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A Study on the Eligibility of the Listening Activities in Turkish Teaching

Textbooks to the Common European Framework of Reference


ABSTRACT
Listening is defined as understanding, interpreting, evaluating, organizing, fixing ideas
put forward in communication between listener and speaker, and identifying valuable
ones to be stored in memory (Taer, 2002: cited in can and Aydn, 2014). At the initial
learning stages, language skills learners are exposed to are perceptive skills, namely
reading and listening which has a vital importance for them to recognize vocabulary and
perceive its pronunciation correctly. After detecting vocabulary, learners are expected to
understand and convey messages in their target language. This is merely realized by
learners who improve their listening skills in the target language; thus, they express their
ideas more clearly, they accelerate their language skills and maintain mutual
conversation and monologues dramatically underlined in Common European Framework
for References (CEFR). Even though there have been studies on Turkish teaching
textbooks, study based on listening skills are not encountered. Therefore, the aim of this
study is to investigate to what extent the listening activities in the Turkish textbooks
cover the scales of CEFR, make a comparative study among the books and present
suggestions. At the end of the study, it is found that the activities in the listening sections
and the guidance in instruction sections lack to embolden learners and motivate them
before, during and after listening activities.
Key Words: Teaching Turkish as a foreign language, listening skills, course books, CEF

1. Introduction
Language Learning occurs as a result of an individuals interaction with
environment and thus knowledge, skills, attitudes and values are gained. The
interaction with environment is essential for the occurrence and permanence of
learning and it becomes permanent through listening skills. Bacanl (1999) argues
that permanent changes occur in behaviours through living. The first step of the
occurrence of behaviours through living is communication and it ends up positive
through listening. Listening is the activity of understanding the speakers
message smoothly and being able to react to the given stimuli (Demirel ve
ahinel 2006: akt. can ve Aydn, 2014). While zbay (2005) defines listening as
the activity of understanding the spoken messages that the speaker or the
person who reads aloud wants to give accurately, Gne (2007) emphasises the
cognitive side of listening and underlines that it is the whole of the mental
activities carried out in order to understand what is heard. As for can and Aydn
(2014: 318), they indicate all these definitions as a process in the grip of
consciousness that intends to mobilize the high-level mental skills. As it is
understood from these definitions, listening is actually an active process rather
than passive. Individuals improve their ability in expressing their own thoughts
and in understanding what is written by using the words they have heard or
learned from their environment while developing not only the native but also the
foreign language. Likewise, students must be a good listener in either their native
language or a foreign language to be able to write what they listen and express
what they think. Listening gains more importance especially in the classrooms
consisting of students who come from different language families and differ in
alphabets. Considering the work on listening skills in teaching Turkish as a foreign

language, postgraduate and doctoral studies done in this area appears to be


limited (Bykikiz, 2012: 209; Ger, ayl ve avu, 2016).
Table 1. Postgraduate and Doctoral Studies in the Area of Listening Skills in
Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language (1981-2015)

Years

1981-2000
2001-2005
2006-2012
2013-2015
Total

Postgraduat
N
3
1
4

e
%
0
0
3,49
1,16
5,65

Doctorate
N
1
1

%
0
0
0
1,16
1,16

Studies in the listening area are quite limited as shown in Table 1. However, an
increase in the number of articles published in the listening skills area in teaching
Turkish as a foreign language is also observed in recent years. For example,
studies in this area vary such as teaching Turkish as a foreign language and
dictation (Bozkurt, Blbl and Demir, 2014), listening activities and vocabulary
teaching (Tfekiolu, 2014), Department of Turcology students listening skills
evaluation in terms of ADO (Erdem ve Yakc, 2015), the development of
listening and reading comprehension skills (sakovi ve Arslan, 2015),
metacognitive scoring key for listening skills (Melanlolu, 2015) and the teaching
of some exclamation words with music videos (Aytan ve Klarslan, 2015). The
increase in such work will ensure the individuals develop their listening strategies
and will contribute to the healthy continuity of communication. Because, listening
strategies covers a variety of actions such as detection strategies, language
skills, use of world knowledge, perception of information and interaction with the
speaker that ensure success in listening comprehension. While perception
strategies are defined as distinguishing the phonemes; knowing the phonetic
diminishes; knowing the rules of phonology and prosody elements, language
skills are defined as recognition of words and phrases, building semantics from
words and phrases, understanding the syntax, configuring the sentences and
building semantics by recognizing different structures. While knowing the nonlinguistic elements such as gesture, mimic stands out when it comes to the usage
of world knowledge, knowing the speech patterns in that area and binary speech
patterns stands out when it comes to the basic needs. They should be able to
perceive information by memory strategies, compare information in memory by
recalling and sustain communication and interact with the speaker in light of this
information. Therefore, the need of more studies in listening to develop the
students effective communication skills is obvious.

