Foreign Language Learning Essay

Foreign Language Learning Essay

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Second/foreign language learning can be a demanding task for many language learners. One of the factors that make such process difficult is the existence of anxiety. Most language learners experience a feeling of anxiety in the process of language learning. Although the degree and severity of this feeling may vary from one individual to another, it cannot be claimed that it does not exist at all. The number of students who report that they feel anxious while learning a second/foreign language is surprising. According to [1], more than half of foreign language learners experience some degree of anxiety. It is also argued that language learning anxiety may pose potential problems for language learners [2]. Learners who feel anxious in their foreign language learning may find their study less enjoyable [3], which will in turn have a negative impact on their performance. Such being the case, it is crucial to investigate language learners’ perspectives on language learning anxiety in order to figure out what factors make them feel anxious. It is hoped that by omitting or at least reducing those factors, teachers and educators can create a more relaxing environment, so that more effective language learning would take place.

Problem Statement
With the increasing number of people who are willing to learn English as a second/foreign language, it is really necessary to find out the factors which may hinder or negatively affect language learning. One of these factors which has not been paid due attention to in academic settings is language learners’ anxiety. Most teachers are not aware of the fact that their students are not able to fully exhibit their potential because of the stressful situation they are in, or even if they know the stu...

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...ed the cause of anxiety to the teacher or other people. Most students felt frustrated and helpless, although students who perceived themselves as having higher ability indicated a greater sense of resilience. Other findings were that the effect of and response to anxiety were associated with gender and perceived ability level.
Andrade and William [17] reported Japanese university students’ reactions to anxiety-provoking situations in English-as-a-foreign language (EFL) classes. Overall, the findings indicate that some degree of anxiety affected 75% of the learners and that the debilitating aspects of anxiety strongly hindered about 11% of them. Another important finding is that many students enter their university EFL classes expecting to experience an anxiety-provoking situation and that anxiety is likely to significantly hinder the performance of some students.

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