ESL Learners’ Learning Motivations and Strategies

By Yi-Chen Lu and David Ryan Berg.

Published by The Learner Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The purposes of this study were to understand ESL (English as a Second Language) students’ learning motivations and learning strategies in the West North Central division of the United Stated. Respondents included 133 students enrolled in intensive English classes in six institutions in Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, and North Dakota. This study concluded that the ESL students in the West North Central Division of the United States tend to be more instrumentally motivated than integratively motivated when learning English. In addition, African students are more instrumentally motivated than are the American, Asian, European, and Middle Eastern students. The ESL students in West North Central states prefer using metacognitive, social, compensation, and cognitive strategies more frequently than using memory and affective strategies. Overall, female students use strategies more frequently than male students when learning English. European students prefer memory strategies and African students prefer cognitive, metacognitive, and affective strategies. European and Asian students prefer compensation strategies and Middle Eastern students prefer social strategies. The researcher suggests that since ESL students’ learning motivations and strategies are different, ESL instructors should understand more about students’ motivations and strategies in order to vary their teaching style to achieve better results in language learning.

Keywords: ESL, Learning Motivation, Learning Strategies

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 1, pp.17-24. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.022MB).

Dr. Yi-Chen Lu

Assistant Professor, Department of Foreign Languages and Applied Linguistics, Transworld Institute of Technology, Douliou City, Yunlin County, Taiwan

Teaching English as a second language to speakers of other languages is my life-long dream. I currently teach English at the Transworld Institute of Technology in Douliou, Taiwan. My most recent research includes ESL learners’ learning motivations and strategies and How cultural differences affect language learners learning languages.

David Ryan Berg

Instructor, Department of Foreign Languages and Applied Linguistics, Transworld Institute of Technology, Douliou City, Yunlin County, Taiwan

My main interests are political communication and rhetoric, but I also enjoy studying ESL education and the many facets of intercultural communication and appreciation. I enjoy learning about other cultures and studying languages. I currently teach English at the Transworld Institute of Technology in Douliou, Taiwan.

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