Apprehension Among Lower Secondary School Students English Language Essay


English in Malaysia was being perceived as the most outstanding and reputable linguistic communication since ages ago and particularly in our current educational issues. The significance of the linguistic communication could be seen through the authorities ‘s determination to denote English as the 2nd linguistic communication of Malayan Education. Malaysia has gone through several alterations in educational policy particularly sing the linguistic communication of the medium of direction in schools.

One of the intent and aim of English linguistic communication direction in Malayan Education system is to enable the scholars to bring forth and compose essays besides increasing their authorship accomplishments in English in a scope of subjects and in tonss of different ways. However, non a batch of Malaysians have the aptitude to compose in English clearly and expressively. This job is non merely a job of pupils from rural countries but besides pupils from the urban countries. Writing in Malayan schools is being assessed as a portion of scrutiny of the English paper and as a necessity and demand in fostering instruction at colleges and universities.

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A batch of pupils did non execute good in composing. Malayan pupils have to travel through compulsory composing topic in their scrutinies such as the PMR and SPM. The not-so-great public presentation of pupils in the English linguistic communication is chiefly related to their jobs in the authorship facet. Problems in composing can be found among Malayan school pupils. A figure of Malayan pupils have a “ not-so-positive ” attitude toward composing.

Writing Apprehension is term mentioned by Daly and Miller ( 1975 ) . “ Writing Apprehension ( WA ) is a state of affairs and subject-specific single difference concerned with people ‘s general inclinations to near or avoid state of affairss perceived to demand composing – particularly when accompanied by some sum of rating ” . Hypothetically, those with low composing apprehensiveness ought to accomplish better on trials of composing accomplishments than authors with higher degree of apprehensiveness.

Anxiety or apprehensiveness is referred to be one of the ground that could act upon the procedure of acquisition of Malayan pupils, and research workers like MacIntyre ( 1995 ) , and Gardner ( 1991 ) province that linguistic communication classs are really prone to do and arouse anxiousness among pupils. Research have besides revealed that pupils that make usage of productive accomplishments, like authorship and speech production, are bound to see a significant measure of apprehensiveness in the class of larning ( Hilleson, 1996 ; Zhang, 2001 ) .

Daly and Miller ( 1975 ) mentioned the term composing apprehensiveness when they produced the Writing Apprehension Test ( WAT ) to through empirical observation verify the composing apprehensiveness degrees among university pupils. Writing apprehensiveness “ refers to a state of affairs and capable specific single difference associated with a individual ‘s inclinations to near or avoid state of affairss perceived to potentially necessitate composing accompanied by some sum of sensed rating ” Daly and Wilson ( 1983 ) .

Daly and Wilson ( 1983 ) expressed that, persons with a high degree of composing apprehensiveness might look upon composing errands as painful and sometimes arduous. For that ground, these people have a inclination to remain off from composing state of affairss, and if forced to compose, they experienced a heightened degree of anxiousness, which influenced their authorship public presentation. On the contrary, persons with low degree of composing apprehensiveness have a inclination to take pleasance in composing because they are more self-confident and confident in their authorship abilities and accomplishments.

Written assignments are by and large a demand in any academic field. Nevertheless, composing since a long clip ago has been claimed to be an terribly slippery accomplishment to get and is terrified by 2nd linguistic communication pupils ( Gupta, 1998 ) . The construct of success in authorship is ever being associated with footings like self-expression, the flow of thoughts, outlooks of foreigners, confidence and besides the pleasance and enjoyment of 2nd linguistic communication academic authorship, and 2nd linguistic communication pupils are recognized to hold jobs covering with this ( Basturkmen and Lewis, 2002 ) .

Even though authorship can do the edginess of scholars, surveies have revealed that it is related to their capableness to be successful in the diverse academic topics ( Onwuegbuzie, 1997 ) , which in bend affects academic and occupational picks.

1.1 Background of the Problem

Students identify composing as a weighty and heavy undertaking ( Basturkmen & A ; Lewis 2002 ) . Not all pupils own the accomplishment of composing extraordinary and fantastic essays. Conversely, this facet of course of study is indispensable for better test classs and the calling promotion of any pupil. Without a uncertainty the accomplishment of bring forthing and making an effectual and valuable piece of authorship is a endowment that is god gifted, nevertheless it besides needs tonss and tonss of pattern, attending, and attempts to the affair. Perceptibly, most of pupils stay off from composing essays and there are rather a smattering of grounds for their anxiousness and apprehensivenesss. ( Truitt, 1995 ) .

