Trends in using questionnaires for EMI research: Suggestions for future improvements.

Samantha Curle, Ali Derakhshan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Following the overall trend regarding the predominance of questionnaires as a data collection method in behavioral and social sciences (Dörnyei, 2007), the questionnaire has been identified as the most widely applied instrument in EMI research (see Macaro et al., 2018). This extensive use originates from the many advantages that questionnaire use brings to researchers in terms of its practicality, economy, feasibility, time, efficiency, versatility, ease of construction and data analysis (Mackey & Gass, 2005). The recurrent and widespread use of questionnaires (often accompanied by qualitative data collection methods) in EMI research has proliferated in studies across the world. Such studies differed in their focus ranging from: EMI practice (Khan, 2013), experience of EMI (Kim & Tatar, 2018), attitudes towards EMI (Banks, 2018), and the successful enactment of EMI (Belhiah & Elhami, 2015; Xie & Curle, 2020). Other aspects as measured using questionnaires include those examining EMI in relation to other variables such as the efficiency of language development programs (Margić & Vodopija-Krstanović, 2018), the use of adaptations strategies (Yang et al., 2019), and language use anxiety (Levine, 2003). Despite this extensive use of questionnaire, most EMI researchers have fallen short of applying knowledge of questionnaire design theory in questionnaire development and enactment. As a consequence, this directly, negatively affects the accuracy of the data obtained through this instrument. As a review study, this chapter attempts to sketch out the use of questionnaires in EMI research, with specific focus on the challenges and potential risks in design and implementation. Stepwise suggestions to enhance the robustness of the psychometric properties that these scales measure are also presented throughout this chapter.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationResearch Methods in English Medium Instruction.
EditorsJack Pun, Samantha Curle
ISBN (Electronic)9781003025115
Publication statusPublished - 21 Jul 2021

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