Syntax Literate : Jurnal Ilmiah Indonesia p–ISSN: 2541-0849

      e-ISSN : 2548-1398

      Vol.4, No.7 Juli 2019

 


AN ANALYSIS OF COMMUNICATION STRATEGIES IN SPEAKING CLASSROOM INTERACTION    

 

Fita Fitriatul Munawaroh dan Jajat Imanudin

Universitas Islam Al-Ihya Kuningan

Email: Afithafitria@gmail.com; imanudinjajat@gmail.com

 

Abstract

This study investigated on the communication strategies at speaking classroom interaction and dominant communication strategies used by students for speaking classroom interaction at the eighth grade of MTs Bina Sejahtera Kuningan. The eight grade of MTs Bina Sejahtera Kuningan was chosen purposively as the sample. A descriptive qualitative methodology was employed in this study, and data were collected through classroom observation and semistructured interview. The data from classroom observation and semi structured-interview were analyzed by transcribing, redacting data, triangulation and drawing a conclusion. The findings showed that there were some types of communication strategies used by students in speaking classroom interaction, message abandonment, use of fillers, self repetition, mime, expressing non-understanding, direct appeal for help, feigning understanding, asking for repetition, and asking for clarification. The dominant communication strategy used by students at speaking classroom interaction was Self Repetition (33,33%), Use of Filler (24,82%), Direct Appeal For Help (9,93%), Asking For Clarification (7,80%), Message Abandonment (7,09%), Asking For Repetition (5,67%), Mime (4,26%), and the least number of communication strategy used by students was Feigning Understanding (2,84%). Based on these findings, it is recommended that the students have to improve their speaking skill, especially in pronouncing, mastery of vocabularies and grammar and in speaking class, the teacher should use teaching varieties to make students more active in classroom interaction and overcome students problems and students difficulties in speaking.

 

Key words: Communication strategies, Descriptive qualitative methodology,
Types of communication strategies.

 

Introduction

Classroom is a place where the interaction process happens among teacher and students, as well as students and the others. The interaction occurs when the information flows from the sources to its destination. In this sense, Taylor (1987, p. 49) comments: "real communication is shared activity which requires the active involvement of its participants who must exercise what we call communicating initiative". It means that the participants in the interaction should get involved actively in the process.

When an English teacher taught especially in speaking subject, it means that he has to be capable to create good interaction among teacher and students or student and the others. But, some students still have some troubles in expressing themselves. It seems that it is indicated by their lack of vocabulary, poor communication, and limited understanding of grammar. The main interest in classroom interaction analysis is to encourage the teachers to make better use of their language and communication skills. Several alternative choices made by teacher have a strong impact on the learning process. 

In the teaching learning process, classroom interaction is very important. The interaction occurs among teacher and student, or student and the others. Classroom interaction stimulates the student involvement in the classroom. It influences student see the relevance of teacher’s topic and increases participation as all students are involved. The interaction can be between the teacher and the students. Students are given a chance to express their opinion in the class.

An teacher have several roles in the process of interaction. As well as in the process of teaching English, a teacher plays a very important role. The roles of a teacher are same ​​as a director, a manager, a facilitator, and as a source of knowledge for his students.

As a director, a teacher directs student’s activities and exercises them to understand the material taught, to do the task and to complete the task.  It is the teacher's responsibility to be able to maintain the process of teaching activities smoothly and effectively. The motive is that a teacher should always be able to involve students to improve in practicing language, since every communication event has its own uniqueness. A teacher has to create more interactive atmosphere in teaching learning process.

As a manager, a teacher has to manage many things in the classroom; such as students, the material, media, method etc. A teacher manage various things, including the students as learners, material as a teaching subject, and method that is a way of teacher to make students become more active in teaching learning process.

As a facilitator, a teacher facilitates students in teaching learning process and teacher provides a way for students to find their own way in teaching learning process, by his guidance and direction. As a facilitator, a teacher also has freedom to instruct and motivate his students in order to use the language technically.