Writing apprehensiveness is one of the most of import causes of demotivation in the English acquisition procedure peculiarly affecting composing lessons and activities in ESL schoolroom ( Zhang, 2001 ) . Motivation is really of import in keeping pupil ‘s involvement and enthusiasm in geting the English linguistic communication. Demotivative factors in linguistic communication acquisition demands to be destroyed in order for English lesson to be effectual.

1.2 Problem Statement

Writing Apprehension decidedly exists among Secondary School Students which will act upon and demotivate them from composing ( Basturkmen & A ; Lewis 2002 ) . Writing apprehensiveness will be a factor of pupils to detest and maneuver clear of authorship, and have unenthusiastic attitudes towards composing lessons and activities in schoolroom ( Truitt, 1995 ) .

There has been amazingly small probe on the facet of degrees of composing apprehensiveness of school pupils ( Zhang, 2001 ) . Research have been carried out in bettering and edifice pupils ‘ attitude and motive in larning the English linguistic communication ( Kleinginna & A ; Kleinginna, 1981 ; Fullam & A ; Steigel bauer, 1991 ; Dev, 1997 ; Crooks, & A ; Schmidt 1991 ; Anderman, & A ; Midgley 1998 ) , but there are simply such little figure of precise research in the facet of Writing Apprehension among school pupils ( Daly & A ; Miller, 1975 ; Daly & A ; Wilson, 1983 ; Daly, Vangelisti, Witte, 1988 ; MacIntyre, 1995 ; Truitt, 1995 ) .

For that ground, there is a necessity for a more focussed and specified research into the facet of composing apprehensiveness particularly among secondary school pupils.

Purpose of the Study

The research is designed based on one intent which is:

To look into degrees of composing apprehensiveness among lower secondary school pupils.

To happen out whether pupils have composing apprehensiveness or non.

1.4 Research Questions

The undermentioned research inquiry is considered in the survey:

What are the degrees of composing apprehensiveness among lower secondary school pupils?

Make the pupils have composing apprehensiveness or non?

1.5 Significance of the Study

The survey had practical realistic applications. This survey inspects the degrees of composing apprehensiveness experienced by pupils. Apprehension negatively affects public presentation in authorship ( Ellis, 1994 ) . This survey will supply an penetration to composing teachers. They may happen ways to give more contributing and loosen uping atmosphere in schoolrooms to decrease apprehensiveness. They ought to seek difficult to pare down the pupils ‘ composing apprehensiveness in order to guarantee positive acquisition. Students may turn to be cognizant of their authorship features that restrain better public presentation, taking them to better do the most of their ain capablenesss that until that clip were overlooked.

1.6 Restrictions of the Study

The survey is being conducted at one school, which may restrict the generalizability of the findings. The consequences of the survey may once more be limited in generalizability to a larger population because a convenience sample was being used, and because random assignment is non employed in the research design.

1.7 Definition of Footings

Chapter 2

Literature Review


From a procedure point of position, authorship is a many-sided, recursive and artistic procedure or set of behaviours that is improbably similar in its broad lineations for both first and 2nd linguistic communication authors. Learning to compose requires developing a well-organized and efficient composition process. The author is the nucleus of attending. The author is person that engaged in the initiation and look of significance. The author is besides the reader which concentrating on content, thoughts and the negotiating of significance and signifier. The text is a merchandise that is a secondary, derivative concern whose signifier is a map of its content and intent.

Some have addressed this complexness by look intoing affectional factors involved in authorship ( Elbow, 1993 ) . Stevick ( 1999 ) concluded that pupils ‘ ego beliefs play a outstanding function in composing. In add-on to self-efficacy, one of these beliefs includes the composing apprehensiveness that pupils feel as they attempt composing undertakings. Writing apprehensiveness was foremost used by Daly and Miller ( 1975 ) to depict a signifier of composing anxiousness and has since been the focal point of legion pupils.

2.1 Writing Apprehension

Daly and Miller ( 1975 ) , define composing apprehensiveness as ‘to describe an single difference characterized by a general turning away of composing state of affairss perceived by the person to potentially necessitate some sum of composing accompanied by the potency for rating of that composing ‘ . Composition is non the lone subject to acknowledge and its possible damaging effects on pupils ( Daly and Miller, 1975 ) .

