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ERIC Number: ED554892
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 160
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: 978-1-3031-4911-5
An Exploration of Language Anxiety in L2 Academic Context for Chinese International Students in U.S. Universities
Zhao, Qing
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, University of Massachusetts Lowell
This mix-methods study examined the language anxiety levels that the Chinese international students perceived in second language (L2) academic context at four universities in the northeastern region of the United States of America; it explored the impact of language anxiety that these students perceived on their academic learning; it also identified the strategies that these students believed to be effective to cope with language anxiety during their academic sojourns in the United States. There were a total of 85 participants responded to the web-based survey, which was adapted from Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale (FLCAS) (Horwitz et al., 1986) and administered through Survey Monkey (a type of software to administer online surveys). Six of the survey respondents were randomly chosen (two students at each of the high, moderate, and low levels of anxiety) based on their anxiety scores for the follow-up interviews. Data analysis revealed that these Chinese international students experienced moderate anxiety in their academic context; however, more language anxiety experiences were reported by the interview participants at different anxiety levels. This study identified several important findings. First, language anxiety was experienced mainly over communication in English for these Chinese international students. These students often encountered difficulties and challenges in producing speech and receiving input from native speakers of English especially at the initial stage of their academic sojourns. Second, this communication anxiety was often associated with other independent variables including subject matter knowledge and academic language, comprehensibility of instruction, fear of negative evaluation, pacing of interlocutor(s), conversational language, cultural differences, and length of stay. These factors worked together in a complex way and varied individually to different degrees to affect the individuals' academic sojourns. Third, according to these students, there were three major strategies to cope with language anxiety, including practice, seeking support, and socializing with native speakers of English. This study provided implications for both research and practice and offered suggestions for future language anxiety research. Recommendations include: conducting more qualitative studies to examine learner variables and explore multiple perspectives from instructors and English as first language (L1) students. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Assessments and Surveys: Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale