Articles
DOI: 10.21070/icecrs2021908

An Error Analysis in Writing Descriptive Text of Tenth Grades Students at SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo


Universitas Muhammadiyah Sidoarjo
Indonesia
Universitas Muhammadiyah Sidoarjo
Indonesia
Error Analysis Writing Descriptive Text

Abstract

The aimed of this study to identify the error in writing descriptive text made by the tenth grade students of SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo. The researcher utilizes quantitative research method. The population of this study is the tenth grade students of SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo. The researcher uses total sampling as the sampling technique. The researcher takes 34 students of X TPM 2. The data instrument of this study is students’ test result. In this study, the researcher used 3 types of analyzed data based on Miles and Huberman theory. The researcher analyzed the errors made by the students use the theory of Corder (1973). The result showed that The tenth graders’ of SMK 1 Antartika Sidoarjo still made error in writing descriptive text in four kinds of error based on Corder (1973) theory, which are omission, addition, selection, and ordering. The students made error in omission 67 times or 30% of total error, 21 times or 10% made error in addition, 103 times or 47% made error in selection, and 30 times or 13% made error in ordering. The most error the students made is selection error. It means that the students still do not know how to use correct word that is appropriated with the context. The student still translate Indonesia into English directly without considering the context.

Introduction

Language is one of the most important asset in human daily life. It related with almost all activities done by us all, since language is ouronly known mean of communication medium. In language itself, there are two major part of role, in which a language might be used to a certain extend. There are written and oral language. Both assets of the language are significantly important and irreplaceable in domain of human communication. Within this chance, researcher tried to put emphasize towards writing, which is classified as written language obviously. Taufiq mentioned that English itself is an international language, which is used as a medium of interaction and communication among people from different parts of the world. In term of language learning and acquisition, writing contributes a tremendous role in shaping learners prior linguistic knowledge. In English language, it is regarded as a productive skill. Through writing, one may convey an idea or information in a written manner, without utilizing our oral organ. Unlike speaking, writing does require more persistence in mastering it. One’s writing capabilities will not be developed, unless if he/she practice his/her writing regularly, as the clearness and sense of writing depends into one’s perspective or what of thinking, well-structured sentences, as well as writer’s excellent ideas.

In our current situation, writing is a material included into a package of lesson to be taught at school, by all students without exception. In most cases, writing courses are often planned to compose a well-organized yet brief paragraphs, forming a simple and common text type, such as recount, descriptive, narrative, discussion, procedure, review, and even a bit complex expository or hortatory text as their routine exercise (in normal dosage). Moreover, Indonesian ministry of education, through their newly reinforced K13 (2013 Curriculum), strengthens that students are expected to compose a accurate and logical text in each writing assignment. Based on the explanation above, writing is the most difficult skill the second language students must master at school. It is proved by many English Second Language (ESL) students make error in some aspects of writing such as organizing, mechanism, grammar, and the content of the text they make. Furthermore, most of the error the ESL students make is grammar.

Based on the initial observation researcher did with doing interview with the corresponding teacher and student, the researcher noticed that most of the students’ problem in learning foreign language came from the issue sentence structure, which simplified as grammar. Grammar itself is an inseparable part in writing. Batko strengthened that it includes clear and appropriate sentence construction and proper words form. It works as the guideline in writing text, particularly in sentence or paragraph development. Grammar is taught for many years in several grades of both formal and informal education (or primary and secondary). Furthermore, based on all the explanations above, researcher finally able to draw a conclusive statement, that there are still many students that made error while writing descriptive text. Henceforth, researcher are interested to analyze the students’ error in writing descriptive text in SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo. There are several reasons for choosing this school as the place for researcher to conduct her investigation.

First reason is that, SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo, despite never claimed to be a same-sex school, almost 98% of its students are males, while the rest is female with the total number of 5 students ranging from first until the third grade. Researcher is fascinated in this fact. Such situation is due to the major segmentation of the school. SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo mostly specialized in machinery technique that mostly attended by male students. Second reason is that, researcher has successfully initiated a good relationship with the school, especially with the corresponding English teacher. Hence researcher believes that such advantageous point will assist researcher in conducting this study successfully while minimizing the risk.

Writing

Writing is a form of communication that allows students to put their feelings and ideas on paper, to organize their knowledge and beliefs into convincing arguments, and to convey meaning through well-constructed text. As slightly mentioned previously, that writing itself is considered as productive skill of a language along with speaking. Quite contrary with its receptive counterparts, reading and listening. Theoretically, several experts defined writing itself variously. For instance, Brown mentioned that writing is a process of thinking, which can be planned and revised count-less time, considering the amount of content of a writing. In further detail, Rivers stated that writing is delivering information or expression of original ideas in a consecutive way in a written form of a language. Similarly, Elbow emphasized that writing consists of two process, which involving in figuring (or distinguishing) out the message and putting it into the appropriate structure of a language in the second process. Meanwhile, Irquhart and McIver, in another chance states that writing is recursive process that revise learners process throughout their learning, and solely depends into discovery as well as content creation, back and forth in all stages. This signifies the complexity of writing as a productive skill in language competence.

