AWEJ Volume.4 Number.2, 2013
Age Factor and Learning English as a Foreign Language at the Elementary and Intermediate Levels at Jarash Province Schools in Jordan
Ahmad Fayez Mutlaq Al-Zu’be
English Language Department, Faculty of Science and Humanities
Ghaat, Majmaah University, Saudi Arabia
The main aim of this study is to investigate the consequence of age on studying English at the elementary and intermediate levels at Jarash province schools in Jordan. The process of teaching English as a foreign language has always been a challenging task, especially in the Arab countries. English being extremely important for technological as well as social development, its teaching, particularly in Arab countries, has captured the attention of many researchers. In most of the Arab countries, English learning begins at the elementary and Intermediate school level; however, in spite of the good overall planning, qualified teachers, integrated textbooks, and a purposive curriculum, the expected achievement is still below the expectations. The study established that learning English as a foreign language is affected by age since early exposure to various language instructions constantly ensures improved outcome in performance. The results illustrate that English learning at an earlier age is one of the most important factors that improve the skills of various English language learners, save for other variables such as motivation to learn, learning opportunities, attitude, and individual differences.
Keywords: English as a foreign language, Critical Period Hypothesis, English learning, Proficiency.