|STRATEGIC IMPROMPTU SPEAKING AS A WAY TO MAKE PUBLIC SPEAKING A PLEASURABLE EXPERIENCE|
Sajeewani Apsara Fernando
This research investigated the potential of strategic impromptu speaking in making public speaking an enjoyable experience. Hundred-and-one second-year undergraduates of the Faculty of Technology Wayamba University of Sri Lanka received instruction on brainstorming ideas, preparing brief outlines, filling the outlines with examples and speaking based on them. Ten sessions were created consecutively in which the learners practiced strategic impromptu speaking. The topics were drawn from university life and the initial five minutes of each session were used for whole class discussions to assist the learners with ideas and vocabulary through a map on board allowing them to identify a unique focus for the individual speech. A questionnaire was administered after the tenth session to measure the outcome. Eight questions out of it were analyzed and the findings were encouraging. Further, Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test was applied on a question which required participants to rate their ability to speak in English, knowledge over speaking strategies, level of confidence and enjoyment of the exercise prior to and after the intervention. The p value of 0.00 (P < 0.05) revealed that there is a statistically significant improvement in their attitude towards public speaking. Feedback from the reflective journals was coded and it proved the participants found the experience to be quite pleasurable and productive.
Ms. Sajeewani Fernando received B.A Degree in English at University of Sri Jayawardenepura, Sri Lanka in 2001 and has earned Postgraduate qualifications: M.A. in Linguistics at University of Kelaniya, Sri Lanka and M.A. in TESL at Open University of Sri Lanka. She has been teaching English as a second language at Wayamba university of Sri Lanka for sixteen years. Her research interest areas are corrective feedback, Innovative Teaching methodologies and Testing and evaluation. Up to now she has made several publications at national and international research conferences and journals.