MOTIVATION AMONG THE STUDENTS OF ENGLISH AND SPANISH LANGUAGES: A COMPARATIVE STUDY
Universiti Malaysia Sabah (MALAYSIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2010 Proceedings
Publication year: 2010
Conference name: 3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 15-17 November, 2010
Location: Madrid, Spain
Abstract:Although the Malay Language is the national language of Malaysia, English is considered to be a second national language as it is spoken and used widely in every aspects of Malaysian’s life. It is taught from kindergarten until secondary school and is also offered as one of the compulsory subjects at the tertiary level for students. Apart from English, students are also exposed to learn other languages as foreign languages at the tertiary level such as Spanish, Russian and French languages. Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) is one of the public universities which offer these languages as the compulsory subjects for its undergraduates. Here in UMS, students who obtained MUET (Malaysian University English Test) Bands 1, 2 and 3 are required to take all the four levels (beginner to advanced level) in the English Language, and students who obtained MUET Bands 4, 5 and 6 are required to take all the three levels (beginner to advanced level) of a foreign language. There are eight foreign languages offered in UMS, namely the Spanish, Russian, French, Japanese, Mandarin, Tamil, Arabic and Kadazandusun Languages. It is found that the grades or results obtained by these groups of students---the English Language and foreign languages’ students---are very distinct and it is clear that students taking foreign languages scored better than those taking the English Language. Why is this so? In relation to this, a comparative study on motivation between the students taking the English Language and students taking the Spanish Language will be conducted, and by adapting the Attitude/Motivation Test Battery proposed by Gardner (1985), we will like to elicit the motivational factors contributing to the students’ achievement in the languages. It is hoped that the findings will give us insights as to why these two groups of students are different in their performance.
Keywords: Motivation, Performance.