Furthermore, Harmer concludes that writing encourages learners in focusing towards accurate language use. It is due to learners’ consideration to the language use, when they engage in their writing development. This activity will provoke language development because the students re-solve problems what writing puts in students’ minds. Based on the definitions above, a definition of writing skill can be obtained. Writing is a productive process done through some stages, which focusing into ideas, thoughts, and feelings transmittance as well conduction of revisions.

Descriptive Text

Descriptive text is one of several kinds of written text, which is usually studied by students at schools. Several experts defined what was meant by descriptive text, for instance , who emphasized that descriptive text is a kind of expository writing. This type of writing aims to draw a picture, tries to convey the taste, sound, and smell of an object or thing. While Tompkins declared that descriptive is a “painting of picture” through words. Readers are being immersed by lively portrayal and imagery of an object or thing described in descriptive text. Friedman added that descriptive details are meant to catch readers’ attention. He considered that this kind of text is categorized as the easiest or simplest form of text amongst other major text type (i.e. narrative or recount) for beginner writers. On accord with these previous description, we can finally determine that descriptive text us a text that describe what a particular person, place, or thing is like. Besides, the students found difficulties in writing descriptive text. Therefore, they focused on this kind of text .

Descriptive text has the following two generic structures, first is identification; identifying the phenomenon to be described. Besides, identification is a part of paragraph consists of introduction of the character. Second, description; describing the phenomenon in parts, qualities, or/and characteristic. In similar manner, descriptive text has some language features that includes using attributive and identifying process, has relational process, using specific noun, and using simple present tense.

Error Analysis

Richards et.al had statement that error analysis is a study of error made by the learners of second and foreign language. Error analysis may be carried out in order to (a) know how well someone knows a language. (b) know how a person learns a language. (c) obtain information on common difficulties in language learning, as an aid in teaching or in the preparation of teaching materials. According to Corder there are four kinds of error; omission, addition, selection, and ordering. But, the first thing we should know on conducting error analysis is the steps of analyzing. Without knowing these steps, we will not making a good result of error analysis. In this study the steps of analyzing of error used by the writer are based on the theory of Corder . The steps are identification of errors, classification of errors, tabulation of errors, and tabulation of errors.

Method

This study is designed into quantitative method. The researcher took the the tenth grade students of SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo. There were 34 students of X TPM 2. Total sampling sampling will be used as the sampling method by researcher. The instrument of this study is students’ test result that already given by the teacher. The data is analyzed with using Corder theory. The steps are identification of errors, classification of errors, tabulation of errors, and tabulation of errors. The table below is used by the researcher during analysis the data of this study.

Identification Description Explanation Correction
His first album was handled by (1) producer named Ari Renaldi. Omission Omitting an article (a). His first album was handled by a producer named Ari Renaldi.
Table 1.The analysis sheet

After categorizing the error, the researcher calculated the total error the students made and drew them into percentage. The percentage of error calculated with using the formulation below:

P= x 100%

F = frequency

P = percentage

N = number of cases (total frequent/ total individual) .

Research Finding and Discussion

Finding

After the researcher conducted this study in tenth grade of SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo, the researcher got some information about the students’ error in writing descriptive text. The researcher got the data from the students’ test result about descriptive text instructed by the teacher. The students should write a paragraph of descriptive text to know the error made by the students in writing descriptive text. The data from the students’ test results were collected at Friday April 26th, 2019. In this research, test is used by the researcher to know the students’ error in writing descriptive text. The test was given by the teacher to the students on April 26th, 2019. In the test the students were asked to create a descriptive text. The students worked on the test under the supervision of the researcher herself and the English teacher. To know the errors made by the students in writing descriptive text, the researcher analyzed the students’ test results and categorized the error based on Corder . After categorizing the error, the researcher calculated the total error the students made and drew them into percentage. The Following table is data of students’ error in writing descriptive text from the test.

