Listening Comprehension and Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety among Iranian EFL learners

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Listening Comprehension and Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety among Iranian EFL learners


Firouz Sadighi, Rahman Sahragard , & Seyed Mohammad Jafari.


Bio Data:

Firouz Sadighi is a professor of Applied Linguistics and teaches graduate courses (M.A. and Ph.D.) in Applied Linguistics at Shiraz University.

Rahman Sahragard is assistant professor in Applied Linguistics. Department of Foreign Languages and Linguistics at Shiraz University, Shiraz, Iran. He teaches Sociolinguistics, Discourse Analysis, Pragmatics, Research Methods, and Materials Development at postgraduate level.

Seyed Mohammad Jafari holds an MA in TEFL from Department of Foreign Languages and Linguistics of Shiraz University. He is currently a lecturer at Shiraz Azad University.


This study investigated the relationship between Iranian EFL learners’ listening comprehension (LC) and their foreign language classroom anxiety (FLCA). Furthermore, it scrutinized the role of gender and years of university study on LC and FLCA. To achieve such goals, eighty Iranian EFL students (40 males and 40 females), majoring in English Translation at the Abadeh Azad University participated in this study. They included freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. Two research instruments were used in this study: Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale (FLCAS) developed by Horwitz, Horwitz, and Cope (1986) — reflecting three types of anxieties: communication apprehension, test anxiety and fear of negative evaluation— and listening comprehension portion of Longman Complete Course for the TOEFL test (Philips, 2001). The results revealed that the relationship between FLCA and LC was negative and significant. That is, the higher the level of FLCA these students experienced, the lower the score they obtained on the LC test and vice versa. This result indicates that FLCA interferes with foreign language listening comprehension.  Likewise, an analysis of variance (ANOVA) revealed that the level of listening proficiency contributes to the years of university study. That is, the level of LC proficiency increases as a function of years of university study. Considering the FLCA and years of university study, no relation was found. In addition, in this study females were found to be more anxious than males in listening settings.

Key words:  Listening comprehension, Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety, English as a Foreign Language Learners



Category: 2009