Advertisement

On the Role of Self-Efficacy as a Possible Component of Language Aptitude in the Acquisition of British [æ]

  • Daniel LeisserEmail author
Chapter
Part of the English Language Education book series (ELED, volume 16)

Abstract

In social cognitive theory it is a common assumption that individuals are not merely passive recipients of external factors, but are able to form and affect their environment. Self-efficacy has been described as one of the major factors seemingly connected with the development of linguistic competence. A considerable amount of research has been conducted to provide evidence for the relationship between self-efficacy and learning strategies, learners’ linguistic performance, causal attributions and anxiety. The research conducted on the relationship between self-efficacy and linguistic competence, however, shows a strong focus on reading and listening skills, mostly neglecting the demand for examinations concerning individuals’ pronunciation talent. This study incorporates the semantic differential method, an adapted version of the Language Experience and Proficiency Questionnaire, and the Generalised Self-Efficacy Scale to investigate the relationship between 39 university students’ self-efficacy and their phonetic aptitude, taking into account their attitude towards near-open front unrounded [æ], their beliefs about their own capability to realise the vowel in a socially acceptable way, and the ratings of 7 native speakers of British English who were provided with 17 random recordings of The Northwind and the Sun. The study has shown a range of interconceptual correlations between single attitudes towards near-open front unrounded [æ]. Furthermore, the quantitative analysis has also confirmed that self-efficacy is indeed relatable to individuals’ linguistic performance. A significant correlation has also been detected between individuals’ phonetic aptitude and their overall pronunciation score as rated by the seven native British English speakers.

