Vol. 3. No. 2 A-3 March 1998
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Usefulness and Enjoyableness of Teaching Materials as Predictors of On-task Behavior

Matthew Peacock
Department of English
City University of Hong Kong


This article reports on a small-scale study that investigated the relationship between on-task behavior, usefulness of materials as perceived by learners, and enjoyableness of materials. It was hypothesized before the study that learners spend a greater proportion of the lesson on task (that is, actively engaged in the task that they were set) when they see the lesson as useful and/or enjoyable.

Data were collected daily over one term in two South Korean university EFL classrooms. The correlation between on-task behavior and usefulness of materials was very low at r = .1608; with enjoyableness, it was also low at r = .2463. It was concluded that the learners did not spend more time on task because they perceived the materials to be more useful, or more enjoyable, but for some other reason.

The project also replicated part of a previous study. Green (1993) found a correlation averaging r = .6480 between the EFL learner-rated usefulness and enjoyable- ness of the activities in Puerto Rico. The present study also found the correlation high, at r = .7040.

Keywords: motivation, materials, tasks, EFL

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