Writing anxiousness is really “ a situation-specific and subject-specific personal difference concerned by people ‘s common inclinations to travel toward or maneuver clear of composing ” ( Daly and Miller, 1975 ) . Even though composing anxiousness or composing apprehensiveness is chiefly the most ordinary and widespread name for this phenomena, it besides has been known as composing anxiousness ( Onwuegbuzie, 1997 ) , and composing block ( e.g. , Rose, 1984 ) . Bloom ( 1980 ) stated that, about 10 % and up to 25 % of persons have gone through some type of composing anxiousness.

Research has revealed that composing apprehensiveness is a status which can blockade pupils in their academic public presentation ( Onwuegbuzie, 1997 ) , demotivate them from taking and take parting in extra or much advanced authorship classs ( Daly & A ; Miller, 1975 ) , and carry them to take academic big leagues which they wiew as incorporating minimum demands in authorship ( Daly & A ; Shamo,1978 ) .

Research workers discovered that, contrast to their low degree of composing apprehensiveness opposite numbers, the authorship of pupils with high degrees of composing apprehensiveness tends be a batch less thoughtful and brooding ( Daly & A ; Miller, 1975 ) , lower in excellence and quality ( Seedhouse, 1999 ) , and really much less clear as a consequence to the author ‘s incapableness to be in charge of and to act upon linguistic communication forms with confidence ( Schumann, 1999 ) . Additionally, authors with composing apprehensiveness tend to do usage smaller sum of adverbs and adjectives, and their proficiency is less in their usage of punctuation ( Daly & A ; Shamo, 1978 ) . Seedhouse mentioned that, even though authors with high degree of composing apprehensiveness tend to compose much longer sentences, their composings have a inclination to incorporate fewer paragraphs, and as a consequence, the length of their composings prone to be a batch shorter than authors with lower degree of composing apprehensiveness. Schumann ( 1999 ) stated that pupils with high degree of composing apprehensiveness tend to bring forth Hagiographas with developing subjects, and with longer sentences in their attempt to mask their deficiency of apprehension of the topic.

Causes of Writing Apprehension

Willis & A ; Willis ( 1996 ) explained that, composing apprehensiveness that came from the perceived demand to be flawless will hold a annihilating effect on authors. White ( 1999 ) stated that the lay waste toing consequence of perfectionism is worsened by the demand for pupils to read and redact their authorship pieces. Particularly, the frequent pattern of pupils reexamined and analysing their work while they are explicating and composing their thoughts, can be counterproductive for authors with a high degree of composing apprehensiveness ( Bloom, 1980 ) .

Onwuegbuzie ( 1997 ) have concluded that two sorts of perfectionist personality types, which is self-oriented and socially prescribed ( Weaver & A ; Cohen, 1998 ) , show to hold certain jobs in composing research proposals. Self-oriented perfectionists are normally tends to repair stiff and rigorous criterions for themselves in regard to both the quality and excellence of the research proposal and the expected completion clip. They take on inflexible self-appraisal in an attempt to accomplish flawlessness and to remain off from failure. Socially prescribed perfectionists believe that the society and people around them pressure them to bring forth flawless and perfect proposals.

Apparently, both sets of pupils tends to concentrate selectively to and to over-generalize failure, involved in alleged all-or-none thought ( Weaver & A ; Cohen, 1998 ) , in which entire achievement or entire failure are the lone possible consequences. Both self-oriented and socially prescribed perfectionists seen to be inclined to high degrees of composing apprehensiveness. Certainly, some research workers ( MacIntyre, 1995 ) have found a positive relationship between apprehensiveness and perfectionism.

Effectss of Writing Apprehension on Students

Additionally, different from pupils with low degree of composing apprehensiveness, pupils with high degrees of composing apprehensiveness tend to acquire lower classs ( Reid, 1999 ) , to achieve low classs composing categories ( Reid ) , and to hold much more negative attitudes and perceptual experience towards former authorship successes ( Daly & A ; Miller, 1975 ) . Reid explained that cogent evidence of composing apprehensiveness in the schoolroom can besides act upon instructors ‘ rating of composing accomplishments in every bit much as instructors expect pupils with composing anxiousness to compose defectively and frequently measure their assignments consequently. Besides, Daly and Wilson ( 1983 ) explained that pupils with high degrees of composing anxiousness are much prone to hold poorer self-concepts than their opposite numbers with low composing apprehensiveness. This determination is strengthened by Daly ‘s ( 1979 ) observation that negative attitudes about composing in general are self-fulfilling, irrespective of how experient the author is in world.