Students The Classification of Error Total
Omission Addition Selection Ordering
Student 1 2 2 1 3 8
Student 2 4 0 3 1 8
Student 3 0 4 2 0 6
Student 4 4 1 3 2 10
Student 5 1 0 1 1 3
Student 6 1 1 2 0 4
Student 7 2 0 2 1 5
Student 8 4 3 6 0 13
Student 9 1 0 2 0 3
Student 10 0 0 3 1 4
Student 11 3 0 2 0 5
Student 12 3 0 2 0 5
Student 13 2 2 5 1 10
Student 14 5 0 0 1 6
Student 15 3 1 2 0 6
Student 16 4 1 6 1 12
Student 17 0 0 2 2 4
Student 18 0 1 5 4 10
Student 19 2 1 5 1 9
Student 20 1 0 3 0 4
Student 21 4 0 3 1 8
Student 22 1 0 3 2 6
Student 23 1 0 2 0 3
Student 24 5 3 5 0 13
Student 25 3 0 2 2 7
Student 26 2 1 3 1 7
Student 27 3 0 0 0 3
Student 28 0 0 5 0 5
Student 29 0 0 6 0 6
Student 30 0 0 2 0 2
Student 31 1 0 3 1 5
Student 32 2 0 7 0 9
Student 33 1 0 3 1 5
Student 34 2 0 2 3 7
Total 67 21 103 30 221
Percentage of error 30% 10% 47% 13% 100%
Table 2.Students’ Error

The column chart below is the transformer of the percentages of the students’ errors recapitulation. The column chart covers up the highest until the lowest rank as below.

Figure 1.Students’ Errors

Based on the data above, the researcher find that the students made all types of error based on Corder . The students made error in omission 67 times or 30% of total errors, then made error in addition 21 times or 10% of total errors, besides the students also made error in selection 103 times or 47% of total errors, and made error in ordering 30 times or 13% of total errors. Furthermore, the researcher could conclude that the most of the students made error in selection.

Discussion

After doing the research, the researcher connects the theory with the results the researcher got. The researcher uses Corder’s theory about types of error. Corder classified 4 types of error which are omission, addition, selection, and ordering. The result of the research showed that the tenth graders of SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo made the 4 types of error which the most common error of the students is selection error. The result showed that the total amount of selection error is 103 or 47% of the total errors. After calculating the errors, the researcher describes the errors of the tenth graders of SMK Antartika 1 Sidoarjo. These are the description of the errors.

Omission

The students made error in omission 67 times or 30% of total errors. The example of this kind of error is “His full * name Edward Christopher Sheeran.” The student omitted the tobe (is). Another example of this kind of error is “She * * singer”. The student omitted tobe (is) and an article (a). The next example of this kind of error is “While still * a participant in Indonesian Idol Season 9, Jodie’s name is still Bianca Jodie.” The student omitted “being”. Another example of this kind of error is “besides, he is also an architect who * graduated from Parahyangan Catholic University, Bandung.” This case is same with the previous example; the student omitted tobe (was). The last example of this kind of error is “His first album was handled by * producer named Ari Renaldi.” The student omitted to add an article (a). In English, article is important to make the writing sounds natural. Certain linguistic forms may be omitted by the learners because of their complexity in production . The errors were happened because the student translated the student’s mother tongue language into English directly. If the sentence is translated into the mother tongue language of the student (Indonesia), it can be understood by the native language of Indonesia, but in English language itself, the sentence does not make sense.

Identification Description Explanation Correction
His full (1) name Edward Christopher Sheeran. Omission Omitting the tobe (is). His full name is Edward Christopher Sheeran
She (1) (2) singer OmissionOmission Omitting tobe “is”.Omitting article “a”. She is a singer.
While still (1) a participant in Indonesian Idol Season 9, Jodie’s name is still Bianca Jodie. Omission Omitting “being”. While still being a participant in Indonesian Idol Season 9, Jodie’s name is still Bianca Jodie.
His first album was handled by (1) producer named Ari Renaldi. Omission Omitting an article (a). His first album was handled by a producer named Ari Renaldi.
Table 3.Example of Analysis of Omission Error

Addition

The student made this kind of error 21 times or 10% of total errors. Addition is a kind of error made by learner because they add redunant element. The example of this kind of error is “We are going to describes the Ed sheeran.” There is no need to add “s” in describe because it does not explain the third person singular and there is no need to add “the”. “His fans name’s is “Kemalicious”. The students wrote double tobe. The researcher thought that the students did not know that he/ she had added tobe right after “name”. Another example of this kind of error is “She is multitalent singer because she cans sing all genre.” “can” is one of modals, so it does not need to be added with “s” though it explains the third person singular. The next example is “It is * tell about * biography * him from Senior High School * as far as famous now.” There is no need to add tobe (is) because “tell” is verb1. The next example is “His face * like Arabian people. The students should not add “people” after “Arabian” because “Arabian” has meaning Arab people.

