EFL high school students’ perceptions of the factors affecting their intercultural communicative competence development

EFL high school students’ perceptions of the factors affecting their intercultural communicative competence development

Tran Quoc Thao tranquocthaobmtc@gmail.com Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology (HUTECH), Vietnam
Vong Phan Ha Bui Thi Xuan High School
This paper presents the results of a study exploring the English as a foreign language (EFL) high school students’ perceptions of the factors that affect their intercultural communicative competence (ICC) development. This mixed-methods study was conducted in the context of a high school in Lam Dong Province, and it involved 140 EFL high school students in answering the questionnaires and 12 of them in semi-structured interviews. The quantitative data were processed using the software SPSS, while the qualitative data were analyzed by the content analysis approach. The findings unraveled that participants believed that learner-related factors played an important role in shaping their ICC. Learners’ psychology (e.g., confidence, calmness, risking-taking) and motivation (e.g., importance, necessity and usefulness of culture) were two major factors in contributing to their ICC development. Nevertheless, it was found out that participants were unsure of the effects of teacherrelated factors (e.g., teaching methods/approaches, enthusiasm, assistance) and learning material-related factors (e.g., cultural issues, textbook contents, effectiveness) on their ICC enhancement. Such preliminary findings may imply that learners play an important role in shaping their ICC, while the teachers and learning materials are not clearly significant in developing students’ ICC.
English language learning
intercultural communicative competence
upper secondary students

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