Exploring the Interplay of Motivation, International Posture, and Online Informal English Learning: A Mixed-Methods Study

  •  Alaa Alnajashi    


Engagement with online media among learners is closely linked to language proficiency and cultural comprehension, offering a platform for enhancing English language skills. This has given rise to the field of online informal learning of English (OILE), with numerous studies exploring learners’ habits in this domain and indicating positive impacts on language proficiency. However, disparities in OILE engagement exist among learners, with individual factors like motivation and attitude playing a role. Recent research has affirmed the positive correlation between learners’ motivation, global outlook, and their involvement in informal learning. Yet, the connection between motivation and OILE remains insufficiently explored. This mixed-methods study, conducted with female university students in Saudi Arabia, utilized a questionnaire (n = 550) and subsequent semi-structured interviews (n = 19) to scrutinize students’ motivations, International Posture (IP), and frequency of OILE use within the framework of the L2 Motivational Self System. The investigation aimed to elucidate how students’ motivation and global outlook influence their OILE practices. Results indicated that participants were moderate OILE users with a relatively restricted global outlook, displaying diverse levels of motivation. Moreover, participants’ engagement with OILE was notably shaped by their Ideal L2 selves and IP. The findings propose that participants perceived OILE as a means to connect with the international English-speaking community. Pedagogically, the study advocates for educating learners about the potential advantages of OILE use and emphasizes the need for institutions in this context to cultivate learners’ International Posture.

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
  • ISSN(Print): 1927-5250
  • ISSN(Online): 1927-5269
  • Started: 2012
  • Frequency: bimonthly

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