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DOI: 10.21070/acopen.6.2022.2358

The Effect of Grammar Translation Method in Description Text on Writing Ability of Class XI Vocational High School Students

Pengaruh Metode Grammar Translation Dalam Teks Deskripsi Terhadap Kemampuan Menulis Siswa Kelas XI Sekolah Menengah Kejuruan

Universitas Muhammadiyah Sidoarjo
Universitas Muhammadiyah Sidoarjo

(*) Corresponding Author

Grammar Translation Method Writing Skill Descriptive Text


The topic of this research is The Effect of Grammar Translation Method in Descriptive Text for Students’ Writing Skill. The objective of this research were to find how the Grammar Translation Method can improve students’ writing skill through descriptive text for eleventh grade students at SMK Yapalis Krian in the academic year of 2019/2020 and whether the grammar translation method can be used as a method in improving the students’ achievement of writing skill. The researchers was applied pre-experimental research in this study. The steps of pre-experimental research were given test and treatment. In gathering the data, the researcher used a test in the form of writing content about descriptive text. The result of this research showed that using grammar translation method was good. It was proven by the improvement mean difference of pre-test and post-test after treatment. The means of the pre-test was 60.85, and the post-test was 74.63. Therefore, it can be suggessted that grammar translation method can be used as the alternative method in teaching which especially to improve writing skill.


In the subject matter, English is a subject that is quite difficult to understand for beginners. This is because English is not a colloquial language or a language commonly used. Therefore, based on the statement from the English subject teacher at SMK Yapalis Krian, even though it is a bilingual school, she still uses Indonesian as the language of instruction. She expressed that statement because, when using English as the language of instruction, there are still many students who did not understand about what the teacher says. Although sometimes the teacher uses mixed English-Indonesian, the level of understanding of these students is still minimal, especially when teaching descriptive text material in class XI. She had to repeat the material several times even though it had previously been delivered, especially on material related to grammar in writing.

From the teacher's statement, she was not satisfied with the results of the scores of his students because he was worried that some students would be left behind because they did not understand the material he was conveying. So, she decided to repeat the material until the students really understood and got satisfactory results. In order to achieve the desired result, she conducted several daily tests which were conducted online to find out the level of understanding from the students after trying to repeat the material. In the end, little by little of the students who are still left behind get an increase. In results, that can be considered significant through the teacher's efforts. From this, we can know that grammar is indeed a challenge for students who are studying English, which is a foreign language in this country. In studying grammar, it requires accuracy, concentration and high understanding. Therefore, the author wants to try to use the Grammar Translation Method as a supporting method to make it easier to learn English as a foreign language.

Grammar Translation Method is one of the strategy that commonly used as a method to learning foreign languages. Grammar Translation Method was the dominant method used in Europe in the 19th century. Many researchers and linguists define that Grammar Translation Method is one of the methods applied in teaching foreign languages. With this method, students learn grammar structure and then apply the rules to translate sentences from the target language, or their native language. In addition, experts state that the Grammar Translation Method is one of the most effective methods that can be use to read and translate sentences. That show grammar rules to gain the ability to speak English as a foreign or second language. Thus, it can be concluded that the Grammar Translation Method is a method for teaching learning that focuses on grammar rules and translation, which also a purpose of grammar translation language.

Grammar Translation Method embraces a wide range of approaches but broadly speaking, teaching target language is seen as a mental discipline even through it is often claimed that the goal of the teaching is to be able to read literature in its original form . With regard to the nature of language and languages learning, Grammar Translation Method has different points of view from modern methods. Although it is classified as a very old and classical method, it is arguably quite effective for beginners who are currently studying English as a foreign language.


This study used pre-experimental research. The researcher used the data instrument with two types of tests, there are pre-test and post-test. Pre-test is a measure of some of the attributes or characteristics needed to assess the experimental participants before they receive treatment, while the post-test is a measure of some of the attributes or characteristics that are assessed for the experimental participants after treatment. Pre-test is an assessment given to students before being given class treatment, while post-test is an assessment that is carried out after treatment.

In analyzing data related to tests written by students, the author uses analytical analysis. There are five components presented in the analytical service rubric to fill in, content, organization, vocabulary, language use, and mechanics. In this study the authors combined vocabulary and mechanical components. The following table is the paragraph analysis used by the author to analyze students' paragraphs.