Listening in Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language


The important, difficult and most commonly used listening skill in teaching
Turkish as a foreign language on the one hand allows students to communicate,
but on the other hand includes features such as processing the useful information

for its own by evaluating and converting to certain structures, providing the
substantial part of the information to be transferred by configuring. Besides, it is
the first skill that the students are exposed to recognize the words they heard in
the target language and perceive the pronunciation skills correctly. Three
different applications are performed in courses for effective listening skill results:
a) activities performed prior to listening b) activities performed during playback,
c) activities performed after listening. The activities performed prior to listening is
a process in which the students are physically and mentally prepared to the
target language. The activities during listening are defined as the students
intensification to the target language, the formation of the idea of finding
answers to the questions formed in their mind, and their effort to understand the
whole and find the main idea. In the post-listening activities, the students are
expected to evaluate, interpret and present the internalized form of the questions
by finding the main idea and supporting ideas. (Gne, 2007: akt. can and
Aydn, (2014). This three different classification is important in terms of
expediting the students language development and the activity types hold a
significant place in order to gain the highest level of education as well as having
the characteristics of Blooms Taxonomy. Activities related to listening skills can
be explained in two parts; listening/monitoring and listening. Listening/monitoring
includes several activities such as reading, affix completion, marking, table filling,
matching, multiple choice, sequencing, finding the answer, writing and this kind
of variety caters to the student diversity in multinational classes. However, these
activities are only considered as finding specific information, recognition and
discovery. As for listening activities, they are such kind of activities that the
students make sense of the information they heard after listening by encoding in
cognitive level and varies such as table filling, multiple choice, dill in the blanks,
sequencing, finding, T/F marking, error correction, answering questions, marking
and summarizing. Such activities are important in terms of detailed
comprehension, reasoning and finding the main idea. The equal distribution of
these two classifications in textbooks on the one hand prompts cognitive and
metacognitive strategies such as selective attention, focusing on the task and
grouping, but on the other hand allows the students to communicate effectively
by enabling them to identify the problem, give details and make inference. Thus,
in a sense, interacts with the speaker while developing the foreign language, tries
to cope with different speech characteristics such as accent and speed, tries to
determine the intention of the speaker correctly, performs the recognition
process of the prosodic clues such as voice tone and tempo (Alderson, Figueras,
Kuijper, Nold vd, 2009). While developing the ability of expressing his own
thoughts and understanding what is written by using the words he heard and
learned from others on the one hand, accomplishes the characteristic of being a
good listener to be able to write what he hears and express what he thinks on the
other hand. Because the reason why the speech is time consuming depends on
the individuals process of beginning with concrete examples and passing on to
abstract expressions. But the most important point to remember is the need for
recognition of the discrimination between listening/monitoring and
hearing/auditory by the teacher and student. While can and Aydn (2014)
emphasizes listening as a thinking activity based - conscious process, nalan
(2006) identifies hearing as a result of a natural process and specifies it as any
kind of audio component that goes to the brain through ears beyond the persons
control (Akyol, 2006: akt. can and Aydn, (2014: 319). Here, there is no doubt

that a great mission and responsibility falls to the teacher in discriminating the
difference between hearing and listening. The primary task for the teacher is to
use his/her own language very smoothly and provide clear examples to the
students. The way for doing this passes from the teachers use of appropriate
words and sentences suitable for the students knowledge level of the target
language otherwise the student cannot activate memory strategies, leaving the
teacher to face with unnecessary loss of time. Therefore, the teacher should take
Common European Framework of Reference for Language (CEFR) levels into
consideration with a patient approach and pay attention to the students use of
vocabulary and sentence structure according to the students current
environment from the centre.

