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Exploring the Scope of Flow in a Language Learning Context: Redefining the Dimensions Based on Student Perspectives

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15:00, Mercredi 27 Avr 2022 EDT (15 minutes)
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Exploring the Scope of Flow in a Language Learning Context : Redefining the Dimensions Based on Student Perspectives

Anamaria Bodea

Concordia University


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This study examines the concept of flow (i.e., a perceived state of harmony in terms of enjoyment and concentration in an activity, to the point of oblivion of the surrounding environment) in a second language (L2) learning context, focusing on the student’s perspective. Flow states have been previously found to correlate with increased engagement (e.g., Cox & Montgomery, 2019) or motivation (e.g., Abbott, 2000) in the classroom. The overall goal of this research is to inform L2 instructors and students on which specific characteristics might be desirable to focus on in the classroom, so as to provide flow opportunities while learning an L2.

Previous research about flow in L2 learning has focused on four dimensions of flow, as established by Egbert (2003), including learners’ attention, interest, control, and perceived skill-challenge balance. However, most studies have explored these dimensions through researcher-proposed descriptions of flow to which L2 learners were asked to react using Likert-type scales. This study focuses on establishing emerging dimensions as reported by the students themselves through journal entries and interviews, in order to portray a holistic picture of flow dimensions in L2 learning, which could potentially be used to encourage flow experiences while learning.

The results of the study suggest that additionally to the dimensions from the literature, new dimensions were emergent as relevant to the students’ flow experiences (e.g., oblivion, stress, enjoyment, and sense of accomplishment). Moreover, the flow experiences of students were mostly related to oral communication (e.g., speaking to a friend/stranger, conversation task).



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Anamaria Bodea


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