ERIC Number: ED314934
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1989-Aug
Reference Count: N/A
An Investigation of Students' Perspectives on Anxiety and Speaking.
Young, D. J.
A study investigated the types of in-class, speaking-oriented activities that second language learners find anxiety-producing and the types of instructor practices that students perceive as anxiety-reducing. A 4-page questionnaire was administered to 135 university-level students of intensive Spanish and 109 high school students in first- and second-year Spanish. Three high school and five college instructors, all considered exemplary teachers, participated in the study. In general, the results confirm previous research findings on language class anxiety. The following suggestions are made for reducing learner anxiety: (1) having students verbalize their fears about language learning, then writing them on the board; (2) using an anxiety graph to pinpoint the highest level of anxiety of a given interaction; (3) encouraging student journal writing; (4) for anxieties stemming from learner personality, providing supplemental instruction or a support group; (5) for anxieties stemming from classroom procedures, using more pair and group work, with activities tailored to the learners' affective needs; (6) playing language games with an emphasis on problem-solving; and (7) role-playing with preparatory activities to instill class rapport. (MSE)
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese (San Antonio, TX, August 10-14, 1989).