References

  1. Al-Hindawe, J. (1996). Considerations when constructing a semantic differential scale. La Trobe Working Papers in Linguistics, 9, 41–58.Google Scholar
  2. Aragão, R. (2011). Beliefs and emotions in foreign language learning. System, 39(3), 302–313.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2011.07.003 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bandura, A. (1994). Self-efficacy. In V. S. Ramachaudran (Ed.), Encyclopedia of human behavior 4 (pp. 71–81). New York: Academic.Google Scholar
  4. Bandura, A. (1997). Self-efficacy: The exercise of control. New York: W.H. Freeman and Company.Google Scholar
  5. Bandura, A. (2006). Guide for constructing self-efficacy scales. In T. Urdan & F. Pajares (Eds.), Self-efficacy beliefs of adolescents (pp. 307–337). Greenwich, CT: Information Age Publishing.Google Scholar
  6. Barcelos, A. M. F. (2003). Researching beliefs about SLA: A critical review. In P. Kalaja & A. M. F. Barcelos (Eds.), Beliefs about SLA: New research approaches (pp. 7–33). Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bem, D. J. (1970). Beliefs, attitudes, and human affairs. Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole.Google Scholar
  8. Bolitho, R. (2011a). Teacher-induced neuroses. British Council. https://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/article/teacherinduced-neuroses. Accessed 10 Feb 2016.
  9. Bolitho, R. (2011b). Teacher-induced neuroses: Pronunciation angst. https://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/blogs/rod-bolitho/teacher-induced-neuroses-pronunciation-angst. Accessed 10 Feb 2016.
  10. Brophy, J. (1998). Failure syndrome students. In Clearinghouse on elementary and early childhood education. Eric Digest. Champaign, IL: University of Illinois, ERIC.Google Scholar
  11. Carmichael, C., & Taylor, J. A. (2005). Seeing self as others see you: Variability in self-efficacy ratings in student teaching. Teachers and Teaching: Theory and Practice, 15(5), 541–561.Google Scholar
  12. Chan, J. C. Y., & Lam, S. (2010). Effects of different evaluative feedback on students’ self-efficacy in learning. Instructional Science, 38(1), 37–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Ching, L. C. (2002). Strategy and self-regulation instruction as contributors to improving students’ cognitive model in an ESL programme. English for Specific Purposes, 13, 261–289.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S0889-4906(01)00008-4 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Chomsky, N. (1965). Aspects of the theory of syntax. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.Google Scholar
  15. Cohen, A. D. (1998). Strategies for learning and using a second language. Essex, UK: Longman.Google Scholar
  16. Csizér, K., & Lukács, G. (2010). The comparative analysis of motivation, attitudes and selves: The case of English and German in Hungary. System, 38(1), 1–13.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2009.12.001 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Danner, D., Aichholzer, J., & Rammstedt, B. (2015). Acquiescence in personality questionnaires: Relevance, domain specificity, and stability. Journal of Research in Personality, 57, 119–130.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jrp.2015.05.004 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Denissen, J. J., Eccles, J., & Zarett, N. (2007). I like to do it, I’m able, and I know I am: Longitudinal couplings between domain-specific achievement, self-concept, and interest. Child Development, 78(2), 430–447.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8624.2007.01007.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Dörnyei, Z. (2001). Motivation strategies in the language classroom. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Dörnyei, Z. (2005). The psychology of the language learner: Individual differences in second language acquisition. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  21. Dörnyei, Z. (2006). Individual differences in second language acquisition. AILA Review, 19(1), 42–68.  https://doi.org/10.1075/aila.19.05dor CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Dörnyei, Z., & Ushioda, E. (2009). Motivation, language identity and the L2 self. Clevedon, UK: Multilingual Matters.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Ferguson, M. J., & Bargh, J. A. (2004). How social perception can automatically influence behaviour. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 8(1), 33–39.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Fitch, W. T., Hauser, M. D., & Chomsky, N. (2005). The evolution of the language faculty: Clarifications and implications. Cognition, 97(2), 179–210.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Gardner, R. C. (2000). Correlation, causation, motivation and second language acquisition. Canadian Psychology, 41(1), 1–24.  https://doi.org/10.1037/h0086854 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Graham, S. (2007). Learner strategies and self-efficacy: Making the connection. Language Learning Journal, 35(1), 81–93.  https://doi.org/10.1080/09571730701315832 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Hamacheck, D. (1992). Encounters with the self (4th ed.). Fort Worth, TX: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich College.Google Scholar
