Investigating foreign language anxiety in Iranian classrooms: The effect of gender

2013 IJRSLL – Volume 2 Issue 1


Mahmoodzadeh, Masoud*
Sheikhbahaee University, Iran (


In an attempt to delve into the issue of affective variables related to language learning, the present study focuses on the influence of gender on learners’ foreign language anxiety in the Iranian context. The objective of this case study is first to determine the extent to which Iranian EFL learners perceive foreign language anxiety in matched-gender and mixed-gender classrooms and second to see if there is any significant difference between the two types of the investigated classrooms. To this end, a 16 items self-reporting questionnaire with a five Likert-type scale was designed. The developed questionnaire was then given to 96 Iranian lower intermediate EFL learners to complete it. After analyzing the collected data, the findings indicated that mixed-gender classrooms can be considered as an anxiety-provoking teaching context in Iran, since the presence of the opposite gender in EFL classrooms was found to cause statistically significant amount of language anxiety among Iranian learners. The study also offers some context-specific pedagogical implications for Iranian EFL teachers and practitioners.

Keywords: foreign language anxiety; mixed-gender classrooms; matched-gender classrooms; EFL learners



*Corresponding Author