Exploring Effects of the Second Language Motivational Self System on Chinese EFL Learners’ Willingness to Communicate in English and Implications for L2 Education

Journal: Journal of Higher Education Research DOI: 10.32629/jher.v2i4.404

Tianhao Li1, Zhenqian Liu2

1. National University of Singapore
2. QiLu University of Technology


This study explores how the three components of L2 motivational self-system (Ideal L2 self, Ought-to L2 self and Learning experience) influence Chinese college students’ willingness to communicate in English using a mixure of methods which include a questionnaire survey and individual interviews. Results show that Chinese college students’ ideal L2 self and learning experience would influence their L2 WTC significantly. Students who have a high level of ideal L2 self and more positive English learning experiences are more willing to use English to communicate inside and outside the classroom. Students’ ought-to L2 self has no significant correlation with their L2 WTC. Findings of the study offers some possible implications to improve Chinese college students’ low motivation in English learning and low willingness to use English to communicate.


L2 motivational self system, L2 willingness to communicate, L2 education, EFL learners


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