Common European Framework of Reference in Teaching Turkish as a


Foreign Language
In teaching Turkish as a foreign language, it is crucial for the teachers to
internalize and apply the level of proficiency specified and recommended in CEFR
in order to make students gain listening/monitoring habits. CEFR highlights these
levels which determines the overall objectives of listening as follows:
A1: 1. To understand questions and instructions that are addressed simple
and clear
2. To understand simple expressions in everyday language about
greeting and meeting
(good morning, good evening, etc.)
3. To understand words and expressions about himself, his family and
familiar persons
when spoken very slowly and clearly
4. To understand the names of the most commonly used objects at
home and classroom
and
5. To understand numbers, prices, time and expressions about days,
weeks, months,
and years (p.29)
A2:

1. To understand simple expressions, questions and information about

basic personal
needs (for example; shopping, restaurants, doctors, etc.)
2. To understand simple words and expressions on issues which are of
interest in daily
life (for example; hobbies, social life, music, television, etc.)
3. To understand the basic information in recorded voice messages
(CD, voice mail, etc.)

4. To understand the basics of the news and movies on TV when they


are visually supported
5. To understand simple directions (by foot or public transport)
6. To understand the main idea of a discussion when spoken slowly and
clearly (p.39)

B1: 1. To follow daily conversations despite having to request repetition of


some words or phrases.
2. To understand the main idea of radio broadcasts about daily topics
or topics within his area of interest when spoken quite slowly and
clearly
3. To understand familiar themed TV programs and the outline of the
verbs when spoken slowly and in standard language
4. To follow a conversation or a short story and be able to make
assumptions for the
things that may happen afterwards
5. To understand simple technical information in the user manual of the
tools used in
daily life (s.49)
B2: 1. To understand a conversation in standard language in detail even
if it takes place
in a noisy environment
2. To understand a course, speech or presentation within the area of
expertise when it is
clear and understandable
3. To understand the desired emotions to be given from the ups and
downs, etc. of the
speakers voice tone in a radio program in standard language
4. To understand documentaries, interviews, theatre plays and movies
televised in
standard language
5. To understand concrete and abstract expressions in debates in
standard language
within the area of interest

6. To understand the text better, using different listening techniques


such as checking
for understanding by using the clues in the text and revealing the
main idea (p.59)
C1: 1. To follow heated conversations in situations where the target
language is spoken as
mother language
2. To follow plenty of presentations, discussions and panels quite
comfortably
3. To understand the announcements in places such as station,
stadium where the
sound is difficult to understand in detail
4. To understand the most of daily language by grasping the style
and various forms of
expressions in speeches (such as phrase, slang, metaphor)
5. To understand movies and radio broadcasts where slang and
idioms are excessively
used and
6. To introduce the instruments used in daily life and to understand
the technical
information in the manual in detail (p.69)
C2: 1. To understand a course, presentation or a seminar easily even if
it is fast and
fluid
2. To understand all kinds of spoken language including accent or
slang in daily real life
situations or media
3. To follow speeches including foreign words and phrases towards
the area of expertise
(European Language Portfolio for Adults, TMER)

CEFR assesses listening as aural receptive activities and reasons for listening as
a) main idea b) specific information c) detailed comprehension and ) reasoning,
etc. (MEB Translation Commission, 2099: 64-65). Besides, within listening
activities, specifications such as overall auditory comprehension, understanding
the interaction between native speakers, listening as a member of a live
audience, listening to announcements and instructions, and listening to audial
media and recordings are presented. Thus, students distinguish the clues given
with reception strategies in certain contexts, the importance and representation

of the message. Without a doubt, there needs to pass a certain amount of time
for this discrimination to occur. As the beginning of increase at listening levels is
a time consuming process, CEFR text levels differs like A1, A1+, A1++, A2, A2+,
A2++ in itself too. Besides being independent users in the classroom, developing
their listening skills in the target language is also expected. So, the Turkish
teacher provides simple reception conditions in the language by referring the
students according to their levels and with listening texts prepared in a certain
context, the students can also be able to guess the meaning of unknown words in
the text.

