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A Paper
Presented to the
Faculty of the Graduate School Bataan Peninsula State University
City of Balanga, Bataan


In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree

Master of Arts in Language Education


March 2018

The study aimed to obtain responses on how the speaking proficiency of the

learners of a second language is affected by intrinsic and extrinsic factors that

motivate the students attending a Special Program for Foreign Language (Chinese -

Mandarin) in the Bataan National High School in the Academic Year 2017 -2018.

The respondents were Grade 7, 8 and 9 students currently enrolled in the

above-stated Special Program whose interviews are voice recorded and later

transcribed. The results affirm that students enrolled in the program are highly

motivated for various reasons ranging from self-satisfaction, practicality of

learning the language and opportunities to use the language in the future.

Moreover, the research confirms that students are generally highly-motivated and

satisfied under the guidance of competent teachers of the language.

The study also recommends the continuity of the Special Program for

Foreign Language in the institution as benefits, realized or potential, has presented

to be taken advantage of now and in the future.


Background of the Study

Some students learn a new language more quickly and easily than others. Either the students

learned the foreign language on their own or a foreign language teacher has taught them in

their school. Some language learners are successful by their sheer determination, hard work,

and persistence.

There are crucial factors influencing success that are beyond the control of the learner. These

factors can be categorized as internal or external in nature. The complex interplay of internal

and external factors determines the speed and facility that the new language is learned.

Motivation is an important factor in learning a second and foreign language (Gardner, 1985b;

Scarcella & Oxford, 1992). It is defined as the individual’s attitudes, desires, and effort

(Gardner, Tremblay & Masgoret, 1997). Moreover, Ryan and Deci (2000) defined

motivation as concerning energy, direction, persistence and equifinality-- all aspects of

activation and intention.

Nature of the Motivation

Motivation is one of the main determinants of second/foreign language (L2) learning

achievement. According to the self-determination theory (Deci and Ryan, 1985; 1995), there

are two general types of motivation, one based on intrinsic interest in the activity per se and

the other based on rewards extrinsic to the activity itself. These types of motivation are not

categorically different, but rather lie along a continuum of self-determination.

Underpinning this observation, the researcher also aspires to fully understand the significance

of these motivations in speaking proficiency among foreign language, Chinese-Mandarin,


Significance of the Study

The study would be very helpful in explaining why students have the motivation to learn one

communicative skill over another. This research would also help teachers and curriculum

designers to make improvements on their current Special Program for Foreign Language

(Chinese-Mandarin) in their respective schools, in order to address the concern of why some

students are not well-rounded in the development of all four macro skills in Chinese-


Statement of the Problem

The study intends to obtain answers to the following questions:

1. Are students intrinsically or extrinsically motivated to acquire speaking proficiency in

foreign languages, specifically Chinese-Mandarin?

2. What motivational factors influence students to learn the Chinese-Mandarin

communicative skills?

Hence, the researcher would like to finish this study to come up with the possible

recommendation to address the problems.

Methods and Techniques of the Study

A qualitative method of research was used in the study to gain information concerning the

factors affecting the speaking proficiency of learners of Chinese-Mandarin.

Construction, Validation, and Research Instrument

The main instrument used in gathering the data is an in-depth guided personal interview using

a self-made interview guide questions. The content of the self-made interview guide

questions was ensured through a dry run done involving 5 respondents represented by Grade

7, Grade 8, and Grade 9 Chinese-Mandarin learners at Bataan National High School.

Additionally, in order to facilitate the process of data collection, permission was secured from

the Special Program for Foreign Language (SPFL) – Chinese Mandarin Consultant and


Data Processing

Narratives from the voice recorded interview were transcribed.

Results and Findings

All the respondents showed the motivation and enthusiasm to learn Chinese-Mandarin as

their foreign language. Noels, Clement and Pelletier (1999) investigated the relations between

perception of teachers’ communicative style and students’ motivation. The results also

suggested that the teacher’s behavior affects the students’ generalized feelings of autonomy

and competence.
Table 1

On being a Chinese – Mandarin Student

Perks and Feelings

Student 1 Student 2 Student 3 Student 4 Student Student 9 Student
8 10
“We are I feel proud “I am glad “Oh, every “I have a “I feel “I enjoy
ahead of because I to be in time I go to a Chinese confident learning
other have edge to SPFL shop or mall friend in for having and
students communicat class and bump with Facebook a speaking
in BNHS e in because a Chinese , we can knowledge Chinese-
because Chinese- other businessman talk in in basic Mandarin,
we can Mandarin. students or Chinese Chinese- I’m
speak a were businesswome during Mandarin different.”
foreign amazed on n, I can speak our because it
language. us once to them in chats.” is the most
” they heard Chinese by spoken-
us speak asking the language
in basic nowadays.
Chinese.” questions ”
when buying

Table 2

Intrinsic Motivation

Determination, Perseverance, Hardwork, and Recognition

Student 1 Student 9 Student 10
“My parents are proud of me “I always read and practice “I’m determined to learn the
because I passed the Youth the tone marks at home, so I language because I’m aware
Chinese Test Level 1 last can actively participate in of its potential in the future.
November 2017.” oral activities in the next I study hard and listen to my
day.” teacher attentively.”