The roles of a teacher as a source of material and knowledge are conveyed for his students. The implication of the role is that teacher takes initiative for students who are ready with advice and guidance to make students need them.

In the learning process, beside do roles of a teacher, a teacher have to has strategy to improving speaking skill students. There are strategies that can be used by students to overcome troubles in their communication. Students can choose on of them to make their communication more effective. Message Abandonment; the strategy of leaving message unfinished because of language difficulties. For example: a learner says “ he took the wrong way in mm....” (He/She does not continue his/her utterance). By using communication strategies, students can create communication with others easier.

Dornyei (1995) suggests that communication strategies need to be taught and he also suggests procedures for strategy training. Dornyei argues that teachers should raise students’ awareness, encourage them to take risks and provide them with models and opportunities to use communication strategies. Not using these strategies in the classroom makes even less likely that they use them in real life situations to solve communicative disruptions and enhance interaction in the foreign language (Dornyei & Scott, 1997; Faerch & Kasper, 1983; Tarone, 1980).Nevertheless, some English teachers are not aware of it.

In this case the writers were interested in investigating about communication strategies in speaking classroom interaction in teaching English language. The writers conducted this research at the eighth Grade Students of MTs Bina Sejahtera at Galaherang, Maleber, Kuningan Regency..

 

Methodology

To comprehend and interpret the objective of the problem in this study, the writers used descriptive method. The reason for choosing the method was that the writers wants to describe the research founded. Fraenkel & Wallen state that descriptive studies describe a given style of affair as fully and carefully as possible. Furthermore, Fraenkel & Wallen (1990:68) give statement as follows:In educational research, the primary descriptive methodology is the survey when researcher summarize the characteristics (ability, preference, behavior, and so forth) of individuals or groups on (sometimes) physically environments (such as school), or, as in some historical studies, changes in any of these over time.

The participants or object of this study were students of the eighth grade of MTs Bina Sejahtera Kuningan which consists of 28 students. This study used purposive sampling as a sampling technique. Therefore, the writers took one class of the eight grade and one English teacher as a sample of the study. The reason for choosing the eight grade because this is an active class, so this grade appropriated with the topic of this study.

The writers divided the steps of collecting data into three steps. There were observation,  interview, and documentation. Finally, the data obtained from the observation, interview and documentation then analyzed by generalizing and interpreting the data. Furthermore, the writers drew some conclusions and gives suggestions based on the results of the study.

 

Results and Discussion

The communication strategies that applied by the students are presented in table 1.1.

Table 1 The overall frequency of communication strategies used:

Types of communication strategies

Frequency (n)

Percentage (%);

1.      Avoidance strategy

10

7,09

2.      Compensatory strategy

2.1.     Intra-actional strategies

2.2.  Interactional strategies

 

92

39

 

65,25

27,66

Total

141

100

 

Table 1 presents the overall use of communication strategies by the students in this study in terms of their frequency and percentage based on classroom observation that have been conducted. Table 1. Shows that a total of 9 communication strategies were used in this study. It was found that compensatory strategies (65,25%) are more frequently used than avoidance strategies (7.09%). This indicated that most students attempted to maintain their original aim by developing an alternative plan and to solve problems in communication by expanding their communicative resources, rather than avoiding their message or renouncing their original communication goal. They were probably able to speak English regardless of their grammatical errors. Most of them attempted to speak as much and as best as they can convey their message to their interlocutor.

Table 2 Types of Communication Strategies Used by Subjects in Classroom   Interaction

 

Subject

 

Types  of Communication Strategies that Used by Students in Answering Teacher’s Question in Classroom Interaction

