Studying the Effects of an EFL Curriculum for Young Adults in Brazil

Nancy E. Dubetz


The ability to speak English offers young adults in Brazil opportunities to prepare for the global job market and promotes cross cultural understanding, which are national curriculum goals for public education. The study reported in this article documents the implementation of the Empregabilidade, Tecnologia e Inglescurriculum, which was designed to expand educational and economic opportunity for young adults attending public schoolsin Salvador, Brazil by providing them with basic communicative proficiency in spoken English. The results of a mixed method curriculum study demonstrate that the published curriculum was implemented differently than intended. Results of the study of the relationship between the implemented curriculum and participants’ oral language proficiency in English demonstrated that while participants in two cohorts did not reach target levels of proficiency, proficiency levels for students in the second year of the implementation were higher than those of students in the first year. Participants had positive attitudes toward learning English at the end of the implementation. Learners’ level of language classroom anxiety may have affected the level of language proficiency acquired as measured by the oral language proficiency assessment designed for the study. School and teacher variables under investigation did not have a significant impact on student outcomes, though there was evidence that students with a teacher implementing the curriculum a second time scored higher on the oral language proficiency assessment than students of teachers in their first year of implementation.

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English Language Teaching       ISSN 1916-4742 (Print)   ISSN  1916-4750 (Online)

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