was used to homogenize the participants of the study in terms of their English language proficiency and to select those learners whose scores would fall in the range of one standard deviation above and below the mean and would subsequently have to sit for the next phase of the selection. (See Appendix A)
It is the first level of Cambridge ESOL Exams set at level A2 of the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework for modern languages. Key English Test is based on language used in real life situations and covers the four skills-listening, speaking, reading, and writing; while due to the practicality and time limitation, the speaking section was deleted. The (2008) version of KET was administered to the subjects of this study which included 81 items and tested learners’ listening, reading, and writing skills. This test was first piloted with 30 participants with the same characteristics of the target sample. An item analysis was then carried out which showed none of the items needed to be revised or changed. The reliability of the test was, then, calculated through Cronbach’s Alpha formula which turned out to be 0.775. The time allocation for the test was 1 hour and 10 minutes.
22.214.171.124. Listening Section
This paper contains five parts. The allocated time is about 30 minutes, including 8 minutes’ transfer time.25 questions (Matching, multiple choice, gap-fill). All texts are based on authentic situations and each part is heard twice. Candidates indicate answers either by shading lozenges (Parts 1-3) or writing answers, (Parts 4 and 5) on the answer sheet. Each item carries 1 mark.
126.96.36.199. Reading and Writing Section
This paper contains nine parts. Time location is 1 hour 10 minutes. (56questions: Matching, multiple choice, multiple-choice cloze, open cloze, word completion, information transfer and guided writing. Candidates indicate answers either by shading lozenges (Parts 1-5) or writing answers (Parts 6-9) on the answer sheet. Each item carries 1 mark, except for question 56 which is marked out of 5.
3.3.2 Grammar Achievement Test as a pre test and a post test
Two grammar achievement tests, each consisting of 40 multiple-choice items, were constructed. (See, Appendix B)
One was given to both groups as a pre-test at the outset of the study before giving any instruction. It was developed based on the materials covered during the past two years of instruction. The other one was given to both groups as post-test at the end of the course of instruction. To determine the reliability of both pre-test and post-test a pilot study was run with about 30 subjects whose characteristics were almost equal to those of target subjects (the reliability of both pre and post tests arrived at through Cronbach Alpha were reported to be .78 and .81 respectively) and to determine the content and face validity of both tests a consensual validity was used, that is the tests were reviewed by two experts who gave attested to their validity. Besides, Item characteristics such as Item Facility (IF), Item discrimination (ID) and Choice Distribution (CD) of the items were calculated and estimated in order to omit the malfunctioning items.
The pre-test aimed to determine the current level of the participants’ grammatical ability and to avoid any significant difference between the experimental and control group regarding their grammar knowledge at the outset of the study. The post-test aimed to determine the degree of grammar achievement of both groups after they finished the course.
Group A was considered as experimental group and received grammatical instruction by co-teaching model, group B was considered as control group and received grammatical instruction by one teacher per se.
3.3.3. Instructional Materials
188.8.131.52. Course Book
The main material used in the present study was the textbook which was used by participants of both the control and experimental groups. The textbook employed for the instruction as the course book was the English book published in Iran and used in all EFL classrooms in junior high schools across the country. It is written by Birjandi and Soheili and published by the Company of Press and Publishing Iranian Educational Books .The textbook contains nine lessons. In each lesson, some grammatical focuses were embedded. For the purpose of this study, 5 lessons of these nine lessons were taught to the participants. The grammatical points that were covered in these lessons were as follows: countable and uncountable nouns, past tense, present tense, future tense, and past continuous tense.
184.108.40.206. khate Sefid
The researcher also used khate sefid .This course book is designed as supplementary and workbook for providing students with more grammar activities which makes it appropriate for the purpose of the present study. It consist of 9 units each containing one lesson.
3.4.1. Homogenizing the Participants
In the beginning, 90 female junior high school students of Bentolhoda School in Ilam sat for a sample KET to assure the researcher in choosing homogenous participants. As stated earlier, the sample test had primarily been piloted among 30 students; following which an item analysis and reliability check were conducted and the results showed that none of the items needed to be revised or changed.