A study of students and teachers attitudes towards the integrated syllabus of English in Secondary schools in Mombasa District, Kenya
The purpose of this study was to find out the attitudes of secondary school students and teachers of English towards the integrated syllabus of English in Mombasa District. The project was limited to three (3) randomly selected secondary schools for the students' sample and six (6) randomly selected schools for the teachers' sample. A total of 13 teachers of English and 120 students were selected to serve as the subjects for the study. To measure the respondents attitudes towards the integrated English syllabus, a 5 point Likerts Attitude scale questionnaire was used. Respondents were required that for every statement made, they respond using the structured format as follows: Strongly Agree (SA) Agree (A) Undecided/ Neutral (U) Disagree (D) Strongly Disagree (SD) The items (statements) for each of the teachers and students' questionnaire were twenty five (25) in number. These statements reflected the diverse possible feelings and beliefs of the respondents towards integrated English. There were both positive and negative statements. The findings showed that: Many students (75%) were unable to work on their own and that they needed very close assistance from their workload in English. Over half the respondents felt that English language and literature should not be combined as one subject in secondary schools. Both teachers and students strongly agreed to this. The data showed that more students (62%) preferred to study English language to learning literature. Teachers and students agreed to the fact that making literature compulsory was unfair to students who were weak in it. Teachers believed that the integrated syllabus was difficult to teach while literature took more time in the teaching of integrated English. From the data obtained, various conclusions were made: (i) By integrating literature and English language, literature in a way was imposed on the learners as a compulsory subject making many learners have an unfavourable attitude towards English. (ii) The content to be covered in the integrated English is overwhelmingly wide to handled within the time frame available making it difficult to cover all areas adequately. This has made the teachers of English not favour this integration. (iii) The examination of the integrated syllabus disfavours students in that there is a wider area to be examined from as compared to other subjects. (iv) The learners of both English language and literature is shallow.