Learn French The “Mis-aligned” Way


There are assessment tools that are not effective simply because the target learning goals are not aligned with teaching strategies in the first place. I never understood why HRM and Tourism students were required to take a 3 unit subject called Foreign Language. Though I got a high final grade, I never learned anything from the subject and could say that I remained unable to converse in French (of course).

The course objective is to provide learning to students who plan to work in the service industry. Yes, knowledge of another language may be important if students are to serve foreigners in their future jobs. But a course that is taught 3 hours a week, by a Filipino teacher who could hardly converse in the said language is “poor alignment.”

MY ANALYSIS & MY SUGESTION: The objective set at the beginning is ideal because HRM and Tourism students will be working in an industry that, for the most part, caters to foreigners. However, a thorough classroom assessment must be conducted. Implementors or school officials must critically examine whether they hire qualified teachers, or if the time allotted to enable learners to learn at least the basic concepts of conversation.

Way back in college, I have not encountered indirect assessments like student surveys. If there was, I would have had gladly expressed my opinion about the impracticability of this method. However, it is nice to know that now; students are given options when it comes to their preferred international language. Yet, time allotted for these courses must be re-evaluated and re-assessed, that is, is 3 hours a week sufficient to learning the language?

Schools officials should conduct a direct assessment on student performance too. By so doing, they could have known early on that even the class topnotcher have learned nothing at all. If this continues, it means that they will produce graduates that are ill-equipped to enter the work force.

More to the point, there is no validity in assessment. Students take written exams where they are asked to translate English words into French. But if you ask them to speak what they just wrote no one will be able to do so because French pronunciations are totally different from how words are spelled. A simple mastery of more than a hundred foreign words but inability to speak in the language means the whole course is just a waste of time, effort and money…

Photo retrieved from https://www.google.com/search?q=image+french



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