Individual Differences and L2 Motivation: The case of EFL Learners

Azam Badrkoohi, Parviz Maftoon


With the growing understanding of the process of Second Language Acquisition (SLA), more and more emphasis has been put on the learner factors that affect the success or otherwise of SLA. These factors have come to be studied under the general title of “Individual Differences” (ID) (Dörnyei & Ryan, 2015). These factors determine not only the success of an individual second language learner but also the inter-individual variation in second language acquisition. This study is an attempt to shed more light on the relationships among L2 motivation, visual learning style, mental imagery, ideal L2 self, and L2 learning experience in the Iranian context. Exploratory factor analysis was run to ascertain the validity of the questionnaire which was used for data collection. The results revealed that visual learning had its highest correlation with L2 motivation. On the other hand, it had only small to moderate correlations with ideal L2 self, mental imagery, and L2 learning experience. In addition, from among the variables investigated in this study, L2 motivation had the largest correlation with L2 learning experience. Furthermore, the ideal L2 self had the second highest positive correlation with L2 motivation. Finally, mental imagery had the lowest correlation with L2 motivation. The implications of the findings for theory and practice are discussed accordingly.



Individual differences, L2 motivation, English as a foreign language

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