Toh Chieh Wern, Noor Hanim Rahmat


Feelings of fear, anxiety, and worry make the learning of ESL / EFL difficult as learners’ focus is being interrupted. Writing; whether in first or second language, is considered a difficult process. The arousal of negative psychological experience in a second/foreign language writing is known as foreign language writing anxiety. As such, the underlying causes of ESL / EFL anxiety need to be understood to ensure a smooth language writing process for ESL / EFL learners. This study aims to investigate the level, types, and causes of writing anxiety among the students in a Chinese Independent Middle School. A convenience sample total of 30 Chinese Independent Middle School students were purposely chosen to participate in this study. This research adopted two survey questionnaires; Second Language Writing Anxiety Inventory (SLWAI) by Cheng (2004) and Causes of Writing Anxiety Inventory (CWAI) by Rezaeia & Jafari (2014). The findings revealed that these students experience a high level of cognitive anxiety, moderate level of somatic anxiety, and low level of avoidance behaviour. It is discovered that the level of writing anxiety being experienced by the students is at the level of moderate to high anxiety. Meanwhile, in terms of the causal factor for writing anxiety, the results reported high means scores for each causal of writing anxiety theme are 'afraid of writing tests' for negative writing experience theme, 'feel worried to write under time constraints' for negative writing attitude theme and 'often encounter some linguistic problems' for limit writing knowledge and skill theme. The researcher proposed some strategies that could be used in reducing ESL writing anxiety which are: process writing approach, affective strategies, positive error correction, and vocabulary knowledge enhancement.

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