Let Us Listen to Our Students: An Analysis of Demotivation to Study English in Bangladesh

MORIAM QUADIR

Abstract


In the area of second/foreign language learning, learner demotivation is a relatively recent issue, and less investigated individual difference compared to learner motivation. This paper reports a study attempted to identify the sources of demotivation experienced at higher secondary (HS) level in the context of Bangladeshi education, and the impacts of those demotivators on their subsequent academic performance at university level. To collect qualitative data an interview guide was developed based on the L2 demotivation factors listed by Dӧrnyei (2001). The original set of items, however, was modified in order to adjust with Bangladeshi context of education. A total of 36 students from three different universities were interviewed to understand the underlying sources of demotivation. From the analysis seven factors were indicated, in descending order: Teachers, Students’ past experiences, Private tutors, Attitude of group members, School facilities, Textbooks, and Students’ and their family members’ attitude towards English study. Among these factors, teachers and students’ past experiences were found to affect students’ performance in academic activities at tertiary level more strongly than the other factors. Finally, this paper discusses some recommendations based on the findings. 


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