English language teaching, for more than six decades of research and practice, has identified the four skills—listening, speaking, reading, and writing—as the most important parameter in the textbooks or curriculum development. The textbook or curricula used tends to focus on one or two of the four skills (Brown, 2001). The teaching process above is used in the English language teaching from elementary to the high school curriculum development.
In fact, many senior high school students still cannot explain certain procedure fluently in English when they are asked to do or make something. So, the teacher should be smart to choose an approach or technique of teaching that is suitable with the condition and the needs of the students. As a result, the goal of teaching and learning can be achieved. Therefore, this issue has become a dilemma for most English curriculum developers in finding the best approach to teach English in order to enable the students' competence to communicate in English both spoken and written successfully (Burkart, 1998).
Cooperative learning is a teaching strategy in which small teams, each with students of different levels of ability, use a variety of learning activities to improve their understanding of a subject. Each member of a team is responsible not only for learning what is taught but also for helping teammates learn, thus creating an atmosphere of achievement. Students work through the assignment until all group members successfully understand and complete it (Kagan, 1994).
A three-step interview is defined as a cooperative learning technique which enables and motivates members of the group to acquire certain concept deeply by students' role. It is an adaptable process in the classroom. The aim of this technique is to gather students in a conversation for analysis purpose and new information synthesis (Kagan, 1994).
Regarding to the explanation above, there should be a technique which is effective to improve student's mastery of English language, especially speaking ability. Due to what most English teachers of senior high school deliver the materials which is dominated by grammar focus, students cannot speak fluently because lack of practice and use of spoken English itself. In line with it, this study is expected to prove whether a cooperative learning : three-step interview is effective to improve students' speaking ability.
2. Reasons for Choosing the Topic
The researcher chose this topic to examine the effectiveness of the cooperative learning : three-step interview in improving students' achievement especially on active speaking ability. So far as the researcher knew that there had not been a study about this issue. This study would be undertaken through experimental study.
To measure the effectiveness of Three-Step Interview in this research, the writer would use speaking test as the research instrument. Florezz & Cunningham (1999) state that speaking is one the important skills in language learning. Inside the classroom, it is used twice as often as listening and the most often used skill (Brown, 2001).
In line with it, Dawson (1975) states that speaking is truly basic skill in language learning. Oral language or speaking is truly basic in the preschool. Furthermore, speaking is basic because in the everyday affairs of life, it is used more frequently than written communication. Moreover, speaking is fundamental aspect of spoken language that similar to those of written communication. However, people speak first instead of both reading and writing.
On the other hand, three-step interview is still rarely used in the English teaching process. It can be an alternative strategy instead of classical teaching model. This technique would be tried to be applied to the students of senior high school and whether it was effective or not to improve their ability on active speaking.
3. Statement of the Problem
In relation with the importance of speaking in learning new language and also because of speaking can be one of the factors that determine someone success in learning the language, so this study was intended to find out the cooperative learning : three-step interview towards student's speaking ability. The research questions will be directed to :
1. Is the cooperative learning : three-step interview effective to improve senior high school students' speaking ability?
2. To what extent the cooperative learning : three-step interview is effective in teaching speaking?
4. Scope of the Study
The main concern in this study was regarding how the cooperative learning : three-step interview could be carried out and used to the students of senior high school. The three-step interview itself was used for the treatment in the experimental group.
In testing speaking, there would be four aspects that were going to be tested : pronunciation, vocabulary, fluency, and procedural generic structure (grammar) which covered present tense, imperative sentence, cause and effect, and sequencing. The tests would be conducted to the both experimental and control groups.
Furthermore, it would be very interesting to go along this process of English teaching-learning technique. Any aspects or cases could be possibly investigated during this study, but this study was designed to cover the three-step interview applied in SMAN X only. Specifically, it investigated whether the three-step interview technique effective or not in improving student's speaking ability.
5. Aims of the Study
Particularly, the study has some aims as follows.
1. To find out the use of cooperative learning : three-step Interview towards student's speaking ability.
2. To explore the extent of the cooperative learning : three-step interview in teaching speaking
6. Significance of the Study
The study is expected to :
1. Contribute to the English as Foreign Language (EFL) teaching model of the institution and the practice of foreign language teaching.
2. Develop student's and teacher's creativity in comprehending speaking skill.
The most common hypothesis that is used in experimental study is null hypothesis (Hatch & Farhady, 1982 : 85-86), which states that there is no difference between the sample and the population after receiving a special treatment. Therefore, this study put forward the null hypothesis as follows. "There is no difference between students' speaking ability in control and experimental groups after being given a Three-Step Interview."
8. Organization of the Paper
The paper is organized into five chapters as follows :
Chapter I : Introduction
This section contains introduction, which discusses background, reasons for choosing the topic, statement of the problem, scope of the study, aims of the study, significance of the study, hypothesis, organization of the paper, and clarification of the terms.
Chapter II : Theoretical Foundation
It contains theoretical foundation, which serve as the basis for investigating the research problems. The theoretical foundation covers the description of The cooperative learning : three-step interview towards Student's Speaking Ability.
Chapter III : Research Methodology
In this section, the researcher discusses the method and procedure of the study.
Chapter IV : Findings and Discussions
This chapter reports the findings and discussions of the study.
Chapter V : Conclusions and Suggestions
This chapter reports the conclusions and suggestions of the study.
9. Clarification of the Terms
The researcher will review several terms related to the study. The terms are :
1. Cooperative Learning is a learning model where students work in small group consists of six members collaboratively and the structure of group is heterogeneous (Slavin, 1995).
2. Three-Step Interview is a learning model in which consists of four members of students signed A, B, C, and D. Each member chooses another member to be a partner. During the first step individuals interview their partners by asking clarifying questions. During the second step partners reverse the roles. For the final step, members share their partner's response with the team (Kagan, 1994).
3. Speaking ability is a productive skill in oral mode (C.J. Orwig, 1991 : 1). It can also be defined as student's competence in producing oral mode.