Exploring Chinese university EFL learners’ l2 willingness to communicate in action: understanding the interplay of self-concept, WTC and sociocultural context through the lens of complexity theory

Yue, Zhen (2016). Exploring Chinese university EFL learners’ l2 willingness to communicate in action: understanding the interplay of self-concept, WTC and sociocultural context through the lens of complexity theory. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.

[img] Yue16PhD_Redacted.pdf
PDF - Redacted Version
Restricted to Repository staff only until 31 December 2021.

Download (4MB) | Request a copy

Abstract

Willingness to communicate in a second language (L2 WTC) has become an important focus of inquiry in applied linguistics over the last decade or so. However, little is currently understood about the practical tasks of producing communicatively competent L2 users in Chinese higher education, an aim which has been fully recognized by the English language teaching (ELT) sector in China. In order to fill this gap, this research study was conducted in one of the universities in mid-east China over a period of one academic term with the aim to produce an empirically-supported fine-grained portrait of Chinese EFL learners’ L2 WTC in actual communication actions. Informed by complexity theory and adopting a qualitative multi-case study research design, this research focused on five first-year postgraduate student participants and investigated their L2 WTC experiences in communicative actions through multiple sources of data, including individual life story interviews, ethnographic classroom observations followed by stimulated recall interviews, and photo-based interviews. The findings confirm L2 WTC as a multidimensional and complex construct, and further demonstrated that the features and trajectories of individuals’ L2 WTC are interrelated, dynamic and largely unpredictable. This study has also identified a construct that seems central to understand L2 WTC: socially constructed future self-guides. The study has shown that our understanding of students’ actual L2 engagement offers critical pointers for practical interventions for encouraging and supporting language learners’ development of a healthy sense of self with regards to L2 learning and, consequently, of their L2 WTC.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
Supervisor(s):
Supervisor(s)EmailORCID
Kubanyiova, MagdalenaUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Licence:
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
School or Department: School of Education
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DS Asia
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PE English
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/7026

Actions

Request a Correction Request a Correction
View Item View Item

Downloads

Downloads per month over past year