Academic journal article International Education Studies

On the Correlation between Iranian EFL Learners' Use of Metacognitive Listening Strategies and Their Emotional Intelligence

Academic journal article International Education Studies

On the Correlation between Iranian EFL Learners' Use of Metacognitive Listening Strategies and Their Emotional Intelligence

Article excerpt


The researchers in the current study were after gauging the would-be correlation between emotional intelligence (and its subcomponents), on the one hand and the use of listening metacognitive strategies by academic EFL learners on the other. The study at hand benefited from 72 female and 40 male university students from Urmia University, Urmia Azad University and Salams Azad University. The main instruments used in the study were Bar-On's emotional intelligence inventory and listening metacognitive strategies use questionnaire. Using Pearson correlation coefficient, the researchers came up with a significant amount of correlation between the use of listening metacognitive strategies and total emotional intelligence score as well as the learners' scores on the subscales of emotional intelligence (Intrapersonal, Interpersonal, adaptability, and general mood), with the mere exception of stress management. Moreover, the relationship between all the 5 subscales of emotional intelligence and the use of monitoring strategies, and the relationship between interpersonal skills and evaluating strategy were found to be significant.

Keywords: emotional intelligence, listening metacognitive strategies

1. Introducation

1.1 Background

Second language acquisition has been viewed as a complex cognitive process by cognitive psychologists as the learners implement some cognitive strategies during this process. As the studies show, not only do learners use cognitive strategies, but also they monitor and control their own mental processes (Pintrich, 1999), which are referred to as metacognitive strategies that are involved in learning and using language.

According to Oxford (1990), "metacognitive strategies help learners manage: (1) themselves as learners, (2) the general learning process, and (3) specific learning tasks" (cited in Carter & Nunan, 2001, p.197). Simply put, "metacognition is thinking about thinking" (Flavell, 1979, p. 906). O'Malley and Chamot (1990), indicate that metacognitive strategies are "higher order executive skills that may entail planning for, monitoring or evaluating the success of a learning activity" (p.44).

Compared with other courses such as mathematics, learning English and generally learning language may be more pertinent to emotional intelligence. Yet, individual differences and personality traits like emotional intelligence are at times taken to play no role in teaching and learning system and are partially ignored. Despite the profusion of studies carried out regarding the role of IQ in academic achievement, very little seems to have been done concerning the relevance of EI to the use of strategies by learners.

As listening is an important medium of providing input for learners of English, finding optimum ways of teaching listening is a challenging task for EFL teachers and researchers. While research on strategies of second language learning has increased in recent years, studies on listening comprehension are so infrequent and the base for research in listening comprehension strategies is even so limited (Rubin, 1994). Recent studies carried out on the effective and less effective listeners, considering differences between their uses of strategies, indicate the important role of metacognitive strategies in success in listening (O'Malley & Chamot, 1990; Vandergrift, 1997). Thus, finding methods of making learners aware of their use of metacognitive strategies and trying to improve the use of such strategies might help them enhance their general listening ability.

1.2 Significance of the Study

Iranian students embark on learning English from the beginning of junior high-school; yet, English continues to be taught in higher levels of education, i.e. in high schools and universities. Although the most important skill they need to obtain in English is reading, as it is emphasized in educational system of Iran, it will be a forfeiture to put aside one of the important channels of obtaining information, i. …

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