An analysis of the English needs of Omani students on vocational and technical courses with implications for the design of foundation year English language programmes
The study provides a methodological framework to inform the design of Foundation Language Programmes (FYP) for students at Colleges of Technology in the Sultanate of Oman. It also provides a framework for embedding the Implementation Needs Analysis in the NA from the outset of the process. The methodology applied by this study is intended to be generalizable to further studies in similar TESOL/EAP contexts around the globe. The current study contributes to future research by reviewing and synthesizing as much of the literature and highlighting the main developments in NA, presenting the prospective reader with a comprehensive overview of the theory of NA. The study itself also contributes to research informed NA by adding to the knowledge base concerning effective, contextualized, implementable needs analysis and by making the data and findings of this study available for public scrutiny and for replication in other contexts. Six groups of participants were approached for the purpose of data collection. The needs were analysed by means of questionnaires, interviews, classroom observations and genre analysis. Data were analysed qualitatively and quantitatively. The study finds that triangulation of resources and instruments is important in order to obtain a tangible picture of the different types of needs in question. The study findings make recommendations for the FYP at the levels of purpose, learners' needs, underpinning principles, objectives and content, discusses potential implementation issues in context and draws out implications for needs analyses of such programmes more generally.