Revising Integrative Motivation: L2 Motivation Research and Learner Context

Gardner, Amanda

“Why am I learning this language? How is my language learning affected by my attitudes and my context?” For the average second language (L2) learner, these questions are probably not often considered in such an explicit fashion. For L2 educators and L2 motivation researchers, however, these student-centered questions are urgent and ever-present. From my own experience, teaching English to speakers of other languages across different contexts has presented vastly differing pictures of L2 learner motivation. What is it that makes teaching English as a Second Language (ESL) to first-generation Hispanic immigrant students so different from teaching English as a Foreign Language (EFL) to sub-Saharan African students? From an anecdotal standpoint, the answer appears to lie in the understanding of motivation within context: which students have it, why they have it, and how to inspire the same, if possible, in other learners. Thus, as “numerous studies have provided statistical evidence that indicates motivation is a predictor of language-learning success,” L2 motivation research seems well worth examining in greater detail for both language researchers and language teachers alike (Gass & Selinker, 2009, p. 426).


Also Published In

Working Papers in TESOL & Applied Linguistics

More About This Work

Academic Units
Applied Linguistics and Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
Published Here
November 5, 2015