Simao E. Luis


1 Language Learning Motivation in Mozambique: A Quantitative Study of University Students

Authors: Simao E. Luis


From the 1960s to the 1990s, the social-psychological framework of language attitudes that emerged from the Canadian research tradition was very influential. Integrativeness was one of the main variables in Gardner’s theory because refugees and immigrants were motivated to learn English and French to integrate into the Canadian community. Second language (L2) scholars have expressed concerns over integrativeness because it cannot explain the motivation of L2 learners in global contexts. This study aims to investigate student motivation to learn English as a foreign language in Mozambique, and to contribute to the ongoing validation of the L2 Motivational Self System theory in an under-researched country. One hundred thirty-seven (N=137) university students completed a well-established motivation questionnaire. The data were analyzed with SPSS, and descriptive statistics, correlations, multiple regressions, and MANOVA were conducted. Results show that many variables contribute to motivated learning behavior, particularly the L2 learning experience and attitudes towards the English language. Statistically significant differences were found between males and females, with males expressing more motivation to learn the English language for personal interests. Statistically significant differences were found between older and younger students, with older students reporting more vivid images of themselves as future English language users. These findings have pedagogical implications because motivational strategies are positively correlated with student motivated learning behavior. Therefore, teachers should design L2 tasks that can help students to develop their future L2 selves.

Keywords: English as a Foreign Language, university students, Mozambique, L2 motivational self system

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