Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 11. Number4 December 2020 Pp. 66-77
Investigation of Factors Influencing Speaking Performance of Saudi EFL Learners
Department of English, College of Education
Majmaah University, Majmaah, Saudi Arabia
Equal focus needs be placed on teaching all four basic skills of language learning: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. However, it is observed that due attention is not devoted to developing speaking skills in Saudi EFL learners; this task is especially challenging as English is not widely used or spoken in their day-to-day communication. The current study aims to investigate the psychological factors which affect learners’ speaking performance by: (a) examining the strategies learners use for developing speaking skills, (b) identifying obstacles confronted by learners in developing speaking skills, and (c) suggesting ways to facilitate the acquisition of English speaking skills. The research seeks answers to these questions: (1) What are some psychological factors affecting speaking skills of students? (2) Why do learners find speaking in English so difficult? . I distributed a questionnaire among 200 female and male participants majoring in various fields at Majmaah university in Saudi Arabia. I employed SPSS to analyze the accumulated data and displayed the results in descriptive tables. The results reveal that affective factors impacting students’ performance in speaking skills are shyness, peer pressure, anxiety, and fear of making mistakes. Other factors that hinder speaking performance are paucity of necessary vocabulary, lack of exposure to the target language, and scarce opportunities to practice speaking outside the classroom. The study contributes to the existing English language learning (ELL) literature through its focus on the affective factors impacting speaking performance in Arabic-speaking EFL learners.
Keywords: affective factors, language learners, motivation, speaking performance, teaching strategies
Cite as: Alrasheedi, S. (2020). Investigation of Factors Influencing Speaking Performance of Saudi EFL Learners (1990). Arab World English Journal, 11 (4) 66-77.
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