Determinants Of Students’ Choice Of French Language Subject: A Case Of Public Secondary Schools In Nairobi City County, In Kenya

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ABSTRACT

The French language was introduced into the secondary school curriculum in Kenya with the aim of producing a specialised workforce with the requisite skills needed in the diplomatic and foreign affairs sectors. Initially confined to a few selected secondary schools, the advent of 8-4-4 saw the numbers of schools offering French increase. However, this increase in the number of schools offering French is not matched by a corresponding growth in the number of students taking French in school. The purpose of this study was to establish the learners‟ and teachers‟ perceptions of the value of studying French and the factors that determine its choice. The study was guided by three research questions, derived from the objectives. It sought to establish learners‟ perceptions of the value of studying French language, teachers‟ perceptions of the value of studying French in Kenya, to identify factors that determines the learners‟ choice for studying French, and elicit suggestions on how to increase enrolment in schools. The study adopted a cross-sectional survey design since the survey involves data collected at a defined time. Semi-structured questionnaires were used to elicit responses from the respondents. Purposive random sampling was used to select ten public secondary schools. The learner respondents were randomly sampled using the ballot method. The quantitative data were analysed using Stata and Microsoft Excel. Content analysis of the qualitative data was carried out through the generation of themes. The findings revealed that instrumental motivation, that is learning a foreign language because of a practical reason, drives the choice of French as a subject of study. Inasmuch as French is attractive as a subject of study, the perceived benefits of studying French language, such as future employment opportunities, play a critical role in choosing it. The findings also indicated that the learner respondents‟ choice to learn French is not influenced by peers, parents or teachers. Besides, the majority of learners attest to having no contact with French before joining secondary school. Learners who were studying French all acknowledge that there is enthusiasm for studying the language and that it is easy to learn. The learners attribute the decision to opt out of studying French, despite its apparent attractiveness, to certain inherent complexities. These include the ability to do well on the subject, subject clustering and performance in the subject at Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education exams. These factors override enthusiasm and interest in the subject. In their suggestions, the respondents pointed out the need to create awareness on the importance of studying French in the 21st century, its benefits and the opportunities available for using it. They further called for the introduction of French at primary school level and in secondary schools which do not currently offer it and emphasized the need to make lessons more interesting and related to the problems youth face today. They did not forget to add that learning of French should be made more digital with programmes aired both on radio and on television.

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APA

Edu, F (2021). Determinants Of Students’ Choice Of French Language Subject: A Case Of Public Secondary Schools In Nairobi City County, In Kenya. Afribary.com: Retrieved June 24, 2021, from https://afribary.com/works/determinants-of-students-choice-of-french-language-subject-a-case-of-public-secondary-schools-in-nairobi-city-county-in-kenya

MLA 8th

Frontiers, Edu. "Determinants Of Students’ Choice Of French Language Subject: A Case Of Public Secondary Schools In Nairobi City County, In Kenya" Afribary.com. Afribary.com, 05 Jun. 2021, https://afribary.com/works/determinants-of-students-choice-of-french-language-subject-a-case-of-public-secondary-schools-in-nairobi-city-county-in-kenya . Accessed 24 Jun. 2021.

MLA7

Frontiers, Edu. "Determinants Of Students’ Choice Of French Language Subject: A Case Of Public Secondary Schools In Nairobi City County, In Kenya". Afribary.com, Afribary.com, 05 Jun. 2021. Web. 24 Jun. 2021. < https://afribary.com/works/determinants-of-students-choice-of-french-language-subject-a-case-of-public-secondary-schools-in-nairobi-city-county-in-kenya >.

Chicago

Frontiers, Edu. "Determinants Of Students’ Choice Of French Language Subject: A Case Of Public Secondary Schools In Nairobi City County, In Kenya" Afribary.com (2021). Accessed June 24, 2021. https://afribary.com/works/determinants-of-students-choice-of-french-language-subject-a-case-of-public-secondary-schools-in-nairobi-city-county-in-kenya