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Maximizing the positive effects of the new Korean National English Ability Test (NEAT) on English language education in Korea through task-based instruction

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Hwang, ARam
Tiedeman, Robyne
Apr 30, 2012
NEAT; Education--Korea (South); Korean National English Ability Test; National English Ability Test; English language--Study and teaching--Korea (South); TESOL
The Korean government has been trying to change English education in Korea for a long time, and because of this, the English educational system has been changing gradually as well. The president of Korea, Lee Myeong Park, promised to reform English education by applying ideas used in immersion programs. For example, these immersion programs give students more time to practice English so that they will have additional exposure to all aspects of the English language. Students are able to have more English speaking content. Another type of reform by the president will be to implement the new National English Ability Exam (NEAT) (Teffeteller). Given the positive effects of washback, I believe that the new test, with its speaking and writing sections, will influence students positively and help them to improve their English proficiency in these fields. In addition, I will argue that teaching speaking skills required for the NEAT can be done effectively by using a Task-based Approach (TBA). Firstly, I will show how English education in Korea has changed from a grammar-focused system to a communicative focused one. Secondly, I will explain how standardized English exams such as KSAT, TOEIC, and TOEFL have been carried out all over the world and will point out some problems with these exams themselves. Thirdly, I will explain the effects of both negative and positive washback through a number of examples. Lastly, I will describe a methodology for preparing for the new exam NEAT through a Task-based Approach (TBA) which can help students improve English proficiency in a communicative way.
Plan B Paper. 2012. Master of Arts-TESOL--University of Wisconsin-River Falls. English Department. ii, 65 leaves. Includes bibliographical references (leaves 52-54).
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