MA

UF

SR

FU

M

AFR

AFC

DAH

ENU

1

1

2

3

-

1

-

-

1

-

2

1

2

3

-

-

1

-

-

-

3

-

2

-

1

-

-

-

-

1

4

-

3

2

-

-

-

1

1

1

5

-

-

2

-

-

-

2

1

-

6

-

2

4

-

-

-

-

-

-

7

1

2

2

1

1

-

-

-

1

8

-

-

-

-

-

2

2

1

-

9

1

2

3

-

-

-

-

1

-

10

-

2

2

1

-

-

2

-

-

11

-

2

4

-

-

1

-

2

-

12

1

2

3

-

-

1

-

-

-

13

1

3

3

-

1

-

-

1

-

14

-

2

2

-

-

-

2

2

-

15

-

2

3

-

-

-

-

1

-

16

2

1

3

-

1

1

-

2

1

17

-

2

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

18

-

1

3

1

1

1

1

1

1

19

1

2

3

-

1

1

-

-

1

20

1

1

2

-

-

-

1

-

-

Total

10

35

47

4

6

8

11

14

6

%

7,09

24,82

33,33

2,84

4,26

5,67

7,80

9,93

4,26

 

MA                           : Message Abandonment

UF                            : Using of Fillers

SR                            : Self Repetition

FU                            : Feigning Understanding

M                              : Mime

AFR                         : Asking for Repetition

AFC                         : Asking for Clarification

DAH                        : Direct Appeal for Help

ENU                         : Expressing Non Understanding

-                                                                : 0 (zero)/ doesn’t use

·                                                                      The subjects/participants are not mentioned the name and they replaced by numbering code (1,2,3, ...... 20) for keeping the subject’s privacy.

·                                                                      In the column 1.2, there are numerals which refer to using calculation of strategy communication that used by students.

Based on the table above, it shows that there are nine (9) types of communication strategies found in this section: message abandonment, use of fillers, self-repetition, feigning understanding, mime, asking for repetition, asking for clarification, direct appeal for help and expressing non understanding.

There were some communication strategies that used by students at speaking classroom interaction based on students’ answers of the interview questions.

The third of interview question is how they solve the problems or the difficulties. The first student’s is to overcome the difficulties in speaking that she repeated word more than once and she repeated unfinished her answer. The second student’s is still same with the first student’s answer but he also make a sounds /mmm/ or /ok/ to make communication goes smoothly and clearly. The third student’s couldn’t answer the question, but she I asked for assistance to her teacher or her friend. The fourth student’s answer was he asked the teacher to repeat his question if he did not know what he had to answer. The last student’s answer was same with the first student’s answer.

From the data analysis of students’ answers of interview from the third question, the writers concluded that there were some communication strategies used by students at speaking classroom interaction. Those communication strategies used by students were message abandonment, self-repetition, using of fillers, direct appeal for help, asking for repetition.

In addition, self-repetition is repeating a word or a string of words immediately after they were said, Dornyei and Scott’s taxonomy of communication strategies (1997). The subjects used this strategy because they wanted to communicate smoothly. Besides self-repetition, the subjects used using of fillers. Using of fillers is using gambits to fill pauses, to stall, and to gain time in order to keep the communication channel open and maintain discourse at times of difficulty. The students may use filling words to fill pause and to gain time to think. Wajnryb (1987) as cited in Tiono (2004:34) added the examples of fillers such as I think, you know, you see, um, mm, ah, sort of, OK, right, really.

The next communication strategies were direct appeal for help. Direct appeal for help is turning to the interlocutor for assistance by asking and explicit question concerning a gap in one’s L2 knowledge (Dornyei and Scott 1997). In this strategy, the students ask other students or teacher for help because they do not know some words, structures, or idioms.

The last communication strategy used by student was asking for repetition. According to Dornyei and Scott’s taxonomy of communication strategies, asking for repetition is requesting repetition when not hearing or understanding something properly. The student used this communication strategy because he did not hear the teacher’s question, so he was confused what he had to answer and he requested to the teacher to repeat his question.

Besides, there were some students’ reasons for choosing of communication strategies. From the data analysis of students’ answers of the fourth interview question, there were some reasons why the students used communication strategies. The first reason was the students often forgot some English vocabularies, so he did not finish his sentence. The second reason of the use of communication strategies by student was she sometimes was not ready to speak in English, so she repeated the words while thinking.

