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Figure 3.3: Teaching and learning environment
students) who shared “agree” opinion . It was only 7,1% (3 students) of giving
With the same purpose, question 15 was designed to investigate student’s
feelings. The data was presented in the following figure question number 15.
Figure 3.5: Reduced self-confidence
As can be seen from the figure 3.5, in question number 15, compare with
other selections, the answer “strongly disagree” consumed the large proportion of
students’ choice. More than one second percentage (50%) of students admitted that
they often felt shy when performing in front of class. And 47.6% of students agreed
with this statement. Therefore, the number of students strongly agreed and agreed
with this statement is 97,6%, a largest number. This figure was fifteen times higher
than percentage of students who strongly disagreed and disagreed with this
statement, with 2,4% of students.
In conclusion, the provided figure 3.4 and 3.5 has four sections, each
illustrated reasons causing demotivation of student in reduced self-confidence. As
was presented in the graphs, most of students agreed or strongly agreed with opinion
that they were reduced self-confidence.
3.1.5. Learning content and materials.
To find out factors related to learning content and materials English
lessons, question number 16 to question number 18 were designed. The survey
results of these questions were shown in table 3. and figure 3.4.
Table 3.5. Learning content and materials.
In question number 16, 17 and 18, most of them strongly disagreed and
disagreed that the content and materials were difficult and interesting to learn,
with an average about 80%. The second question had the most popular
choice, attracting one third of proportion, was students’ disagreement. The
answer strongly disagree and disagree had lower choice rates in the graph.
For example, in question number 16, only 9 students stated that the learning
content and materials were not interesting and suitable averaging 21,5 percent
of students. The difference was greater in question number 17 when 17
students (40,5%) agreed that English lessons were too long and difficult to
In contrast, question number 18, proportion of students, who agreed
and strongly agreed, are higher than those in remaining questions. Percentage
of students who agreed is about 7,2%. This figure was lower than those in
other questions in graph.
In conclusion, it was very clear that English learning content and
materials were appropriate for 10A1 students.
Result from class observation
To find out 10A1 student’s demotivating factors, observing how English
activities are carried out and what is actually going on in the English classes is
really indispensable because it is a technique that can often reveal
characteristics of groups and individuals which would have been impossible to
discover by other means and direct observation may be more reliable.
The researcher would like to observe what demotivating factors that
affect students’ motivation in English lesson. The observation was carried out
six times at three different units (Unit 12, 13 and 14) and with different
teachers in these classes. Each lesson lasted 45 minutes. While observing, the
researcher watched and followed all the procedures and activities the teachers
and the students were performing in the real classroom settings, which enabled
her to elicit reliable data.
The researcher carried out to observe 10A1 class taught by one teachers
with 2 reading lessons, 2 speaking lessons, 1 writing lesson and 1 listening lesson
at Huong Can high school. During each lesson, the researcher took notes of what
were observed carefully in the most detailed way.
Based on the observation objectives (Appendix 2), researcher found that:
First of all, about students, through observation sheets of 4 teachers (2
trainee teachers, 1 English teacher and the researcher), most students are
involved in the English lessons. Teacher’s way of teaching created students’
activeness in learning. The majority of students (31 students) often raised their
hand to contribute ideas. Observer saw that about four-fifth (88,6%) of students in
each class have had positive attitude toward English lessons. Some of them felt
sleepy and bored (11,4%), so they made noise and did their own work. However,
when teacher asked them to work in groups or in pairs, many students did not
give their ideas and interact to others. They always depended on better and harder
classmates. On the other hands, students’ ability and knowledge are limited.
Although they studied hard and paid attention to teacher’s lecture, they did not
get good result. Another case is that some students had good knowledge. They
were able to answer most of teacher’s questions.
Secondly, teachers used the teaching techniques in English lesson. In
the warm- up stage, she didn’t raise any questions and any games for students
to express their knowledge about singers and musicians as a way to warm up
students. In the pre stage, she gave instructions and vocabulary that need for
students and asked them to do that task. In general, the researcher saw that
this stage was not fairly good as it attracted most of the students in the
activities. Teacher, however, did not give clear corrections and feedback to
students that they did not know exactly the answers were correct or in correct.
