Motivational strategies in EFL classrooms: How do teachers impact students' motivation?

Maya Sugita McEown*, Osamu Takeuchi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


The objective is to examine the changes in the effectiveness of motivational strategy use by teachers during one semester in the English as a foreign language (EFL) classrooms. More specifically, we investigate differences in effectiveness changes for each motivational strategy used according to students' English proficiency levels and their original motivational intensity levels in order to understand the process by which instructors influence students' motivation. The participants were an instructor and 222 university students. Two distinct clusters were found within the student sample based on cluster analysis: Cluster A) students with higher English proficiency and higher motivational intensity; and Cluster B) students with lower English proficiency and lower motivational intensity. The results showed that (a) the two clusters did not exhibit a similar trend in terms of the relationship between frequency of motivational strategy use by teachers and students' motivation except with respect to two motivational strategies; (b) seven strategies showed positive correlations at least once in the semester in either Cluster A or Cluster B; (c) five strategies showed no significant correlations throughout the semester; and (d) there were three strategies that did not show a positive correlation; however, these strategies were associated with a negative correlation throughout the semester in either Cluster A or Cluster B.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)20-38
Number of pages19
JournalInnovation in Language Learning and Teaching
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2014 Jan
Externally publishedYes


  • classroom research
  • motivational intensity
  • motivational strategies
  • proficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education
  • Linguistics and Language


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