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Teaching Style Preferences at Higher Educational Institutions.

TitleTeaching Style Preferences at Higher Educational Institutions.
Publication TypeConference Paper
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsMulalic, A
Conference NameInternational Balkan Congress
Date Published2012.
PublisherSuleyman Sah University
Place PublishedTurkey
Abstract

ABSTRACT

There has been a lot of researches on the effective interaction with the students. What are the common effects related to second language acquisitions? One of the most important core effects are the students’ learning preferences and ways of teaching. What is the unique formula for effective teaching and learning? What students need while learning second language should be appreciated by the instructor in order to provide sustainable and applicable process of knowledge. Since there has been no enough investigations on what students really need and what they prefer while learning second language we decided to apply the investigation at three private higher educational institutions in order to help our students and the educational policy. It has been a great dilemma about the most famous and appreciated effects of effective learning second language. Therefore, our team’s concern was the most preferred teaching styles at three different private institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The aim of project was to clarify preferred teaching strategies (the most and least dominant preferences); the relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity and the relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s gender of the students’ at three private institutions.The focus group was comprised by 67 (N-67) students from different departments. Data were gathered by the questionnaire including 20 questions based on teaching styles. Further in the study project the findings of the research are pointed out and some suggestions are given in order instructors could tend to match their teaching styles with the students’ teaching styles preferences. It has been concluded that learning about the students’ teaching style preferences is necessary for providing better outcomes.

Key words: teaching strategy,students’ learning styles preferences, effective learning

Full Text

INTRODUCTION

It has been a great dilemma about the most famous and appreciated effects of effective learning second language. There has been a lot of researches on the effective interaction with the students. What are the common effects related to second language acquisitions? One of the most important core effects are the students’ learning preferences and ways of teaching. What is the unique formula for effective teaching and learning? What students need while learning second language should be appreciated by the instructor in order to provide sustainable and applicable process of knowledge. Many authors and researches agreed about there is no the unique applicable style of teaching which considers the whole class. Different approaches should be applied to each student. Since there has been no enough investigations on what students really need and what they prefer while learning second language we decided to apply the investigation at three private higher educational institutions in order to help our students and the educational policy.  Therefore, our team’s concern was the most preferred teaching styles at three different private institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina: International Burch University, International University of Sarajevo and University of Travnik.

In the beginning, five main teaching styles that Grasha (1996) offered as a pattern are defined: the expert style, the formal authority style, the facilitator style, the personal model style and the delegator style. It was necessary as well to explain what exactly is to be the scope of investigating the teaching styles preferences at private institutions. The aim of project was to clarify preferred teaching strategies (the most and least dominant preferences); the relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity and the relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s gender of the students’ at three private institutions. Our concerns were the students at different departments at International Burch University, International University of Sarajevo and University of Travnik. The investigation was done in May, 2012. The focus group was comprised by 67 (N-67) students from different departments. Data were gathered by the questionnaire including 20 questions based on teaching styles. Further in the study project the findings of the research are pointed out and some suggestions are given in order instructors could tend to match their teaching styles with the students’ teaching styles preferences. It has been concluded that learning about the students’ teaching style preferences is necessary for providing better outcomes.

 

