Analysis of Concord and Tense Errors in Written Essays of Students of IMSU Owerri and COOU, Igbariam Campus
Errors, to a layman, are considered to be mistakes but to an applied linguist, they are areas of inadequacies on the part of the learner of a second language. This study is an attempt to analyse concord and tense errors found in the written essays of 100 and 200 levels students of English Department of Imo State University, Owerri and Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Igbariam Campus. It explored different errors found in their uses of concord and tense in their written essays as second learners of the language which ranges from a singular subject going with a plural verb and a plural subject going with a singular verb. They used present tense when it supposed to be past tense and past tense when it supposed to be present tense. The first and second year students of Imo State University, Owerri and Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University, Igbariam Campus were used as research population; a total number of fifty (50) students participated. Two different essay topics were administered to them. The essay items were collected, marked, corrected, analyzed, presented in tables, and raw scores converted into percentage scores. Through the analysis of data that were collected, the researcher discovered that efforts are not made by the students to study the different processes of concord and tense. The results also showed that the majority of the respondents do not have adequate knowledge of the use of concord and tense in English. It also presented the correct, functional use of concord and tense in English language and a conclusion subsuming the problem areas defying proper learning and use. Based on the findings, some recommendations which were aimed at improving the correct learning of concord and tense in an ESL situation were made.