Research into language learning strategies over the past 30 years has provided many insights into how good language learners use these strategies to facilitate their language learning process. Much of this research has indicated that the use of language learning strategies facilitates mastery of a second language. The impact of cultural background upon the choice of language learning strategies, has not received widespread attention from language learning strategy researchers, particularly in relation to learners of Japanese. This present study looks to investigate the impact of cultural background on the use of language learning strategies in the JFL context.
Defining cultural background is a difficult task. The difficulty lies in identifying cultural groups as a singular collective that can be compared. In some studies authors have used other terms such as ethnicity, nationality or first language background. All terms are value laden because one’s nationality may not necessarily have a linear relationship with one’s culture. In this study, the main consideration is the first language background of the participants, that is, native speakers of English or non-native speakers of English.
Although there is much debate as to what constitutes a language learning strategy, in the context of this study, the term refers to actions undertaken by a language learner to influence the process of second or foreign language acquisition. Although this body of knowledge exists, the knowledge is largely limited to English as a Second Language (ESL) or English as a Foreign Language (EFL).
The complicating factor in language learning strategy research is the existence of many impacting learner and environmental factors, including age, gender, cultural background, motivation, target language and others, each of which has been investigated on multiple occasions. Although the research results have been mixed, the motivation to investigate language learning strategies in second...
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