Research’s concern: Three private institutions in Bosnia and Herzegovina

International Burch University (IBU) was established in 2008 in Sarajevo, capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with the goal of presenting a unique opportunity to rethink the very idea of a modern university and formulate a blueprint for the future. Upon the Sarajevo Canton Ministry of Education decision, teaching process was started according to Bologna System of Education (3+2+3) entirely in English language within three faculties. Burch University began with a determined mission: “To advance learning and transform lives”. Now University pursues to adapt successfully to the needs of students by investing in world-class facilities for teaching, learning, research and recreation. With some of the highest quality teaching and research and the broadest spread o academic subjects, we will be able to complete in order being recognized as one of the leading universities in the region. IBU is member of the private Bosna Sema Educational Institutions family, well known on the ground of Bosnia and Herzegovina for the success its students shows participating various educational competitions on federal, country and international level. Bosna Sema Educational Institutions offers the education in seven schools from primary school, through college up to university in cities of Tuzla, Bihac, Zenica and Sarajevo. Vision of the International Burch University is to achieve a high degree of intellectual development and contributions to the economy and society of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and by the application of European standards in the field of higher education to become a leading reference and a respectable institution of higher education both in the region and internationally. The mission of the International Burch University is to provide education, scientific research and training of highly qualified personnel to work in academic and professional fields through the development of modern curricula, and creating an environment to encourage the creative, objective and critical thinking and continuous learning. University with its public activity's aims to improve the community, and through joint projects and cooperation with institutions from the private and public sectors, and international institutions contributes to solving local and global challenges. An important aspect of activity is a friendly academic environment that encourages students to take a leading role in researching their personal and intellectual potential.

International University of Sarajevo was founded by the Foundation for Education Development Sarajevo, IUS was inaugurated in the academic year of 2004-2005. It is located in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The university comprises the Faculty of Engineering and Natural Sciences, the Faculty of Business and Administration and the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences . IUS is open to students from all over the world, and the language of instruction and communication is English. Students without English proficiency will attend a one-year intensive English Language Program. The vision of IUS is to become an internationally approved institution of higher education and research and a centre of excellence and quality through the shared efforts of the founders, academic and administrative staff, students and all stakeholders. IUS aims at becoming the major hub in Balkans for bridging the East to the West as a leading international institution of higher education and research centre with comprehensive excellence whose students are lifelong learners, intercultural competent and well-developed leaders in socio-economic development of societies.  The mission of IUS is to produce science, art, and technology and present it to the benefit of humanity; to educate free-thinking, participating, sharing, open-minded individuals who are open to change and improvement and who have the ability to transform knowledge into values for themselves and the community. IUS, with its identity as an international institution of education and research, will cooperate with universities in the region and in other countries to provide a peaceful and comfortable atmosphere of learning for students from a wide geography. The mission of IUS has six dimensions:Internationalized Higher Education, Integrity with High Ethical Values to perform in society, Interdisciplinary programs, Intercultural Competency, Civic Engagement and Comprehensive Excellence.

The International University of Sarajevo is conceived as a dynamic and a forward-looking institution that intends to achieve a specific character through: education, research and training spanning modern information sciences and administrative disciplines, fundamental and social sciences, humanities, arts, applied sciences and engineering; providing a diverse and interactive curriculum, bridging traditional boundaries between subjects, to educate students for life in a rapidly changing world; emphasizing interdisciplinary studies especially in profiles important for democratic and modem economic development in the region; efficiency, organization and creativity adopted from the American educational system, combined with the breadth and depth of knowledge of the traditional European system; establishing a research institute, thus increasing connections between academic, industrial and service sectors; assuring openness to students and scholars from all over the world, adhering to highest academic values and criteria assuring international accreditation for its diplomas and certificates; establishing academic and scientific co-operation with other universities; creating attractive conditions for visiting academicians interested in studies of regional societies and cultures. Being situated in a city unique for the special character of its heritage, city of peace and understanding where Muslim, Orthodox, Catholic and Jewish traditions have coexisted for centuries despite persistent attempts to destroy this harmony - this university provides exceptional conditions for developing research and educating students in the fields of history of arts and sciences. lt will allow Bosnia, as the meeting place of different civilizations, to help enlarge the knowledge and the values of our global heritage.

