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A diary study on the causes of English language classroom anxiety

Gkonou, C (2013) 'A diary study on the causes of English language classroom anxiety.' International Journal of English Studies, 13 (1). 51 - 68. ISSN 1578-7044

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Abstract

Drawing on learners' diaries, the study reported in this article focused on the English language classroom anxiety (ELCA) of eight Greek EFL learners in private language school settings. The study investigated the extent to which anxiety is amenable to change and the factors contributing to the creation and increase in students' anxiety in class. A training session prior to the commencement of keeping a diary was conducted with the participants under the supervision of the researcher. A total of 64 entries were collected and analysed through qualitative content analysis. The results indicated that students' ELCA fluctuated over time, thus proving that language anxiety is a situation-specific as well as a dynamic variable in L2 contexts. Moreover, a closer scrutiny of the diary data revealed an interplay between linguistic and non-linguistic difficulties substantially affecting learning. Anxiety lay mainly with the participants' perceptions of the input taught, of classroom procedures, and of themselves as learners. Socio-psychological constraints raised by the diarists included fear of negative evaluation by the teacher and by the peers with specific attention to mistakes and correction, and extrinsic motivation. Based on the findings, suggestions are made to improve teacher education and training and to slightly deviate from the exam oriented nature that the Greek educational system imposes on EFL learning. © Servicio de Publicaciones. Universidad de Murcia. All rights reserved.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PB Modern European Languages
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences > Language and Linguistics, Department of
Depositing User: Clare Chatfield
Date Deposited: 09 Mar 2017 14:50
Last Modified: 17 Aug 2017 17:31
URI: http://repository.essex.ac.uk/id/eprint/15230

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