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PSYCHOLOGICAL FACTORS THAT HINDER STUDENTS FROM


SPEAKING IN ENGLISH
Fitra Elia
FKIP Islamic University of Riau
Dewi Irianti
FKIP Islamic University of Riau

Abstract
Psychological factors are the mental factors that help or hinder students for
making 'frame of mind' to perform thing well. The study aims to find out psychological
factors that hinder students from speaking in English class and causes of the factors as
well as the possible solution to overcome the factors. English is not easy to be able
master a foreign language, English is a second language which is certainly difficult to
understand for people in Indonesia. So there are some factors that can hinder them from
speaking. They are fear of making mistake, shyness, anxiety, lack of confidence, and
lack of motivation. This study has three instruments. They are observation,
questionnaire, and interview. Observation used to observed students participation of
speaking English in the classroom, questionnaires were addressed to the respondents to
get their responses in a form of written data, and the interview was conducted to gain
further information about psychological factors that hinder students from speaking and
the causes of the factors as well as the solutions to overcome the factors. Total of
population are 319 students. In this research, the writer chose all classes and chose 7
students as a representative from each class. So, the samples consist of 63 students. The
observation result shown that the first year students at SMAN 10 Pekanbaru are active
enough in participating of speaking English in the classroom with percentage 32%. The
result from questionnaire shown that fear of mistake is the highest percentage as
psychological factors that hinder students from speaking in with percentage 38%. This
finding suggests that the teacher should be more aware of their students hindrance to
speak in English class.
Keywords

: Psychological factors, speaking

FAKTOR PSIKOLOGIS YANG MENGHAMBAT MAHASISWA DARI


BERBICARA DALAM BAHASA INGGRIS
Abstrak:
Faktor psikologis adalah faktor mental yang membantu atau menghalangi siswa
untuk membuat 'kerangka pikiran' untuk melakukan hal dengan baik. Penelitian ini
bertujuan untuk mengetahui faktor-faktor psikologis yang menghambat siswa dari
berbicara di kelas bahasa Inggris dan penyebab faktor serta solusi yang mungkin untuk
mengatasi faktor. Inggris tidak mudah untuk dapat menguasai bahasa asing, bahasa
Inggris adalah bahasa kedua yang tentunya sulit dipahami bagi orang-orang di
Indonesia. Jadi ada beberapa faktor yang dapat menghalangi mereka dari berbicara.
Mereka takut membuat kesalahan, rasa malu, kecemasan, kurang percaya diri, dan
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Psychological Factors that Hinder Students from Speaking in English

51

kurangnya motivasi. Penelitian ini memiliki tiga instrumen. Mereka observasi, angket,
dan wawancara. Observasi digunakan untuk mengamati siswa partisipasi berbahasa
Inggris di dalam kelas, kuesioner yang ditujukan kepada responden untuk mendapatkan
respon mereka dalam bentuk data tertulis, dan wawancara dilakukan untuk
mendapatkan informasi lebih lanjut tentang faktor-faktor psikologis yang menghambat
siswa untuk berbicara dan penyebab faktor serta solusi untuk mengatasi faktor. Jumlah
populasi 319 siswa. Dalam penelitian ini, penulis memilih semua kelas dan memilih 7
siswa sebagai perwakilan dari masing-masing kelas. Jadi, sampel terdiri dari 63 siswa.
Hasil pengamatan menunjukkan bahwa mahasiswa tahun pertama di SMAN 10
Pekanbaru cukup aktif dalam berpartisipasi berbicara bahasa Inggris di dalam kelas
dengan persentase 32%. Hasil dari kuesioner menunjukkan bahwa takut kesalahan
adalah persentase tertinggi sebagai faktor psikologis yang menghambat siswa dari
berbicara dengan persentase 38%. Temuan ini menunjukkan bahwa guru harus lebih
menyadari hambatan siswa mereka untuk berbicara di kelas bahasa Inggris.
Keywords