International University of TravnikUniverzitet je prvi privatni univerzitet koji je osnovan uz podršku resornog Ministarsva obrazovanja, nauke, kulture i sporta SBK/KSB, a na osnovu zakonskih propisa, civilizacijskih postignuća i prakse savremenog svijeta današnjice, čiji je osnovni cilj da bude generator razvoja Srednjobosanskog kantona i šireg područja, kroz podizanje nivoa kvaliteta visokog obrazovanja kako u srednjobosanskoj regiji tako i na području cijele BiH.is the first private university that was established with support from the line of the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports SBK / KSB, based on legislation, civilizational achievements and practices of the contemporary world of today, whose main goal is to be a generator of development of Central Bosnia Canton and wider through raising the quality of higher education in the Central region and across the country.Voljom osnivača koji su ulaganjem vlastitog kapitala u materijalnim i intelektualnim vrijednostima imali hrabrost donijeti odluke o osnivanju privatnih fakulteta, otvorenWill the founders who are investing their own capital in the material and intellectual values ​​had the courage to make decisions on the establishment of private universities, openjeisnovi pravac i pogled našeg društvanew direction and a view of our societyna privatni oblik osnivanja visokoobrazovnih institucija.the form of private higher education institutions.Osnivači prvog privatnog univerziteta na regiji, dali suThe founders of the first private university in the region, gavepečat i historijsku vrijednost u procesu nastajanja, razvoja i unapređivanja rada privatnih visokoškolskih ustanova u Srednjobosanskom kantonu, Federaciji BiH i Bosni i Hercegovini.seal and historical value in the process of formation, development and improvement of private higher education institutions in Central Bosnia Canton, Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Bosnia and Herzegovina.Univerzitet je ustanova visokog obrazovanja koja ima svojstvo pravnog lica.The University is an institution of higher education is a legal entity.Prvi put je registrovan 2007.It was first registered 2007thgodine od kada svoju djelatnost obavlja u skladu sa Rješenjem Ministarsva obrazovanja, nauke, kulture i sporta SBK/KSB, broj: 03-38-63/07 od 4.years since its activity is performed in accordance with the decision of the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sports SBK / KSB, No. 03-38-63/07 of 47.7th2007.2007thgodine.year.Upisan je u Registar visokoškolskih ustanova SBK/KSB pod brojem 10, na stranici 00010 od akademske 2007/08.Entered in the Register of higher education institutions SBK / KSB under the number 10 on page 00 010 of the academic 2007/08.godine.year.Univerzitet u Travniku (u daljem tekstu Univerzitet) obavlja osnovne akademske studije prvog ciklusa – dodiplomske, studije drugog ciklusa – magistarske studije i studije trećeg ciklusa – doktorske studije.University of Travnik (hereinafter University) conducts basic academic studies first cycles - undergraduate, second cycle studies - master studies and the third cycle - doctoral studies.  Historijat razvoja Univerziteta može se podijeliti u dva perioda, i to: period od osnivanja do integracije Univerziteta i period nakon integracije Univerziteta.History of development of the University can be divided into two periods, namely: the founding of the University and to the integration period after the integration of the University.

Literature review

Students learn in many ways, by seeing and hearing, reflecting and acting, reasoning logically and intuitively, memorizing and visualizing. Teaching methods also vary. Some instructors lecture, others demonstrate or discuss, some focus on rules and others on examples, some emphasize memory and others understanding. How much a given student learns in a class is governed in part by that student’s native ability and prior preparation but also by the compatibility of his or her characteristic approach to learning and the instructor’s characteristic approach to teaching.

The ways in which an individual characteristically acquires, retains, and retrieves information are collectively termed the individual’s learning style.  Learning styles have been extensively discussed in the educational psychology literature (Claxton & Murrell 1987; Schmeck 1988) and specifically in the context of language learning by Oxford and her colleagues (Oxford 1990; Oxford et al. 1991; Wallace and Oxford 1992; Oxford & Ehrman 1993), and over 30 learning style assessment instruments have been developed in the past three decades (Guild & Garger 1985; Jensen 1987).

Serious mismatches may occur between the learning styles of students in a class and the teaching style of the instructor (Felder & Silverman 1988; Lawrence 1993; Oxford et al. 1991; Schmeck 1988), with unfortunate potential consequences. The students tend to be bored and inattentive in class, do poorly on tests, get discouraged about the course, and may conclude that they are no good at the subject of the course and give up (Felder & Silverman 1988; Godleski 1984; Oxford et al. 1991; Smith & Renzulli 1984). Instructors, confronted by low test grades, unresponsive or hostile classes, poor attendance, and dropouts, may become overly critical of their students (making things even worse) or begin to question their own competence as teachers.

