Interrelationship between action control variables and L2 learners’ dynamic changes of WTC

2016 IJRSLL – Volume 5 Issue 3


Hashemian, Mahmood*
Department of English Language, Shahrekord University, Iran (

Mirzaei, Azizullah
Department of English Language, Shahrekord University, Iran

Alian, Azadeh
Department of English Language, Shahrekord University, Iran (


This study aimed to examine whether action control system, defined in terms of stable individual differences, predicts key reactions to the dynamic and situated nature of willingness to communicate (WTC) in both whole-class and group work. By adopting methods of classroom observation and questionnaires, we measured the consistency between self-report and actual WTC among 30 EFL participants. Whereas trait-like WTC—as measured by a self-report questionnaire – could predict a tendency to communicate, classroom observation of situational WTC showed the evidence to be contrary. Preoccupation, as one component of action control system, influenced the decision to engage in interaction with both the teacher and fellow students. Looking at the issue from a very personal perspective, we propose that although high trait-like WTC predicts a tendency to communicate, preoccupation of action control system causes a lack of actual WTC inside the classroom with the context as a key element in determining this WTC. Implications for trait and dynamic conceptions of WTC are discussed.

Keywords: willingness to communicate (WTC); individual differences; self-report WTC; trait-like WTC; actual WTC



*Corresponding Author