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INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL Of ACADEMIC RESEARCH

LCC: LC5201-6660.4 BF501-505

Vol. 2. No. 1. January 2010

MOTIVATING AND DE-MOTIVATING FACTORS AMONG LEARNERS
Fazal ur Rahman , Dr. Nabi Bux Jumani , Abdul Basit
a b

a

b

c

Early Childhood Education & Elementary Teacher Education Department Department of Secondary Teacher Education, Allama Iqbal Open University c Government Higher Secondary School Tarnab Charsadda (PAKISTAN)

ABSTRACT The study aimed to investigate motivating and de-motivating factors in learners and their impact on their achievement. The subject under focus was English (English as second language). The sample of study consisted of 100 students of Higher Secondary School and the Instrument of the study consisted of a questionnaire and an achievement test in the subject of English. It was found that majority of students were motivated to learn English. The results of the study revealed a significant correlation between the motivation and academic achievement of the students. The study further revealed that there are significant gender differences in the motivational factors. The study recommended that teachers adopt measures to increase the motivation of students. Further the teachers should focus on practical skills in teaching English and educate the students on how to tackle the social and peer pressure. Teacher need to focus on the gender differences. Key words: Motivation, De-motivation, Learners, English language 1. INTRODUCTION

Motivation is a very common concept and is regarded as important to starting or taking action, and is a concept widely used in a variety of situations. The search of its empirical verification produced an enormous amount of research. According to Koiso (2003, p.96), “Motivation is considered to be one of the main determining factors of success in developing a second or foreign language” Everybody needs to have motivation and a reason for action. Second and foreign language learners should be offered the opportunity to be motivated and fulfil their learning orientations (Qashoa, 2006). “Attitude and motivation are key points in second language acquisition.” (Nagano, 1995, p.72) “Without motivation, success will be hard to come by, and the case of learning a second or foreign language is little different” (Ushioda, n.d. p.19) English is a foreign language and is not used in daily life; however there are aspects of second language environment. Many students have developed passive attitudes towards learning English due to previous experiences that English is hard to learn and it is observed that students in current school systems feel de-motivated and hopeless because they lack the skills needed to help them to develop motivation. Qashoa (2006, p.2 ) has reported from Domyel (2001) that, “ A de-motivated person is someone who initially had a motivation to fulfil a goal or to engage in an activity and has lost the motivation to do so because of negative external factors which are related to the environment in which learning takes place such as the classroom or school.” Attitude and motivated behaviour is most important for language learning. “It is a common-place belief in language pedagogy and second language acquisition research that language-related attitudes and motivated behaviour play a highly important role in second and foreign language learning” (Csizer and Kormos (2008, p.30).Motivation is often connected with levels of aspiration, which is defined as the standard that individuals set themselves in target-directed activities. It is generally assumed that previous success in some activity raises the level of aspiration, while previous failure lowers it (Djigunović, 2007, p.116).In other words “motivation concerns what moves a person to make certain choices, to engage in action, and to persist in action” (Ushioda, n.d. p.19). Similarly Akbas & Kan, 2006, p.11 were of the view that motivation is a repulsive power to conduct organism attaining to certain goal and being able to do necessary actions in particular conditions, giving energy and a guide to behaviours causing an affective advance. Motivation in learning English can be explained with the help of Gardner’s Socio-psychological Model of Second Language Acquisition. Gardner (1985) proposed a model of motivation in second language learning called as the socioeducational model. The model is concerned with various individual differences in the learning of the second language (L2). In this model two classes of variables integrativeness and attitudes towards the learning situation contribute to the learners’ level of motivation. (Conttia, 2007: Qashoa, 2006). It was suggested that greater L2 competence would be achieved as a result of integrative orientedness which is characterized by learners’ demonstration of greater motivational effort in learning of an L2.

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and action control. 2007. The learner’s natural interest (Intrinsic satisfaction) 2. appraisal. They should feel that their views are valued. Different scales are used for measuring motivation. (b) Desire to Learn the Language. Competence vi. 2. p. Need v. This system consists of three components: task execution. and URL: www. Fig. 1. January 2010 Fig. Attitude iv. p. Dörnyei’s task processing system model Source: Sakai (2007.19) In assessing motivation. 2. Self efficacy iii. Curiosity ii.INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL Of ACADEMIC RESEARCH Vol. pp.lit. The teacher/employment etc (Extrinsic reward) 3. Success in task (combining satisfaction and reward) Motivation comprised of many components: Frith (1997. Tremblay. p. the main problem is measuring device. that Motivation is measured by three scales: (a) Attitudes toward Learning the Language. there are different sources of motivation as outlined by Qashoa (2006.19) has presented from Dörnyei (2003) a task processing system that expresses a more dynamic picture of L2 motivation. and they have opportunities to share their feelings and thought.az 207 . Sakai (2007. External motivators These motivators should be accepted and valued by students. p.2-4) has described the following components of motivation to learn: i. These included: 1.ijar. Schematic representation of the socio-psychological model (Gardner 1985) Source: (Conttia.90) However. No.6) has reported from Gardner.3). and Masgoret (1997). Sakai (2007. 1. p.