Identification Description Explanation Correction
We are going to (1) describes (2) the ed sheeran AdditionAddition There is no need to add “s” in describe because it does not explain the third person singular.There is no need to add “the”. We are going to describe Ed Sheeran.
His fans name’s (1) is “Kemalicious”. Addition There is no need to add double tobe. His fans name’s “Kemalicious”.
She is multitalent singer because she (1) cans sing all genre. Addition No need to add “s” in “can” because “can” is modal. She is multitalent singer because she can sing all genre.
It (1) is * tell about * biography * him from Senior High School * as far as famous now. Addition no need to add tobe. It tells about his biography from Senior High School until as far as famous now.
His face * like Arabian (1) people. Addition No need to add “people” because Arabian has meant Arab People. His face is like Arabian.
Table 4.Example of Analysis of Addition Error

Selection

Most of students made this kind of error. The students made 103 times error in selection. stated that while learning English, learners commit errors in pronunciation, morphology, syntax and vocabulary due to the selection of the wrong, phoneme, morpheme, structure or vocabulary item. This study result is in line with the teacher’s statement whe the researcher did pre-observation with interviewing the teacher that most of the students are lack of vocabulary, so the students could not know how to chooce a correct word to be added in a sentence and appropriated with the context. The example of this kind of error is “She was born on December 27, 1975”. It should use specific preposition, that is “at” because it explains a specific time. Another example of this kind of error is “Andre Taulany is born in Jakarta, September 17, 1974.” It should be use tobe in verb 2 because it explains event that happened in the past. The next example is “His long name is Ahmad Kemal Palevi.” The student should use “full” or “complete” because the word the student use causing ambiguity. The next example is “On 2002, Time Magazine named him as a Great Asian Hero.” The student should use more unspecific preposition, that is “in”. The last example is “He started his career by singing at several jazz music community and campus events in Bandung.” The student should use “with” instead of “by”.

Identification Description Explanation Correction
She was born (1) on December 27, 1975. Selection It should use specific preposition, that is “at”. She was born at December 27, 1975.
Andre Taulany (1) is born in Jakarta, September 17, 1974. Selection It should be use verb 2. Andre Taulany was born in Jakarta, September 17, 1974
His (1) long name is Ahmad Kemal Palevi. Selection It should be “full”. His full name is Ahmad Kemal Palevi.
(1)On 2002, Time Magazine named him as a Great Asian Hero. Selection It should use “in” because the time is not specific. In 2002, Time Magazine named him as a Great Asian Hero.
He started his career (1) by singing at several jazz music community and campus events in Bandung. Selection It should be “with”. He started his career with singing at several jazz music community and campus events in Bandung.
Table 5.Example of Analysis of Selection Error

Ordering

Corder stated that miss-ordering can occur in morphological level. The students made error in ordering 30 times or 13% of total errors. The result is in line with Corder statement that miss-ordering of bound morpheme in English is perhaps less frequent. In this study, ordering error also categirizes into low frequency of error. The example of this kind of error is “He is well known as a singer young talented.” The next example is “Atta is a men business (3) young and successful.” The last example is “He * have hair red curly, eye grey and skin white. In this case the students are still influenced by their mother tongue. The students put each word based on their mother tongue grammar.

Identification Description Explanation Correction
He is well known as a (1) singer young talented Ordering “singer” (noun) should be put after adjective phrase. He is well known as a young talented singer
Atta is a * (1) men business (2) young and successful. OrderingOrdering “man” should be put in the last or after the adjective phrase.“young and succesful” should be put before “business”. Atta is a young and succesful business man.
He * have (1) hair red curly, (2) * eye grey and (3) skin white. OrderingOrderingOrdering “hair” (noun) should be put after “red curly” (adjective phrase).“eye” (noun) should be put after “grey” (adjective).“skin” (noun) should be put after “white” (adjective). He has red curly hair, grey eyes, and white skin.
Table 6.Example of Analysis of Selection Error

Conclusion

Based on the research result at tenth grade student of SMK 1 Antartika Sidoarjo academic year 2018/2019. It can be concluded that: The tenth graders’ of SMK 1 Antartika Sidoarjo still made error in writing descriptive text in four kinds which are omission, addition, selection, and ordering.. The most error the students made is selection error. It means that the students still do not know how to use correct word that is appropriated with the context. The second highest is omission, students do a certain word removal which needed. The third is ordering, students still made error in phrase order and the last error is addition, they do not understand that there are some sentence no needed for addition. It happened because the student still translate Indonesia into English directly without considering the context, lack of vocabulary and sometimes they took from internet.

Acknowledgement

The researcher would like to extend their deepest sincerest gratitude to all the people who helped and involved in any manner, who have shared knowlegde in order to make this research a reality.

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