: Faktor Psikologis, Kemampuan Berbicara

1. INTRODUCTION
Speaking is one of the important
and essential skills that must be
practiced to communicate orally. By
speaking people are able to know that
kind of situations in the world. People
who have ability in speaking will be
better at sending and receiving
information or message to another.
Speaking is the process of building and
sharing meaning through the uses of
verbal and non-verbal symbol in various
contexts. In these cases shows that
speaking emphasizes the use of
language interactively in order to make
meaning of what is said. All these show
the speaking concerns meaning creation
which involves both verbal and nonverbal symbols through an interaction
process.
Psychological factors are the
mental factors that help or hinder
students for making 'frame of mind' to
perform thing well. These are a process
for students to develop their abilities in
English. Psychological factors play an
important role in a learners success in
acquiring and using a second language
J-SHMIC, Vol 2, No 4, August 2015

because as we know the learners as


individual carries character that enable
him/her to function in different ways
and deal with the situation in a unique
from each individual. According to
Maria (2006) says that psychological
factors can be divided into two
categories: affective or emotional, and
cognitive. Base on to argue that in other
word affective factors are emotional
factors which influence learning.
Individuals become aware of their
environment, and respond to it with
feelings, and act according to
themselves such as self-esteem,
motivation, anxiety, attitude, and
empathy, etc. They can have a negative
or positive effect, whereas cognitive
factors refer to the characteristics of the
person that affect performance and
learning.
These
factors
involve
cognitive functions like attention,
memory, and reasoning.
The reason of choosing this
problem is because English is not a
daily language for Indonesian people.
Therefore a lot of the things that
become an inhibiting factor for students
to understand the English language

Psychological Factors that Hinder Students from Speaking in English

52

well. This case is not only experienced


by students who are still at a low level,
but also felt by advanced students. This
research was conducted at the high
school level. Why did the author choose
high school?, Because according to
Abin Shamsuddin (1996:62) there are
differences in the developmental profile
of adolescents in junior high school and
senior high school. The physical and
psychomotor factors are different, the
junior high school have gestures seem
awkward and poorly coordinated
whereas at senior high school moved to
steady. So, the author considers the high
school students are able to take action
and skilled in the learning experience.
In this paper the writer wants to discuss
about the psychological factors that
hinder students to develop their English
language skills, especially in speaking.
The psychological factors like fear of
mistakes, shyness, anxiety, lack of
confidence, and lack of motivation.
The situation above is cause of
students problems in speaking English.
Firstly, the students have a lack of
vocabulary. Some of them do not have
enough vocabulary to express their
ideas, because they are lazy to increase
their vocabulary mastery. The second is
the lack of practice using English so
make them rigid in pronunciation. The
third is the students attitude in
classroom activities, such as shyness
and worry about making mistakes to
speak English, low English ability, so
they cant make conversation. And
finally they are not self-confident to
convey the message and always wait
their friend to speak first the reason they
have the same ideas.
The difference between this
research and the other research is this
research
observed
about
the
psychological factors that hinder
students to speak English in the class,
and also explain about the causes of
J-SHMIC, Vol 2, No 4, August 2015

psychological factors and possible


solutions to overcome these factors. But
there is other research such as "The
Psychological Problems Faced by
students of Class Speaking at English
Department
of
University
of
Muhammadiyah Malang by Astra
Wicaksono (2009), the title explains
about
problems
in
Speaking,
Psychological
Factors
in
Communications, External factors,
internal factors, The Characteristics of a
Successful Speaking Activity, and also
about solutions from the students. And
the other research by Mai (2011), the
title "An Investigation into the Factors
that Hinder Participation of University
Students in English Speaking Lessons.
In this research discussed about the
participant learner, factors that hinder
students participation in speaking
activities, students factors, teacher
factor, and teaching and learning
conditions.
According to speaking case
there is some psychological factors such
as shyness and anxiety are considered as
the main causes of students reluctance
to speak Brown (2001). This is also in
line with Gebhard (2000) who says that
the students problem in speaking is
caused mostly by their shyness or
anxiety, all these indicated the
importance for teachers to help students
reduce those feelings to minimize their
learning to speak in English.
According to Schwarz (2005) says
that psychological factors such as fear
of mistakes, anxiety, shyness, lack of
confidence, and lack of motivation are
the factors commonly that hinder
students from speaking. Based on that
argue it is clear that psychology is one
of the factors that make students find it
difficult to speak English.
According to Burns & Joyce in
Nunan (1999) in Wade (2011) cited in
Novitasari (2012) there are some factors

