Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 13. Number2.  June 2022                                          Pp. 338 -351
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.24093/awej/vol13no2.23

Full paper PDF

 

Gratitude in Foreign Language Learning

Jeffrey Dawala Wilang
School of Foreign Languages, Institute of Social Technology
Suranaree University of Technology
Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand
Email: wilang@g.sut.ac.th

Received:2/4/2022                            Accepted: 5/4/2022                       Published:6/24/2022

 

Abstract:
Studies on positive emotions in language learning have increased over the years. However, gratitude, a moral virtue, which may have a novel effect in learning a foreign language, remains underexplored in applied linguistics. This paper aims to know the antecedents of gratitude and its constructs in English as a foreign language context. Nineteen antecedents of gratitude were generated to create a survey questionnaire called Foreign Language Gratitude Scale, a 4-point Likert rating scale. An open-ended question was also added to gain qualitative data. Convenience sampling was used to collect data from 240 undergraduate students. Descriptive statistics results showed that the participants were very grateful in all situations in the survey, specifically for their improved outputs and the corrections initiated by their teachers. Further, principal component analysis was used to explore the underlying dimensions of gratitude. Two factors were elicited – positive reinforcement and language practice. The first factor includes the following grateful situations: encouraging students to do better, appreciating students’ output, correcting students’ mistakes, using media resources in learning, sharing practical knowledge, providing examples and practices, treating students equally, encouraging language activities, and managing classroom effectively. The grateful situations in the second factor are having fluent English speakers, doing productive activities, providing opportunities, sharing ideas, and having a better output. Other factors coded from the qualitative data include promoting collaborative work, gaining comprehension and knowledge, language success, encouraging productive activities, the teacher acts, and designing out-of-class activities. Finally, implications of results and suggestions for future studies were presented.
Keywords: English as a Foreign Language, Foreign Language Gratitude Scale, gratitude, Principal Component Analysis

Cite as:  Wilang, J. D.  (2022). Gratitude in Foreign Language Learning. Arab World English Journal, 13 (2) 338 -351.
DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.24093/awej/vol13no2.23

References

Ackerman, C. E. (2022). 28 benefits of gratitude and most significant research findings. PositivePsychology.com. Available at www.positivepsychology.com/benefits-gratitude-research-questions/

Adler, M. G. (2002). Conceptualizing and measuring appreciation: The development of positive psychology construct, (Unpublished Doctoral dissertation). Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ.

Adler, M. G., & Fagley, N. S. (2005). Appreciation: Individual differences in finding value and meaning as a predictor of subjective well-being. Journal of Personality, 73 (1), 79-114. Available at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15660674.

Augustine, L., John, R., & Francis, Y. (2017). Relationship between gratitude and teacher effectiveness The International Journal of Indian Psychology, 9(3), 37-45. Available at https://ijip.in.

Bryan, J. L., Young C. M., Lucas, S., & Quist, M. C. (2018). Should I say thank you? Gratitude encourages cognitive reappraisal and buffers the negative impact of ambivalence over emotional expression on depression. Personality and Individual Differences, 120, 253-258. Available at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0191886916311928.

Chan, D. W. (2010). Gratitude, gratitude intervention, and subjective well-being among Chinese teachers in Hong Kong. Educational Psychology, 30(2), 139-153. Available at https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01443410903493934.

Dewaele, J.M., Chen, X., Padilla, A.M., & Lake, J. (2019). The flowering of positive psychology in foreign language teaching and
acquisition research. Frontiers in Psychology, 10, 1-13. Available at https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyg.2019.02128/full.

Emmons, R. A., McCollough, M. E., & Tsang, J. A. (2003). The assessment of gratitude. In S.J. Lopez & C. R. Snyder (Eds.), Positive psychological assessment: A handbook of models and measures (pp. 327-341). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Kini, P., Wong, J., McInnis, S., Gabana, N., & Brown J. W. (2016). The effects of gratitude expression on neural activity. NeuroImage,
128
, 1-10. Available at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1053811915011532.

Field, A. (2005). Discovering statistics using SPSS. London: Sage.

Filep, S., Macnaughton, J., & Glover, T. (2017). Tourism and gratitude: Valuing acts of kindness. Annals of Tourism Research,
66
, 26-36. Available at https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0160738317300841.

Fredrickson, B. (2013). Love 2.0: How our supreme emotions affects everything we feel, think, do, and become. New York:
Hudson Street Press.