Textbooks in Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language


Textbooks are kind of resources where the materials are presented in a layout
and language skills are performed for the students, creating a resource for
grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation to the students as well. Moreover, they
enable the students a syllabus and opportunity for self-study (Cunningsworth,
1995). As for Richards (2011), he states that books provide a variety of resources
that makes the learning environment interesting and entertaining such as CDs,
tapes, videos, and so on. Textbooks are essential in learning and teaching for
transferring information to the students. In recent years, textbooks prepared in
teaching Turkish as a foreign language has increased and one of the reasons for
this is the students need of different necessity and knowledge (e.g. gaining
knowledge or skills in specific areas such as commerce, education, health, etc.).
Therefore, writing books in different areas is natural to respond these needs.
Because thesis written in this area are indicative in terms of discovering the
deficiencies and correcting them. In recent years, the muchness of the work on
textbooks draws attention (Ger, ayl and avu, 2016). While studies on the
history of teaching Turkish as a foreign language and its common issues were at
stake in previous studies, the increase of textbooks and skills in postgraduate,
doctoral and master studies about teaching Turkish between the years 2013 and
2015 particularly is given in the table below.

Table 2. Studies about Textbooks and Listening Skills in Teaching Turkish as a


Foreign Language (2013-2015)

Textbook
Skills
Total

2013
Articl
PG
e
1
9
10

2
3
5
16

DR

2014
Articl
PG

1
1

e
8
8
16

3
3
2
20

DR

2015
Articl
PG

DR

2
2

e
21
37
58

1
1

4
6
10
69

As it can be seen from the table, 16 out of 109 studies about textbooks and skills
made between years 2013 and 2015 are published in 2013, 20 in 2014 and 69 in
2015. In foreign language teaching; There is no perfect book, but the aim is to
find the most appropriate one that fits a specific group of learners (Grant, 1987:

8). However, the features of listening skills that must be in the books can be
listed under seven titles:
1. Must be in accordance with the interests, requirements and level of the
students
2. Must be qualified enough to improve the language skills of the students
3. The duration of the listening text and the speech rate of the text vocalizers
must be in accordance with the age, requirements and level of the student
4. Type of materials must be different in multiple listening on the same theme
5. Must reflect the narrative richness and beauty of Turkish
6. Must be qualified to perform the objectives and outcomes of the lesson
7. Evaluation of the students outcomes must be structured according to the
syllabus
Besides these rules, textbooks must be considered in terms of formal, scientific
and grammar usage while preparing. Scientific evaluation is significance,
constancy in perception, depth, student eligibility, closure and relativism
presentation from the themes usage principles whereas formal assessment
covers presentation of the theme, length of theme, visuals, exercises,
presentation of language structures, distribution of the four skills in the unit and
existing methods. As for the grammar usage, it is the coherence of the structures
from simple to complex and from concrete to abstract, the coherence of the used
language to the level and perception of the students, multi-sampling, the
coherence of the skills to the course goals and target behaviour, the skills to
have the property of learning reinforcement in a meaningful and consistent
manner, the exercises to take individual differences into consideration and the
exercises to be prepared according to the interconnectivity principle. In terms of
the body of literature, (A1-A2) textbooks has not been evaluated for the
coherence to CEFR even though the studies about the comparison of textbooks
seem much.
Research objectives
The aim of the study is to present the compliance rate of the applications related
to the listening skills in teaching Turkish as a foreign language books to CEFR. The
questions that make up the sub-titles of the problem are:
1. Are applications related to the listening skills in teaching Turkish as a
foreign language books appropriate to CEFRs goals and outcomes?
2. Are the variety and number of the activities related to the listening skills in
teaching Turkish as a foreign language books appropriate to CEFRs
suggestions?
3. Are the students being informed about the listening activities in teaching
Turkish as a foreign language books before, during and after listening?
2. METHOD
Quantitative and qualitative research methods were used in this study. The
compliance of teaching Turkish as a foreign language books (A1-A2) to Common
European Framework of Reference has been investigated for the purposes,
outcomes and diversities of the listening activities. The obtained data were
analysed with content analysis, frequency and percentage statistics. Only parts
on listening skills in A1-A2 level books were examined in this study.

2.1. Data Collection and Analysis


In this research, by selecting four A1-A2 level books that are prepared with the
aim of teaching Turkish as a foreign language, listening sections of the books
were patterned with screening model and data were collected. Ankara University,
Yeni Hitit 1 Kitab (A1-A2) of TMER, prepared based on the Council of Europes
modern language teaching criteria; stanbul Yabanclar iin Trke Kitab (A1-A2),
prepared by multiple authors; Pratik Trke (A1-A2), individual and in-class
learning book prepared by two authors and Yabanclar iin Trke renme Kitab
(A1), single-authored were examined and their compliance with Common
European Framework of Reference was investigated. In order to analyse the data,
listening sections in the books are presented as Listening/monitoring and
listening according to two classifications in the table (See Table 5 below) and the
list of goals and outcomes in the study of Kara (2011) is listed in the tables below
(p. 176-179).