Psychological Factors that Hinder Students from Speaking in English

53

that included in psychological factors


that related to second language learning,
among them are: 1) Lack of Motivation,
2) Anxiety, 3) Self-confidence, 4)
Shyness, and 5) Students fear of
ridicule or laughter. On the other hand
the psychological factors are one of
factors make the students reluctant in
speaking English.
Based on the explanation above,
the writer is interested to do the
research which the title of the research
is A Study on Psychological Factors
that Hinder Students from Speaking in
English Class at First Year Students of
SMAN 10 PEKANBARU.
Based on the cases that often
occurs with students about problems
interacting or difficulty speaking
English with the teacher and other
friends in the class. The writer wants to
set
the
problems
about
the
psychological factors that hinder
students to talk and express their ideas
in the class. The psychological factors
and problems in speaking English class
were:
Firstly, it is fear of mistakes. In
this factor students are afraid of looking
foolish in front of other people which
looking them and they are concerned
about how others will see to them, they
do not want to be ridiculed by others
because their mistakes.
Shyness is an emotional thing
which often appears feeling of
apprehension, lack of comfort, or
awkwardness experienced when a
person doing something, approaching,
or been approached by other people,
especially in new situations or with
unfamiliar people.
Anxiety is a feeling of tension,
apprehension, nervousness, and worry
consisted of an arousal of the automatic
nervous system. Anxiety refers to an
emotional state that can have both
positive and negative influences, and
J-SHMIC, Vol 2, No 4, August 2015

which fosters and facilitates of


disturbing and hinder learning.
Lack of confidence feels inferior
to others and a doubtful of their selfworth. They tend to isolate themselves
and over-conform because they mistrust
their own judgment and abilities. Lack
of confidence indication is beginning
from the weakness in various
personality aspects. Lack of confidence
will hamper somebody in achieving the
aim in the life.
Lack of motivation is a symptom
that causes the sufferer does not feel
compelled to do something as quickly
intervening Losing interest, Thinking
that you're weak, being passive, Feeling
misunderstood, and Wanted to improve
your life, but not doing anything about
it.
Secondly, The students have a
limit of vocabulary, they are not having
enough vocabulary to speak and express
their ideas, because they are lazy to
increase their vocabulary mastery, so
this also as obstacle of students to
practicing speaking English in the class,
because It will be difficult for them to
memorize words and also remember
what they want to say when they are
speaking.
Thirdly, the students lack of
Grammar is the important aspect in
English. Most of the students have lack
of grammar, because they reluctant to
remembering and learning about an
aspect of grammar in English. This case
makes students have not confidence and
not want to speak to the class, because
they are afraid to make mistakes when
they speak.
Fourthly, the teacher does not use
a good media, Sometime the students
felt bored when they learning English,
because the teacher do not use a good
media when teaching English. The
teacher always used in similar ways in
every meeting that makes the students

Psychological Factors that Hinder Students from Speaking in English

54

have low interest in learning English.


