On the Measurement of Affective Variables in Second Language Learning

Authors

  • Robert C. Gardner,

    Corresponding author
    1. The University of Western Ontario
      Requests for reprints may be sent to the first author at Department of Psychology, The University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada N6A 5C2. E-mail: GARDNER@VAXR.SSCL.UWO.CA
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  • Peter D. MacIntyre

    Corresponding author
    1. The University of Western Ontario
      Requests for reprints may be sent to the first author at Department of Psychology, The University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada N6A 5C2. E-mail: GARDNER@VAXR.SSCL.UWO.CA
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  • This research was supported by grants 410–90–0195 and 410-88–0158 from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada to R. C. Gardner for research on the topics “Social factors in second language learning and ethnic relations” and “Attitudes, motivation and anxiety in second language learning”. We express our appreciation to the Chairman of the French Department and the class instructors who permitted us to solicit volunteers, and to the volunteers themselves. We also thank Vicki Galbraith for her valuable assistance in all phases of the research.

Requests for reprints may be sent to the first author at Department of Psychology, The University of Western Ontario, London, Ontario, Canada N6A 5C2. E-mail: GARDNER@VAXR.SSCL.UWO.CA

Abstract

This study focuses on four issues concerning aspects of the validity of the Attitude/Motivation Test Battery. Data were obtained from 92 students of university-level French. The first issue deals with whether the various subtests assess the attributes they are presumed to measure. A multitrait/multimethod analysis of three methods indicated that they did. The second issue focuses on the relationship of the subtests to higher order constructs. A factor analysis provided empirical support for the higher order constructs of Integrativeness, Attitudes Toward the Learning Situation, Language Anxiety, and Motivation. The third issue is concerned with whether the strategy used to measure affective variables influences their correlations with measures of achievement. The correlations obtained suggested that they did; moreover, some measures of achievement were less related to all affective measures than were others. The fourth issue directs attention to measures of integrative and instrumental orientation, their relationship to each other and to achievement. The results demonstrated more communality among integrative orientation items and measures than among instrumental orientation measures. Neither correlated that highly with achievement, but the correlations were slightly higher for measures of integrative orientation.

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