A qualitative exploration of Bangladeshi STEM graduates’ English speaking
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English speaking skills especially in the ESOL context like Bangladesh, STEM graduates are facing many challenges in terms of English speaking. Many of them are not proficient to speak in English well as they face many challenges. That is why this study aims to explore the challenges and identify the solutions to reduce the speaking challenges of STEM graduates in Bangladesh. For collecting data, the researcher of this study took an individual English-speaking test of 6 STEM graduates, following the IELTS speaking module, conducted observation, and semi-structured interviews for in-depth analysis. The results of this study revealed that most STEM graduates’ English speaking skill was of the “limited users” category which was proven based on their speaking test. The reason for being “limited users” in English speaking they face many challenges such as psychological, social, linguistic, and instructional. As they are from Bangla medium background students become nervous and less confident while speaking in English that falls psychological problems. On the other hand, not having an appropriate environment to practice speaking English and peers' negative responses are some of the social problems they face. Linguistic problems include lack of vocabulary knowledge and correct pronunciation while engineering teachers’ negative feedbacks, using Bangla instead of English in the classrooms are instrumental problems. However, STEM graduates try to overcome the challenges by using various affective and cognitive strategies. The fact is, in the modern era speaking ability in English is required in every sector. As a result, English speaking skills are most important especially in the ESOL context for STEM graduates who want to engage in jobs in international organisations as well as have a desire to go abroad for higher studies related to STEM background, accordingly the teachers of STEM should emphasise on English speaking proficiency of STEM students.