SKRIPSI Jurusan Sastra Inggris - Fakultas Sastra UM, 2017

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The Use of Top-down and Bottom-up Strategies to Enhance the Listening Comprehension of the Eighth Graders of SMP Negeri 4 Malang

Evi Rahmadhani




Rahmadhani, Evi. 2017. The Use of Top-down and Bottom-up Strategies to Enhance the Listening Comprehension of the Eighth Graders of SMP Negeri 4 Malang. Thesis. Department of English, Faculty of Letters, Universitas Negeri Malang. Advisors: (I) Francisca Maria Ivone, M.A., Ph.D  (II) Nunung Suryati, M.Ed., Ph.D


Key Words: top-down strategy, bottom-up strategy, listening comprehension

Listening comprehension is perceived as a complex process of understanding the meaning of spoken texts. It is crucial for language learners to develop the listening skill. However, listening activity is rarely practiced in the formal learning contexts. Therefore, many students find comprehending listening texts difficult. The students’ inability to comprehend listening texts was also observed in SMP Negeri 4 Malang. The students had difficulties in understanding unfamiliar words, sentence structures, and the speaker’s accent. In order to address these issues, the researcher designed learning activities by combining top-down and bottom-up listening strategies. In top-down strategy, the students use their  background knowledge to predict the content of the listening texts, whereas, bottom-up strategy requires the students to use their linguistics knowledge to recognize words used in the listening texts.

The research design of this study was collaborative action research covering four stages: planning, implementing, observing, and reflecting. This study used curriculum 2013. The subjects of this study were 27 students of class VIII I of SMP Negeri 4 Malang. The instruments used to collect the required data were questionnaires, interview guide, listening tests, observation sheets, and field notes. There were two kinds of data that the researcher collected: the students’ listening performances and the students’ response towards the implementation of the strategies. This study was considered successful because more than 85% of the students could gain 20 points improvement in the final test score and over 70% of the students showed their positive response towards the use of top-down and bottom-up strategies.

The finding of this study revealed that 96% of the students could improve above 20 points in their final test score. This means that the first criterion of success had been achieved. However, 4% or only one student failed to improve his score up to 20 points in the final test. Actually, the test scores of this student (4%) increased 9 points from 59 in the first listening test to 68 in the final listening test. Besides, the listening tests score of the student improved from the first meeting to the fourth meeting. It proved that the student’s listening skill also improved but he did not improve as fast as the other 96% students. Moreover, there was 85% students who showed positive responses towards the use of top-down and bottom-up strategies. This means that the second criterion of success had also been achieved.


Based on the research findings, the researcher provides two suggestions to the English teacher and future researchers. The English teacher is suggested to implement the strategies using the procedure designed in this study. Furthermore, future researchers are suggested to combine the use of top-down and bottom-up strategies with some word games such as crossword, scrabble, and puzzle.