Fostering Autonomous Learning in Oral English Through Role Play: An Exploration in Course Setting


  • Rui Li Universiti Putra Malaysia, Malaysia,
  • Fazilah Razali Corresponding author, Universiti Putra Malaysia, Malaysia,
  • Lilliati Ismail Universiti Putra Malaysia, Malaysia,
  • Mohd Mokhtar Muhamad Universiti Putra Malaysia, Malaysia,
  • Xiaolan Ma Mulan Primary School, China,


autonomous learning, oral English learning, role play, cartoon film, curriculum


Enhancing student motivation to manage their learning process and attain selftransformation in Oral English learning presents a notable challenge. This study
emerged from a Role Play Oral English Course (RPOEC) which utilizes English
cartoon film clips to enhance primary students’ oral English skills through role
play, facilitating meaningful language input and output. Implemented in a Chinese
context where English language exposure is limited, this qualitative case study,
combined with action research, explores how autonomous learning is fostered
through RPOEC. The study engaged a Grade Six class of 30 students (25 girls and
5 boys) in northern China, investigating strategies to trigger learners’ interests and
form their independent learner identities autonomously, empower learners in their
educational journey, encourage reflective practices in oral English learning, and
involve learners in evaluative processes. Data, collected through a combination of
observations, focus group discussions, and document analysis for three months,
were thematically analyzed across four intertwined perspectives: situated learning,
interactive communication, cooperative learning, and evaluative discussions. The
paper posits that the outlined curricular approach can be tailored to educators’
needs aiming to cultivate students’ oral English skills within a situated, interactive,
and collaborative learning environment, pushing learners towards autonomous




How to Cite

Li , R., Razali , F., Ismail , L., Muhamad , M. M., & Ma , X. (2024). Fostering Autonomous Learning in Oral English Through Role Play: An Exploration in Course Setting. International Journal of Instruction, 17(3), 581–598. Retrieved from