Furthermore, research workers have linked composing apprehensiveness to pupils ‘ higher instruction major field of survey picks ( Daly, Vangelisti, & A ; Witte, 1988 ) and to persons ‘ occupational picks ( Daly & A ; Wilson, 1983 ) . For illustration, high composing discerning university pupils tend to prefer big leagues that require few written demands, while low composing discerning pupils tend to prefer big leagues that require more writing demands ( Daly, Vangelisti, & A ; Witte, 1988 ) . Likewise, high composing discerning pupils and persons tend to take businesss that do non necessitate much authorship, and low composing discerning pupils and persons tend to choose callings or occupations that demand relatively more written demands ( Daly & A ; Wilson, 1983 ) .

Weaver & A ; Cohen ( 1998 ) stated that, non merely do authors with a high degree of composing apprehensiveness tend to avoid state of affairss affecting authorship, but they besides keep off from direction in authorship, therefore impede their capableness to develop their accomplishments. Furthermore, Hilleson ( 1996 ) explains the predicament of pupils with high degree of composing apprehensiveness perceive that person over them continuously criticizes them while they are in the authorship procedure which rising their degrees of composing apprehensiveness. Furthermore, Hilleson explained that such pupils besides feel intimidated and frightened by “ The Superior intelligence ” throughout the authorship procedure. In other words, they feel that they are non as competent and skilled in composing as their equals.

Puchta ( 1999 ) asserts that if the web of nervus cells in the encephalon that is involved with linguistic communication ( i.e. , neurolinguistic tracts ) is non ready for persons to larn to compose, they will undergo terrible troubles trying to make so. In add-on, harmonizing to Puchta, early composing failures can go generalized into other undertakings of linguistic communication acquisition. Although this enfeebling rhythm can be broken in college pupils because their neurological development is complete, composing anxiousness is prevailing among undergraduate pupils ( Onwuegbuzie, 1997 ) . Such writing-anxious pupils do non bask set abouting class undertakings that seemingly require authorship and are improbable to inscribe in advanced composing classs ( Daly & A ; Miller, 1975 ) .

Even at the alumnus degree, composing anxiousness appears to be widespread. Indeed, utilizing both quantitative and qualitative analyses, Onwuegbuzie ( 1997 ) conducted a survey look intoing the function of composing anxiousness on pupils ‘ ability to compose research proposals. Onwuegbuzie found that composing anxiousness is related to the quality of research proposals and, as such, is a forecaster of pupils ‘ degree of accomplishment in research methodological analysis classs. Specifically, writing-anxious pupils tend to subject research proposals that are developing, shorter, less clearly written, and that contain more grammatical and typographical mistakes. Apparently, the composite, novel, stiff, and mandatory nature of research proposals appear to bring on composing anxiousness in some pupils, which, in bend, reduces their quality. Besides, composing anxiousness undermines the pupil ‘s ability to believe cohesively plenty to compose efficaciously. Therefore, Onwuegbuzie ‘s findings highlight the possible debilitating effects of composing anxiousness on academic accomplishment among graduate pupils.

Reasons on Reducing Writing Apprehension

There are several grounds for concentrating on cut downing composing apprehensiveness. First, it is claimed that a certain sum of apprehensiveness or anxiousness is present and likely necessary in all successful authors. However, the apprehensiveness degree of some pupil authors is so high that it becomes counter-productive to the successful completion of composing assignments. See the state of affairs of Basturkmen & A ; Lewis ‘s remedial pupils, “ aˆ¦aˆ¦ . they hate and fear composing more than anything else they have had to make in school. If they see a clean sheet of paper on which they are expected to compose something, they look as though they want to shout ” ( Basturkmen & A ; Lewis, 2002 ) . This fright of authorship and its associated symptoms are related to hapless composing public presentation and may hinder the development of composing accomplishments.