2007.05 and 0. These include Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation. No.01. Random sampling technique was used to select sample of the study. both within and out of the classroom settings. “A majority of research in the English language learning field has been focusing largely on teaching or course effectiveness. the regional languages are the dominant languages and English is used as an auxiliary language in limited situations.05 0.22 0. The problem exists among learners of English from beginning to more advanced levels.90). (2006).01 0. This was followed by an interview. Table 1. v.0 for windows were applied for the analysis of data. language aptitude only has a significant influence on formal context. Analysis of Data The responses to the questions were displayed using descriptive statistics like frequencies.20 0.05 0.20 0. I learn English to prove to myself that I am capable of learning English.ijar.2). The questionnaire was a five point Likert scale ranging from “Strongly Agree” to “Strongly Disagree” in which the participants were asked to tick the appropriate box. and designed other questions based on the results of Kormos and Csizer’s (2007) study. p. p.22 Statement i. The instrument was revised by incorporating the suggestions and feed-back provided by the experts and results of the pilot test. but little has been done to look at what makes learners become self-determined enough to take control of their own learning” (Conttia.153) who conducted a study on the impact of motivation on student’s academic achievement and learning outcomes in mathematics among secondary school students in Nigeria. Students at Higher secondary grade spend 45 minutes period per day and is equal to 18 credit hours.30 0. 2. The questionnaire was adapted from various researches previously conducted on motivation among learners of English. English is a compulsory school subject in Pakistani schools. The final draft of both the questionnaire and researcher made test were consisted of 30 items.Learning English is important to me as it will allow me to be at ease with people who speak English ii. The method was derived from Tella (2007. There are various types of motivation. Very little work has been done on this phenomenon. Instrument of the study A questionnaire was developed to obtained opinion of students about motivating and de-motivating factors in learning of English. Even highly advanced learners feel that they cannot perform better in English in many situations. nervousness and de-motivation. Features in Microsoft Excel XP 2002 and SPSS 13. It is interesting to note that the following statements were significantly correlated with the performance of students on the test. 2006.INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL Of ACADEMIC RESEARCH Vol. percentages. Students spend 12 years of schooling before entering the higher educational institutions.05 208 URL: www. An achievement test was also used to assess the performance of students. education policy makers and curriculum planners to improve the students’ proficiency” (Qashoa. 2. All the students were studying English as a compulsory subject at higher secondary level. 2007. 1.30 0.lit. means. In the learning context of Pakistan. p. OBJECTIVES AND METHOD OF THE STUDY The objectives of the study were to identify the factors motivating and de-motivating students in learning English and to find out the relationship between motivation and student achievement . p. A total of 100 students of grade XII participated in the study. but a weak one in informal situations. “Both formal and informal contexts yield linguistic and non-linguistic outcomes” (Conttia. The responses were coded as: Strongly Agree = 5 Agree = 4 Undecided = 3 Disagree = 2 Strongly Disagree = 1 The student performance was assessed with help of researcher made test in the subject of English. Motivating factors for students to learn English Test score r . 1).However. therefore the students were extrinsically motivated towards its learning. p. Expert opinion and pilot test were used for the purpose of validity and reliability of instrument.People will respect me more if I have knowledge of English p 0. January 2010 (c) Motivational Intensity As far as the learning of English language is concerned.Learning English will make me a more knowledgeable person iv. As English is a mean of success and excel in the society. “Understanding the students’ goals and motivation in learning English in addition to de-motivating factors help the teachers.01 0. The significant level was established at 0.Learning English will enable me to understand English literature iii. Language acquisition in both formal and informal contexts is induced by motivation. Pearson product movement coefficient of correlation was applied for determining relationship between the student motivation and test score.az .05 0. A large majority of students are not satisfied with their abilities in English after studying it for many years in schools.This was a survey study.I feel honored while reading or speaking English in front of other students vi. The method was derived from Csizer and Kormos (2008. and ranking. however. standard deviation.34) who drew some questions from the questionnaire used in the survey reported in Dornyei et al. There are different reasons for this but one reason that is the primary concern of this study is motivation. The sample consisted of equal number of male and female students. the students of English frequently express a feeling of stress.

