“What Killed Audiolingualism”
Audiolingualism is one of the nine 20th century language teaching approaches which was based on contrastive analysis about behaviorism and structuralism, and was created as a reaction to the reading approach that was lacking of emphasis on oral-aural skills. The results of this approach, audiolingual approach, were generally regarded a great success. The small groups of learners and high motivation were the caveats that undoubtedly contributed to the success of the approach. However, successful as it was, Audiolingualism reached its end in the 1970s and is no longer used today. There are some reasons as to why this approach collapsed. The first reason was the emergence of error analysis that makes audiolingualism received attacks from many linguists. Chomsky’s attack on behaviorist view on which audiolingualism is based is very well-known. He also proposed that people have innate system- generally known as Universal Grammar- within them that provides them with ability to construct their own grammar. The error in audiolingualism was also viewed not as something to be avoided. Error is a good thing through which learners’ mind is shown. There was another attack as well saying this approach, especially in the late 1960s, failed to follow the learners’ needs in a way that the learners needed advanced academic skills more than they need oral skill because of the university requirement for enrollment at U.S and British (grabe, 1991). That audiolingualism banned students from using L1 because it will interfere with their L2 acquisition also received critics because some linguists viewed L1 not as a hindrance, but as an important resource in decision making in writing Another reason that killed audiolingualism is the negligence of the caveat that audiolingualism be taught in small class with highly motivated students. This negligence occurred because of several reasons; people’s amazement toward how successful audiolingualism was that...
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