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This study sought to investigate students’ attitudes towards listening and speaking in the English classroom at Al Istiqlal University. The researchers noticed that freshmen students at Al Istiqlal University were de-motivated and reluctant to get involved in listening and speaking activities in the English classroom. One root cause may be students’ prior experience of learning English in Palestinian state schools where Arabic is the dominant language (Hamdallah, 1999) and where there may be little provision of speaking and listening to English. The researchers sought to experiment with innovative teaching methods to address these problems. These included using group work, giving students clearly defined roles, using technological applications and drawing on students’ personal lives as strategies to motivate students and change their attitudes towards listening and speaking activities. A stratified–purposeful sample consisting of 18 freshman students was selected. The researchers used a quantitative approach to measure changes. The researchers also used qualitative instrument for the purpose of the study. A questionnaire was administered at the beginning and end of the study to determine changes in students’ attitudes. Also, interviews were organized to decide and get comments on the influence of the strategies which were used. Results indicated that there was a significant difference in students’ attitudes towards listening and speaking activities in English class. When the researchers used different strategies such as: role plays cards, group activities, technology and different assessment forms, students expressed positive feelings, enjoyment and fun. The researchers recommend that teachers in similar university-level context should implement different strategies such as: group wok, role plays, cards, videos and some applications i.e. Padlet to motivate students bridge the gap between school life and university life. It was also found that such strategies help to change students’ attitudes to listening and speaking.
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