  28. Henry, A. (2009). Gender differences in compulsory school pupils’ L2 self-concepts: A longitudinal study. System, 37(2), 177–193.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2008.11.003 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Hsieh, P. H. P., & Schallert, D. L. (2008). Implications from self-efficacy and attribution theories for an understanding of undergraduates motivation in a foreign language course. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 33(4), 513–532.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cedpsych.2008.01.003 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. Hu, X., Ackermann, H., Martin, J., Erb, M., Winkler, S., & Reiterer, S. (2013). Language aptitude for pronunciation in advanced second language (L2) learners: Behavioural predictors and neural substrates. Brain and Language, 127(3), 366–376.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bandl.2012.11.006 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. International Phonetic Association. (2003). Handbook of the International Phonetic Association: A guide to the use of the International Phonetic Alphabet. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  32. Jacobs, J. E., Lanza, S., Osgood, D. W., Eccles, J. S., & Wigfield, A. (2002). Changes in children’s self-competence and values: Gender and domain differences across grades one through twelve. Child Development, 73(2), 509–527.  https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-8624.00421 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Knight, C., Studdert-Kennedy, M., & Hurford, J. R. (2000). The evolutionary emergence of language: Social function and the origins of linguistic form. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  34. Kramer, G. (2009). Clinical psychology. Somerset, NJ: Pearson.Google Scholar
  35. Kroth, M. S. (2007). The manager as motivator. Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers.Google Scholar
  36. Lane, J., Lane, A., & Kyprianou, A. (2004). Self-efficacy, self-esteem, and their impact on academic performance. Social Behaviour and Personality, 32(3), 247–256.  https://doi.org/10.2224/sbp.2004.32.3.247 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Leisser, D. H.. (2016). On phonetic attitude and the linguistic self: Revisiting socio-phonetic perspectives on age and gender. Unpublished paper. University of Vienna.Google Scholar
  38. Levelt, W. J. M. (1989). Speaking: From intention to articulation. Cambridge, MA: MIT.Google Scholar
  39. Linnenbrink, E., & Pintrich, P. (2003). The role of self-efficacy beliefs in student engagement and learning in the classroom. Reading and Writing Quarterly, 19(2), 119–137.  https://doi.org/10.1080/10573560308223 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Magogwe, J. M., & Oliver, R. (2007). The relationship between language learning strategies, proficiency, age and self-efficacy beliefs: A study of language learners in Botswana. System, 35(3), 338–352.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2007.01.003 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. Mahyudding, R., Elias, H., Cheong, L., Muhamad, M., Noordin, N., & Abdullah, M. (2006). The relationship between students’ self-efficacy and their achievement. Jurnal Pendidikdan Pendidikdan, Jil, 21, 61–71.Google Scholar
  42. Marian, V., Blumenfeld, H., & Kaushanskaya, M. (2007). The Language Experience and Proficiency Questionnaire (LEAP-Q): Assessing language profiles in bilinguals and multilinguals. Journal of Speech, Language, and Hearing Research, 50(4), 940–967.  https://doi.org/10.1044/1092-4388(2007/067) CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Marzuki, M. (2014). Managing an effective English language laboratory in a polytechnic. Studies in English Language and Education, 1(2), 108–118.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Matthews, P. H. (2010). Factors influencing self-efficacy judgments of university students in foreign language tutoring. The Modern Language Journal, 94(4), 618–635.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1540-4781.2010.01057 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Mercer, S. (2011). Language learner self-concept: Complexity, continuity and change. System, 39(3), 335–346.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2011.07.006 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Mills, N., Pajares, F., & Herron, C. (2006). A reevaluation of the role of anxiety: Self-efficacy, anxiety and their relation to reading and listening proficiency. Foreign Language Annals, 39(2), 275–294.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1944-9720.2006.tb02266.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  47. Mills, N., Pajares, F., & Herron, C. (2007). Self-efficacy of college intermediate French students: Relation to achievement and motivation. Language Learning, 57(3), 417–442.  https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-9922.2007.00421.x CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. Morita, N. (2004). Negotiating participation and identity in second language academic communities. TESOL Quarterly, 38(4), 573–603.  https://doi.org/10.2307/3588281 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Nesse, R., & Lloyd, A. (1992). The evolution of psychodynamic mechanisms. In J. H. Barkow, L. Cosmides, & J. Tooby (Eds.), The adapted mind: Evolutionary psychology and the generation of culture. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  50. Nguyen, N., Shawa, J., Tyler, M., Pinkus, R., Best, C. (2015). Affective attitudes towards Asians influence perception of Asian-accented vowels. International Phonetic Association. https://www.internationalphoneticassociation.org/icphsproceedings/ICPhS2015/Papers/ICPHS0561.pdf. Accessed 10 Feb 2015.
  51. Norton, B. (2000). Identity and language learning: gender, ethnicity and educational change. London: Longman.Google Scholar
  52. Nowak, M., Plotkin, J., & Krakauer, D. (1999). The evolutionary language game. Journal of Theoretical Biology, 200, 147–162.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. O’Malley, J. M., & Chamot, A. U. (1990). Learning strategies in second language acquisition. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Osgood, C., Suci, G., & Tannenbaum, P. (1957). The measurement of meaning. Urbana, IL: University of Illinois Press.Google Scholar
