Chapter 3. The development of speaking proficiency of LDS missionaries

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In this study we explore the levels of speaking proficiency attained by returned missionaries after spending sixteen to twenty-two months abroad, where they had daily opportunities to speak the languages of the countries to which they were assigned. The missionaries tested for this report speak a total of seven different languages learned primarily during their missionary service. We first seek to describe the level of proficiency achieved by these missionaries as measured by standardized Oral Proficiency Interviews, and then to describe in broader terms what kinds of real-world communication tasks these returned missionaries are prepared to accomplish. We also compare the abilities of these returned missionaries with the abilities of non-returned-missionary undergraduate language majors.


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