‘The Effect of Iranian EFL Learners` Social Class on Their English Language Learning Strategies: A Sociolinguistic Perspective’ by Azizeh Chalak & Mahshid Kourang Beheshti

Abstract

Language learning strategies play a crucial role in language learning. The choice of strategies is influenced by a variety of factors such as learning style, motivation, age, gender, attitudes, beliefs, type of task, L2 level, tolerance of ambiguity, cultural and contextual factors. This study was an attempt to examine the relationship between Iranian EFL learners’ social classes and their language learning strategies (LLS). Two types of questionnaire- questionnaire of Oxford’s (1990) Strategy Inventory for Language Learning (SILL) and a general biographical questionnaire- as well as an interview and an observation were employed as the instruments for the data collection procedure. The questionnaires were distributed among 90 Isfahanian female EFL learners enrolled in Iran Language Institute (ILI) to look for different strategies- if any – occupied by learners. To determine whether there was a relationship between social class and language learning strategies, an ANNOVA test was administrated. The findings  revealed that (a) there was not a significant relationship between social class and the language learning strategies; (b) Iranian EFL learners were medium users of language learning strategies; (c) the cognitive category had the highest mean, followed by compensatory, metacognitive, memory, affective, and social; (d)in all social classes, Cognitive strategies were used at most; (e) and finally,  in higher mediate and mediate class, students preferred to use Social strategies less than other categories while, in lower mediate class the less preferred category was the Affective one. It is suggested that educators and administrators can look for more trenchant factors that affect learners’ choices of language learning strategies.

Index Terms: language learning strategies, social class, socio-economic status.

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