33 0.22 0. Table 4. De-Motivating factors for students to learn English Statement i.0 71. No. How can we learn English when we cannot even learn our own language 9.az 209 .I want to learn mathematics.05 Table 2 indicated that there were eight statements out of fifteen which correlated with student poor performance in English.01 0. This demands creation of a conducive environment for the students so they could feel comfortable in learning English.5 8.I worry about making mistakes in reading or speaking English vi.We don’t try to learn English.The English textbook is difficult and boring iii. This is useful in that it indicates some key areas of student behaviour which may well be very useful. Motivational/De-motivational factors and Test data Group All students Males students Female students All students Males students Minimum Maximum Motivational factors 32. Among the above statements. I get so nervous I forget things I know viii.0 Mean 57.30 0. and is still speaking English” 4.5 54. are low.English grammar rules are complicated iv. imply causation. 5.05 0.3 59.0 41.8 URL: www.1 6.lit. We feel shy while speaking English with each other.In reading or speaking English.01 0.I want to learn English but I am very poor Frequency 5 3 5 3 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Percentage 5% 3% 5% 3% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1% 1% The table 4 revealed the social attitude of the people towards English language.I keep thinking that the other students are better in English than I am vii. even then he does not try to speak English 6.6 49. Had we practiced it we would have learnt it like our mother tongue 10.I am afraid that other students in the class will laugh at me when I read or speak English Test score r p 0. 2.0 75. news paper and movie The students also enlisted some factors responsible for their de-motivation as summarized in table 3: Table 3. Pearson is more sensitive and will give higher values. Of course. We fear that people will laugh at us and we would not be able to face them 7.Whenever we try to speak English people start making fun of us.0 59.7 6.0 66. but I am forced by my parents to learn English 11. “Were your parent English men that you are learning English?” b. The effect was much less for the other nine questions and is not shown here. It has to be noted that all the correlation values.ijar. some of the statements were significantly correlated with the performance of students as indicated in below table: Table 2.40 0.I often do not remember things that I learn in English. of itself. correlation does not. The teacher may think about those if he wishes better student performance.0 71.5 SD 8.01 0. If one learns to read and speak English.I have difficulty in understanding what I listen in English v.0 De-Motivational factors 20.0 32. even when highly significant. 1. Six questions show significant correlations (table 1). What the outcomes show is that certain motivational factors that relate to better student performance.Speaking English is not considered good in our society. 3. These reflect on students’ progress and have some idea of their success in terms of higher marks.22 0.0 41.Students reported the following type of remarks a. Summary of interview about de-motivated factors Statement 1.INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL Of ACADEMIC RESEARCH Vol. In interview the students highlighted that major drive for learning English language is the understanding of English news.22 0.Our society is such where English is not spoken 8.I am de-motivated to learn English because the English teacher speaks rapidly during the lesson ii.The biggest de-motivating factor in learning English is our society. he cannot earn a living. 2.8 8.0 75.Our parents have not learnt English.A de-motivating factor is that we do not practice English.05 0.01 0. January 2010 Pearson correlation can only be used if the data to be correlated are approximately normally distributed and are integer in nature. so how can we learn it.24 0. “look at him.26 0.