For example, When 8 students were confused about the instruction and the
result that teacher gave out in 2 speaking lessons and teacher did not explain
again and correct the mistake or say if they were true or false, which led to
the boring environment and they felt unpleasant. In the post-stage there was no
time to check or apply any technique. The teacher did not use games, activities,
videos and dramas to motivate students in English lessons, the researcher think
that teacher should use games or dramas, students usually will feel exciting to
join the games or dramas.
In spite of being lack of teacher’s enthusiasm and dedication, it seemed that
the teacher’s English technique was not effective in boosting her students’
motivation in the lesson and doing the tasks.
Thirdly, after observation, researcher found that 10A4 students did not have
a good learning environment. The class was silent when teacher asked and the
class atmosphere were so stressful and boring, so teacher had a lot of difficulties
in teaching. In additions, partners play an important role in English lessons,
especially in pair or group works, the researcher saw that they didn’t cooperate
together when teacher asked them. Teacher had hardly asked them to move and
make groups when they moved. It was clearly that the classroom environment
was boring and unexciting.
Fourthly, about reduced self-confidence, most students felt scared when
they made mistake in both 6 periods, on the first and second lessons (2 reading
lessons) there are few students raise their hand to answer (just have 3-4 students),
and on the third lesson (2 speaking lessons), students sat in silent, they might be
shy. On the Listening lesson, students could not be interested in this lesson, so
they did not keep pecker up. And in writing lesson, student might be more active
due to activities teacher gave out. In general, it prevented them from thinking of
what they would say. Especially, in 1 listening and 2 speaking lessons, 7 students
felt shy and did not say anything instead of looking around when being asked to
go in front of class and perform. They were prevented from thinking and giving
their answers, so they were not confident enough to express their answer, because
they were afraid of making mistakes.
Finally, materials were various and attractive. Teacher could provide the
tasks in the text book without any activities and teaching aids such as: games,
videos, pictures, etc. In addition, each English topic is so practical in daily life,
which is very necessary for students easy to understand.
In short, the observation helped the researcher confirm the fact that
technique applied by the teachers greatly affect the students’ motivation before
they start to learn and in order to keep students high motivated, the teacher needs
to employ various activities during the lesson.
In this chapter, this is the collected data from survey questionnaire and
observation. Then the data were synthesized and discussed to find out the
demotivating factors that 10A1 students faced when learning English including
learners’ factors teacher factors, classroom environment factors, reduced selfconfidence factors and learning content and materials factors.
Major findings from questionnaire and observation
English is an important language, however, most students believe that it is
difficult and boring subject. Therefore, they have a lot of demotivation in learning
English. The researcher has focused on investigating the demotivating factors in
learning English of 10A4 students at Huong Can high school.
After investigating, analyzing data collected from the questionnaire and
observation for the teachers. The study has found out four main factors that cause
demotivation during English lessons of 10A1 students at Huong Can high school.
They were learner’s factors, teacher’s factors, classroom environmental factors
and reduced self-confidence factor.
3.3.1. Learners’ factors
The second factor is a problem from the students themselves. When
learning English, the students at Huong Can high school had many difficulties.
First of all, their personality and intelligence were not very mature. They have
been freshmen at High school, so they did not have much opportunity to
use and practice English. Moreover, the majority had a quite low grade of
entrance exam so their qualifications are not very good. The survey showed that
most of the students did not understand much about content during English class
and could not answer the teachers’ tasks during the class.
Most of the students come from places around Phu Tho, so their
background knowledge is limited . They rarely come to visit the city and
approach the mass media. About the other topics, the fact makes students find it
difficult to learn well their English learning. The survey showed that most of
them blamed their English learning difficulties of the lack of vocabulary or
knowledge. After observing, researcher found that many students were not
confident enough to show their ideas and ask the help.