The third reason the student used communication strategies especially direct appeal for help. The student appealed for help to her teacher or her friend. The fourth reason that the student did not understand if the teacher asked him one time, so he asked the teacher to repeat his question. The last reason was same with the second reason, she used communication strategies especially self-repetition because she did not know the next word or the next sentence.

In order to have a clear picture of the students’ use of communication strategies, two excerpts extracted from teacher and students interaction and students performance in the role play will be used to illustrate their use and each communication strategies used by the students will be identified and discussed. In the interest of space, those communication strategies that have previously been discussed but reappear in another excerpt will not be discussed again.

The following excerpt which was extracted from the conversation or interaction between teacher and students, student and student interaction in role play performance. It is provided below to illustrate the use of communication strategies by students including self-repetition, using of fillers, direct appeal for help, asking for clarification, message abandonment, mime, asking for repetition, expressing non-understanding and feigning understanding.

Table of excerpt the conversation between teacher and students, student and students at speaking classroom interaction in giving opinion

Speaker

Utterance

Communication strategies

T

·      As we know that July, ninth, we will choose our OSIS Head and the    candidates are two; they are Doni and Dino.

 

T

·      Atik, what do you think about. Dino?

 

S1

·      I think Dino (1)mm, (2)is very, is very handsome.

(1)  Using of fillers

(2)  Self-repetition

T

·      Atik says that Dino is very handsome.

 

T

·      Dik dik what do you think about Mr Dino?

 

 S2

·      (3) In my opinion, in my opinion, Dino is smart.

(3)   Self-repetition

T

·      Now, Didin what do you think about Doni?

 

S3

·      I think Doni (4) is, is, is, (5).......

(4)   Self-repetition

(5)   Message Abandonment

T

·      Any other opinion??

 

S4

·      Yes I am. In my opinion Doni is smart, handsome and discipline.

 

T

·      Ok, by the way talking about discipline I got a problem at MTs Bina Sejahtera Kuningan the students are not discipline. Sorry, what is your name? What do you think about educational system at  MTs Bina Sejahtera Kuningan

 

S5

·      My name is Ila, (6)oh yes I go to school everyday and I am discipline.

(6)   Feigning Understanding

T

·      Ok, thank you ila. Any other opinion?

 

S6

·      I’m sorry sir, (7) can you repeat your question?

(7)     Asking for Repetition

T

·      What do you think about educational system at MTs Bina Sejahtera Kuningan?

 

S7

·      In my opinion, the headmaster must be more explicit.

 

S8

·      Excuse me sir,(8) what is the meaning of explicit?

(8) Asking for Clarification

T

·      The meaning of explicit in Indonesian is tegas.

 

S9

·      What do you think (9)about, about (10)mmm about children hardness?

(9)   Self-repetition

(10)    Using of Fillers

S10

·      (11)what is the meaning of children hardness?

(11)   Asking for Clarification

T

·      kekerasan terhadap anak.

 

S11

·      (12)oh, y.(13)mmm I think children hardness is not good for all children.

(12)   Using of Fillers

(13)   Using of Fillers

T

·      Ok, good. Next one are diah and lulu.

 

T

·      mmm what do you think about, about English lesson?

 

S12

·      Ok, (14)i think umm English lesson is good for us (15)because, because English is international language.

(14)   Using of Fillers

(15)   Self-repetition

T

·      Well done. Next one are Imang and Rifki.

 

T

·      What do you think about scout?

 

S13

·      (16)Scout itu apa?

(16)   Direct Appeal to Help

T

·      Pramuka

 

S14

·      (17)mmm,(18) i think, i think, !(19)mm i think scout is (20) mm,mm(21) ....

(17)   Using of Fillers

(18)   Self-repetition

(19)   Using of Fillers

(20)   Self-repetition

(21)   Message Abandonment

T

·      Ok please sit down. Next one are Taufik and Diki.

 

T

·      Ok, what do you think about world cup?

 

S15

·      (22)mm apa tadi , tentang apa?

(22)   Asking for Clarification/ Direct Appeal to Help

T

·      piala dunia, world cup.

 

S15

·      (23)oh, mm, I think world cup (24)is, is, is very good to watch.

