The Effect on Learning Objectives and Outcomes of Students’ Inability to Develop Language Competencies for Appropriate Communication at the Undergraduate Level

Casimir Adjoe, Rosemary Kimani


The ability to communicate is a skill needed for beneficial learning outcomes. It is likewise needed for functioning in our connected world and spaces. However, undergraduate writing still gives the impression of poor English writing skills and inadequate communication. The paper takes a linguistic ethnography approach to examine the effects of poor English writing skills on the learning objectives and communication of undergraduate students. Using a random sampling of 37 examination scripts of Communication Studies students and their analysis through a revised version of Bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives, the study suggests that poor English writing skills and the inability to communicate are likely among the effects of the inability of undergraduate students to acquire competence at the comprehension, analysis, synthesis, and evaluation tasks needed to enable them compose knowledge and meaningful messages as well as to communicate them. The study, therefore, suggests the need for investigating practical steps that can be taken to assist students with poor English writing competencies and skills to access knowledge and be able to produce knowledge in their learning situations, and further still, be able to communicate their knowledge as competently as possible without an overemphasis on grammatical correctness as the goal.

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