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Begin with Beliefs: Exploring the Relationship between Beliefs and Learner Autonomy among Advanced Students.

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This study examined data elicited by the Beliefs About Language Learning Inventory (BALLI), which was administered to first-year, advanced learners of French at the University of the West Indies. The questionnaire looked at students' attitudes regarding the difficulty of language learning, foreign language aptitude, the nature of language learning, learning and communication strategies, and student motivation. Results indicated that most students agreed or strongly agreed that there existed a language-learning hierarchy of difficulty. No students felt that French was a very easy language to learn. Most students believed that everyone could learn a foreign language, and their self-esteem as language learners was high. The majority of students felt it was better to learn a second language in the country where it was spoken. They also considered vocabulary more important than grammar rules in learning a foreign language. Finally, 63 percent of students felt that successful communication with native speakers depended upon their ability to speak the language. Only 9 percent of the students endorsed the view that language teaching must embrace the utilitarian. (Contains 40 references.) (SM)

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Author:Carter, Beverly-Anne
Publication:ERIC: Reports
Date:Dec 1, 1999
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