Table 3. A1-A2 Level Basic Language Skills: Listening/Monitoring - Listening


A1-A2 Level Listening/Monitoring Objectives
1. To understand and analyse their listening/monitoring (A1, A2)
2. To understand short and simple expressions listened/monitored regarding
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.
9.

daily life (A1)


To understand
To understand
To understand
To understand
To understand
To understand
To understand

questions and instructions, and short simple directions (A1)


numbers, prices and hours (A1)
daily, simple dialogues with ease (A2)
surrounding discussions carried on slowly and clearly (A2)
routine expressions about urgent and immediate needs (A2)
simple directions about how to go (A2)
important information in the short recordings about daily

subjects in short and understandable format (A2)


10.To understand the main subject of visually presented TV news comments
such as incidents and traffic accidents (A2)
11.To understand the main subject of short, simple messages and
announcements (A2)
12.To understand a short, simple incident or story based on the clues when
they listen/watch (A2)

Table 4. A1-A2 Level Basic Language Skills: Listening/Monitoring - Listening


A1-A2 Level Listening/Monitoring Outcomes
1. Understands simple instructions.
2. Understands the words and expressions about himself, his family and
acquaintances when spoken slowly and clearly.
3. Understands simple expressions in daily language about greeting and

meeting.
4. Understands the names of the most used objects at home and class.
5. Understands songs, poems, etc. written in plain language
6. Understands the questions posed simply and clearly
7. Understands numbers, prices, hours and expressions about day, month and
year
8. Understands simple, clear, daily needs and related programs, recordings in
TV and audio devices
9. Understands the announcements he listens and the messages he follows
10. Understands a short, simple incident or story based on the clues when they
listen/watch
11. Understands the questions related to the text he listens
12. Summarizes the things he listens/watches
13. Predicts the continuation and result of the incident he listens/follows
The texts in Table 3 and Table 4 are the list in the Common European Framework
of Reference that Kara (2011) suggested to put into the program in his study.
Therefore, it is assumed that the implementation and evaluation of this list is
appropriate.
The list about the scale used for the objections (Available=+, Unavailable=-) and
outcomes (Yes=Y, No=N, Partially=P) in CEFR was given to a research group
consisting of 10 people and the data which they marked separately were
tabulated by another researcher and evaluated by finding the average of the
rates. The data analysed according to these lists were compared by being listed
from three researchers in terms of consistency and reliability, and consistency
were identified in the lists of researchers (Reliability= number of convention
convention + number of convention (Tavancl and Aslan: cited by etinkaya and
Hamzaday 2014: 9).

3. RESULTS AND COMMENTS


In this part of the study, Yeni Hitit (YH), stanbul Yabanclar iin Trke (ST), Pratik
Trke (PT) ve Yabanclar iin Trke (YT) were selected from the corporate,
multi-authored, double-authored and single-authored textbooks written in the
area of teaching Turkish as a foreign language and the suitability of the listening
texts to CEFR were investigated. The analysis of listening texts was made in two
ways; 1) finding the number of units in the book and the percentage of the
number of listening texts, listening activities and qualitative diversity in each
unit, 2) finding the compliance of the aims and outcomes in CEFR in the books.
The number of units in the books, the listening sections in the units and the
number of listening activities and their varieties percentage distribution in these
sections are given in the table below.

Table 5. Listening Skills and Activities in Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language


Textbooks

Listening Sections Activities

A1-A2
Number of Units
Number of Listening Sections
Number of Listening Activities
Reading
Followingl
y

Listening
/
Monitorin
g

Listening

Text

Affix completion
Gap-filling
Multiple choice
Filling the table
Matching
Sequencing
Marking
Finding
Writing/response
Listening to
Gap-filling
Table filling
Multiple choice
Marking
Sequencing
Finding
T/F marking
Error correction
Answering the
questions