Froh, J. J., Sefick, W. J., & Emmons, R. A. (2008). Counting blessings in early adolescents: An experimental study of gratitude and
subjective well-being. Journal of School Psychology, 46, 213-233. doi:10.1016/j.jsp.2007.03.005

Horwitz, E.K., Horwitz, M.B., & Cope, J. (1986). Foreign language classroom anxiety. The Modern Language Journal,
70
(2), 125-132. doi:10.1111/j.1540-4781.1986.tb05256.x

Howells, K. (2014). An exploration of the role of gratitude in enhancing teacher-student relationships. Teaching and Teacher Education,
42
, 58-67. doi: 10.1016/j.tate.2014.04.004

Howells, K. (2004). The role of gratitude in higher education. Research and in Higher Education, 27, 164-173. Available at http://www.herdsa.org.au/publications/conference-proceedings/research-and-development-higher-education-transforming-15.

Hutcheson, G., & Sofroniou, N. (1999). The multivariate social scientist. London: Sage.

Kashdan, T. B., Uswatte, G., & Julian, T. (2006). Gratitude and hedonic and eudaimonic well-being in Vietnam war veterans. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 44 (2), 177-199. doi:10.1016/j.brat.2005.01.005

McCollough, M. E., Emmons, R. A., & Tsang, J. A. (2002). The grateful disposition: A conceptual and empirical topography. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 82(1), 112-127. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11811629.

Liu, H.-J. (2012). Exploring academic self-concept among learners with foreign language anxiety. Asia EFL Journal, 14(1), 153-173.

Mercer, S., MacIntyre, P., Gregersen, T., & Talbot, K. (2018). Positive language education: Combining positive education and language education. Theory and Practice of Second Language Acquisition, 4(2), 11-31. Available at https://www.journals.us.edu.pl/index.php/TAPSLA/article/view/7011

Morgan, B., Gulliford, L., & Kristjánsson, K. (2017). A new approach to measuring moral virtues: the multi-component gratitude measure. Pers.Individ. Differ. 107, 179–189. doi:10.1016/j.paid.2016.11.044

Naito, T., & Washizu, N. (2015). Note on cultural universals and variations of gratitude from an East Asian point of view. International Journal of Behavioral Science, 10(2), 1-8.

Naito, T., Wangwan, J., & Tani, M. (2005). Gratitude in university students in Japan and Thailand. Journal of CrossCultural Psychology, 36(2), 247-263. Available at https://www.tci-thaijo.org/index.php/IJBS/article/view/37533.

Oxford, R. (2016). Toward a psychology of well-being for language learners: The “EMPHATICS” vision. In P. MacIntyre,
T. Gregersen and S. Mercer (Eds.), Positive Psychology in SLA (pp. 1-87). Bristol: Multilingual Matters.

Peterson, C., & Seligman, M. E. P. (2004). Character strengths and virtues: A classification and handbook. New York: Oxford University Press/Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.

Renshaw, T. L., & Olinger Steeves, R. M. (2016). What good is gratitude in youth and schools? A systematic review and meta-analysis of correlates and intervention outcomes. Psychology in the Schools, 53(3), 286-305. Available at https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/pits.21903.

Seligman, M. E. P. (2011). Flourish. New York, NY: Simon & Schuster.

Tsang, J. A. (2006). Gratitude and prosocial behavior: An experimental test of gratitude. Cognition & Emotion, 20(1), 138-148. Available at https://psycnet.apa.org/record/2006-02362-009.

Wangwang, J. (2015). A model relationship between gratitude and prosocial motivation of Thai high school and undergraduate students. International Journal of Behavioral Science, 9(1), 15-30.

Watkins, P. C., Woodward, K., Stone, T., & Kolts, R. L. (2003). Gratitude and happiness: Development of a measure of gratitude, and relationship with subjective well-being. Social Behavior and Personality, 31 (5), 431-452.doi.10.2224/sbp.2003.31.5.431

Wood, A. M., Froh, J. J., & Geraghty, A. W.A. (2010). Gratitude and well-being: A review and theoretical integration. Clinical Psychology Review, 30(7), 890 905. doi: 10.1016/j.cpr.2010.03.005

Wu, H.-J. (2011). Anxiety and reading comprehension performance in English as a foreign language. Asian EFL Journal, 13(2), 273-307.

Van Dusen, J. P., Tiamiyu, M. F., Kashdan, T. B., & Elhai, J. D. (2015). Gratitude, depression, and PSTD: Assessment of structural relationships. Psychiatry Research, 23(2), 867-870. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2015.11.036

 

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
Tumblr
Reddit
Email
StumbleUpon
Digg
Received: 2/4/2022 
Accepted: 5/4/2022
Published: 6/24/2022
https://dx.doi.org/10.24093/awej/vol13no2.23

Jeffrey Dawala Wilang is an Assistant Professor at the Graduate School of Foreign Languages, Institute of Social Technology, Suranaree University of Technology, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand. His research interests are emotions in language learning, English Medium Instruction, and ELF.ORCID: https://orcid.org/ 0000-0001-6322-8799