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Creating a Low-Anxiety Classroom

             Anxiety has been diagnosed in different learning settings, but when it relates to second or foreign language learning, it is called 'second/foreign language anxiety'(cited in Hashemi & Abbasi 640). From the 1970s, researchers started to devote specific attention to learners' affects in order to determine what can obstruct the process of second/foreign language learning. Thus, anxiety emerged as a potentially important field of research due to its extensive harmful effect on learners' achievement (640-641). Research on language learning anxiety has been enriched with two significant works. Scovel qualified anxiety as complex, since it can lead to both high and low performance. On the other hand, Horwitz, Horwitz and cope affirm that language learning anxiety is situational. They designed the Foreign Language Anxiety Scale whose results revealed that language anxiety has negative effects on second/foreign language classroom achievement in different situations (Zheng 2-3). High anxiety can be a real handicap for FL/SL learners, for this reason, this work is going to explore some of the factors that lie behind it, and suggest some practical solutions to lower it.
             Definition of Anxiety.
             Anxiety is the feeling of tension, apprehension, nervousness, and worry. Many students feel more anxious and nervous in foreign language (FL) class than in any other class. In fact, foreign language anxiety (FLA) has been identified as one of the major obstacles to acquisition and fluent production of foreign languages. Maclntyre and Gardner defined FLA as the feeling of tension and apprehension specifically associated with second language contexts, including speaking, listening, and learning; and Horwitz et al. described language anxiety as " a distinct complex of self-perceptions, beliefs, feelings, and behaviors related to classroom language learning arising from the uniqueness of the language learning process" (Cited in Javad Riasalti 907-917).

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