A study of anxiety experienced by EFL students in speaking performance

Nira Erdiana, Bukhari Daud, Diana Fauzia Sari, Shindy Khusuma Dwitami


Many EFL students show anxiety when speaking English in Indonesia. Therefore, the researchers were interested to conduct this study to find out the level of English-speaking anxiety experienced by those students. In this quantitative study, data were collected from 29 students through a questionnaire that was adopted from the Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale (FLCAS) consisted of 10 items developed by Horwitz, et al. (1986). The data from the questionnaire were analyzed by using the FLCAS questionnaire scale. The results were described in percentages and are further elaborated in narration. The data revealed that 11 out of 29 students (38%) experienced low-level anxiety, 17 out of 29 students (59%) had anxiety at a moderate level, and one out of 29 students (3,4%) got high-level anxiety. It means that most students experienced a moderate level of speaking anxiety. In this case, those findings can be the inputs for every English teacher, especially for the English teachers in which this study was conducted, to be aware of the level of their students’ English-speaking anxiety. It is hoped that the findings of this research can give information and add knowledge to English teachers about EFL students’ level of anxiety so that they could find an appropriate strategy to reduce their students’ speaking anxiety.


speaking; anxiety; levels of anxiety; Foreign Language Classroom Anxiety Scale; EFL students

Full Text:



Ansari, M. S. (2015). Speaking anxiety in ESL/EFL classrooms: A holistic approach and practical study. International Journal of Education Investigation, 2(4), 38-46.

Bada, E., Genc, B., & Ozkan, Y. (2011). Speak the real: News articles as major source for oral competence. In D. J. Alonso (Ed.), English as a second language (pp. 121-134). Nova Science Publisher Inc.

Baruah, T. C. (2006). The English teacher’s handbook. Sterling Publisher, Ltd.

Basavanthappa, B. T. (2007). Psychiatric mental health nursing. Jaypee Brother Publisher.

Cassady, J. C. (2010). Anxiety in school. Peter Lang Publishing, Inc.

Cizek, G., & Burg, S. S. (2012). Test anxiety in a high stake’s environment: Strategy for classroom and school. Crown Press.

Clark, D. & Beck, A. (2012). The anxiety and worry work book. The Guildfold Publication, Inc.

Coopman, S. (2009). Public speaking (3rd edition). Cengage Learning.

Debreli, E., & Demirkan, S. (2016). Sources and levels of foreign language speaking anxiety of English as a foreign language university student with regard to language proficiency and gender. International Journal of English Language Education, 4(1), 49-62.

Ellis, G., & Jean, B. (2014). Tell it again: A storytelling handbook for primary English language teacher. Shortland Publication Ltd.

Fitriani, N., & Zulkarnain, S. I. (2019). Vocational college students’ common errors in EFL speaking performance. Studies in English Language and Education, 6(1), 141-151.

Genard, G. (2015). 10 causes of speech anxiety that create fear of public speaking. The Genard Method. https://www.genardmethod.com/blog/bid/169656/top-10-causes-of-speech-anxiety-that-create-fear-of-public-speaking

Goh, C. C. M., & Burns, A. (2012). Teaching speaking: A holistic approach. Cambridge University Press.

Gopang, I. B., Umrani, T. H., Bughio, F. A., & Lohar, S. (2015). English speaking anxiety: A study of undergraduate students of English. International Researcher, 4(1), 54-61.

Grugeon, E., Hubbard, L., Smith, C., & Dawes, L. (2015). Teaching speaking and listening in the primary school. David Fulton Publishers.

Hadfield, J. (1999). Simple speaking activities. Oxford University Press.

Hadziosmanovic, L. (2012). Students’ perspective on speaking anxiety and dynamics in the ESL classroom [Unpublished bachelor’s thesis]. Malmö Universitet.

Halimah, H. (2018) Boosting students’ speaking ability through Community Language Learning. Studies in English Language and Education, 5(2), 204-216.

