Emotion and motivation in younger learners’ second foreign language acquisition

Susan Sayehli, Rakel Österberg, Jonas Granfelt

Forskningsoutput: Kapitel i bok/rapport/Conference proceedingKapitel samlingsverkForskningPeer review


Reports and studies repeatedly indicate that foreign languages other than English are facing major challenges in European educational systems (European Commission, 2012). While young learners’ motivation to learn a second foreign language (SFL) is often reported to be low (Tholin & Lindqvist, 2009), studies have only recently started to take emotional factors into account in order to better understand how young learners experience foreign language learning and use. Learners’ emotions might particularly influence younger learners’ behaviour such as mitigating their willingness to communicate despite being engaged and motivated learners (MacIntyre, 2002; Teimouri, 2017). In this study we therefore examined 9th grade Swedish SFL (French, German and Spanish) learners’ (N=120) foreign language classroom anxiety (FLCA; Horwitz et al, 1986), their SFL motivation (Dörnyei, 2009; Gardner & Lambert, 1972), and their willingness to communicate (WTC; McCroskey & Baer, 1985). As only few studies have examined motivations and emotions of students who study different SFLs, we also asked to what extent emotions and motivation are language-specific or learner-general in SFL learners within the same educational system. Results indicate that differences between learners of different SFLs are few and that FLCA together with learners’ motivation is the strongest predictor for their willingness to communicate. Results indicate further that there are persistent gender differences between girls’ and boys’ emotions and motivations in SFL learning. Taken together the findings of our study point to the importance of including emotions into studying motivation and use of SFLs also in younger learners.
Titel på värdpublikationIndividual Differences in Young Second Language Learners
RedaktörerVanessa De Wilde, Claire Goriot
FörlagDe Gruyter
Antal sidor21
ISBN (elektroniskt)9783110743043
ISBN (tryckt)9783110742947
StatusPublished - 2022 okt.


NamnStudies on Language Acquisition
FörlagDe Gruyeter Mouton
ISSN (tryckt)1861-4248

Ämnesklassifikation (UKÄ)

  • Jämförande språkvetenskap och lingvistik
  • Utbildningsvetenskap


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