The themes instructed how Intrinsic Motivation affects the learner’s development in learning
is related to what Ryan, Kuhl and Deci (1997) introduced the Self-Determination Theory
(SDT) which they defined as an approach to human motivation and personality that utilizes
traditional empirical methods while employing a metatheory that highlights the importance of
human’s evolved inner resources for personality development.

Table 3
Extrinsic Motivation

Reward, Parents, and Desired Grade

Student 2 Student 3 Student 4 Student 5 Student 6 Student 8
“I feel great “Every time “My father “I always “I got one “Every time
every time I I speak told me that aim to have mistake only we greet our
get high Chinese at this summer, good in YCT Level teachers in
grade both home, my we will have scores, it 1 last Chinese-
in oral and parents a tour in tells the November Mandarin in
written motivate me Hongkong. result of y 2017. For me, the corridor,
activities.” by giving He said I can patience in it was an she gives us
me extra communicate learning achievement.” plus 5 in our
allowance.” with Chinese Chinese.’ performance.”

The themes that materialized from the interview concerning the advantage of Extrinsic
Motivation was the rewards, parents and desired grade which is in accordance to Ryan and
Deci (1985). (EM) are those actions carried to achieve some instrumental end, such as
earning a reward or avoiding a punishment. This type of motivation does not necessarily
imply a lack of self-determination in the behaviors performed.

Table 4

Teacher’s Motivation

Attitude and Feelings

Student 5 Student 6 Student 7 Student 8 Student 9
“Our teacher “My teacher “The teacher “I always feel “I enjoy our
has a positive speaks well in gives a lot of excited in the class in
disposition.” Chinese- unique subject because Chinese-
Mandarin.” presentation.” they presents Mandarin, we
the lesson are always
interactively.” looking forward
in learning new

The themes regarded why students are motivated in learning Chinese- Mandarin is because of
the teacher’s significant role in motivating the students in learning. Noels (2001a)
investigated the relations between perception of teacher’s communicative style and student’s
motivation. The results suggested that the teacher’s behavior affects the students generalizes
feelings of autonomy and competence.

The study clearly showed that SPFL-Chinese Mandarin learners are intrinsically and

extrinsically motivated to learn a Foreign Language skill such as speaking in their third

language, Chinese Mandarin. These can be explained by the students’ interest in speaking using

Chinese-Mandarin with their teachers, peers and even inside the classroom as it is a

requirement in SPFL Chinese-Mandarin.

Moreover, it was found that students by and large, are intrinsically motivated via

accomplishment and knowledge. These findings suggest that these learners are attempting to

master their skills in speaking as manifested in their intrinsic motivation.

The study puts forward the reality indeed, Chinese-Mandarin a potential language and that

students will always be interested to learn this language due to many benefits it may bring.

Their multilingual exposure at a very early stage in their lives puts the Filipino young language

learner to an advantage over their Asian counterparts


Without a doubt, there are still so many things to be done when it comes to conducting research

on motivation, In the end, the voluminous amount that might come from studies related to the

said topic would further enhance how teachers practice their profession and how students

acquire and process knowledge in general.


Deci, E. L., & Ryan, R.M. (1985). Intrinsic Motivation and Self Determination in Human

Behavior. New York: Plenum Press.

Deci, E.L., & Ryan, R.M. (1995). Human autonomy: The basis for true self-esteem. In

Kernis, M. H. (Ed.). Efficacy, Agency and Selfesteem. New York: Plenum.

Gardner, R. C. (1985b). Social Psychology and Second Language Learning: The Role of

Attitudes and Motivation. London: Edward Arnold. Gardner, R. C., Tremblay, P. E., &

Masgoret, A. M. (1997). Towards a full model of second language learning: An empirical

investigation. Modern Language Journal, 81, 344-362.

Noels, K. A., Clement, R., & Pelletier, L. G. (1999). Perceptions of teacher communicative

style and students’ intrinsic and extrinsic motivation. Modern Language Learning Journal, 83,


Scarcella, R., & Oxford, R. (1992). The Tapestry of Language Learning: The Individual in

the Communicative Classroom. Boston: Heinle.