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The Effects of Task-Based Instruction on Japanese EFL Learners' Communicative Confidence and Willingness to Communicate

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Pino Cutrone

Nagasaki University, Japan


Siewkee Beh

Osaka Ohtani University, Japan



While extensive research supports the benefits of task-based language teaching (TBLT), its real-world impact on EFL classrooms remains unclear. This study aims to bridge the gap between theory and practice by investigating how TBLT affects practical classroom settings. Specifically, in addressing an area where Japanese EFL (JEFL) learners have traditionally struggled, this study investigates the effectiveness of task-based instruction on JEFL university students’ communicative confidence and willingness to communicate (WTC) in L2 English. To this end, a group of 32 JEFL university students (enrolled in an English Listening and Speaking course) participated in this study. Assessments of each participant’s communicative confidence and WTC in L2 English were conducted at the beginning and the end of the course (after 15 weeks, which consisted of approximately 45 hours of TBLT). Each of these assessments involved completing two questionnaires and subsequently being interviewed regarding their feelings concerning the instruction they received. The instruction provided between the Pre-test and Post-test followed the principles of TBLT. Specifically, over the course of fifteen weeks in this English Communication course, the instructor covered one of the fifteen units of a taskbased coursebook/syllabus each week. Each unit in the syllabus involved the students engaging in a series of tasks, which included a Pre-Task, Core Task, First Listening (for gist), Second Listening (for analysis), Language Analysis Exercises, and Post-Task. The results, overall, showed that TBLT had an overwhelmingly positive impact on students’ communicative confidence and WTC in L2 English.



Japanese university EFL students, task-based language teaching (TBLT), communicative confidence, willingness to communicate (WTC)