 

A multi - style approach to foreign language education

Studies show that matching teaching styles to learning styles can significantly enhance academic achievement, student attitudes, and student behavior at the primary and secondary school level (Griggs & Dunn 1984; Smith & Renzulli 1984), at the college level (Brown 1978; Charkins et al. 1985), and specifically in foreign language instruction (Oxford et al. 1991; Wallace & Oxford 1992). This is not to say that the best thing one can do for one’s students is to use their preferred modes of instruction exclusively. Students will inevitably be called upon to deal with problems and challenges that require the use of their less preferred modes, and so should regularly be given practice in the use of those modes (Hunt 1971; Friedman and Alley 1984; Cox 1988).  However, Smith and Renzulli (1984) caution that stress, frustration, and burnout may occur when students are subjected over extended periods of time to teaching styles inconsistent with their learning style preferences.

A point no educational psychologist would dispute is that students learn more when information is presented in a variety of modes than when only a single mode is used. The point is supported by a research study carried out several decades ago, which concluded that students retain 10 percent of what they read, 26 percent of what they hear, 30 percent of what they see, 50 percent of what they see and hear, 70 percent of what they say, and 90 percent of what they say as they do something (Stice 1987).What must be done to achieve effective foreign language learning is to balance instructional methods, somehow structuring the class so that all learning styles are simultaneously or at least sequentially accommodated (Oxford 1990). The approach recommended in this paper is designed to meet this goal.The prospect of tailoring language instruction to somehow accommodate many different learning styles might seem forbidding to instructors. This reaction is understandable. Teaching styles are made up of the methods and approaches with which instructors feel most comfortable; if they tried to change to completely different approaches they would be forced to work entirely with unfamiliar, awkward, and uncomfortable methods, probably with disastrous results from the students ‘point of view. Fortunately, instructors who wish to address a wide variety of learning styles need not make drastic changes in their instructional approach.

 

Definitions of Teaching Styles

Cook (1991) described “style” as the element of fashion and changeability in teaching. Sternberg (1997) illustrated style as our preferred ways of using the abilities that we possess. Reinsmith (1992; 1994) describes teaching style as the teacher’s presence and the nature and quality of our encounter with students. According to Conti and Welborn (1986), teaching style is a label associated with various identifiable sets of classroom teaching behaviours, no matter what is being taught. Grasha (1996) viewed that teaching style is a particular pattern of needs, beliefs, and behaviours that teachers manifest in the classroom and that style is multidimensional and affects how teachers present information, interact with students, and manage coursework along with mentoring. Grasha (1996) classified teaching styles into five groups: the Expert Style, Formal Authority Style, Personal Model Style, Facilitator Style, and Delegator Style.Grasha (1996) asserted that in the expert teaching style, the instructor is considered the expert by the students with the necessary knowledge and expertise. The instructor gives the information needed through a brief explanation followed by a demonstration. A short amount of time is spent on instruction with this teaching style, but it is often not sensitive to the students' individual needs. Expert teaching can also be confusing to some students because occasionally, the underlying methods used to find answers may be unclear.Grasha (1996) stated that instructors who use the formal authority teaching style set up learning goals, expectations and rules for the students. This style focuses on the correct or established way of doing things and provides students with a structure from which they learn. This style is similar to the expert teaching style in that the instructor controls all or most of the decision-making. Although the expectations from the instructor are clearer, relying heavily on this teaching style alone requires a lot of preparation time for the teacher and tends to be inflexible to students' individual needs.Grasha (1996) asserted that personal modelling requires the instructor to guide and direct students by showing how things are done then encouraging students to observe before copying the instructor. Although this style is useful in that it is clear, it can inhibit learning for some students if the instructor is not open to alternative methods of doing things.Grasha (1996) stated that the facilitator style of teaching guides and directs students through questions, suggestions and by encouraging students to make informed choices. The goal in this teaching style is to encourage initiative and personal responsibility. Instructors which use this teaching style work with students as a consultant, providing support as they learn. This style is flexible because the instructor is open to alternative options, but it can be time-consuming and is not ideal for large groups.Grasha (1996) asserted that the delegator teaching style is focused on encouraging students to learn independently. Students that learn under this teaching style work alone on projects, either individually or in teams. The instructor does not guide or suggest but is available should the students need more instruction or information. Although this style is ideal for teaching students to be independent learners, students that lack the confidence to work on their own or ask questions may not respond well.

