The influence of personality and language proficiency on esl learners' word contributions in face-to-face and synchronous online forums

Yi, Chew Shin and Luan, Ng Lee (2021) The influence of personality and language proficiency on esl learners' word contributions in face-to-face and synchronous online forums. Journal of Nusantara Studies-Jonus, 6 (1). pp. 199-221. ISSN 0127-9319, DOI

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Background and Purpose: Recent technological advancements and Covid-19 pandemic have prompted more opportunities for online learning. However, there is a dearth of empirical research that is focused on high school students. Therefore, this study aims to obtain a more comprehensive view of ESL learners' involvement or word contributions in a `normal' face-to-face situation and in a synchronous online text-based environment by relating it to their personality and language proficiency. Methodology: In this study, a quasi-experiment was carried out over four weeks. It involved eight sessions of face-to-face and online discussions with 48 Malaysian high school students who were divided into two matched-sample groups. The participants' feedback was used to support and provide insights on the findings. The quantitative data were analysed using using IBM SPSS statistics 26 software while the participants' responses to the online feedback session were analysed using open coding and axial coding strategies. Findings: Statistically significant difference was found in learners' word contributions during face-to-face and online discussions. Apart from the extroverts with high-intermediate language proficiency, the other groups of learners who are either introverts or having lower level language proficiency were found to produce significantly more words in synchronous online text-based discussions. The non-face-to-face context of online forums might have lowered the learners' level of anxiety and increased their confidence to interact with their peers. Contributions: Learners' personalities and language proficiency levels should be considered when choosing a discussion setting and when facilitating discussion activities. More support should be provided for the less proficient or introverted learners to express themselves in a face-to-face discussion.

Item Type: Article
Funders: Impact Oriented Interdisciplinary Research Grant (IIRG) : IIRG011C-19SAH
Subjects: Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Divisions: Faculty of Languages and Linguistics
Depositing User: Ms Zaharah Ramly
Date Deposited: 17 May 2022 02:35
Last Modified: 17 May 2022 02:35

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