Date of Award

12-1-2010

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Applied Linguistics

First Advisor

Charkova, Krassimira

Abstract

This study examined issues related to the development of English as a major for gifted students in Vietnam and current and former students' perceptions of the program. The data were collected through an online survey and analyzed through descriptive statistics in order to identify patterns of agreement and disagreement between two groups of 60 current and 30 former gifted students. The results showed that the majority of the participants came from well-educated families and that family influences and traditions had a great impact on their choice of the program. The major reasons for the program selection were identified as its high prestige and students' interest in learning English as a tool for career advancement. Based on current and former students' evaluations, their initial expectations were met as the majority of them expressed satisfaction with the quality of the English education at the school and appreciated its usefulness for their further study and career. The only area of slight dissatisfaction concerned the lack of opportunities to acquire native like pronunciation. The findings were interpreted in view of their implications for the maintenance and further development of the specialized English major program in Vietnam.

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