Reading anxiety and language learning strategies among ESL students

Date of Publication


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts in English Language Education


Br. Andrew Gonzalez FSC College of Education


Dept of English and Applied Linguistics

Thesis Adviser

Rochelle Irene G. Lucas

Defense Panel Chair

Ma. Joahna M. Estacio

Defense Panel Member

Aireen B. Arnuco
Marianne Jennifer M. Gaerlan


In the Philippines, English is considered as a second language (ESL) rather than a foreign language (EFL), as compared to most neighboring countries. Despite this difference, both ESL and EFL students need to learn the same four macro skills: writing, listening, speaking, and reading, considerably the most important. ESL and EFL learners can experience difficulty when it comes to reading in the target language, therefore triggering anxiety. Particularly for the Philippines, anxiety may arise from the general familiarity with English causing expectations of competence from the students, potentially affecting their reading proficiency thus, this study aimed to identify and analyze the anxiety experienced by selected Philippine high school students (from first to fourth year) and the particular language learning strategies they used to cope with this anxiety, as well as the effects of these two factors on students reading proficiency. To attain this, the researcher administered the Foreign Language Reading Anxiety Scale and the Language Learning Inventory, conducted an English proficiency test, and conducted focus group discussions. Analysis of the gathered data revealed that participants were mostly in the average to proficient levels of proficiency (mostly fourth-year students) and that most experienced translation anxiety (encountering unfamiliar words/expressions); however, they were able to cope by using learning strategies such as making reading plans and using dictionaries. Statistical analysis of the data showed no significant relation between reading anxiety, learning strategies, and proficiency, with other factors not analyzed in the study potentially affecting results. It was concluded from the findings that proficiency may improve with age and that experiencing anxiety or using learning strategies may not necessarily significantly affect the students level of reading proficiency. Other factors affecting reading proficiency may also be explored for further studies.

Abstract Format






Accession Number


Shelf Location

Archives, The Learning Commons, 12F Henry Sy Sr. Hall

Physical Description

leaves ; 4 3/4 in.

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