Motivation of Polish learners of English: The rural-urban divide. Paper presentation

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Language learning motivation is considered to be one of the most important individual differences that accounts for variability in second and foreign language acquisition, which triggered numerous theories of how motivation works (Dörnyei, 2005). Despite Dörnyei's (2005; 2009) repeated calls that individual differences do not happen in the vacuum; there has been few attempts to examine the influence of environmental factors on language learning motivation. Motivation has been researched in a number of geographical locations such as bilingual Canada (Gardner & Lambert, 1972), Hungary (Csizér & Kormos, 2009), Japan, China and Iran (Taguchi, Magid, & Papi, 2009) just to mention a few; however, most examinations focused largely on urban environments. One of the few studies that investigated the influence of the rural-urban divide was Lamb (2012) who found significant differences between the structure and strength of motivation between language learners from two urban contexts (a metropolitan city and the provincial town) and a rural area. In this study, I employ a quantitative approach to investigate the differences between students from rural and urban environments in Poland in terms of the strength of their motivation as well as its structure. 599 English learners completed the motivational questionnaire including scales of the ideal L2 self, self-regulation, intrinsic motivation, instrumental orientation, international orientation, self-efficacy beliefs and English self-concept. The data was analysed using SPSS, Mplus (Structural Equation Modelling Software) and R. The t-test showed that students from urban schools tend to score higher than their peers from rural schools. Similarly, the models of language learning motivation for the two populations are significantly different. Whereas the overall model retains its original shape, the strength of individual links between variables varies. In particular, the models suggest that the biggest differences are between four paths: self-regulation → language learning proficiency, instrumental orientation → the English self-concept, and international orientation → self-efficacy beliefs.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2013
EventEuroSLA 23: The Annual Conference of European Second Langauge Association - University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 28 Aug 201331 Aug 2013


ConferenceEuroSLA 23: The Annual Conference of European Second Langauge Association


  • motivation
  • rural/urban divide
  • Polish context


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