(23)   Using of Fillers

(24)   Self-repetition

T

·      Good, next one.

What do you think about volley ball?

 

S16

·      I think volley ball is good for our (25)

·      mmm  (26) (take hold of his body), and make fresh.

(25)   Using of Fillers

(26)   Mime

T

·      For our body do you mean?

 

S17

·      Yes sir.. (27) mmmmm .. I mean like that

(27)  Using of Fillers

T

·      Ok, Thank you Wildan. Afina do you like soccer? What do you think about that?

 

S18

·      (28)me?.. (29)(take holf of her body) (30)mmmmm (31)soccer? bola? (32)mmmmmmm I don’t like like sir.

(28)   Asking for Repetition

(29)   Mime/Expressing non understanding

(30)   Using of Fillers

(31)   Asking for Clarification

(32)   Using of Fillers

T

·      Hi.. Susi. I want to ask to you about your hobby. What is your hobby?

 

S19

·      (33)(take holf of her body) (34)mmmm my hobby is (35)sing .. sing a song

(33)   Mime/Expressing non understanding

(34)   Using of Fillers

(35)   Self-repetition

T

·      And you Fachri?

 

S20

·      (36)I.. I.. (37)eemmm(38) i like.....

(36)   Self-repetition

(37)   Using of Fillers

(38)   Message Abandonment

T

·      Soccer?

 

S20

·      No sir. I like swimming

 

 

          T            : Teacher

          S1-20          : Student 1-20

It can be seen from excerpt above that self-repetition is the communication strategy mostly used by these subjects. Self-repetition got the percentage of 33.33%. The example of self-repetition found in this study was the subject repeated a word or a string of words immediately after they were said. For example I think, I think Doni is smart. It could be interpreted that these subjects used this strategy mostly probably because they wanted to communicate smoothly. They only repeated one or two words and used fillers to think for a while, then continued their explanation. Thus it could be concluded that these subjects did not hesitate too much.

The next higher number of communication strategy besides self-repetition was using of fillers with the percentage of 24.82%. The example of using fillers in this study was “mm... I think Dino is handsome. Mm showed one of the examples of fillers.

The third communication strategy used by subjects was direct appeal for help which was got 9.93%. Based on Dornyei and Scott’s taxonomy of communication strategies (1997), direct appeal for help is one of interactional or a modification device strategy that is an approach, whereby the participants carry out a trouble-shooting exchange cooperatively. Direct appeal for help is turning to the interlocutor for assistance by asking and explicit question concerning a gap in one’s L2 knowledge. In appealing for help strategy, the subjects asked for the English term of “scout itu apa?” The subjects used this strategy mainly because they lacked vocabulary or forgot some English words due to their nervousness. In addition, possibly because the subjects were afraid of making mistakes, they might think that it would be better to ask someone else than to produce the wrong words themselves.

The fourth communication strategy used by subjects was asking for clarification which was got 7.80%. Asking for clarification is requesting an explanation of an unfamiliar meaning structure based on Dornyei and Scott’s taxonomy of communication strategies (1997). The example of asking for clarification of this study was “what is the meaning of explicit?”

The fifth communication strategy used by subjects was message abandonment, which got 7.09%. According to Tarone’s taxonomy of communication strategies (1977), message abandonment is beginning to talk about concept but being unable to continue due to lack of knowledge in meaning, and stopping in mid utterance. The example of message abandonment in this study was I think Doni is.......... A subject made their utterance unfinished.

The sixth communication strategy was used by subjects was asking for repetition which was got 5.67%. Asking for repetition is requesting repetition when not hearing or understanding something properly, Dornyei and Scott’s taxonomy of communication strategies (1997). The example of asking for repetition of this study was “can you repeat your question, please?”

