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Title: Motivational strategies implemented in Mandarin classrooms in England
Author: Lam, Sin Manw (Sophia)
ISNI:       0000 0004 8508 357X
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2020
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Learning a foreign language is beneficial for an individual as it can facilitate linguistic awareness and broaden the horizons of learners in multiple facets. There has been growing interest in learning Mandarin within the United Kingdom, with more than a 20% constant increase in the uptake of GCSE Mandarin since 2014. However, a lack of research in teaching Mandarin in secondary schools coupled with low continuation rates in Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) in England has led to the need for relevant research to inform practitioners is of paramount importance. Previous research has found that teachers' motivational strategies have impact on students' motivation but is also culturally and contextually dependent. Additionally, preparing learners with language learning strategies can promote their self-efficacy and sustain their motivation. On the other hand, Mandarin Chinese, which is a character language, has its distinctive features and assumed to have transferability of pedagogical approach compared to that of European languages. This study aims to investigate the motivational strategies implemented in Mandarin classrooms in England. By adopting Dörnyei's (2001) Motivational Strategies Framework, in particular, the third phase which is to maintain and protect motivation, the study explores the perceptions and use of motivational strategies of the teachers, as well as how the students respond to the teachers' practices. Qualitative methodology was employed. Four secondary schools, including two academies, one independent school and one comprehensive school participated in the research. The empirical data of the study consisted of seven teacher interviews, 24 lesson observations, 156 student questionnaires and eight student focus group interviews. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the data collected. The study found that the Mandarin teachers used six out of eight of the motivational strategies in this phase. More importantly, they were based on the distinctive features of Mandarin and developed language-focused pedagogy, such as building knowledge of radicals, the use of pictorial image, and the creation of idiosyncratic stories. It also contributes to motivational effects of the teaching methodology - Communicative Language Teaching of MFL in England. The study shed light on motivational strategies on foreign language other than English in an Anglophone context and provide insights to teaching and learning Chinese as a foreign language.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available