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Volume 23Number 2 publication date:Dec. 2010
The Influence of the Elementary Students’ Early English Learning Experience on their English Motivation and Academic Achievements
    Author:Chwen-Chyong Tsau & Chia-Hua Hao
Research Article


This study aimed to investigate the influence of early English learning experience in kindergarten on the English motivation and academic achievements of 1st and 3rd graders who just started formal English lessons at elementary schools in Kaohsiung area. An English Learning Motivation Questionnaire (ELMQ) based on Gardner’s social-educational model of second language acquisition (SLA) was designed with good content validity and reliability. Questionnaires and document analysis were adopted in the study; 2,339 students from 11 elementary schools in Kaohsiung area were invited to fill out the ELMQ and their 1st semester scores of English, Math and Chinese were obtained for further analysis. Quantitative data was processed by descriptive statistics, one-way ANOVA, t-test, Scheffé analysis with SPSS 15.0 for Windows. The results were as follows: (1)62.4% students started learning English in kindergarten, (2)the ‘English learning start time’, ‘English learning place’, ‘English learning hours’, and ‘English teacher’s qualification’ of the early English learning experiences showed different levels of positive influence on elementary students’ English learning motivation including instrumental and integrative motivation, and (3)Students who had early English learning experiences outperformed students who did not in terms of their English, Math, and Chinese scores in the 1st semester. This suggests that learning English early may have a positive influence on students’ academic achievement later on.

Keywords: kindergarten English learning experience, learning motivation


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