Adequacy and Suitability of Recommended French Language Textbook for Developing Communicative Proficiency in Nigerian Junior Secondary School Students

Abstract:

This study identified the types of communication activities presented in three recommended French Language textbooks used in Nigerian junior secondary schools. It examined the quality and the quantity of communication activities and exercises in the textbooks and their relevance in achieving communicative proficiency in students. The descriptive survey design was used. Three of the five mostly used recommended French textbooks for Nigerian junior secondary schools were purposively selected for the study. One instrument, “Inventory on Textbook Communication Activities” (ITCA) was used to collect data on the quantity, quality and relevance of the communication activities and exercises in the books for achieving communicative proficiency in students. Data collected were analyzed using descriptive statistics. Findings showed that communication activities such as choice in language form, choice in language function, and questioning were maximally used in the three textbooks closely followed by discussion activities, dialogues and pair work activities. The communication activities in the textbooks were however considered inadequate for developing communicative proficiency in students as they were found to be less than 50% of recommended activities in the Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) class. The activities presented were nevertheless found to be suitable for use, in terms of quality, in the Nigerian junior secondary school communicative French class as depicted by a high index of 73%. Like the communication activities, the communication exercises were found to be inadequate with a low index of 44%; the quality of the exercises was found to be average with an index of 53%. The study concluded that recommended French textbooks could be used to achieve communicative proficiency in Junior Secondary School students only if more qualitative communication activities and exercises were incorporated.