Home » Uncategorized » 18 STUDENTS’ NEED OF ENGLISH SKILLS





(Descriptive Study in Vocational School Wisata Indonesia – South of Jakarta)


Audi Yundayani1, Mariam Brenda Aprilia Lamongi2







The objective of the research is to find out students’ needs of English skills in Hotel Management Study Program. As a part of English as Specific Purposes (ESP), English comprehension should play an important role in Hotel Management study Program. This is a descriptive research that used observation, questionaire and interview. The data analysis and interpretation indicates that, 1)speaking skill is the major need of the hotel front officer, because oral communication is the most frequently used skill to communicate with the customers; 2) listening skill is required by students since speaking and listening are interrelated skills. It is important for the teacher to provide the suitable learning material and learning technique based on the requirement


Keywords: needs, english skills; hotel management, descriptive research


  2. Background

Nowadays, the globalization era makes English rapidly grow in many sectors of the world, including in tourism field. Communication can be a problem if we don’t know about what people need and want. There is a lot of work that needs a good skill in using language and one of them is working in Hotels. The word Hotel itself reflects exciting images: a busy lobby with international dignitaries, celebrities, businesspersons, community leaders, and family vacationers. Hotel itself, according to Tarmoezi and Manurung (2000) has several kinds of hotel based on the target market; commercial hotels, airport hotels, suite hotels, residential hotels, resort hotels, bed and breakfast hotels, time-share hotels, casino hotels, and conference hotels. So that this research want to find students’ need analysis in English Skill in Vocational School Wisata Indonesia.

The concept of English English for Specific Purposes (ESP) has been the major driver for the changes in the English Language Teaching (ELT) Program, specifically in vocational education field. The goal of EOP as a part of ESP is to help the students to develop their study skills abilities that are required  to be used in any required working field. The English skills reflected by integrated skills between receptive and productive skills; listening to speaking and reading to writing. The teacher must realize that learners in Hotel Management Study Program should be supported the English skills that will help them to do any activities as required in related field.

The above description describe the important of English skills comprehension. But  the learners still having some difficulties to perform English skills in their working field, especially in front office area. They have lack self confidence when they must communicate with the foreigner since the unique  accent and dialect. It can cause misunderstanding and misinterpretation as a front officer, they must avoid a miscommunication with their guests.in order to avoid miscommunication. They need to master the variation in English in terms of word choice, grammar, pronunciation, spelling, and register varieties. They also have to master the language skills such as; listening, writing, reading and speaking so that they can give a clear explanation to the guests. In addition, the front liner has to show positive attitudes, politeness, and use the proper languages to communicate with the guests. It  become a needs for the students’ to understand how to speak professionally with customers

This study would benefit English language teachers in their attempt to improve teaching practices particularly in the development of teaching and learning process  based on learners’ needs, specifically on the development of learners’ English skill that is required as hotel front officer. Finally this study could serve as a basis for other researches in the development of acceptable, useful substantial and appropriate teaching and learning process that would enhance students’ English  skills.

  1. The Objective

Based on the problem above, the objective of this study is to get the understanding about the students’ needs of English skills in Hotel Management Study Program.

  1. Theoretical Framework

Teaching English as foreign language must be based on the students’ needs. In the vocational education field, students are expected to use their English skills in doing any activities that will support the teaching and learning process, including the Hotel Management Study Program students. As a part of English for Specific Purposes (ESP), English Academic Purposes (EOP) is concerned with those communication skills in English which are required for working  purposes.(Jordan, 1997:1).  Dudley-Evans notes (2001, ix) that: “EAP often tends to be a practical affair, and these areas are typically understood in terms of local contexts and the needs of particular students”.  Based on the statement, we realize that English for Academic Purposes courses must focus on empowering students to develop and use skills which can facilitate them to be a part of learning process in an academic teaching and learning field.

Front Office is  the nerve center of a hotel property. They have two basic functions based on Tarmoezi and Manurung (2000): communication and accounting. Communication role that is done by the front desk are: answering guest inquiries about hotel services, sales department and marketing for request information on guest room, and housekeeping department inquiring guest reservation. Moreover, effective communication with the guests, employees, and other departments of the hotel become paramount in reflecting a hospitable image. Besides the communication, accounting procedures involve charges to registered and nonregistered hotel guest accounts are important in the hospitality field.

