The Korean Association for the Study of English Language and Linguistics
[ Article ]
Korea Journal of English Language and Linguistics - Vol. 18, No. 1, pp.50-77
ISSN: 1598-1398 (Print)
Print publication date 31 Mar 2018
Received Jan 2018 Revised Feb 2018 Accepted Mar 2018

Remotivation Strategies for Korean Male High School Students’ English Learning

Tae-Young Kim** ; Kim, Ji-Young
Chung-Ang University, Korea
Chung-Ang University, Korea

Correspondence to: ** Email:


Kim, Tae-Young and Ji-Young Kim. 2018. Remotivation strategies for Korean male high school students’ English learning. Korean Journal of English Language and Linguistics 18-1, 50-77. This study examines the EFL learning remotivation components for male Korean high school students who showed improvement from a state of EFL learning demotivation and low in-house English test scores. The participants were four male second-year high school students who had been remotivated in EFL learning and enhanced low English test scores in junior high school. To explore the experiences specific to EFL learning remotivation, this study adopted a qualitative approach. The participants completed open-ended questionnaires and took part in a series of semistructured interviews, one for the preliminary study and two for the main study. The results revealed two remotivation components: instrumental motivation to obtain admission to a university and competitive motivation with peers. The components, motivated behavior and self-efficacy, enhanced English proficiency. Thus, when EFL learning motivated behavior related to remotivation components is strengthened, it increases English proficiency, enabling students to experience a high level of self-efficacy, which in turn helps maintain higher English proficiency. This qualitative research implies that EFL learners’ perception of remotivation components is a key determinant of L2 proficiency when combined with their motivated behavior and self-efficacy.


EFL learning remotivation strategies, changes in EFL learning motivation, high school students, qualitative inquiry


This research was supported by the Chung-Ang University Research Scholarship Grants in 2017


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1. Main Interview: First Session

1.1 EFL Learning Atmosphere

1) Could you explain in detail the proceedings of your English class? What assignments do you get?

2) Could you describe in detail the atmosphere of your English class?

3) How is your relationship with English teachers?

4) Do you participate actively in your English class?

5) Are you satisfied with your English class? Why or why not?

1.2 EFL Learning Motivation

1) Was there a specific moment when you thought you should work hard on your English? Could you tell me about the experience and why you felt that way?

2) What is the hardest part of studying English?

3) What efforts have you made to overcome the difficulties?

4) Do you think you need to study English? If so, why?

5) What kind of ideal images of yourself do you wish for as you study English?

2. Main Interview: Second Session

2.1 Assessment of EFL Achievement

1) What is the format of your English exams? (e.g., essay-type, multiple choice)

2) Could you explain how you prepare for your exam? (e.g., duration and method)?

3) Are you satisfied with your English score in high school? Why?

4) Do you share your score with your friends? What do you think when you hear about other friends' scores?

5) What are the difficulties in preparing for an English exam?

2.2 How to Improve Your English Proficiency

1) What do you do to improve your English vocabulary (or grammar) knowledge?

2) What do you do to improve your reading (or listening) comprehension?

3) What do you do to improve your English writing (or speaking) skills?

4) When you cannot understand something while studying English, how do you deal with it?

5) How confident are you in studying English? How much fear do you have?

6) What angers or annoys you while studying English? How do you deal with these emotions?

7) Does someone encourage you to study English well? If so, please tell me who and what kind of encouragement you get.

8) What is the most significant change in English study since coming to high school from junior high school?