Japanese ESL Students’ Willingness to Communicate in English: The Effects of L2 Self-Confidence, Acculturation, and Motivational Types


This study aimed to identify the factors that affect English learners’ willingness to communicate (WTC) in the second language (L2) (L2 WTC) and particularly focused on self-confidence in the second language (L2 self-confidence), acculturation, and motivational types. L2 self-confidence was hypothesized to predict L2 WTC and to mediate the correlation between acculturation and L2 WTC for instrumental motivation learners, but not for integrative motivation learners. Participants were 88 Japanese speakers of English as a second language (ESL) studying at a small liberal arts college located in Southern California. The results partially confirmed the hypotheses, showing that both L2 self-confidence and acculturation strongly correlate with L2 WTC. The results also indicated that the mediation effect of L2 self-confidence on the correlation between acculturation and L2 WTC was opposite from the hypothesis, showing that the mediation effect was significant for integrative motivation learners but not for the instrumental counterparts. In explaining this disconfirmation of the hypothesis, a particular focus was placed on differences between L2 self-confidence and L2 WTC.

Author Information
Tomoko Takahashi, Soka University of America, United States
Tatsuya Aoyama, Soka University of America, United States

Paper Information
Conference: ACL2020
Stream: Language Acquisition

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon