Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 12. Number1  March 2021                                                Pp.19-27

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Teaching English Speaking Online versus Face-to-Face: Saudi Students’ Experience during
the COVID-19 Pandemic

Abdulrahman Alzamil
Department of Foreign Languages
Taif University, Saudi Arabia


Received: 12/14/2020             Acceoted: 2/25/2021              Published:3/24/2021


In March 2020, schools in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia were suspended. Online learning became a substitute for traditional face-to-face learning. This study addresses the implications of this shift for the attitudes of university-level English majored Saudi students taking a listening and speaking course. The study investigated the students’ attitudes towards: a) the importance of speaking in English; b) teachers use of emails to communicate their feedback on students’ English-speaking tasks; c) online teaching of English speaking; and d) online learning and teaching of the English language. The data collection tool was a 21-item questionnaire. The participants were 18 second-year male Saudi students who were studying English at a Saudi university. The findings showed that the participants: a) had positive attitudes towards the importance of speaking English; b) appreciated the benefits that online learning offers, but felt it could not replace face-to-face learning.
Keywords: COVID-19 pandemic, face-to-face learning, online learning, Saudi EFL students, teaching speaking

Cite as: Alzamil, A. (2021).Teaching English Speaking Online versus Face-to-Face: Saudi Students’ Experience during the COVID-19 Pandemic.
Arab World English Journal, 12 (1) 19-27.


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Received: 12/14/2020 
Accepted: 12/14/2020 
Published: 3/24/2021

Dr. Abdulrahman Alzamil is an associate professor of second language acquisition of syntax in the Department of Foreign Languages at Taif University in Saudi Arabia. His research interests lie primarily in the area of generative second language acquisition of morphosyntactic and semantic properties.  ORCiD: