Postgraduate Use of English at Dhurakij Pundit University

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The Use of English Among Members of the Thai Academic Community of Dhurakij Pandit University’s Postgraduate Business Students(Research in Progress)[edit]

Work in Progress. For referencing or quoting, please inform the researcher of your use

The Department of English, Dhurakij Pandit University.

Contact the researcher, Janpha Thadphoothon, at janpha.th@dpu.ac.th or janphauc@yahoo.com

Abstract

The aim of this study was to investigate the postgraduate students’ English use with other members of the Thai academic community. The instruments of the research were the seven-part questionnaire developed by the researcher and the qualitative data from two roundtable seminars.

The questionnaire was answered by 131 DPU postgraduate students (MBA and DBA), collected during the first semester of the academic year 2009. The two roundtables were conducted in August, 2009. The statistics utilized in analyzing the data were percentage, mean, standard deviation, t-test One-way ANOVA, and Pearson's product moment correlation coefficient. Qualitative data were analyzed using simple content analysis.

The major findings were as follows:

1. Most of the respondents moderately used English in their graduate study (M=3.00). Like other graduate students, for example a study conducted by Prinyajarn and Wannaruk (2008), the student participants reported that they had limited opportunities to practice or use English.

2. Similar to the finding reported by Prinyajarn and Wannaruk (2008), this study revealed that the reading skill was the most important skill for their study and it was their main concern. They said that they needed it to understand texts or related articles for their courses and research work.

3. The analysis found the significant relationship between the student participants’ perceived identity ---- being or not being part of the Thai academic community ---- and their use of English within the academic community. The relationship was statistically significant at p > .05. Those who identified themselves as being part of the community were found to use more English.

4. The English support needed from the institution was high. It was found that gender influenced the English support needed. Compared with male participants, the female seemed to prefer more English support.

5. The correlation between their coping ability and need of support was significantly negative (-.39). This suggests that those who needed more support were those with lower English ability or vise versa. It was not a surprise, however, to discover that the respondents who said they needed more support were those whose perceived English ability was low.

6. However, the correlation between the ability to cope with the demands of English and the overall perceived English ability was significantly positive (.33).

7. This research also revealed the relationship between the subjects' perceived English ability and their support needed from the establishment. The correlation between the two variables was found to be significantly negative (-.28). This suggests that the subjects who needed less support were often those whose English ability was perceived to be higher or vice versa.


Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Literature Review
  3. Methodology
  4. Findings and Discussion
  5. Conclusions, Implications, and Recommendations
References
Appendices