An Exploration of the Factors Hindering Students’ Lesson Comprehension in EMI Classes


  • Ngoc Tien Tran Hoa Sen University
  • Thi Bao Trinh Tran Hoa Sen University
  • Thi Thanh Mai Bien Hoa Sen University


English as a medium of instruction (EMI), lesson comprehension, factors hindering students’ comprehension, undergraduate students, challenges of EMI implementation


The implementation of English as a medium of instruction (EMI) has been found to bring numerous benefits to its learners. There has been a rising trend in introducing EMI at higher education institutions worldwide. However, challenges are ubiquitous and there is still prevalent hesitation in integrating content and language in many institutions. This study aimed to explore factors hindering students’ level of lesson comprehension in EMI classes through a mixed-method study carried out on 233 participants at Hoa Sen University, Vietnam. The findings showed that variables hampering students from lesson understanding were mainly associated with instructors’ teaching methods and students’ and instructors’ language competences. Results from standard multiple regression indicated that vocabulary range, writing skills and teaching methods were found to have significant contribution to the prediction of the level of lesson comprehension of the students. The findings of the study could be a considerable reference source for universities aiming at implementing EMI programmes.


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Author Biographies

Thi Bao Trinh Tran, Hoa Sen University

Tran Thi Bao Trinh was a former student of English Language Studies of Hoa Sen University. She has just graduated from the undergraduate level of Hoa Sen University and on her way of preparing for her higher education. Her research interests include second language teaching, bilingual education, psychology of second language learners and voluntary second language teaching in Vietnam.

Thi Thanh Mai Bien, Hoa Sen University

Bien Thi Thanh Mai, (MA. TESOL, University of Melbourne), is a lecturer in the Department of English Language Studies at Hoa Sen University in Vietnam. She is an in-service teacher trainer and the coordinator of English language teaching strand. Her research interests include English language writing, teacher professional development, and teaching English in different contexts.



How to Cite

Tran, N. T., Tran, T. B. T., & Bien, T. T. M. (2020). An Exploration of the Factors Hindering Students’ Lesson Comprehension in EMI Classes. International Journal of Language and Literary Studies, 2(3), 29–42.