YH
12
64
71
N %
1
1,40

ST
12
38
44
N %
0
0

3
2
3
3
3
3
3
11
2
6
0
0
0
0
5
0
1
0
3
3

1
1
5
4
5
0
3
1
1
2
0
0
2
0
1
1
1
3
1
3

4,22
32,39
4,22
4,22
4,22
4,22
15,49
2.81
8,45
0
0
0
0
7,04
0
1,40
0
4,22
4,22

2,27
34,09
9,09
11,36
0
6,81
2,27
2,27
4,54
0
0
4,54
0
2,27
2,27
2,27
6,81
2,27
6,81

PT
10
48
56
N
1
4
0
1
0
2
2
2
1
0
0
2
7
2
2
1
0
0
0
2
0
4

%
25,00

YT
21
41
41
N %
41 100,00

0
17,75

0
0

0
0

3,57
3,57
3,57
1,78
0
0
3,57
12,50
3,57
3,57
1,78
0
0
0
3,57
0
7,14

0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0

0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0
0

Table 5. When textbooks that teach Turkish as a foreign language are examined in
terms of listening/monitoring and listening activities, it is seen that the
distributions have significant differences. While most of Yeni Hitit 1s
institutionally prepared listening activities include gap filling (%32,39) and
marking (%15,49), stanbul Yabanclar iin Trke (ST) includes gap filling
(%18,18) and table filling (%11,36), Pratik Trke (PT) includes reading through
listening (%25,00) and gap filling (%17,85) and Yabanclar iin Trke renme
(YT) includes reading through listening only (%100). While YH includes writing
through listening activities %8,45, ST %4,54 and PT %3,57, YT doesnt include
any activities towards listening skills reinforcement through writing. The
observations in the activities about table filling while reading shows that the
activities of ST book (%11,36) tops YH (%4,22) and PT (%3,57). ST also takes
place at a high rate in multiple choice activities as %9,09 whereas close results
are observed in YH (%4,22) and PT (%3,57) books. While YH and ST books
include equal number of activities about sequencing activities during listening
(YH %4,22 and ST %6,81), PT includes even less (%1,78). Books including
matching activities are shown as YH (%4,22) and PT (%3,57). Finding while
listening activity shows very close values with YH (%2,81) and ST (%2,27). The

sections that take part the least in listening/monitoring activities are YH (%1,40)
and ST (%0) with reading; while PT book doesnt include affix completion, finding
and marking, all activities except reading has been ignored in YT. Also postlistening activities are important for the students to recall and display the
information which they interpret and code in mind. But a significant difference is
observed about post-listening activities between the books. For example, finding
activity results are shown as YH (%1,40), ST (%2,27) whereas marking is YH
(%7,04), ST (%2,27); error correction is YH (%4,22), ST (2,27). In terms of
answering the questions, similar rates are given in YH (%4,22), ST (%6,81) and
PT (%7,14) books. True-false activity takes part in two books only: ST (%6,81)
and PT (%3,57). Table filling takes place only in ST (%2,27) and PT (%3,57) once
again. As multiple choice and fill in the blanks takes place in PT (%1,78 and
%3,57) only, sequencing activities only take place in ST (2,27) book. As a result,
when the sections about listening activities of the four books are examined, it is
found out that the most effective activities are in YH and the least are in YT book
in listening by following and monitoring sections. In this section performed as
listening the texts and usually supported by visuals, it is found out that the most
effective activities are used by ST and PT books. However, for the evaluation of
all activities in terms of comprehension, recognition, finding specific information,
detailed comprehension and reasoning with the main idea, recognition and
specific information remains at %45, detailed comprehension at %40 and main
idea, reasoning and deducing at %15. This shows that listening activity rates are
inadequate and reveals the necessity of doing metacognitive, cognitive and
affective rates in the activities via revising. The analysis of the items partaking in
the objectives (available +; unavailable -) and outcomes (Yes=Y, No=N,
Partially=P) list located in CEFR and suggested by Kara (2011) to be put into
teaching Turkish to foreigners program in his study are presented in Table 6 and
Table 7 below.

