An Arab EFL Context: Does Variance in Anxiety and Motivation across Gender Impact Language Attainment?

Priya Mathew, Liz Mundakkal Job, Tareq Al Damen, Mohammad Rafiqul Islam

Abstract


This study proposes to investigate whether mixed classes are a de-motivating influence and increase anxiety levels and causes variance in performance between males and females. The researchers’ observation and documentary evidence suggest that female learners outperformed their male counterparts in assessments and class participation. The main objective of this study was to identify factors which account for the disparity in gender performance, addressing three research questions: a) is there a correlation between gender and performance?  b) Do levels of motivation and types of anxiety vary in males and females thus causing variance in language attainment in a co-educational Arab EFL context? c) Does effort work on the anxiety experienced by female students and make the latter beneficial? A questionnaire was administered to a stratified sample of 100 Arab EFL learners in the Foundation Programme at a private college in the Sultanate of Oman. Findings show that although males and females display equal amounts of anxiety and motivation, females still outperformed the males. This study identifies the factors responsible for this disparity.

Keywords


Proficiency; Anxiety; Motivation; Gender; Arab EFL learners; Socio-cultural

Full Text:

PDF

References


Al-Busaidi, K. A. (1995). English in the labour market in multilingual Oman with special reference to Omani employees. Unpublished doctoral dissertation, University of Exter, England.

Al-Husseini, S. (2006). The visible and invisible role of English foundation programmes: A search for communication opportunities within EFL contexts. Asian EFL Journal, 8(4), 35-51.

Al-Issa, A. S. (2005). An ideological discussion of the impact of NNEST’s English language knowledge on ESL policy implementation: A special reference to the Omani context. Asian EFL Journal, 7(3), 98-112.

Al Jadidi, H., & Sangunietti, J. (2010). Characteristic pedagogical styles of bilingual and monolingual English teachers. International Journal of Arts and Sciences, 3(16), 131-147.

Bailey, K.M. & Nunan, D.  (1996). Voices from the Language Classroom. NewYork:  CUP.

Bristol, UK: Multilingual Matters.

Brown, D. H. (2007). Principles of language teaching (4th ed.). White Plains, NY: Longman.

Carreira, J.M. (2011). Relationship between motivation for learning EFL and intrinsic motivation for learning in general among Japanese elementary school students. System, 39, (1), 90-102.

Cheng, Y. (2002). Factors associated with foreign language writing anxiety. Foreign Language Annals, 35 (6), 647–656.

Department for Education and Skills, corp creator. (2007) Gender and education : the evidence on pupils in England. Great Britain.

Dörnyei, Z & Csizér, K. (1998). Ten commandments for motivating language learners: results of an empirical study.  Language Teaching Research, 2(3). Retrieved March 14, 2013, from http://www.zoltandornyei.co.uk/uploads/1998-dornyei-csizer-ltr.pdf

Dornyei, Z., & Csizer, K (1998). Ten commandments for motivating language learners: Results of an empirical study. Language Teaching Research, 2, 203-229.

Dornyei, Z. (2001). Teaching and researching motivation. Harlow, England: Pearson Education.

Dornyei, Z., & Schmidt, R.W. (2001). Motivation and second language acquisition. Hawai University of Hawai.

Dörnyei, Z., & Ushioda, E. (2009).  Motivation, Language Identity and the L2 Self. Bristol, UK: Multilingual Matters.

Ehrman, M. E. and Dörnyei, Z. (1998) Interpersonal Dynamics in Second Language Education. Thousand Oaks: Sage.

Fischer, F.,Schult, J., & Hell, B. (2013). Sex differences in secondary school success: why female students perform better. European Journal of Psychology of Education, 28(2), 529-543.

Flowerdew, J. & Peacock, M. (2001). Research perspectives on english for academic purposes. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Gardner, R. C., & MacIntyre, P. D.(1991). An instrumental motivation in language study: who says it isn’t effective?.  Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 13 (1), 57-72.

Gardner, R. C., & Lambert, W. (1959). Motivational variables in second-language acquisition. Canadian Journal of Psychology, 13(4), 266-272.

Holliday, A. (1994). Appropriate methodology and social context. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Horwitz, E. (1990). Attending to the affective domain in the foreign language classroom. In S. Magnan (Ed.), Shifting the instructional focus to the learner. Middlebury, VT: Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages.

Horwitz, E. K., Horwitz, M. B., & Cope, J. (1986). Foreign language classroom anxiety. In E.K. Horwitz & D. J. Young (Eds.). Language anxiety: From theory and research to classroom implication (pp. 27-36). Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Keller, J. (1983). Motivational design of instruction. In C.M Reguleth  (ed.), Instructional design theories and models (pp. 383-436). Hillsdale, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.