Mime and expressing non-understanding had the same number of communication strategy used by subjects which was got 4.26%. Expressing non-understanding  is expressing that one did not understand something properly either verbally or nonverbally. It might that the subjects really did not understand about the materials that given and explained by the teacher. The example of expressing non-understanding of this study was when the teacher asked students about the materials, students shaked of the head.  Mime is describing a whole concept non-verbally; accompanying a verbal strategy with a visual illustration. The example of mime from this study was the student take hold his body refer to his body but he got difficulty to say “body”. The students used this strategy to help them in expressing the meaning.

The last or the least communication strategy used by subjects was feigning understanding which was got 2.84%. Feigning understanding is making an attempt to carry on the conversation in spite of not understanding something by pretending to understand. The example of feigning understanding of this study was when the teacher give the question to the student, the student can answer the question but it was not appropriate with the question.

The finding was supported  by the data analysis of students’ answers of interview from the third question presented in the first research question before. From the data analysis of students’ answers of interview from the third question presented in the table above, there were some communication strategies used by students at speaking classroom interaction. Those communication strategies used by students were message abandonment, self-repetition, using of fillers, direct appeal for help, asking for repetition.

Although there were some communication strategies used by students at speaking classroom interaction, the writer concluded that self-repetition was dominant communication strategy used by students at speaking classroom interaction.The data analysis of communication strategies was based on classroom observation showed that there were some communication strategies found in this study. There were message abandonment, self-repetition, using of fillers, feigning understanding, direct appeal for help, mime, asking for repetition, asking for clarification and expressing non understanding. Moreover, the present study indicates that the students tended to rely on compensatory strategies (92.91%) more frequently than avoidance strategies (7.09%), indicating that the students attempted to keep the conversation flowing and maintain their interaction with the interlocutor.

From the classroom observation and the interview the writers concluded that  the most communication strategy used by students is self-repetition. Self-repetition got the percentage (33.33%). The next higher number of communication strategy used by students is using of fillers. Using of fillers got the percentage (24.82%). The third number of communication strategy used by students was direct appeal for help which got the percentage (9.93%).  The fourth number of communication strategy used by students was asking for clarification which got the percentage (7.80%). The fifth number of communication strategy used by students was message abandonment which got the percentage (7.09%). The sixth number of communication strategy used by students was asking for repetition which got the percentage (5.67%). The seventh number of communication strategy used by students was expressing non-understanding and mime which got the percentage (4.26%). The last or the least number of communication strategy used by students was feigning understanding which got the percentage (2.84%). Furthermore, from the explanation above, the writers concluded that the dominant communication strategies used by students was self-repetition.

There were some reasons of the students’ used of communication strategies. The first reason was the student used self -repetition strategy because they wanted to communicate smoothly. Besides self-repetition, the subjects used using of fillers. Using of fillers is using gambits to fill pauses, to stall, and to gain time in order to keep the communication channel open and maintain discourse at times of difficulty. The students may use filling words to fill pause and to gain time to think.

 

Conclusion

Based on the data that have been obtained and analyzed by the writers, the results of this study is relevant and in accordance what is happening in the field. One of the excesses of this study is the result of this study are presented in details. It is presented in table form and completed by the explanation about communication strategies used by students at speaking classroom interaction.

On the other hand, there are several short comings of this study. First, the results of this study are less varied related to the students’ speaking performance in classroom interaction. The writers only took one class as the sample of this study and there is no other class to be compared. Second, the writers only carried out the classroom observation two times. The writers just analyze types of communication strategies used by students at speaking classroom interaction. The imperfectness of this study was hopes to be able to the next researcher to conduct further research with the same topic but broader in context.

Considering the conclusion above, the writers would like to propose some suggestions, which hopefully will be useful for teachers, students, and other researchers.

For teacher, in speaking class, the teacher should use teaching varieties to make students more active in classroom interaction and overcome students problems and students difficulties in speaking.

For students, the students have to improve their speaking skill, especially in pronouncing and mastery of vocabularies. They also should learn about grammar; therefore they can speak in English correctly and fluently.

Furthermore, the writers hope that this study can give contribution to those who want to conduct further research such as finding the reasons for using communication strategies and finding the appropriate style of teaching speaking in foreign language classroom which can reduce students’ difficulties in English speaking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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