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International Journal of English Language Education

An Exploration of Causes of Saudi Students' Reluctance to Participate in the English Language Classroom

Arafat Hamouda
Department of English language and Translation Faculty of Arabic Language and Social Studies Qassim University, Qassim, Saudi Arabia
Abstract :
EFL learners’ reluctance to speak English in the classroom is a problem commonly found in a 
foreign language context. This study attempts to investigate the causes of the non- 
participation of students in EFL classrooms in a key university in Qassim, Saudi Arabia. One 
hundred, fifty-nine first-year non-English majors answered a 66-item questionnaire on 
reticence. The research findings indicate that a considerable number of students were 
reluctant to respond to the teacher and remained silent in oral English language classrooms 
due to many causes such as low English proficiency, fear of speaking in front of others, 
negative evaluation, shyness, lack of confidence and preparation, and fear of making 
mistakes. The study also indicated some strategies used by students to participate in the class 
such as rehearsing what they say and preparing the ideas and questions. Based on the findings, 
pedagogical implications are discussed with the aim of enhancing the teaching and learning 
of spoken English in foreign-language contexts.
Keywords :
reluctance, participation, anxiety

Date Deposited : 25 Apr 2014 11:04

Last Modified : 25 Apr 2014 11:18

Official URL:

Volume 1, Number 1, - 2013 , ISSN 2325-0887

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