Krashen, S. (1982). Principles and practice in second language acquisition. Oxford:  Pergamon Press.

Kromos, J., Kontra, E., & Csolle, A. (2002). Language wants of English majors in a non- native  context. System, 30(4), 517-542.

Leont’ev, A.N. (1981). Psychology and the language learning process. Oxford: Pergamon Press.

Life, J. (2011, September). Motivation and EFL University Students in North-East Asia. The Asian EFL Journal Quarterly, 13(3). Retrieved April 14, 2013, from http://www.asian-efl-journal.com/PDF/September-2011.pdf

Lightbown, P.M. & Spada, N. (2006). How languages are learned. China: Oxford University Press.

Liu, M. (2006). Anxiety in chinese EFL students at different proficiency levels. System, 34, (3), 301–316.

MacIntyre, P., Baker, S., Clement, R., & Conrod, S. (2001). Willingness to communicate, social support, and language learning orientations of immersion students. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 23, 369-388.

MacIntyre, P., Dornyei, Z., Clement, R., & Noels, K. (1998). Conceptualizing willingness to communicate in a L2: A situational model of L2 confidence and affiliation. Modern Language Journal, 82, 545-562.

Madsen, H. S. (2006, October). Determining the debilitating impact of test anxiety. Language Learning, 32(1). Retrieved May 20, 2013, from http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-1770.1982.tb00522.x/abstract

Mohamed, A. R. & Wahid, N. (2013). Anxiety and speaking english as a second language among male and female business students in universiti industri selangore.  Retrieved  May 26th, 2013 from www.onlinereview.segi.edu.my/chapters/vol2_chap7.pdf

Oxford, R. (1999). Anxiety and the language learner: New insights. In J. Arnold (Ed.), Affect in language learning (pp.58-67). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Oxford, R.L. (2001). Language Learning Styles and Strategies. In Marianne Celce-Murcia (Ed.), Teaching English as a Second or Foreign language (3rd ed., p. 365). Boston: Heinle Cengage Learning.

Pomerantz, E. M., Altermatt, E. R., & Saxon, J. L. (2002). Making the grade but feeling distressed: Gender differences in academic performance and internal distress. Journal of Educational Psychology, 94(2), 396-404.

Rubin,J. & Thompson, I. (1994). How to be a more successful language learner. Boston: Heinle & Heinle

Sakai, H., & Kikuch, K. (2009). An analysis of demotivators in the EFL classroom. System, 37(1), 57-69.

Salem, N.M. (2006). The Role of Motivation, Gender and Language Learning Strategies in EFL Proficiency. University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon.

Scovel, T. (1978). The effect of affect on foreign language learning: a review of the anxiety research. Language Learning, 28(1), 129-142.

Shaaban. K.A., & Ghaith, G. (2000). Student motivation to learn english as a foreign language. Foreign Language Annals, 33(6), 632–644.

Sheen, Y. (2008). Recasts, language anxiety, modified output and l2 learning. Language Learning, 58(4), 835-874.

Spielmann, G., & Radnofsky, M. L. (2001). Learning language under tension: new directions from a qualitative study. The Modern Language Journal , 85(2),  259–278.

Swain, M., Kinnear, P & Steinman, L. (2011). Sociocultural Theory in Second Language Education. Bristol, UK: Multilingual Matters.

Williams, M., & Burden, R. (1997). Psychology for language teachers: A social constructivist approach. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.

Wong, M.S. (2009, April 1). Language anxiety and motivation to learn english: a glimpse into the form 4 classroom Date of document completion. Paper presented at the UPALS International Conference on Languages, Pulau Pinang, Malaysia.

Young, D. (1992). Language anxiety from the foreign language specialist’s perspective: Interviews with Krashen, Omaggio-Hadley,Trrell, and Rardin. Foreign Language Annals, 25 (2), 157-172.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3968%2Fj.sll.1923156320130603.2551

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Reminder

If you have already registered in Journal A and plan to submit article(s) to Journal B, please click the CATEGORIES, or JOURNALS A-Z on the right side of the "HOME".


We only use three mailboxes as follows to deal with issues about paper acceptance, payment and submission of electronic versions of our journals to databases: caooc@hotmail.com; sll@cscanada.net; sll@cscanada.org

Copyright © 2010 Canadian Academy of Oriental and Occidental Culture
Address: 730, 77e AV, Laval, Quebec, H7V 4A8, Canada

Telephone: 1-514-558 6138
Http://www.cscanada.net
Http://www.cscanada.org
E-mail: office@cscanada.net; office@cscanada.org; caooc@hotmail.com