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Japanese as a foreign language (JFL) education in the Republic of Korea : relationships between attitudes, motivation type and JFL achievement

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Title: Japanese as a foreign language (JFL) education in the Republic of Korea : relationships between attitudes, motivation type and JFL achievement
Author: Thumm, David E.
Degree Master of Arts - MA
Program Modern Language Education
Copyright Date: 1997
Abstract: Research investigating the link between attitudes, motivation and second-language (L2) achievement remains inconclusive. Studies have shown the importance of both integrative and instrumental motives in L2 acquisition. Thus, there is considerable evidence pointing to the importance of the educational context in which learning takes place. This study investigates the importance of integrative and instrumental motivation in Japanese as a foreign language (JFL) achievement among South Korean JFL students at the post-secondary level. It also assesses the influence of attitudes towards Japan, Japanese people, Japanese culture and bilateral relations on JFL achievement. In addition, it provides a description of South Korean JFL learners with specific reference to their views of Japan. The rationale for studying Korean JFL learners is based on the growing importance of Japan in global affairs and the subsequent expansion of JFL programs worldwide. The Republic of Korea was chosen for several reasons including: historical relations between Japan and Korea, the popularity of Japanese language programs in the country, and the paucity of English language research concerning this context. Initially, data from interviews with students and the administration of a questionnaire was used to create a profile of learners. Secondly, this data was cross-referenced with JFL achievement using Pearson (r) correlation coefficients. In addition, bivariate and multiple regression tests were done to determine the contribution of motivation type and attitudes to students' marks. Among the major findings of this study, there exists a diversity across students in terms of their motivation type and attitudes towards Japan. In terms of motivational orientation, most students chose to study JFL for a combination of integrative and instrumental reasons. Secondly, students generally expressed both positive and negative attitudes towards modern Japan, Japanese people, Japanese culture and bilateral relations. Typically, attitudinal profiles of students are suggestive of a high degree of ambivalence towards these aspects of Japan. A third major finding of this study concerns the relationship between motivation type and JFL achievement. Both integrative motivation and instrumental motivation have minimal associations with JFL achievement. Attitudes towards modern Japan, Japanese people, and bilateral relations also have neutral relationships with JFL achievement. Conversely, views of Japanese culture have a negative correlation with JFL achievement that is of intermediate value.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2429/5922
Series/Report no. UBC Retrospective Theses Digitization Project [http://www.library.ubc.ca/archives/retro_theses/]

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