Out-of-class English learning anxiety and its relation to motivation among Chinese university English majors

Shuting ZHANG, Chun LAI

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

Abstract

A wide range of studies have examined foreign language anxiety (FLA). However, these studies have primarily examined the context of classroom-based learning, while neglecting out-of-class learning settings. Thus, this study investigated the factor structure of out-of-class FLA and its relationship to L2 motivation (Ideal L2 Self, Ought-to L2 Self, and L2 Learning Experience). The data comprised 20 interviews and 557 survey responses from English majors at Chinese universities. This study identified three out-of-class FLA factors: anxiety about learning effectiveness, learning approaches, and effort management. It further revealed a close association between out-of-class FLA and L2 motivation. Out-of-class L2 Learning Experience was the most salient predictor and was negatively associated with all three dimensions of out-of-class FLA. The Ideal L2 Self exhibited negative associations with anxiety about the learning approach and effort management, whereas Ought-to L2 Self was a positive predictor of anxiety about the learning approach and learning effectiveness. These findings enrich our understanding of the affective aspects of out-of-class learning and suggest the significance of facilitating learners’ out-of-class L2 Learning Experience and Ideal L2 Self to help them overcome FLA in a self-directed out-of-class learning context. Copyright © 2024 Elsevier Ltd.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103384
JournalSystem
Volume124
Early online dateJun 2024
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - Jun 2024

Citation

Zhang, S., & Lai, C. (2024). Out-of-class English learning anxiety and its relation to motivation among Chinese university English majors. System, 124, Article 103384. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2024.103384

Keywords

  • Foreign language anxiety
  • Out-of-class language learning
  • Underlying constructs
  • L2 motivation

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