3.3.2. Teacher’s factors
The lack of knowledge about the teaching profession and some related
issues including the lack of knowledge of teaching methodology, dealing with
special students, and the difficulties with stress control are the main sources of
Teachers’ teaching methods refer to a set of techniques or activities used to
get students involved in learning to achieve a goal. One of the reasons for
learning a foreign language among many students is that they find learning
activities interesting. It means teachers’ teaching techniques or activities can
either motivate or demotivate students to learn. All students agreed that the
teachers often organized quite few activities. They did the same things lesson by
lesson, which caused boredom to the students. Teacher observing that class also
admitted that they didn’t have new and attractive activities to encourage their
students, so students were usually stressful and uncomfortable.
Teachers always took good care of their students and paid much attention
to their studying. They were willing to explain when students have difficulties.
Most of students asserted that teacher have fair treatment to them and agreed that
teachers did not usually criticize and insult students.
The data analysis of the survey indicated that the teachers’ teaching
methods mismatched the students’ preferences. For example, students want to
swap their learning to their partner to check but organization for students to
swop their learning is sometimes used by teacher. It is clear that teacher is one
of the biggest demotivation for students to study in English lesson.
3.3.3. Environmental factors
To begin with, the result from the survey questionnaire and observation
sheet showed that demotivating factors in classroom environment are the number
of students and the cooperation of partner. It is clear that the overload students
makes students difficult to learning English well. For example, when we study in
a crowded class, teacher can not control their students, of course, students will not
pay attention to the lesson.
Otherwise, cooperation also plays an important role in learning English. In
English lessons, it brings motivation for students when other students cooperate.
For example, a student wants to practice speaking English but nobody practice
with, which leads to demotivation.
From the observation, many students denied practicing with their partner
until teacher asked to move to make groups.
3.3.4. Reduced self-confidence.
Problem is related to the reduced self-confidence is student’s feelings about
their mistake and performance, which created demotivation in the English lesson.
It was showed that students often felt scared when making mistake. Their
feeling occurs because they feel unconfident when they are false. As the observation
sheet, teacher didn’t encourage whenever they make mistake in both 6 periods.
Most of students strongly agreed that they were shy to perform in front of
class. They were lack of confidence, so they didn’t speak loudly even they looked
In addition, it was stressed that confidence is one of the most important
elements for students and therefore, reduced self-confidence also reduces
motivation and the ability to enhance. From result of questionnaire and
observation, researcher find that most of students are timid or shy, some are not
Suggested solutions to deal with students’ demotivation in English
Many researchers gave out some suggested solutions to deal with students’
demotivation in English learning. The followings are some suggestions to the
teachers and 10A1 students of English at Huong Can high school.
3.4.1. Having awareness of students’ need and attitudes
Hausbeck, Milbrath and Enright (1992) studied awareness along with
attitude in high school students. They linked these results to the relatively easy
access to information by electronic media, where awareness and concern can be
picked up with little substantive attitude.
The level of attitude presented by the students was significantly higher
when compared to the levels of their corresponding parents. Villacorta, Koestner,
and Lekes (2003) developed the Motivation Towards the Environment Scale
(MTES) and found that individuals were more likely to engage in autonomous
environmental behaviors if their parents had shown an interest in their developing
students’ attitude, their peers supported their freedom to make decisions about
their learning, and if they had concern for their community.
It is important that English teachers are aware of the existence of different
sources of demotivation and critically evaluate their teaching methods and
classroom activities to meet students’ need.
Firstly, teachers need to have students understand about English’s importance
to be more interested in English as well overcome difficulties. In class, students
should concentrate the teacher’s lesson, try to show the opinion and ask the help and
advice if not understand. Similarly, students need to listen and write the feedback
from teacher carefully.
Secondly, the teacher should encourage learners to raise long-term
motivation by focusing on student’s internal features. It is also advisable for the
teacher to arouse learners’ intrinsic interest in the activity, to improve both their
awareness of developing skill and their realistic ability.
