Investigating Foreign Language Teacher Anxiety Using SFL’s ATTITUDE and TRANSITIVITY Systems
Keywords:teacher emotions, anxiety, appraisal theory, systemic functional linguistics
This study investigates language teachers’ verbal construals of classroom anxiety and its cognitive precursors by drawing on the TRANSITIVITY and ATTITUDE systems in systemic functional linguistics (Martin & White, 2005) and integrating them with appraisal theory in cognitive psychology (Smith & Lazarus,1993). Three collegiate-level German teachers in a CLIL-like context participated in a two-week classroom observation sequence, which included 8 in-depth, semi-structured interviews that employed stimulated recall methodology by way of recorded classroom observations. Transcribed interview data were examined using both TRANSITIVITY analysis to capture experiential meanings and a multi-step TRANSITIVITY and ATTITUDE analysis to capture both emotional meanings and cognitive appraisals simultaneously. Findings revealed individual patterns of verbal construals of anxiety for each participant. The multi-step analysis uncovered discernible patterns for the verbal construal of cognitive appraisals that are strongly associated with both participants’ feelings of anxiety and their beliefs about the nature of language teaching. Based on these findings, a new system network for the description and approach to the analysis of foreign language (FL) teacher emotions is proposed and implications of the findings for future research into teacher emotions and beliefs, as well as for teacher training, emotional well-being, and foreign language pedagogy research are discussed.
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2020 Julia Goetze
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
The authors retain copyright over their work under a creative commons 4.0 agreement (CC-BY-SA). This means that authors are free to:
Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format
Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material for any purpose, even commercially.
Under these terms:
Attribution — You must give appropriate credit, provide a link to the license, and indicate if changes were made. You may do so in any reasonable manner, but not in any way that suggests the licensor endorses you or your use.
ShareAlike — If you remix, transform, or build upon the material, you must distribute your contributions under the same license as the original.
No additional restrictions — You may not apply legal terms or technological measures that legally restrict others from doing anything the license permits.