According to Bardi (1947) from the Hollandsworth book (1987 cited in Master 1998:208). “front office employees must be trained properly to function within the guidelines and policies of the lodging establishment”. That is why, the front officer must know how to explain certain tasks about hotel reservation or its advantages using a proper language. Furthermore, they have to master the language function needed in order to provide a good service and make the guests come back to the hotel again.

Needs is an umbrella that will cover many aspects, specifically in learning and teaching process. Needs analysis refers to the techniques for collecting and assessing information relevant to course design: it is the means of establishing the how and what of a course. (Hyland, 2006: 73). It is quite important for the lecturers for doing need analysis before implementing the course. The result of it will be as a guidance to choose the appropriate material, method or technique in teaching and evaluation, so the goal of the learning process will be achieved easily.  In doing need analysis, the lecturer must concern between the result of present situation analysis and target situation analysis. The gap between them will be as a corner stone to design a proper course.

Need analysis is a key stage in EAP which is not separate with course design, materials selection, teaching and learning and evaluation. Need analysis is the process of establishing the what and how of a course. Robinson (1991:16) said that repeated needs analysis can be built into the formative evaluation process.  By doing the need analysis we can improve the quality of teaching and learning process. We know the information about target situation analysis and objective needs by need analysis. We will get the information about learners’ wants, means and subjective needs including present situation analysis, and learning needs. The result of them will be as a guidance in doing continuous improvement of teaching nad learning quality, specifically in English writing skill for Academic purposes in formal higher education field.


  1. Methodology

This study aimed to get the understanding about the students’ needs of of English skills in Hotel Management Study Program. This research is held at Vocational School Wisata Indonesia Jakarta. Research methodology used a qualitative descriptive method as empirical and theoretical approaches. The data were collected through participants by using questionnaire, observation sheet and document study.


    1. Result

The research result through observation, questionnaires and interviews show that the students’ need more speaking for communication with foreigner such as for reservation or ask something to foreigner  and listening for listen the foreigner’s complain or when they needs information .  It may involve English skills based on the context.  Their proficiency in English speaking and listening is a must for use to enhance the quality of service. It is important for the teacher to provide the suitable learning material and learning technique based on the requirement.SOP (Standard Operational Procedure from the hotel industry


  1. Discussion

Based on the result, we can realize that English speaking and listening mastery is the important qualification that must be achieved by the students’ of Vacational Wisata Indonesia.



Based on the findings and discussion of research, it can be formulated some conclusionsof It was found that the students’ of Vocational School Wisata Indonesia need speaking, listening, reading and writing skill in their job when they did practical work in Ritz Calton Hotel. The finding of this study indicates that speaking skill is the main language skill they really need to cope with demands of their workplace. As revealed throughout the questionnaire and interview, the language functions needed were in greeting, asking for the customer’s needs or orders, confirmation, dealing with cancellation, apologizing or dealing with complaining, and upgrading Information. When the hotel receptionists communicate, they find that accent, dialect, and intonation of the guests can have a tremendous impact of their communication. In addition, spelling and pronunciation can be crucial to the meaning of spoken word. It happened especially in listening to different accents. It is in line to the finding of Bobanovic (2011) who found accent as one of the biggest listening obstacles. It means that besides speaking, listening can be an important factor causing misunderstanding in communication. According to Shumin (1997), listening plays quite a big role in the process of speaking. As hotel receptionists, they need listening skill to take reservation through telephone calls or direct arrival to respond to the guest’s question.






Bardi. (1947).  The Hollandsworth. 1987 cited in Master 1998. AS


Bobanovic, M. K and Grzinic, J. (2011). The importance of English language skills in the tourism sector: A comparative study of students/employees perceptions in Croatia. AlmaTourism, Journal of Tourism,Culture and Territorial Development, Volume 1(4). Retrieved March 26, 2012 from http://almatourism.unibo.it/article/view/2476

Evans, Tony Dudley dan Maggie Jo St John. Developments in English for Specific Purposes. UK: Cambridge University Press, 1998.

Jordan, R.R. English for Academic Purposes. UK: Cambridge University Press, 1997.

Robinson, Pauline. ESP Today: a Practitioner’s Guide. UK: Prentice Hall International, 1991.

Shumin, K. (1997). Factors to Consider: Developing Adult EFL Students’ Speaking. English Teaching Forum1997,Volume35(3).Retrieved May 09, 2012, from http://exchanges.state.gov/englishteaching/forum/archives/1997.html

Tarmoezi, T. and Manurung, H. (2000) Professional Hotel Front Liner: Hotel Front Office. Jakarta: Kesaint Blanc.

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