The linguistic competencies of early French immersion graduates : an investigation of parental expectations

Hewlett, L. R. Scott (1999) The linguistic competencies of early French immersion graduates : an investigation of parental expectations. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Abstract

This study was an attempt to determine the expectations of parents of students' linguistic competence upon graduation from the Early French Immersion program. The purpose of the study was to determine the French language performance characteristics as expected by parents in the domains of Oral Production, Reading Comprehension, and Writing Ability. The variables of parental level of French skills, parents of EFI students in grade 3 versus those in grade 9, and previous experience with EFI were also examined in relation to performance expectations. -- The study was a census of parents of EFI students in grades 3 and 9 under the Avalon East School Board undertaken in the spring of 1997. A two-part questionnaire was sent to all parents seeking firstly, background information on the parents, and secondly, asking parents to indicate their expectations among explicit descriptions of second language performance levels adapted from current federal government hiring guidelines. Open ended questions were also provided at the end. -- Parental profiles were compiled by frequency count and percentage in Part A of the questionnaire. Responses from Part B of the survey were analyzed using the Chi Square test of independence at p<.05 to determine the statistical significance of variables as they relate to parental expectations. Comments provided by parents in response to open ended questions were also discussed. -- Findings from this study indicate that parents do not expect nativelike fluency from their child (ren) when they graduate from Early French Immersion; however, they do expect a high degree of second language performance skills in all 3 language domains examined by this study. There were no significant differences found between parents of students in grade 3, and those in grade 9. The level of parents French IV knowledge and skills did not have a significant effect on parental expectations. Parents who had previous experience with EFI also did not hold significantly different expectations from parents who were involved with EFI for the first time. -- The following data patterns were also noted. The EFI program seems to be a family choice rather than based on any one student' s potential for language learning. Parents are not intimately involved with enhancing their own French skills despite indicating that the largest drawback to EFI is parental difficulty in assisting with homework. Future employment enhancement was the principal reason why parents chose EFI .

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/1472
Item ID: 1472
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 146-153
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 1999
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula
Library of Congress Subject Heading: French language--Study and teaching--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula--Immersion method; Education, Bilingual--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula; Second language acquisition--Parent participation--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula

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