0 at p = 0.e.0 5. de-motivational factors and student test score. t (98) = -1.5 54. January 2010 Mean 50.9 8.8 Table 5 indicated that mean score of male students was higher than female on motivational factors. and teachers anger over a wrong answer.2 13.0 Levene's Test for Equality of Variances F Equal Motivating variances factors assumed Equal variances not assumed Sig.5 SD 6. 210 URL: www. The male were more motivated that female to learn English.002 4. The table further highlighted a small gender difference in the de-motivational factors and test score. difficulty in understanding listened English.2 13.0 23. p = 0. Result of independent sample test Independent Samples Test t-test for Equality of Means 95% Confidence Interval of Sig.9 1.0 Test data 5.0 Vol.lit. An independent sample test was also carried out to see if there are any significant gender differences in motivating factors of students as shown in table 6: Table 6. difficult textbook. Many of them wanted to learn it for future education. t ( 98) = 3.az . They not only wanted to learn it for knowledge but also to have practical gains from learning English.2. too much nervousness.5 50.002 4.0 23.54 1.ijar.9 1.0 7.6 57.8 3. fear of laughter by students. t df 1. 2. This indicates the due importance of motivating factors in learning.7 3. Findings of the study It was found that majority of students were motivated to learn English. career and job.05) which revealed significant difference between motivating factors of male and female students. spelling and reading mistakes.54 0. no use of modern technological aids in teaching English. It was concluded that other major de-motivating factor pointed out by students was society as it hampered students to learn English by mocking at them.3 Test score 14.5 3. 1.INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL Of ACADEMIC RESEARCH Group Female students All students Males students Female students Minimum 33. No. The study found that the main de-motivating factors were complicated English grammar rules.5 Table 4 present an overall picture of motivational.2 98 3. low self esteem.511* Test score 0. (2Mean Std. no encouragement from parents and friends.31 Table 7. large memory load.54 1.2 49.0 Maximum 66.0 The results show that there is a significant difference between motivating factors of male and female students.2 94 0. Correlation between motivational factors and test score Motivational factors 1 0.0 59.511* 1 p 0. rapid pace of the lesson.22 3.9 8. Comparison of mean score of students De-Motivational factors Group Males students Female students All students Motivational factors 59.05 Motivational factors Test score Pearson “r” Pearson “r” The table shows that there is a significant correlation between motivational factors and students test score. Error the Difference tailed) Difference Difference Lower Upper 0.8 14. Further the significance value 0. Table 5. fear that teacher would correct mistakes immediately in front of the whole class. Their motivational orientation was more instrumental in nature.002 is less than alpha (0.0 23. The results of the study indicated that the motivational factors for learning English was significantly correlated with students’ performance.5 13.002 While it was found that there was not significant differences among male and female students with respect to de-motivating factors i.2 13.

Classroom management plan. they usually have studied English for at least six years in various classes. By the time students enter higher secondary classes. Retrieved March. Therefore. However. S. 2008 from http://njaes. Retrieved November 12. and should be educated on how to tackle the social and peer pressure 4. yet many of them are unable to carry on simple conversation or write a few sentences free of grammatical errors. (2003). students lack communicative ability. Boice.It is interesting to note that most motivating factors for learning English language including self-esteem and honor which is highest level of human needs. and prefer teacher-centered classrooms in which little English is spoken. Student centered teaching methods and appropriate teaching material for English may be developed.htm Broussard. Big responsibility lies on the shoulders of teacher and teacher educator. This is a grimy picture of what is going on in the school.boicewebpage/teacher_studentportfolios. One of these factors is prior learning experience. Affective factors that influence chemistry achievement (motivation and anxiety) and the power of these factors to predict chemistry achievement-II. W. Students should be encouraged to learn English. The study has also limitations and it may be kept in mind while generalizing findings of the study. The influence of learner motivation on developing autonomous learning in an englishfor-specific-purposes course. Retrieved December 01. Students should be trained in understanding spoken English 3. (2008). Volume 4. University of Hong Kong. The relationship between classroom motivation and academic achievement in first and third graders. Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development. 78). Motivation is positively related to academic achievement of students.pdf Conttia.edu/pubs/publication. and is an important component of teaching learning process. If teachers want students to become motivated to learn. (2007). 4. Journal of Turkish science education. No. Akbaş. 2008 from http://www. The result of the study also indicated significant gender differences in motivational factors. however there are aspects of second language environment. pp..lsu. 10.ijar. 2008 from http://etd. Grammar rules should be clearly explained to students.rutgers. There should be more focus on practical skills in learning English. January 2010 English is an international language. There is a need to create a learning environment that promotes students’ motivation.pdf Csizér. DISCUSSION Vol. 5. 5. Choosing appropriate research methods to evaluate educational programs. Rutgers NJAES Cooperative Extension FS943. A. Issue 1. C. It has been observed that higher achievers are highly motivated and actively participate in the classroom activities while the slow learners rarely join in classroom activities and are worried about their English final examinations. The male students were found more motivated than female. & Kormos.INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL Of ACADEMIC RESEARCH 3. the study did not found any significant gender differences in case of de-motivational factors for learning English language.asian-efl-journal. M. In this regard media role is important. REFERENCES 1. Many school teachers still favor the grammar-translation method. 29 (1). Secondly questionnaire was used to find motivation and de-motivational level of the students which require further validation. This study highlighted some of the main features that can promote learning of English . “More needs to be done to encourage independent learning” (Nagano 1995. (2002). This indicated flaws in the teacher training program and curriculum of English language. May 2007. 2. The relationship of inter-cultural contact and language learning motivation among Hungarian students of English and German. M. Master level dissertation. 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