The Study of English Language Classroom Anxiety and Its Relationship with English Language Proficiency among Graduate Students in Thai Higher Education Institutions

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Apirat Akaraphattanawong
Arunee Hongsiriwat
Pateep Methakunavudhi

Abstract

This study aimed at investigating foreign language anxiety levels and the factors affecting the anxiety among Thai graduate students based on different ages, the field of study, and the type of higher education institution. It also examined the relationship between anxiety and language proficiency in the Thai context. Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale (FLCAS) (Horwitz et al., 1986) was administered to graduate students from four types of Thai Higher Education Institutions: public higher education institutions, 3 fields of education following The Office of the Higher Education Commission (OHEC) classification framework; Science and Technology, Health Science, and Social Science & Humanities. That leads to several 248 students. The results revealed that Thai graduate students had a moderate level of anxiety. The highest level of English language anxiety that the participants experienced while they were studying English was fear of negative evaluation. Results of the ANOVA and a series of follow-up Scheffe-adjusted t-tests have revealed that students in private universities have significantly higher average foreign language classroom anxiety levels than those in Rajabhat universities, while there was no meaningful difference in foreign language classroom anxiety between different age groups and fields of study. A Pearson correlation was performed to examine the relationship between English language classroom anxiety level and English language proficiency level. Results revealed a significant negative relationship between English language classrooms and English language proficiency, whereby the lower the language proficiency, the higher the language anxiety, and the higher the language proficiency, the lower the language anxiety.

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