A Short-note on Audio-lingual Method and its Characteristics

Read a short note on – Audio-lingual Method with its characteristics – Advantages and Disadvantages

The Audio-lingual method found some pace in the USA toward the end of 1950s. This method has a history. The two world wars caused innovations in the approaches in teaching of English as a 2nd language, especially in the United States.

These innovations were a kind of modifications in the Direct Method. With the entry of the US into the Second World War, language teaching underwent a further change owing to the new needs and objectives.

It was during this war that US officials realized the need of personnel who were fluent in major foreign languages and who could do the job of translators and interpreters. To reach this goal, there was the urgent need of special training program.

As a result, Army Specialized Training Program was initiated in 1942 with the special objective to train fluent speakers of foreign languages in the shortest possible time. The program was also known as Army Method.

The initial point of Audio-lingual Method was also grammar and pronunciation by oral drills and practice. This method had strong connection with the Structural linguistics.

Features of Audio-Lingual Method –

  • The teacher treat all the four skills equally and teach them separately.
  • In audio-lingual syllabus, dialogue has the dominant role to play.
  • There is much focus on Language Laboratory as an important teaching aid.
  • Like Direct Method, there is no importance of Mother Tongue.

Techniques used in Audio – Lingual Method –

The teacher teaches the four skills in the following order – Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. Dialogues with useful vocabulary and common structures of communication always play a major role.

Aims of Audio – Lingual Method –

  • Main focus is on oral learning. So aim is to enhance listening and speaking skills.
  • Main aim is to achieve development of communication skills.
  • Practice is more important in learning foreign language. So the main focus is on this aspect.

Advantages of A-L Method –

  • This method is teacher-dominated. Teacher’s role is very important.
  • Main focus is on Listening and Speaking skills.
  • The method can be used for a larger group of learners.
  • This method demands pattern practice, drilling and memorization.

Disadvantages of Audio-lingual method –

  • No heed on communicative competence.
  • Main focus is on language form, not on meaning.
  • The learner assumes a passive role during the learning process.
  • There is no equal focus on all the four skills.

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