Managing an Effective English Language Laboratory in a Polytechnic

Marlina Marzuki


Polytechnic graduates are required to have applied skills as well as communication skills in English. In most of the polytechnics in Indonesia, English courses are served as compulsory courses for students and in some institutions language laboratories are established in order to support their students. To run an effective language laboratory there are, at least four aspects that need to be considered, namely lab facilities, standard operating rules, students, and lab coordinators. Of all the agents, lab coordinators are classified as internal factors that can easily be empowered by the institutions in the management of the language lab. This paper aims to discuss leadership and management roles in improving an English Language Laboratory. The discussions are based on literature reviews, personal experiences and observations gained by the author whilst working at Politeknik Negeri Lhokseumawe for the last decade plus perceptions of teachers and administrators who have worked in the lab. Regarding the leadership and management in the language laboratory there are four items that should be improved: management of leadership, professional development, rewards, and the concept of educational management.


Language laboratory; Leadership; Management; Communication skills; TESOL

Full Text:



Alexander, C. (2007). Language labs: An overview of trends. Teaching English with Technology Journal, 7(3): 1-16.

Alexander, C. (2008). Humanising management software. Teaching English with Technology Journal, 8(1): 1-17.

Barge, M. (2009). Teaching techniques for multimedia language labs (Final Report).London: Center for Excellence in Multimedia Language Learning, The Language Centre, Queen Mary University of London.

Brenes, C. A. N. (2006). The language laboratory and the EFL course. Revista Electrónica Actualidades Investigativas en Educación, 6(2): 1–25.

Bush, T. (2003). Theories of educational management, 3rd ed. London: Sage.

Bush, T., & Middlewood, D. (2005). Leading and managing people in education. London: Sage.

Coles, L., Richardson, A., & Tuson, J. (2000). Integrating information and communications technology in professional practice: an analysis of teachers’ needs based on a survey of primary and secondary teachers in Scottish schools. Journal of Information Technology for Teacher Education, 9(2):1-16.

Cooper, D. (1970). Verbal fluency and the language laboratory. Kivung, 3(1): 46-50.

Davis, R. (2011). Retooling perspectives on technology’s role in language education. Studies in Self-Access Learning Journal, 2(3): 212-218.

Directorate General of Higher Education (2004). Strategi jangka panjang pendidikan tinggi 2003-2010 (HELTS): Menuju sinergi kebijakan nasional. Jakarta: Directorate General of Higher Education, Ministry of National Education, Republic of Indonesia.

Eriksen, E. O. (2001), Leadership in a communicative perspective. Acta Sociologica, 44: 21-35.

Gobbo, C., & Giradi, M. (2001).Teachers’ beliefs and integration of information and communications technology in Italian schools. Journal of Information Technology for Communications Technology in Italian Schools, 10(1/2): 63-85.

Hafiz, K. D. (2013). An investigation into CALL in English language teaching through language laboratory. IOSR Journal of Humanities and Social Science (IOSR-JHSS), 6(6): 08-14.

Hallinger, P. (2003). Leading educational change: Reflections on the practice of instructional and transformational leadership. Cambridge Journal of Education, 33(3): 329-351.

Hashmi, S. (2013). Need of an English language laboratory in engineering universities. IJCSN International Journal of Computer Science and Network, 2(5): 8-10.

Republic of Indonesia. (2003). Law of the Republic of Indonesia Number 20 Year 2003 on the National Education System. Jakarta: Ministry of the State Secretariat.

Lee, J. (2001).The Internet for English language teaching. The Reading Matrix, 1(2): 43-50.

Noddings, N. (1995). A morally defensible mission for schools in the 21st century. Phi Delta Kappan, 76(5), 365.

Rifandi, A. (2013).Mutu pembelajaran dan kompetensi lulusan Diploma III Politeknik. Cakrawala Pendidikan, 1: 125-138.

Roby, W.B. (2004). Technology in the service of foreign language teaching: The case of the language laboratory. In D. Jonassen (Ed). Handbook of research on educational communications and technology, 2nd ed. (pp. 523-541). Mahwah, N.J.: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Towndrow, P. A., & Vallace, M. (2002). Using information technology in the language classroom. Singapore: Prentice Hall.

UNESCO. (2006). Growing legitimacy and recognition, trends and developments in private higher education in Europe. Higher Education in Europe, XXXI (1). Retrieved August 21, 2014 from

Yeong, K. T., & Chiew, P. S. E. (2009).Effective utilization of a language laboratory. Teaching and Learning, 1(2): 77-89.


Article Metrics

Abstract view : 0 times
PDF - 0 times


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Print ISSN: 2355-2794, Online ISSN: 2461-0275

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

View Journal Stats