So, the teacher must creative and active
to give effective strategy to teaching
English in the class.
Fifthly, the teacher does have a
good strategy in teaching English. That
makes the students difficult to
mastering English. So, the teacher must
update and search about a good strategy
that efficient to use in teaching English.
In this case the teacher must know
about how the way to make students
active and interest learning English and
also it is can improve students ability,
especially in speaking.
Because the problem was broad,
the writer needs to limit the problem in
this research. It would be focused on
psychological factors that hinder
students in speaking English. The
psychological factors in speaking
English class are:
Fear of mistake. In this factor
students are afraid of looking foolish in
front of other people which looking
them and they are concerned about how
others will see to them, they do not
want to be ridiculed by others because
their mistakes.
Shyness is an emotional thing
which often appears feeling of
apprehension, lack of comfort, or
awkwardness experienced when a
person doing something, approaching,
or been approached by other people,
especially in new situations or with
unfamiliar people.
Anxiety is a feeling of tension,
apprehension, nervousness, and worry
consisted of an arousal of the automatic
nervous system. Anxiety refers to an
emotional state that can have both
positive and negative influences, and
which fosters and facilitates of
disturbing and hinder learning.
Lack of confidence feels inferior
to others and a doubtful of their selfworth. They tend to isolate themselves
J-SHMIC, Vol 2, No 4, August 2015

and over-conform because they mistrust


their own judgment and abilities. Lack
of confidence indication is beginning
from the weakness in various
personality aspects. Lack of confidence
will hamper somebody in achieving the
aim in the life.
Lack of motivation is a
symptom that causes the sufferer does
not feel compelled to do something as
quickly intervening Losing interest,
Thinking that you're weak, being
passive, Feeling misunderstood, and
Wanted to improve your life, but not
doing anything about it.
2. METHODS
This research is descriptive
qualitative research. This research has
one variable. The variable is
psychological factors that hinder
students from speaking in English class.
The researcher observes students'
activity in the class. This Observation
was carried out to find out students
participations and responses in speaking
activity.
To get the data writer gives
questionnaire. The questionnaire was
used to know and completed indicate of
psychological factors that hinder
students in speaking English. The
information about questionnaires was
addressed to the respondents to get their
responses in a form of written data.
Questionnaire means a list of questions
to be answered by students in order to
add information of fact. Most of the
questionnaire items were adopted, with
some modification, from the ones used
by Markusic (2012) about likert scale,
format of questionnaire that is used in
educational research, especially in the
field of special education. The
questionnaires consist of 50 numbers of
choice related psychological factors that
hinder students in speaking. Students

Psychological Factors that Hinder Students from Speaking in English

55

could choose their answers based on


their experiences in speaking English in
the class.
3. FINDINGS AND DISCUSSION
The writer found that the total
students have psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class started from class X1 from 7
responses, 3 (43%) were have fear of
mistake as psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class,
0 (0%) was not have
shyness as psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class, 0 (0%) was not have anxiety as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class,2 (29%)
were have Lack of confidence as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, and 2
(29%) were have Lack of motivation as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class.
Second class X2 from 7
responses, 2 (29%) were have fear of
mistake as psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class,
0 (0%) was not have shyness
as psychological factors that hinder
them from speaking in English class, 2
(29%)
were
have
anxiety
as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, 1 (14%)
was have Lack of confidence as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, and 2
(29%) were have Lack of motivation as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class.
Third class X3 from 7 responses,
3 (43%) were have fear of mistake as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class,
1
(14%)
was
have
shyness
as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, 0 (0%)
J-SHMIC, Vol 2, No 4, August 2015

was not have anxiety as psychological


factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, 1 (14%) was have lack
of confidence as psychological factors
that hinder them from speaking in
English class, and 2 (29%) were have
anxiety as psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class.
Fourth class X4 from 7 responses,
4 (57%) were have fear of mistake as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class,
0
(0%) was not have shyness as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, 1 (14%)
was have anxiety as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, 2 (29%) were have
lack of confidence as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, and 0 (0%) were not
have
lack
of
motivation
as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class.
Fifth class X5 from 7 responses, 1
(14%) was have fear of mistake as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class,
1
(14%)
was
have
shyness
as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, 2 (29%)
were have anxiety as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
English, 2 (29%) were have lack of
confidence as psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class, and 1 (14%) was have lack of
motivation as psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class.
Sixth class X6 from 7 responses,
1 (14%) was have fear of mistake as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, and
2
(29%) were have shyness as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, 2 (29%)