 

The Methodology of study

1.      Statement of the problem

Teaching and learning styles have been investigated from many different perspectives by the practitioners in the field. While investigating language learning preferences there emerged the need to investigate what students need while learning foreign language. Second language acquisition is an intriguing field and researchers always wanted to reach into the core problems when it comes to second language acquisition. Therefore, many researchers agree that there are many things that influence language learning and the most common influences are related to attitude that the learners have towards language, input that the learner receives while studying foreign language, interaction with the interlocutors and output, the language that learner produces in the interaction with other people. Over the years, due to the complexities involved in the acquisition and learning of a language, there has been developed a debate regarding the most appropriate approach or methodology that should be used in language teaching. However, there has been less investigation when it comes to what students need and prefer in terms of teaching style of their professors. Therefore, this research will deal with this issue into details and shed some lights on what students actually prefer when it comes to professors teaching methodology, styles and attitudes in the classroom.

2.      Research objectives

In order to achieve the research objectives, this paper intends to determine:

1. Preferred teaching strategies (the most and least dominant preferences);

2. The relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity;

3. The relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s gender.

This research addresses the following research questions:

1.   What are dominant preferred teaching strategies among students at IUS, BURCH and TRAVNIK Universities?

2.   What are the differences between preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity?

3.   What are the differences between preferred teaching styles and student’s gender?

Based on research questions 2, and 3, the hypotheses of the research are:

H1: There are significant differences in student’s preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity.

H2: There are significant differences in student’s preferred teaching styles and student’s gender.

3. Research design/conceptual framework

Language teaching theory is basically derived from educational theories. According to Stern (1990) there are two decisive variables that establish and manipulate the language teaching process. The language teacher and the language learner are the key factors that influence language acquisition. The two characteristics of language teaching are related to educational attitude in language learning. Therefore, teacher performance in the language classroom and the language learner characteristics will inevitably lead to success or failure in the learning process.

4. Good Language-Learner (GLL) Model

Naiman et al, (1978) developed a model of good language learner. In this model the various variables interact at varying degrees and at different levels to produce a good or bad language learner. There are five categories regarding these variables. Three variables are independent (teaching, learner and learning context) and two are dependent variables (learning and outcomes). 

In the teaching process, the teacher must be conscious of how all these factors interact if the language learning process has to be successful. The language teacher in this case plays a decisive role in understanding understand and specifying each of these variables in relation to the specific components under each, in order to produce a good language learner. According to Naiman et al, (1978), each of these five variables has few different independent influences or characteristics. Figure 1.1 represents a summary of the process of language acquisition and different variables that play a key role for successful language acquisition.