  55. Pajares, F. (1996). Self-efficacy beliefs in academic settings. Review of Educational Research, 6(4), 543–578.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Pajares, F. (2003). Self-efficacy beliefs, motivation, and achievement in writing. Reading and Writing Quarterly, 19(2), 139–158.  https://doi.org/10.1080/10573560308222 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Parry, T., & Stansfield, C. W. (Eds.). (1990). Language aptitude reconsidered. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
  58. Pellegrino, V. A. (2005). Study abroad and second language use: Constructing the self. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Pintrich, P. R., & Schunk, D. H. (1996). Motivation in education: Theory, research and applications. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall Merrill.Google Scholar
  60. Podesva, R. (2006). Phonetic detail in sociolinguistic variation: Its linguistic significance and role in the construction of social meaning. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.Google Scholar
  61. Rahimi, A., & Abedini, A. (2009). The interface between EFL learners’ self-efficacy concerning listening comprehension and listening proficiency. Novitas-Royal, 3(1), 14–28.Google Scholar
  62. Raoofi, S., Tan, B. H., & Chan, S. H. (2012). Self-efficacy in second/foreign language learning context. English Language Teaching, 11(5), 60–73.Google Scholar
  63. Reiterer, S. M., Hu, X., Erb, M., Rota, G., Nardo, D., Grodd, W., et al. (2011). Individual differences in audio-vocal speech imitation aptitude in late bilinguals: Functional neuro-imaging and brain morphology. Frontiers in Psychology, 2, 1–12.  https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2011.00271 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Reiterer, S., Hu, X., Sumathi, T., & Singh, N. (2013). Are you a good mimic? Neuro-acoustic signatures for speech imitation ability. Frontiers in Psychology, 4, 1–13.  https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00782 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  65. Renninger, K. (2000). Individual interest and its implications for understanding intrinsic motivation. In C. Sansone & J. M. Harackiewicz (Eds.), Intrinsic and extrinsic motivation: The search for optimal motivation and performance (pp. 373–404). San Diego, CA: Academic.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Rosenhan, D. (1973). On being sane in insane places. Science, 179, 250–258.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  67. Rosenthal, R. (1985). From unconscious experimenter bias to teacher expectancy effects. In J. B. Dusek, V. C. Hall, & W. J. Meyer (Eds.), Teacher expectancies (pp. 37–66). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.Google Scholar
  68. Rubio, F. (2007). Self-esteem and foreign language learning: An introduction. In F. Rubio (Ed.), Self-esteem and foreign language learning (pp. 2–12). Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  69. Schunk, D. H. (1991). Self-efficacy and academic motivation. Educational Psychology, 26, 207–231.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. Schunk, D. H. (2003). Self-efficacy for reading and writing: Influence of modelling, goal setting. Difficulties, 19(2), 159–172.  https://doi.org/10.1080/10573560308219 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  71. Schwarzer, R., & Jerusalem, M. (1993). From measurement of perceived self-efficacy: Psychometric scales for cross-cultural research. Berlin, Germany: Freie Universität.Google Scholar
  72. Singleton, D. (2014). Apt to change: the problematic of language awareness and language aptitude in age-related research. Studies in Second Language Learning and Teaching, 4(3), 557–571.  https://doi.org/10.14746/ssllt.2014.4.3 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  73. Stansfield, C. (1989). Language aptitude reconsidered. Washington, DC: ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages and Linguistics.Google Scholar
  74. Sternberg, R. (2002). The theory of successful intelligence and its implications for language aptitude testing. In Individual differences and instructed language learning. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.Google Scholar
  75. Tilfarlioğlu, F. T., & Ciftci, F. S. (2011). Supporting self-efficacy and learner autonomy in relation to academic success in EFL classrooms (a case study). Theory and Practice in Language Studies, 1(10), 1284–1294.  https://doi.org/10.4304/tpls.1.10.1284-1294 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  76. Tracy, E., Bainter, S., & Satariano, N. (2015). Judgments of self-identified gay and heterosexual male speakers: Which phonemes are most salient in determining sexual orientation? Journal of Phonetics, 52, 13–25.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.wocn.2015.04.001 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  77. Williams, M., & Burden, R. (1997). Psychology for language teachers. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.Google Scholar
  78. Woodrow, L. (2011). College English writing affect: Self-efficacy and anxiety. System, 39(5), 510–522.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2011.10.017 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  79. Woods, D. (2003). The social construction of beliefs in the language classroom. In P. Kalaja & A. M. F. Barcelos (Eds.), Beliefs about SLA: New research approaches (pp. 201–229). Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Kluwer Academic Publishers.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  80. Yilmaz, C. (2010). The relationship between language learning strategies, gender, proficiency and self-efficacy beliefs: A study of ELT learners in Turkey. Procedia Social and Behavioural, 2(2), 682–687.  https://doi.org/10.1016/j.sbspro.2010.03.084 CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Linguistics and Centre for Teacher Education, Unit for Language Learning and Teaching ResearchUniversity of ViennaViennaAustria

Personalised recommendations