Second, research has besides shown that undue apprehensiveness can be the pupil authors ‘ worst enemy. Students learn better and instructors teach better in schoolrooms where this emphasis is minimized. These are conditions under which pupil authors can outdo develop their accomplishments, and promote the positive and direct motive to larn comes from the desire to compose good, whereas motive caused by fright and characterized by high degrees of apprehensiveness, is the least effectual in assisting pupils win at authorship.

Third, when pupils recognize force per unit areas upon them to execute and doubt their ability to make so, the anxiousness that consequences can increase the likeliness of failure. Under this status, non merely are pupils able to compose good, but besides they compensate frequently by denying the value of wining, and a consequence of this, it is possible that the victims of a high degree of apprehensiveness come to detest authorship.

It is widely known that how a pupil feels about the undertaking of larning greatly affects the larning the pupil may or may non make. Teachers have noted that pupils with positive attitudes toward composing frequently write really good. Puchta, ( 1999 ) claims that ‘positive attitudes lead to more willing authorship, and it is merely by rehearsing composing that one can larn to compose good ‘ . Research back uping Puchta ‘s claims reveal that ‘attitudes decidedly influence growing in authorship, that a author ‘s grade of apprehensiveness toward composing can be measured and that certain instruction schemes can decrease pupil ‘s composing anxiousness ‘ ( Reid, 1999 ) .

Hence, the method of learning composing used besides contributes to the job of composing apprehensiveness. It is necessary to concentrate on animating the positive attitudes towards composing particularly among ESL pupils. Once the importance of cut downing apprehensiveness among ESL pupil authors has been realized, it is so considered necessary to happen ways of accomplishing this.

Chapter 3

Research Design


This study is a quantitative type of research which involves the usage of questionnaire. Quantitative surveies emphasize the measuring and analysis of causal relationships between variables, non processes. Advocates of such surveies claim that their work is done from within a value-free model ( Denzin & A ; Lincoln, 2000, p.8 ) .

In a quantitative research, questionnaires, and computing machines are used as informations aggregation methods. The information collected is numerical and statistical. The general aim of the research worker is to detect but does non actively take part. Research design is besides structured and well-tested.

3.1 Participants

Participants consisted of 30 Form 2 pupils in Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Pekula Jaya located in Tikam Batu, Kedah. The socioeconomic position of the school and the country that the school served was mostly in-between category, and pupils were chiefly Malays. The instruments were administered in the schoolroom during two periods of English lesson. During the session, pupils were asked to finish the apprehensiveness instrument. Directions and single points were read aloud by the decision maker.


Writing Apprehension Test ( WAT )

The instrument used is adapted from Daly and Miller ‘s ( 1975 ) Writing Apprehension Test ( WAT ) which has been used extensively and regarded a dependable step of composing anxiousness. This is a 26 point questionnaire, 13 points with positive mutual opposition and 13 with negative mutual opposition, scored on a 5-point Likert graduated table, which asks the topic to hold or differ with statements about composing like “ I look frontward to composing down my thoughts ” or “ Expressing my thoughts through composing seems to be a waste of clip ” . The questionnaire produces a individual mark which can be taken as an index of composing apprehensiveness. ( refer to Appendix A )


The study was administered to the pupils in a schoolroom environment. Prior to the study, the participants were assured of namelessness and confidentiality. Then, they were a brief account to ease the disposal, and were asked to react to the questionnaire points every bit spontaneously as possible. The pupils were asked to click the reply wherever seemed necessary. The participants took about 30 to 40 proceedingss to finish the questionnaire, although there was no clip bound. Upon completion of the disposal, the participants were offered some refreshments for their engagement

3.4 Data Analysis

Daly and Miller ( 1975 ) structured the WAT to mensurate three wide degrees of composing apprehensiveness, including high, moderate, and low apprehensiveness. The research workers calculated a entire mean mark for all respondents to all of the WAT inquiries related to mensurating composing anxiousness. The research workers so determined the standard divergence for the inquiries mensurating composing anxiousness. If a average mark of a respondent exceeded the entire average mark of composing anxiousness by more than one standard divergence, the research workers concluded that the several respondent experienced high authorship anxiousness. If a average mark of a respondent was less than the entire average mark of composing anxiousness by more than one standard divergence, the research workers concluded that the several respondent experienced low composing anxiousness. Average tonss happening within a plus or minus one criterion divergence from the entire mean suggested that respondents exhibited moderate degrees of composing anxiousness. The consequence will be shown in signifier of saloon chart.



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