Refocusing on Listening Skills and Note-Taking: Imperative Skills for University Students’ Learning in an L2 Environment


  • Festus Uwakwe Ngwoke University of Nigeria
  • Walter Ugwuagbo University of Nigeria
  • Basil Okwudilichukwu Nwokolo University of Nigeria



listening skill, note-taking, language learning, university students


Listening as the foremost language skill remains an indispensable language skill in human communication, language teaching, and learning. Its indispensability lies in its being the pillar upon which other language skills are built (Obiweluozo & Melefa, 2013). Note-taking as a post-listening activity is a very crucial step for remembering what has been captured through listening since information retention lasts shortly. Irrespective of the glaring importance of listening skills and note-taking strategies to language learning, university students from very common observations have continued to neglect these skills, hence the poor performance in other language skills and other learning activities. For this reason, this paper is set to investigate the importance of listening skills for effective language teaching and learning of university students, examine to what extent listening skills have been neglected/overlooked by university students, and explore the positive effects of note-taking strategies on listening skills as well as language learning. The data for this study will be elicited from first-year undergraduates of University of Nigeria, Nsukka using a well-structured questionnaire with 31questionnaire items based on the aspects of listening skills and note-taking strategies. The paper shall be descriptively analysed and findings exposed with proper recommendations.

Author Biographies

Festus Uwakwe Ngwoke, University of Nigeria

Department of English and Literary Studies

Walter Ugwuagbo, University of Nigeria

Department of English and Literary Studies

Basil Okwudilichukwu Nwokolo, University of Nigeria

Department of English and Literary Studies


Asemota, H. E. (2015). Nature, importance and practice of listening skill. British Journal of Education, 3(7), 27-33. Retrieved 28/12/2020.

Bird, D.E. (1953) “Teaching Listening Comprehension” in Journal of Communications, 3, 127-130.

Brown, G. (1978). Listening comprehension. ETIC Occasional Paper: The Teaching of Comprehension. The British Council.

Canpolat, M., Kuzu, S., Yıldırım, B.,& Canpolat, S. (2015). Active listening strategies of academically successful university students. Eurasian Journal of Educational Research, 60,163-180. https://doi:10.14689/ejer.2015.60.10.

Chung, H. and Ahn, H. (2005). Does the role of contextual cues vary with L2 listening proficiency level? English Teaching, 60(4), 3-21.

DeZure, D., Kaplan, M. & Deerman, M. A. Research on student note-taking: implications faculty and graduate student instructors. Researchgate,, 18/5/2021.

Field, J. (2008). Listening in the language classroom. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Guo, N. & Wills, R. (2006). An investigation of factors influencing English listening comprehension and possible measures for improvement. A paper presented at the AARE Annual conference. Parratta, 2006. Retrieved: 18/5/2021.

Graham, S. (2006). Listening comprehension: the learners’ perspective. System. 34(2), 165-182.

Hamouda, A. (2013). An investigation of listening comprehension problems encountered by Saudi students in the EL listening classroom. International Journal of Academic Research in Progressive Education and Development, 2(2), 113-155.

Hassan, A. S. (2000). Learners’ perception of listening comprehension problems. Language, culture and curriculum, 13(2), 137-153.

Hayati, A. M. & Jalilifar, A. (2009). The impact of note-taking strategies on listening comprehension of EFL learners. English Language Teaching Journal, 2(1). 101-111.

Howe, M. J. (1970). Note-taking strategy, review and long-term retention of verbal information. Journal of Educational Research, 63(6), 285-291.

Kumar, F. N. and Shankar, L. R. (2021) The importance of listening skill in language acquisition- the problems experienced & strategies adopted in teaching listening skill, International Journal of Innovative Research, 7(12), 309-314.

Lee, C. N. (1986) “Improving listening skills: some strategies and materials” in Journal Pengajaram dam Pembelajaram Bahasa 3, 26-37.

Low, J. (2015). Tips for successful listening. Retrieved:, 28/12/2020..

Oxford, R.L. (1993). Research update on teaching L2 listening. System, 21(2), 205-211.

Peterson, P. W. (2001). Skills and strategies for proficient listening. In M. Celce Murcia (Ed.), Teaching English as a Second or Foreign Language, (69-85). Heinle &Heinle.

Rivers, W.M. & Temperley, M.S. (1978). A practical guide to the teaching of English as a second language. Oxford University Press.

Rost, M. (2002). Teaching and researching listening. Longman.

Rixon, S. (1986). Developing Listening skills. Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

Scott, J. H. (2001). Effective Listening and Note-Taking, California State University.

Sheerin, S. (1987). “Listening Comprehension: Teaching or Testing”?, ELT Journal, 41, 126-131.

Sheth, T. D. & Chauhan N. (2015) Receptive skills-Listening and Reading: A sin qua non for Engineers. International Journal of English Language, Literature and Humanities. 3(3). 222-228.

Underwood, M. (1989). Teaching listening. Longman.

Ur, P. (2007). Teaching listening comprehension. Cambridge University Press.

Vandergrift, L. (1999). Facilitating second language listening comprehension: acquiring successful strategies ELT Journal, 53, 168-176.

Vandergrift, L. (2004). Listening to learn or learn to listen? Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 24, 3-25.

Wallece, T., Stariha, W. E. & Walberg, H. J. (2004). Teaching speaking, listening and writing. International Academy of Education. Retrieved 18/5/2021.

Xie, Q. (2002) “the relationship of note taking to listening comprehension in the English Placement test” Retrospective theses dissertations. Iowa State University. 16155., 28/12/2020.

Yii, S. Y. (2008). Listening strategies and problems in comprehending English lectures, B.Ed. (TESL) Thesis of Faculty of Cognitive Sciences and Human Development, University of Malaysia, Sarawak. Retrieved from,18/12/2020.

Yildiz, N. & Albay, M. (2015) The role of listening skills in developing communicative competence: A case study in the language classroom. International Journal of Social Sciences & Educational Studies, (2), 4-11.

Yildirim, S. & Yildirim, O. (2016). The importance of listening in language learning and listening comprehension problems experienced by language learners: A literature review. Abant İzzet Baysal Üniversitesi Eğitim Fakültesi Dergisi, 16(4), 2095-2110.

Yousofia, N., Sa’eedianb A., and Khaledi, E., (2014). “Headway” or “Tactics for listening? Which one enhances listening comprehension of Kurdish EFL learners? International Conference on Current Trends in ELT- Procedia Social and Behavioural Sciences. Retrieved from› article › pii › pdf. 5/11/2019.