Hiroshima Studies in Language and Language Education Issue 19
2016-03-01 発行

Original Teaching Content and Student Motivation in the EFL Classroom

The present research investigates university students’ intrinsic motivation to learn English and explores to what extent the content of teaching materials is received favorably by non-English-major students, and whether or not introducing original materials is related to student awareness of English learning. Intrinsic motivation is responsible for learners taking an interest in English learning and wanting to communicate with English speakers in English. Hamada (2011) lists the methods, which he believes are effective in preventing students’ demotivation. One of them is Teachers’ uniqueness, includes teachers’ creative ideas such as their experiences abroad and their use of quizzes in English on current world news. Hamada further mentions that this category can be said to be related to the materials the teacher uses. When it comes to the English reading class especially, the teaching content has a crucially important effect on student learning motivation.

In the reading class, the author’s textbook based upon overseas experiences was introduced as a means of enhancing student motivation to learn English. At the beginning and the end of the semester (15 weeks) a questionnaire was administered to explore learner awareness of the teaching materials and language learning. One of the results showed that there were significant differences between the pre- and post-test learner awareness regarding the following classified categories: Awareness of English ability improvement, Understanding class content, Teaching content, and Interaction in English. Especially, with regard to teaching content, the post-test data showed the tendency of students to be more intrigued about stories of overseas experiences and to want to read English more.
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