Motivation Toward English Language Learning of Thai Students Majoring in English at Asia-Pacific International University

Main Article Content

Nakhon Kitjaroonchai
Tantip Kitjaroonchai


This study sought to investigate the types of motivation (integrative or instrumental) that English major Thai students at Asia-Pacific International University have toward the learning of the English language, and the correlation between the students’ learning motivation and their academic achievement (GPA). A modified 20- item motivational survey adapted from Gardner’s (1985) Attitude/Motivation Test Battery (AMTB) was administered to 137 English major Thai students. The findings reveal that the students had high levels of integrative and instrumental motivation to learn English. Their instrumental motivation was found slightly higher than their integrative motivation. The investigation also demonstrated that there is a significant positive relation between students’ learning motivation and their academic achievement (GPA). Following these findings, some pedagogical implications are discussed with their recommendations.


Download data is not yet available.

Article Details

Research Articles


Al-Quyadi, A. 2000 Psycho-sociological variables in the learning of English in Yemen. PhD thesis, Bhagalpur University.

Al-Tamimi, A. and Shuib, M. 2009 Motivation and attitudes towards learning English: a study of petroleum Engineering undergraduates at Hadhramout University of Sciences and Technology. GEMA Online Journal of Language Studies. Vol. 9(2) 2009. Retrieved May 8, 2011, from: http://www.ukm. my/ppbl/Gema/pp%2029_55.pdf

Arvizu 2011 Education and supplying the skills for the labor force. Retrived March 15, 2012, from: for- the-labor-force/

Atagi, R. 2002 The Thailand Educational reform Project: School Reform Policy. Report to ONEC and ADB as part of TA 3585-THA, June, 2002.

Bangkok Post 2010 English to be second language. Retrieved May 9, 2011, from:

2010 Plan to make English 2nd language vetoed. Retrieved May 9, 2011, from: vetoed

Best, J.W. 1981 Research in Education, 5th ed. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice Hall.

Brown, H. D. 2007 Principles of language learning and teaching (5th ed.). White Plains, NY: Pearson Education. 2000 Principles of language learning and teaching. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.

Clement, R. Dornyei, A. and Noels, K.A. 1994 Motivation, self-confidence, and group cohesion in the foreign language. Language learning, 3. 417-448.

Cokley, K., Barnard, N., Cunningham, D., & Motoike, J. 2001 A psychometric investigation of the academic motivation scale using a United States sample. Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development, 34, 127-136.

Deci, E.L. and Ryan, R. M. 1985 Intrinsic motivation and self-determination in human behavior. New York: Plenum.

Degang, M. 2010 Motivation toward English language learning of the second year undergraduate Thai students majoring in Business English at an English-medium university. Master’s project M.A. (Business English for International Communication). Bangkok: Graduate School, Srinakharinwirot University.

Deniz, S. 2010 Student teachers’ evaluation of the motivational strategies used in foreign language teaching. Social Behavior and Personality, 38 (9). 1269-1286. Retrieve May 7, 2011, from:

Dornyei, Z. 2001 Teaching and Researching Motivation. UK, Harlow: Pearson Education.

2001 Motivational strategies in the language classroom. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

1994 Motivation and motivating in the foreign language classroom. Modern Language Journal, 78, 273- 284.

Donryei, Z., K. Csizer, and N. Nemeth. 2006 Motivation, Language attitudes and globalization: Hungarian perspective. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.

Dornyei, Z. and Clement, R. 2000 Motivational characteristics of learning different target languages: Results of a nationwide survey. Paper presented at the AAAL convention, Vancouver, Canada, March.

Dornyei, Z. and Otto, I. 1998 Motivation in action: A process model of L2 motivation. Working papers in applied linguistics (Thames Valley University, London), 4: 43-69.

EF English Proficiency Index Report 2011 Asia EF EPI ranking. Retrieved May 5, 2011, from:

Ely, C. M. 1986 Language learning motivation: A descriptive and causal analysis. The Modern Language Journal, 70, 28–35.

Elyildirim, S. & Ashton, S. 2006 Creating positive attitudes towards English as a foreign language. English Teaching Forum. Vol. 44, no. 4: 2-11.

Faculty of Arts and Humanities of Asia-Pacific International University. 2009-2011 FAH Self-Assessment Reports. Saraburi: Thailand.

Fry, Gerald W. 2002 “Synthesis Report: From Crisis to Opportunity, The Challenges of Educational Reform in Thailand.” Report to ONEC and ADB as part of TA 3585-THA, June.

Gardner, R.C. 2007 Motivation and second language acquisition. Porta Linguarum 8, June 2007, 9-22.

2006 The socio-educational model of second language acquisition: a research paradigm. EUROSLA Yearbook, 6, 237-260.

1985 Social psychology and second language learning: The role of attitudes and motivation. London: Edward Arnold.

Gardner, R.C., Lalonde, R.N., and Pierson, R. 1983 The socio-educational model of second language acquisition: An investigation using LISREL causal modeling. Journal of Language and Social Psychology, 2, 1-15.

Harmer, J. 2007 The practice of English language teaching. (4th ed.). Essex: Longman.

Kyriacou, C. 2005 English pupil’s attitudes towards learning French. Paper presented at the 11th European Conference for Research on Learning and Instruction, August 23-27, at the University of Cyprus, Nicosia, Cyprus.

Kyriacou, C. and Zhu, D. 2008 Shanghai pupil’s motivation towards learning English and the perceived influence of important others. Educational Studies. Vol. 34, No. 2, May 2008, 97-104.

Likert, R. 1932 A technique for the measurement of attitudes, Archives of Psychology. Vol. 22, 140.

Lile, W.T. 2002 Motivation in the ESL classroom. The Internet TESL Journal, 8(1). Retrieved May 10, 2011, from:

Liu, M. 2007 Chinese students’ motivation to learn English at the tertiary level. Asian EFL Journal, vol. 9, no. 1, March 2007, 126-146.

Liuoliene, A. and Metiuniene, R. 2006 Second language learning motivation. Santalka. Filologija, Edukologija, T. 14 N. 2: 93-98. Retrieved May 7, 2011, from:

Matichon Online Newspaper. 2011 Students failed O-NET because they lack critical thinking skills.(translated). Retrieved May 10, 2011, from:

Ministry of Education Thailand. 2004 National Report 2004. Paper presented at the Forty-seventh Session of the International Conference on Education, Geneva, September 8-11, 2004.

Moriss, S. 2010 English language teaching and learning in Thailand. Retrieved May 9, 2011, from:

National Institute of Educational Testing Service (Public Organization) Thailand. 2011 Result of Ordinary National Educational Test 2010 (O-NET). Retrieved May 10, 2011, from:

Online Business Dictionary. 2010 Motivation. Retrieved May 8, 2011, from:

Oxford English dictionary. 2004 Oxford: Oxford University Press.