Hanifa, R. (2018). Factors generating anxiety when learning EFL speaking skill. Studies in English Language and Education Journal, 5(2), 230-239.

Horwitz, E. K., Horwitz, M. B., & Cope, J. (1986). Foreign language classroom anxiety. The Modern Language Journal, 70(2), 125-132.

Ito, N. (2008). Exploring the nature of language anxiety experiences of non-native-English speaking college students in the United States [Unpublished doctoral dissertation]. The University of New Orleans.

Komariah, E., Erdiana, N., & Mutia, T. (2020). Communication strategies used by EFL students in classroom speaking activities. International Journal of Language Studies, 14(3), 27-46.

Kusiak, M. (Ed.). (2009). Dialogue in a foreign language education. Columbia University Press.

Luo, H. (2014). Foreign language speaking anxiety: A study of Chinese language learners. Journal of the National Council of Less Commonly Taught Languages, 15, 99-117.

Mayangta, T. (2013). Students’ speaking anxiety in an EFL classroom [Unpublished master’s thesis]. Universitas Pendidikan Indonesia.

Neil, A. (2008). Anxiety disorder. CHAM Publication.

Occhipinti, A. (2009). Foreign language anxiety in class speaking activity [Unpublished master’s thesis]. The University of Oslo.

Onwueghbuzie, A. (2004). Anxiety, theory research, and application. The Scarecrow Press, Inc.

Palwak, M. (2015). Issue in teaching, learning and testing speaking in a second language. Springer Publishing.

Rahman, D. S., & Sahayu, W. (2020). How do foreign language teachers motivate students in language learning? Studies in English Language and Education, 7(1), 181-193.

Riasati, M. J. (2011). Language learning anxiety from EFL learner’s perspective. Middle-East Journal of Scientific Research, 7(6), 907-914.

Richards, J. (2008). Teaching speaking and listening from theory to practice. Cambridge University Press.

Rodriques, M. V. (2000). Perspective of communication and communicative competency. Concept Publishing Company.

Shumin, K. (2002). Factors to consider: Developing adult EFL student speaking abilities. In J. C. Richards & W. A. Renandya (Eds.), Methodology in language teaching: An anthology of current practice (pp. 204-211). Cambridge University Press.

Thomas, T. (2006). Face the fear: Overcoming speaking anxiety. Impact Publication.

Tsiplakides, I., & Keramida, A. (2009). Helping students overcome foreign language speaking anxiety in the English classroom: Theoretical issues and practical recommendations. International Education Studies, 2(4), 39-44.

Sari, D., Yusuf, Y. Q., Yusuf, Y. Q., Darniati, N., & Fajrina, D. (2020). Boosting young EFL students’ speaking through game activities. Ilkogretim Online - Elementary Education Online, 19 (2), 436-444.

Wahyuni, S., Qamariah, H., Syahputra, M., Yusuf, Y. Q., & Gani, S. A. (2020). Challenges and solutions to develop critical thinking with the British Parliamentary Debate System in EFL classrooms. International Journal of Language Studies, 14(3), 137-156.

Waters, A. (Ed.). (2003). Oxford learner’s pocket dictionary, 3rd edition. Oxford University Press.

Woodrow, L. (2006). Anxiety and speaking English as a second language. Sage Publications, Inc.

Yahya, M. (2013). Measuring speaking anxiety among speech communication course students at the Arab American University of Jenin. European Research Journal, 1(3), 229-248.

Young, J. (1990). The relationship between anxiety and foreign language oral proficiency. Foreign Language Annals, 19, 439-445.

Zhiping, D., & Paramasivam, S. (2013). Anxiety of speaking English in class among international students in a Malaysian university. International Journal of Education and Research, 1(11), 1-16.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.24815/siele.v7i2.16768

Article Metrics

Abstract view : 0 times
PDF - 0 times


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Print ISSN: 2355-2794, Online ISSN: 2461-0275

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

View Journal Stats