Second language anxiety among Latino American immigrants in Australia

Marta Garcia de Blakeley, Ruth Ford, Leanne Casey
2015 International Journal of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism  
Research into Second Language Anxiety (SLA) has largely focused on secondlanguage learners rather than immigrants. However, living in an environment where the target language (TL) is the language of everyday communication may constitute a significant source of anxiety that generalises beyond the language classroom (Pappamihiel, 2001; Rose, 2008 , Woodrow, 2006 . This study explored SLA across different social contexts in a sample of 190 adult immigrants from Latin America to Australia who spoke
more » ... Australia who spoke Spanish as their first language (L1) and English as their second language (L2). The aims were to (a) investigate the presence and severity of SLA among L2 long-term immigrants, and (b) examine sources of individual differences in SLA. Results indicated that SLA exists among L2 immigrants at moderate, high and very high levels, and that levels of anxiety vary significantly across social contexts. Self-perceived L2 proficiency was found to be the strongest predictor of SLA followed by extroversion and age, with higher scores on all three variables associated with lower SLA. Gender, education level, duration of residency in Australia, and emotional stability did not predict SLA in any of the contexts. These findings suggest that SLA is a significant problem for adult immigrants, permeating most aspects of their everyday lives. Practical implications and recommendations for future research are discussed.
doi:10.1080/13670050.2015.1083533 fatcat:exovkqwrknhmhk25buv3w7yrdq