Concept Checking Questions in English Language Teaching

In ELT, we tend to use Concept Checking Questions a lot because we believe CCQs play an important role in ensuring that students grasp the target language accurately. They  are simple and useful tools to assess understanding, clarify doubts, and reinforce learning.

A Concept Checking Question (CCQ) is a question, or a series of questions designed to confirm students’ understanding of target language. These questions help learners to show their comprehension, often through short, focused answers.

CCQs are especially necessary at the presentation stage, introducing the target language. They are particularly useful when teaching grammar points, vocabulary, idioms, phrasal verbs, or any aspect of language that might be confusing to learners. CCQs can also be beneficial during revision sessions.

By using CCQs during or after a lesson, we can evaluate how effectively students have learned the target language and based on students’ responses to CCQs, we can adapt our teaching strategies to meet specific learning needs.

CCQs are necessary for

  • Enhancing comprehension.
  • Encouraging active learning
  • Clarifying misconceptions

However, they may not always work if they are not well-structured, clear, or focused so how can teachers prepare effective CCQs?

  1. Teachers must have a firm grasp of target language to prepare the appropriate questions.
  2. Teachers must anticipate common areas of confusion and create CCQs that target those specific points.
  3. They should aim for brief questions that can be answered quickly and accurately.
  4. They should plan additional questions to explore the concept from different angles if needed.
  5. They should use simple language in CCQs to avoid confusion.
  6. One question at a time will avoid confusion.
  7. If CCQs are based on real life experiences, they work better.

CCQs are simple and effective tools in ELT. We can’t always count on them, but we should know how to generate good CCQs to help learners understand the target language.

You can read more about CCQs on these posts here and here and here

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