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ERIC Number: EJ1176708
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: EISSN-1936-7384
Why an Indirect Measure of L2 Learner's Willingness to Communicate in L2 Writing Requires Cautious Inferencing
Kim, Peter
Working Papers in TESOL & Applied Linguistics, v17 n1 p101-103 2017
In "Exploring the Dynamics of Willingness to Communicate (WTC) in Written Communication" (EJ1176701), Choe's preliminary case study explores an area of WTC that has not been fully addressed by WTC scholars: an analysis of WTC in written communication. When the concept of WTC was applied to the L2 context, a negative correlation between L1 WTC and L2 WTC revealed a different nature of L2 WTC. L2 WTC was found to be fluid and dynamic, open and interactive with L2 learning context and a host of other factors both learner internal and external that self-organizes to emerge a changing WTC orientation that is situation-specific. In light of this, according to the "Complex Dynamic Systems Theory" (CDST) approach to second language acquisition (SLA), L2 WTC features layers of potential factors that comprise situation-specific influences at a given moment-in-time as well as stable, enduring influences that are more resistant to change. In short, in CDST, L2 WTC is seen as an emergent property of both the stable, intrinsic nature of the learner and the dynamic nature of the learner's external conditions. In Choe's study, the dynamism of Belinda and Michelle's WTC through email correspondences was analyzed in relation to topic, lexical complexity, article accuracy, and article form-function mapping. Using an inductive approach, the author measured WTC indirectly by assuming that at the macro-level, the amount of words an individual was willing to produce in each correspondence adequately measured her WTC in writing. At the micro-level, a similar approach was used to assume that the proportion of words an individual was willing to write under a topic was proportional to her WTC on the same topic. The author fully acknowledged this limitation and such limitations notwithstanding, she has done an admirable work in her attempt to explore WTC in L2 writing. Nevertheless, Peter Kim aims to revisit the assumptions of the indirect method used to measure the latent psychological construct in question.
Teachers College, Columbia University. 525 West 120th Street, New York, NY 10027. e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
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