‘An Exploration of University Students’ Perception of De-Motivators in an EFL Context’ by Zahra Farmand & Seyed Jalal Abdolmanafi Rokni


De-motivation, the opposite side of motivation, dramatically affects EFL learners. The learners, once motivated to learn English, lose their interest and energy so that learning English would transform into a suffering and time-consuming task. The present study was an attempt to investigate the main de-motivating factors among Iranian university students in learning English as a foreign language. To find the major de-motivating factors, a questionnaire consisting of 35 items was given to 280 university students majoring in English Literature or English Translation. An Exploratory Factor Analysis was conducted to explore the factorial structure of the questionnaire. Based on the results, six main de-motivating factors emerged from the data as: Failure to do as desired, Materials and learning equipment, Contextual/ Environmental factors, Teachers, Characteristics of classes, and Attitudes toward communication. Furthermore, an open-ended questionnaire, which consisted of two questions about the learners’ experiences that caused their motivation to decrease or increase, was then given to the students to investigate their perspectives. Based on the students’ answers to the open-ended questionnaire, four categories of de-motivating factors were identified, two of which were similar to the factors found in the Factor Analysis. The information provided in the present research can be helpful for a better understanding of the dynamics of the language classroom and how these can promote or hinder the willingness to learn English. This study has also some implications for the interested researchers in motivation studies, material developers and teachers.

Keywords: Motivation, De-motivation, De-motivating Factors, De- motivators

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