    TEACHING

Materials

Syllabus

Methodology

Resources

Proficiency

Listening

Speaking

Reading

Writing

Errors

Interlanguage

Affective reactions

                                                             LEARNING                                      OUTCOME

Unconscious process

Generalization

Transfer

Simplification

Conscious process

Strategies

 

  THE LEARNER

Age

Intelligence

Aptitude

Resources

Motivation

Attitude

Personality

Cognitive Style

 

   THE CONTEXT

 

Opportunities

for use

Social milieu

 

Figure 1.1 Good Language-Learner (GLL) Model (Adapted from Skehan, 1989:4)

 

5. Subjects and Procedures

Participants for this study were students from International University of Sarajevo, International Burch University and Travnik University. One portion of the students from IUS attended English Language School during the data collection. The purpose of this department is to prepare students to have basic academic knowledge in English language so that they can proceed and attend the classes at their respective study program. The participants were also students attending ENG101 IUS at the time of data collection. IUS is a multiethnic and multicultural institution of higher learning with more than 140 academic and administrative staff and about 1200 students. The first rational behind choosing this institution of higher learning is its multiethnic and multicultural environment as this study itself aims to determine the relationship between language teaching strategies and ethnicity. The second rational behind choosing this university is English language as a medium of learning and teaching. The participants were also from International Burch University which was established in 2008 in Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with the goal of presenting a unique opportunity to rethink the very idea of a modern university and formulate a blueprint for the future.  Students from Travnik University participated in this research as well. The three institutions bare the similar if not the same characteristics and play an important part in English language learning in Bosnia. The procedures for the distribution of the questionnaire took place during the usual classes and were completed by all the students attending the classes at three abovementioned institutions.

6. Instrument

The instrument used in this study was designed by the researchers in order to meet the requirements of the research questions and hypothesis stated in the research. The questionnaire was composed of 20 statements, with a rating scale from one to five for each one of them. Students answered them as they applied to their study of English on a 5-point scale, Likert scale.

7. Data collection

This research was carried out at three private educational institutions called International University of Sarajevo, International University of Sarajevo and International University of Travnik. They are located in Travnik and Sarajevo. The research was done within the spring semester 2011/2012. The participants of the survey were distributed the questionnaire that consisted of twenty questions. They were also informed about the purpose of the research and later on about the results. It was completed within 20 minutes.

8. Data Analysis

Before collecting the data students were asked permission to participate in this research and they agreed to do it. With this instrument learners identified the most preferredteaching styles from their point of view, the relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity and the relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s gender. The questionnaire was composed by 20 statements, with a rating scale from one to five for each one of them. Students answered them as they applied to their study of English on a 5-point scale, Likert scale.

Rating Scale

Strongly agree

Agree

Undecided

Disagree

Strongly disagree

5

4

3

2

1

 

After that, all the results were analyzed by categorizing them into according to the value preferences and presented in tables shown in the findings.

9. Analysis of research findings

9.1.Research validity

Table 1.  Case Processing Summary

                                                

 

Table 1. which shows validity in research brings us to the concluding that all 67 responders accessed very seriously and responded each question. Therefore, the survey is 100% valid.

 

9.2. Descriptive of findings

Table 2. Descriptive Statistics

In Table 2. are presented responders who shared their attitudes using the Likert scale type of questions. The responders answered about: sex, age, nationality, preferred  teaching style, department and year of study.

 

Table 2. shows followings:

   When it comes go the age of responders we can say that the responders are pretty young (the average is 21). The youngest responder was at the age of 17, while the oldest was at the age of 30.

   The focus group was comprised by 67 (N-67) students from different departments. There was 40 males and 27 female students.

  When it comes to the nationality, the responders were from 2 nationalities, Turkish and Bosnian,17 Bosnian and 50 Turkish.

  The results from the table 2. point out that the most preferred teaching style by all students was the expert style. Second preferred style was the facilitator style, the third was the delegator, the personal style was the fourth preferred style and the least preferred style was the formal/authority style.

 

9.3. Correlation Coefficients

 

Table 3.  Correlations

9.4. Research questions

This research addressed the following research questions:

 

9.4.1. Research question 1

What are dominant preferred teaching strategies among students at IUS, BURCH and TRAVNIK Universities?

 The results from the table 2 and 3. point out that the most preferred teaching style by all students was the expert style. Second preferred style was the  facilitator style, the third was the delegator, the personal style was the fourth preferred style and the least preferred style was the formal/authority style.

 

9.4.2 Research question 2

What are the differences between preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity?

