Departmental Bulletin Paper The Effect of Communicative Based Teaching on Foreign Language Anxiety

Dykes, Robert

1pp.37 - 49 , 2017-03-01 , 福井大学国際交流センター
Research into foreign language anxiety (FLA) is plentiful yet is an area of study and research that remains incomplete due to anxiety's unique complexity that is affected not only by each learner's innate disposition, by reaction to certain stressors and stimuli, but also by the immediate context of anxiety. Results from pre-test/post-test experiments measuring FLA in the classroom have varied widely. In an attempt to get some clarifying data in this area, this project measured the FLA of a large group of Japanese university students (N=397) over the course of a mandatory 16-week university English course to determine if a change in FLA would occur in a Japanese university classroom context. A secondary research goal was to explore what effects a student centered communicative curriculum would have on FLA. The study found that a significant decrease in FLA did occur between the beginning and end of the 16-week mandatory English course. Initial conclusions of the secondary research goal indicated that stressors such as speaking or peer evaluation in one situation may increase FLA, while the same stressors in a different situation such as a classroom with a strong sense of community may help decrease FLA. However, it was also determined that the research design needs to be improved in a number of ways for subsequent studies.

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