Table 6. Compliance of the Objectives in Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language


to CEFR
Objectives

1. To understand and analyse their listening/monitoring

H
+

(A1, A2)
2. To understand short and simple expressions
listened/monitored regarding daily life (A1)
3. To understand questions and instructions, and short
simple directions (A1)
4. To understand numbers, prices and hours (A1)
5. To understand daily, simple dialogues with ease (A2)
6. To understand surrounding discussions carried on slowly
and clearly (A2)
7. To understand routine expressions about urgent and
immediate needs (A2)
8. To understand simple directions about how to go (A2)

PT

T
+

T
+

9. To understand important information in the short

recordings about daily subjects in short and


understandable format (A2)
10.To understand the main subject of visually presented TV
news comments such as incidents and traffic accidents
(A2)
11.To understand the main subject of short, simple
messages and announcements (A2)
12.To understand a short, simple incident or story based on
the clues when they listen/watch (A2)
In the compliance of the objectives partaking in listening activities in
textbooks to CEFR, while YH and ST meets the whole objectives, PT hasnt put
such an objective into its content, which is understanding the main subject of
visually presented TV news comments such as incidents and traffic accidents
(A2). As for YT, it has not included others adequately except understanding
and analysing their listening/monitoring (A1, A2); understanding questions
and instructions; and short simple directions (A1); understanding numbers,
prices and hours (A1); understand daily, simple dialogues with ease (A2).
Besides, all listening texts in YT book stayed in recognition level for being in
the form of reading and the students section of sorting the information out
and deducing by using metacognitive strategies is not available. However,
although most of CEFR outcomes seem to be in books according to the table,
nevertheless it appears that they dont cover adequate prior knowledge of the
students outcomes and meet only in cognitive level.

Table 7. Compliance of the Outcomes in Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language


to CEFR
Outcomes

YH

ST

PT

YT

1. Understands simple instructions.

2. Understands the words and expressions about himself, his

3. Understands simple expressions in daily language about

greeting and meeting.

4. Understands the names of the most used objects at home and

class.

5. Understands songs, poems, etc. written in plain language

7. Understands numbers, prices, hours and expressions about

day, month and year

recordings in TV and audio devices

9. Understands the announcements he listens and the messages

he follows

10. Understands a short, simple incident or story based on the

family and acquaintances when spoken slowly and clearly.

6. Understands the questions posed simply and clearly

8. Understands simple, clear, daily needs and related programs,

clues when they listen/watch


11. Understands the questions related to the text he listens
12. Summarizes the things he listens/watches
13. Predicts the continuation and result of the incident he
listens/follows

As shown in Table 7, CEFR and KARAs (2011) program suggestions were taken
into consideration in evaluating the outcomes of Turkish books written to teach
Turkish to foreigners. According to this evaluation while YH and ST meets the
majority of the outcomes, it appears that it doesnt meet the Predicts the
continuation and result of the incident he listens/follows item. As for PT and YT,
they do not meet the Understands simple, clear, daily needs and related
programs, recordings in TV and audio devices and Predicts the continuation and
result of the incident he listens/follows outcomes. PIT also fails short of the
Understands a short, simple incident or story based on the clues when they
listen/watch outcome. The problem, which is the third sub-title of the study, is
related to how much the students informed about listening activities in the books
teaching Turkish as a foreign language, whether their prior knowledge activated
or not during listening and how much they deduced at post-listening. There isnt
anything that appears to be lacking in the evaluation of listening sections
visually. Besides, on the one hand listening sections of textbooks must be
supported with visuals, title or instructions, but on the other hand listening
processes must be planned very well for the outcomes related to listening skills
to occur at the highest level. The data of giving titles in listening activities, one of

the most important input that activates prior knowledge of the students in
listening sections, is given in Table 8 below.

Tablo 8. The Use of Titles in the Listening Activities of Teaching Turkish as a


Foreign Language Textbooks
Books

Number

Listening

Listening activities with

of Units
12
12
10
21

Activities
71
44
56
41

titles

YH
ST
PT
YT

53
34
26
4

74,64
77,29
46,42
9,75

The title giving needed for the information in the text that the students will be
exposed during listening to be activated takes part in YH (%74,64), ST (%77,29)
books closely; %46,42 in PT book and %9,75 in YT book. Considering these
results, listening activities of the books doesnt provide the students the
opportunity to use their prior knowledge and askes the students to show their
understanding or awareness by performing the listening activity directly.
However, without the titles for listening sections it wont give accurate
information about to what extent has the students internalised the things they
listen. Whereas CEFR considers listening to instructions as a descriptive scale
also (p. 65). Therefore, as well as the titles, the instructions that directs listening
activities also have importance for the listening activities to end up positive. The
pre, while and post-listening outcomes are also limited in the evaluation of data
about the use of instructions. The instructions given about the pre, while and
post-listening activities that prompts the prior knowledge of the activities in the
listening sections are given in Table 9 below.

