Rapid Changes in Foreign Language Learning Anxiety Caused by a Multiplicity of Topics: An Idiodynamic Approach
(2020) Journal of Language and Education, 6(1), 83-102. doi: 10.17323/jle.2020.9684
20 Pages Posted: 23 Jun 2020
Date Written: March 31, 2020
Considering the dynamicnature of foreign language anxiety (FLA), we applied an idiodynamic method to explore topic-based variations of FLA. Before the study was conducted, a class of 20 female intermediate English as foreign language learners were assessed using the foreign language classroom anxiety scale (FLCAS). Two low-anxiety learners and two high-anxiety learners were selected to participate in this study. The idiodynamic method involved videotaping the participants’ responses to four topic-based questions, their self-ratings of fluctuations in FLA while answering the questions, and drawing attributions for topic-based changes in FLA. The results demonstrated both within-individual and between-individual stability and variation in FLA. Linguistic block, topic familiarity, topic interest, and topic-related emotional loading were revealed as the major factors affecting the dynamics of FLA. The pedagogical implications of the findings are discussed.
Keywords: Foreign language learning anxiety, idiodynamic method, change, topic, complex system
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