Engineering students’ motivational variables towards English and the learning of the English language

  • Marian Amengual-Pizarro Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria


This study examines the influence of motivational variables (integrative vs. instrumental motivation, attitudes, L2 anxiety and linguistic self-confidence) towards the learning of English in the current globalised university context. A total of 76 engineering undergraduates at the University of the Balearic Islands (U.I.B) participated in this study. A questionnaire was used to elicit students’ responses. The results indicate that contrary to previous research (Wimolmas, 2013), integrative reasons for learning the English language have the greatest influence on ESP students’ motivation. The findings also show that the integrative orientation that drives participants is more closely related to their wish to integrate and fluently communicate with a broader international community rather than with a specific valued target language community (Dörnyei, 2009; Papi, 2010). This new conceptualisation of L2 motivation involves a no longer clear-cut separation between integrative and instrumental orientations. The data also reveal that engineering students have highly positive attitudes to learn English, especially female students who score significantly higher in their ratings. Engineering students also show a high level of linguistic self-confidence, although they are found to experience a great deal of language anxiety mainly associated with classroom-related factors.


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Cómo citar
Amengual-Pizarro, M. (2017). Engineering students’ motivational variables towards English and the learning of the English language. Revista De Lenguas Para Fines Específicos, 23(1), 31-44. Recuperado a partir de