While Listening - Tackling
the Double Challenge of Note Taking
by Alex Case
Note-Taking - Possible Problems
Caught out by long piece of text with no relevant information
Miss key information because:
- thinking about previous question
- concentrating on meaning of unknown word/ phrase
Not understanding key word/ phrase because:
- pronunciation very different from spelling
- sounds different/ indistinct in fast connected speech
- totally unknown vocabulary
Too long- Adding unnecessary (wrong) information
Too short- Missing necessary information
Wrongly written- Spelling wrong- common errors
- totally unknown spelling (v. unlikely)
- homophones (e.g. there/ their)
Capital letters- days, months, nationalities etc.
- proper names
Does not fit gap- Wrong part of speech
- Missing preposition etc. (N.B. articles not important)
GOOD NEWS IS:
You can predict a lot about the answer before hearing the
text- and you have lots of time to do so!
and tasks always easier for Part Two (because you only hear
in the same order as text
answer will very rarely be a word you are unfamiliar with,
i.e. difficult words can usually best be ignored
minus marks for wrong answers- so take a guess!
kind of listening practice is good for the exam- films, music
John Field 'Skills and strategies: towards a new methodology
for listening' ELTJ Vol. 55 April 1998
Jack Richards 'The Context of Language Teaching' Cambridge
Michael McCarthy 'Discourse Analysis for Language Teachers'
I. Clark and V. Clark 'The Psychology of Language' Harcourt
Bruce Jovanovich 1997, quoted in Jack Richards 'The Context
of Language Teaching'
Ann Anderson, Tony Lynch 'Listening' OUP 1988
'Cambridge CAE handbook' UCLES 1999
Paul Davis, Mario Rinvolucri 'Dictation: New Methods, New
Possibilities' 1989 CUP
Michael Vince 'Advanced Language Practice' Macmillan Heinemann
Ruth Wajnryb 'Grammar Dictation' OUP 1990
Helen Naylor, Stuart Hagger 'Cambridge First Certificate Handbook'
Penny Ur 'Teaching Listening Comprehension' CUP 1984
Alex Case is working as Senior Teacher (Materials and Teacher Development) and a freelance EFL writer in Tokyo, after working in Turkey, Thailand, Spain, Greece, Italy and the UK. He is also Reviews Editor of TEFL.net and you can comment on this article and other TEFLy things on his blog- "TEFLtastic with Alex Case" (www.tefl.net/alexcase)
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