Polytechnic University of Valencia Congress, Sixth International Conference on Higher Education Advances

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Socrative in the Language Classroom: Tackling Classroom Anxiety and Encouraging Participation
Jennifer Irene Wood

Last modified: 07-05-2020


In second language teaching and learning the building of trust relationships and the creation of a mutually supportive atmosphere can be fundamental: It is well recognized that affective concerns, such as anxiety and communication apprehension, are more salient in the language classroom (Hernández & Rankin, 2015). Practitioners have long been aware of the importance of reducing learner anxiety and one way that has been shown to be effective is motivation (Gardner, 1985). This paper will consider how the use of the smart personal response system Socrative can help address learner anxiety, foster motivation and encourage participation. It will examine theoretical approaches to foreign language anxiety, as well as reviewing motivational factors in language learning. It will also present qualitative evaluations of using Socrative in the third-level language classroom in both small and larger group settings. The introduction of Socrative has thus far yielded encouraging results, increasing student engagement, promoting interaction, L2 production and more effective learning, alongside a more comprehensive evaluation of student understanding and knowledge retention. As regards its effectiveness in addressing FLA, initial qualitative results suggest that it can be an effective tool in helping to foster a mutually supportive identity and a low-anxiety atmosphere in the classroom.

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