Finally, the teacher’s characteristics are, furthermore, decisive factors
to help increase motivation. It is the teacher’s helpfulness and enthusiasm
that make students feel like learning. Besides, the teacher’s friendliness and
humor make students feel more comfortable and relaxed. Moreover, in order to
lead students to willingly study the subject matter, the teacher should be active
and creative. The teacher should keep walking around the class so as to check
students’ work at the same time to encourage them to study by giving help
immediately when they need. Besides, teachers need to pay attention to poor
students in class instead of praising excellent ones only. Feeling of being ignored
has negative influences on students’ motivation.
3.4.2. Renovating teaching methods to motivate students
Teachers often enter the profession because of their heartfelt desire to
witness and support the physical, emotional and intellectual growth of their
students. Yet a teacher’s performance is measured largely by student
performance outcomes, educators have a vested interest in their students’
motivation. However, motivation is not an easy task. Motivation is a complex and
dynamic construct that is a function of the past, present and future and is
dependent on both the whole group and the individual (Hardre & Sullivan, 2002).
While one strategy will not work on all students, some elements of social contexts
influence what will influence a given group (Black & Deci, 2000). Teachers
should view motivation as a complex task involving a multi-faceted approach to
the classroom and to their relationships with the students within that classroom.
Motivation is a process, not merely an end product (Reeve, 2005)
First of all, in order to make the English learning process more motivating,
teachers need to build a lot of fun activities which maintain learner’s interest in
English lesson… So far as the teaching aids and techniques are concerned,
games and music are truly beneficial for teachers to motivate their students. The
teacher can use them in any stage of English lessons. However, it will surely be of
benefit if these two aids are used in the warm-up stage. For example, Unit 13
Theater and movies, before starting new lesson, teacher can organize a game:
Slap the board. Teacher write some word related to the writing topic such as:
character, actor, scene, director, cartoon, etc. After that, teacher reads loudly the
words, students have to listen and slap that word as fast as possible, then elicit
student to the new lesson. Students either are provided and reviewed vocabulary
or feel more interested and comfortable to begin the lesson. Teacher can base on
the topic and unit to choose suitable games (lucky numbers, cross words, jumper
words, so on). Besides, instead of teaching new words in traditional way, teacher
can show some pictures or real objects to express the meaning of the new word,
then teacher ask students to give example with the new word to make sure their
students understand and know the usage of the new words. For instance, unit 14
The World Cup, teacher can show pictures about defender, forward, midfielder,
goalkeeper to teach new words instead of providing Vietnamese meaning.
Teacher should have other activities to make the task in textbook more
attractive and interesting. Sometimes, they can replace very difficult tasks to easier
ones with same content for weak students. They also change some unnecessary and
impractical topics to be suitable for all level of students. Teacher should make
themselves and use some teaching aids to enrich their lessons. The topics in the
textbook should be added with more interesting aspects and more suitable interests
that students care about.
3.4.3. Enhancing students’ background knowledge and language
According to Fisher & Frey (2009), teachers could enhance students’
background knowledge in a number of ways. As an instructor, part of the
teacher’s role in observing instruction is to determine whether students’
background language knowledge was activated. In other words, it’s not enough to
look for instructional techniques, classroom management procedures, grade-level
content, and background knowledge development. Putting all of this to use
requires attention to the ways in which background knowledge is activated during
a lesson. To understand how background knowledge activation works, a close
glance to spreading activation should be paid.
Firstly, the students who are lacking behind should be offered additional
support and material as often as possible and similarly students that already are
very good at English should be given additional tasks and material to work
on. Also, teacher should provide information and knowledge about the topics before
Secondly, students should be asked to study in groups and in pairs to learn
from better classmates. Besides, it had been hoped that English would be
practiced not only in class but also in life. They should be more active and
confident to take part in some extra- activities or English club at school.
Finally, students must practice English regularly such as watching film,
listening to music in English to improve their vocabulary, they have to do
grammar exercises and should practice English every day.
In conclusion, chapter 3 showed the result of the study about 5 factor that
demotivate students’ English learning, they were learners’ factor, teacher factor,
environmental factor, reduced self-confidence and learning content and materials.