Psychological Factors that Hinder Students from Speaking in English

56

were have anxiety as psychological


factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, and 2 (29%) were have
lack of confidence as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, and 0 (0%) was not
have
lack
of
motivation
as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class.
Seventh class X7 from 7
responses, 4 (57%) were have fear of
mistake as psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class,
1 (14%) was have shyness as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, 1 (14%)
was have anxiety as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, 1 (14%) was have lack
of confidence as psychological factors
that hinder them from speaking in
English class, and 0 (0%) was not have
lack of motivation as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class.
Eighth class X8 from 7 responses,
4 (57%) were have fear of mistake as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class,
0
(0%) was not have shyness as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, 3 (43%)
were having anxiety as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, 0 (0%) was not having
lack of confidence as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, and 0 (0%) was not
having lack of motivation as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class.
Finally class X9 also from 7
responses, 2 (29%) were have fear of
mistake as psychological factors that
hinder them from speaking in English
class, 1 (14%) was have shyness as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class, 2 (29%)
J-SHMIC, Vol 2, No 4, August 2015

were have anxiety as psychological


factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, 2 (29%) were have
lack of confidence as psychological
factors that hinder them from speaking
in English class, and 0 (0%) was not
have
lack
of
motivation
as
psychological factors that hinder them
from speaking in English class.
Overall results show that from 63
students, 24 (38%) were have fear of
making mistake as psychological factors
that hinder students from speaking in
English class, 6 (9%) were have shyness
as psychological factors that hinder
students from speaking in English class,
13 (21%) were have anxiety as
psychological factors that hinder
students from speaking in English class,
13 (21%) were have lack of confidence
as psychological factors that hinder
students from speaking in English class,
and 7 (11%) were have lack of
motivation as psychological factors that
hinder students from speaking in
English class. The largest group of
students overall was fear of mistake 24
(39%) as psychological factors that
hinder students from speaking in
English class at First year Students of
SMAN 10 Pekanbaru.
4. CONCLUSION
The conclusion of this research
divided into two groups, namely the
conclusion concerning with the concept
and the conclusion concerning with the
research finding.
Theoretical Conclusion
The psychological factors were
thoughts, feelings, attitudes, or other
cognitive or affective characteristics of
an individual that influence his/her
behavior. There were five kinds of
psychological factors namely (1) Fear
of mistakes, In this factor students was
afraid of looked foolish in front of other

Psychological Factors that Hinder Students from Speaking in English

57

people which looked them and they was


concerned about how others would see
to them, they did not want to be
ridiculed by others because their
mistakes. (2) Shyness, was an emotional
thing which often appears feeling of
apprehension, lack of comfort, or
awkwardness
experienced
when
a person doing something, approaching,
or been approached by other people,
especially in new situations or with
unfamiliar people. (3)Anxiety was a
feeling of tension, apprehension,
nervousness, and worry consisted of an
arousal of the automatic nervous
system. (4) Lack of confidence, feels
inferior to others and a doubtful of their
self-worth. And (5) lack of motivation
was a symptom that causes the sufferer
does not feel compelled to do
something. They are the factors
commonly that hinder students from
speaking.
Research Finding Conclusion
In this research, the writer found
that from 319 students, 24 (38%) were
have fear of making mistakes as
psychological factors that hinder
students from speaking in English class,
6 (9%) were have shyness as
psychological factors that hinder
students from speaking in English class,
13 (21%) were having anxiety as
psychological factors that hinder
students from speaking in English class,
13 (21%) were having lack of
confidence as psychological factors that
hinder students from speaking in
English class, and 7 (11%) were having
lack of motivation as psychological
factors that hinder students from
speaking in English class. It could be
concluded
that
the
dominant
psychological factors that hinder
students from speaking in English class
at first year students of SMAN 10
PEKANBARU was fear of mistakes,
J-SHMIC, Vol 2, No 4, August 2015

because fear of mistakes got a higher


percentage than shyness, anxiety, lack
of confidence, and lack of motivation.
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Psychological Factors that Hinder Students from Speaking in English