Developing Independent Listening Skills for English as an Additional Language Students.

Michelle Picard, Lalitha Velautham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper describes an action research project to develop online, self-access listening resources mirroring the authentic academic contexts experienced by graduate university students. Current listening materials for English as an Additional Language (EAL) students mainly use Standard American English or Standard British pronunciation, and far fewer materials use Australian or
regional accents. Materials are also simplified or spoken at a slower speed, emphasizing comprehension-type questions, despite the fact that literature reveals effective listening development involves practice in real-life listening contexts. Academic listening materials conversely emphasize the formal lecture and development of note-taking skills. We developed a range of activities where
listening input was accompanied by materials reflecting top-down and bottom-up strategies as well as other cognitive and meta-cognitive skills. Materials were developed over two action research cycles involving EAL research student participants. Paper-based exercises were trialed and then developed into online materials where students could create their own listening materials and build
portfolios. Results from the participants in the workshops/focus groups indicate they were able to develop their listening skills independently because of the explicit and focused approach of the materials. However, even more explicit and simple instructional design was needed when translated into the online environment.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)52-65
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Graduate Students
  • English (Second Language)
  • Second Language Learning
  • Listening Skills
  • Learning Activities
  • Instructional Materials


Dive into the research topics of 'Developing Independent Listening Skills for English as an Additional Language Students.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this