Components of Writing Score Indicators
Content 4321 Relevant to the topic and easy to understandRather relevant to the topic and easy to understandRelevant to the topic but is not quite easy to understandQuite relevant to the topic but is not quite easy to understand
Organization 4321 Most of the sentences are related to the main ideaSome sentences are related to the main ideaFew sentenes related to main ideaThe sentences are unrelated to each other
Vocabulary & Mechanic 4321 A few errors in choice of words, spelling and punctuationSome errors in choice of words, spelling and punctuationOccasional errors in choice of words, spelling and punctuationFrequent errors in choice of words, spelling and punctuation
Grammar 4321 A few grammatical inaccuraciesSome grammatical inaccuraciesNumerous grammatical inaccuraciesFrequent grammatical inaccuracies
Table 1.Scoring Rubric For Student

To analyze the data that has been collected from the procedure. There are several stages used in the quantitative data analysis process:

  1. The first step is to prepare the data for analysis. This involves determining how to assign a numerical score to the data, assessing the type of score to use, selecting a statistical program, and entering data into the program, and then cleaning up the database for analysis.
  2. The second step begins data analysis. Usually researchers perform descriptive measures of reporting data on central trends and variations. Then the researcher performs a sophisticated inferential analysis to test the hypothesis and the researcher examines the confidence interval and effect size.
  3. The next step is to report the results found using tables, figures, and a discussion of the main results.
  4. Finally, the researcher interprets the results of the data analysis

Finding and Discussion

In the interview session, the researcher asked several things to the English teacher about the conditions in the classroom during the teaching and learning process of English subjects. Then, the writer asked about the difficulties faced by the students while learning English, the participation of the students in the class during the lesson, what media were used by the teacher especially in honing the students' writing skills, and the writer did not forget to ask about the grammar translation method to the teacher. Basically, learning in the classroom runs as usual. Warm-up, delivery of material, questions and answers and activities after learning. In writing, teachers usually use individual work activities. Due to lack of vocabulary and grammar skills, sometimes students have difficulty in writing a few words or sentences. Furthermore, the teacher said that he had never used Grammar Translation Method as a learning method, because in writing lessons, the teacher only directed students to read or asked students to think of creative ideas to write down or based on student experience.

In scoring student the researcher used rubric of scoring based on the lesson plan. It was found that pre-test and post-test score was different. The table below shows the result of pre-test and post-test in pre-experimental.

Definition N Minimum Maximum Sum Mean
Pre-test 41 40 95 2495 60,85
Post-test 41 55 100 3060 74,63
Table 2.Statistic of Pre-test and Post-test

From the table above, it can be seen that pre-test mean score is a lower than post-test score. It is mean that using Grammar Translation Method can make better result of their score in writing skill after treatment. In this case, the researcher wants to know whether there is a significant effect by using this method on the development of students' writing skills. This sample was taken from 41 students after being given treatment.

t-Test: Paired Two Sample for Means
Pre-Test Post-Test
Mean 60,85 74,63
Variance 264,8 140,4
Observations 41 41
Hypothesized Mean Difference 0
Df 40
t Stat -9,516
P(T<=t) two-tail 7,909
t Critical two-tail 2,021
Table 3.Paired Test
  1. If tcount ≥ ttable or significance value > α (0.05) then H0 accepted and Ha rejected.
  2. If tcount ≤ ttable or significance value < α (0.05) then H0 rejected and Ha accepted.

Based on these calculations, the value of tcount is higher than ttable (2,021 ≥ -9,516) or P value (sig. (7, 909) > 0.05), thus Ho is accepted and Ha is rejected. So, there is a significant difference in learning outcomes using the grammar translation method on students' writing skills. The calculations that have been carried out by researchers, it can be concluded that there is a significant effect on students' writing skills using the Grammar Translation Method.

This can be said to be significant because there are differences in the final results of the research that has been carried out by researchers. The increase from the pre-test to the post-test scores was 60,85 from the pre-test scores to 74,63 in the post-test scores. In addition, the amount of increase can be said to be significant based on the results of calculations through the T-Paired statistical test with a sample of 41 students, where the statistical test shows that tcount is higher than ttable (2,021 > -9.516) or the significance level can be known based on the calculation of the significance level of the p-value of (sig. (7,909) > 5%) then the data can be said to be significant.


Based on the research, it can be concluded that the Grammar Translation Method is successful method used as a method to improve students' writing skills. Although it is considered a classic method, it is still feasible to use in modern times. This research can be said to be successful because there is a significant increase in the results of the pre-test and post-test scores after being given treatment to the students. So this research has proven that there is an increase in achievement with the method used by researchers as research material. In addition, researchers have obtained significant results by using this method to conduct this research. That way, the Grammar Translation Method can still be used as a learning method that can improve students' learning abilities.


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