Factors Affecting Language Learning Strategy Use

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Factors Affecting Language Learning Strategy Use

  1. 1. 5 FACTORS AFFECTING THE USAGE OF LANGUAGE LEARNING STRATEGIES HAYANI AMANINA HISHAM A143822
  2. 2. 1. GENDER
  3. 3.  Significantly, females employ more language learning strategies than males as reported by studies. (e.g. Goh & Kwah, 1997; Green & Oxford, 1995; Gu 2002).  It is also reported that gender difference causes different strategies to be utilized.  A study by Hong-Nam and Leavell (2006) found that females use Social and Metacognitive strategies the most and Memory strategies the least. Meanwhile male prefered Metacognitive and Compensation strategies the most and Affective strategies the least.
  4. 4.  However, this contradicted with the study conducted by Tran, 1988 and Wharton, 2000, which revealed that learners used varied strategies and most of them are males compared to females. This shows that males are more likely to employ a diversity of strategies than females.
  5. 5. 2. MOTIVATION
  6. 6.  Motivation plays a great role which prompts learner to use more strategies than less motivated learner (Oxford and Nyikos ,1989)  According to Gardner (1985), attitudes and motivation are the primary sources contributing to individual language learning.  Motivation is divided into two. First, an instrumental orientation which is described as when students have a personal reason that they want to achieve such as for the sake of career or to pass an exam.
  7. 7. Second, integrative orientation which is when the learner really want to be part of the culture of the language (Gardner, 1985).  Apart from that, Pintrich and Schunk (2002) stated that motivation involves all activities in the classroom, affecting learning of new behaviors and the performance of earlier learned behaviors.  Generally, motivation is the reason why learners choose to use strategy and are keen to continue and maintain the usage.
  8. 8. 3. EXPERIENCES IN STUDYING A LANGUAGE
  9. 9.  The experience of studying the language can also affect the options of strategies used by learners.  Studies conducted by Purdie and Oliver, 1999 found that the longer a bilingual learner stays where the target language is used, the more proficient the learner is in the language compared to those who stayed for a short period of time or not at all.  This is also supported by Opper, Teichler, and Carlson’s (1990) which reported that studying abroad in countries such as Europe and The United States influence the learners’ thoughts and learning styles.  Therefore, learners with experience of studying the language are more inclined to have vast of strategies use.
  10. 10. 4. FIELDS OF STUDY
  11. 11.  Fields of study is uncommonly investigated as a factor that influences language learning strategy use.  However, it is related slightly to the learner’s choice of strategy use according to the findings by Intaraprasert (2003).  Peacock and Ho (2003) had also investigated the use of language learning for students with different fields of study- building, business, computing, engineering, English, math, primary education, and science in a university in Hong Kong.  Their study highlighted a evaluation of strategy use across those disciplines and also an investigation of the relationships with strategy use.
  12. 12.  Nonetheless, there are little significant proofs showing any influence of this variable on learners’ choice of language learning strategy use.
  13. 13. 5. LANGUAGE PROFICIENCY
  14. 14.  Higher levels of language proficiency has also been reported to be one of the contributing factors that influence the frequency of strategy use.  Studies to rate the relationship between the two were done by several researchers- Sheorey, 1999; Torut, 1994; Intaraprasert, 2000; Oxford and Nyikos, 1989; Green and Oxford, 1995; Wharton, 2000.  The findings revealed that major distinctions exist between the students' self-apprehended English proficiency level and the usage of language learning strategies as a whole.
  15. 15.  Needless to say the higher the level of language proficiency, the higher the usage of language learning strategies. This statement is supported by Oxford, and Nyikos, 1989; Green and Oxford, 1995; Wharton, 2000.

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