 

Table 4.  Students' teaching styles preferences according to student’s ethnicity

 

According to the results, the most preferred teaching style by Turkish responders is the expert style as well as for Bosnian responders. The second preferred teaching style by Turkish students is the facilitator model way of teaching, whereas for Bosnian responders it is the delegator style. The third teaching style which is preferred by Turkish responders is the personal model way of teaching styles. For Bosnian responders the third preferred teaching way is the facilitator. The fourth preferred style for Turkish responders is the delegator model, while for Bosnian responders it is the personal model. The significant data is that the least preferred teaching styles for Bosnian and Turkish responders is the formal/authority style of teaching.

Therefore, we can conclude that the most preferred teaching style by responders from both nations is the same (the expert style) as well as the least preferred teaching style is the formal /authority style. In the Table 3., it is shown that the second hypothesis which claimed that there are significant differences in student’s preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity was confirmed.

 

9.4.3 Research question 3

What are the differences between preferred teaching styles and student’s gender?

 

Table 5.  Students' teaching styles preferences according to students' gender

 

According to the results from the Table 5., the most preferred teaching style by male responders is the expert style as well as for female responders. The second preferred teaching style by male responders is the facilitator model way of teaching, whereas for female responders it is the facilitator style as well. The third teaching style which is preferred by male and female responders is the delegator style. The fourth preferred style for male and female responders it is the personal model. The least preferred teaching style for male and female responders is the formal/authority style of teaching.  Therefore, we can conclude that both males and females prefer the same teaching styles. Therefore, the second hypothesis which claimed that there are significant differences in students’ preferred teaching styles and student’s gender was rejected (shown in Table 3.).

 

Conclusion

The study was done amongstudents (N=67) at three different private institutions: International Burch University, International University of Sarajevo and University of Travnik. The focus group was comprised by 67 (N-67) students from different departments. There was 40 male and 27 female students, ranging ages between 17 and 30 years old. 50 students come from Turkey; whereas 17 students are from Bosnia and Herzegovina. The instrument composing of 20 questions which was used in this study was designed by the researchers in order to investigated the preferred teaching strategies (the most and least dominant preferences); the relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity and the relationship between preferred teaching styles and student’s gender of the students’ at three private institutions.There were two hypothesis determined as H1: 'There are significant differences in student’s preferred teaching styles and student’s ethnicity' and H2: 'There are significant differences in student’s preferred teaching styles and student’s gender'. The first hypothesis was confirmed, whereas the second hypothesis was rejected.

Students have shared their experiences and attitudes about their teaching styles. According to the results, the most preferred teaching style by Turkish responders is the expert style as well as for Bosnian responders. The second preferred teaching style by Turkish students is the facilitator model way of teaching, whereas for Bosnian responders it is the delegator style. The third teaching style which is preferred by Turkish responders is the personal model way of teaching styles. For Bosnian responders the third preferred teaching way is the facilitator one. The fourth preferred style for Turkish responders is the delegator model, while for Bosnian responders it is the personal model. The significant data is that the least preferred teaching styles for Bosnian and Turkish responders is the formal/authority style of teaching. Therefore, we can conclude that the most preferred teaching style by responders from both nations is the same (the expert style) as well as the least preferred the formal /authority style. Interesting finding was that both male and females prefer the same teaching styles. The most preferred teaching style by male and female responders is the expert style. The second preferred teaching style by male as well as female responders is the facilitator model way of teaching. The third teaching style which is preferred by male and female responders is the delegator style. The fourth preferred style for both genders responders is the personal model. The least preferred teaching style for male and female responders is the formal/authority style of teaching. Our suggestion is a multi - style approach to foreign language education. Matching teaching styles to learning styles and to students' teaching styles preferences can significantly enhance academic achievement, students' attitudes and student behavior in any higher educational institution.

We heartily believe and hope the study and the results of the study will contribute and benefit to the academic community, employees at International Burch University, International University of Sarajevo, University of Travnik and the instructors as well.

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