Table 9. The instructions in Teaching Turkish as a Foreign Language Textbooks


Books

Instructions about the listening activities in books


Pre-listening
While listening activities
Post-listening

YH

activities
Complete,

Listen, complete; Listen, mark

activities
Listen, write;

ST

listen, etc.
Look at Cans

Listen and write; Listen and fill in the

Complete, Retell, etc.


Listen to the text and

calendar. Listen

blanks; Listen and fill the gaps in the

answer the questions

to the text.

table.

Listen and
write; Listen
and fill in the
PT

blanks;
-

Listen and repeat the following

sentences/words; Listen to the


following text; Listen to the following
dialogue and fill the gaps in the
YT

dialogue, etc.
Please listen and study the following

situations
When listening texts in the books are evaluated in terms of instructions,
differences between the books can be seen as in Table 9. While YH uses very
short and limited instructions, ST offers prior knowledge to the students about
the text theyll listen. While the instructions in PT book are given in both Turkish
and English, the instructions in YT book are only in English without any Turkish
explanation. But pre-input is very important for the development of the students
listening skills. A text suddenly starting with Listen instruction can be
prohibitive for the students to find the main idea. Because the alphabet, syntactic
structure, pronunciation of the target language that the students are exposed
may differ from other languages the know, they can lose time at creating
diagram in cognitive level. The students preparation by listening is important in
terms of not only language structures but also content. Therefore, preparation of
the students in cognitive and affective sense before the activities provides great
benefits. However, the general trend in teaching Turkish as a foreign language
books is to expose the students to listening directly without preparation by
keeping the instructions short. The instructions are very short and limited in
textbooks, but YH book includes instructions like find the address. In some
sections of ST and PT books we can also see some instructions that enables the
students to think ahead and makes the listening easier. For example; in ST book
we have Mrs. Sibel stops by the pharmacy after seeing the doctor. Listen the
text. Fill in the blanks (p. 93) and in PT book we have Alena and her friend are in
the bookstore. Today we have many customers in the bookstore. Uur works in
the bookstore and helps the customers. Mustafa and Alena are looking at the
books (p. 182).
Giving such kind of instructions systematically from the beginning of the book not
only makes the students learn easier by activating their world and language
experiences, but also provides an entertaining course.

3. CONCLUSION AND SUGGESTIONS


Listening skill is very important in language learning because it requires doing
many facts at the same time such as listening skills, understanding, interpreting
and processing the information in the speech, determining the relationship
between the consecutive sentences, evaluating the important information and
storing in the memory by sorting them out. As it is indicated in Common
European Framework of Reference, some inputs must be given according to the
students level (for example; understanding simple expressions, questions and

information about basic personal needs such as shopping and restaurant;


Understanding simple words and expressions about daily life on subjects related
to areas such as hobbies, social life and music, etc.) in pre, while and postlistening for an effective and easy listening process. Taken from this perspective
it complies with the criteria stated in CEFR. However, the titles, instructions of the
listening activities and pre, while and post-listening activities in teaching Turkish
as a foreign language books must be reviewed and enabled for listening to rank
at the highest level. Undoubtedly, the titles make the students access to the
information through learning strategies before accessing to the information and
using it by recalling from memory easier. The instructions about listening
activities guide the teacher and students about the implementation of listening
skills in lessons but the most important point to keep in mind is that sometimes it
is necessary for the teacher to make some changes on the instructions while
improving his listening skills. The implementation style of instructions makes it
easier for the students to understand what they hear and answer by
understanding where, how, when and between who the events in the text occur
in occurrence order. Besides, it is essential for the book authors and educational
institutions to take these important aspects into consideration while preparing
products containing listening skills for different student needs. Moreover, the
grouping of effective audio materials in a particular syllabus or classification
according to the topics is also important. The books to have more questions
including prior knowledge especially before listening activities make the students
communicate easier not only in classroom environment but also in environments
where the target language is spoken. In addition to this, the use of songs, movies,
ballads to improve listening in classroom environments is beneficial in terms of
exposure to the language as well as to the culture. Furthermore, these products
guide the students in order to be used outside of the class and make decisions
according to the level of the students, which will help the students develop their
language skills as well as raise awareness to different languages and target
culture and have prior knowledge on the functionality of the target language.

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