A Comparative Study of Listening Competencies in English of Teacher Trainees in Public and Private Teacher Training Colleges in Kenya

Lydia W. Wangungu, Paul N. Mwangi


English language in Kenya is important as it is the medium of instruction, among other things, from class four to higher institutions of learning. Listening on the other hand is a key factor in facilitating language learning because it is the foundation of the other language skills. It is also the skill that facilitates the interaction of the instructor and the learner in any learning situation. Lack of listening competence in English therefore means poor language skills and poor performance in all the subjects taught in English. This paper presents the findings of a comparative study conducted in Teacher Training Colleges (TTC) in Kenya. The study sought to compare the levels of listening competencies in English of primary school teacher trainees in public and private Teacher Training Colleges in Kenya. A sample of 30 male and 30 female trainees was used. Data were collected using three subtests namely dictation, cloze test and listening comprehension. Research findings showed that trainees in public colleges performed better than trainees in private colleges. Female trainees also performed better than their male counterparts in both colleges. The younger trainees in both colleges performed better than the older trainees in most of the tasks. Trainees with stronger entry points in both colleges performed better than those with weak entry points. Generally, the trainees lacked the desired competence levels in listening in English.


Listening abilities in English, Primary school teacher trainees, Desired Competence Level (DCL), Minimum Competence Level (MCL)

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