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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R3H12V722

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Accents and Identity: Adult ESL Students’ Attitudes Open Access

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Author or creator
Dawson, Bonnie
Additional contributors
Subject/Keyword
belonging
immigrants
L2 user
English as a second language
identity
accents
Type of item
Research Material
Language
English
Place
Time
Description
This study explores the relationship between accent, identity, and sense of belonging for adult ESL immigrants to Canada. Forty-two adult immigrant ESL students at a post-secondary institution in western Canada participated in a survey about their attitudes towards their accents, the value they attribute to their first language and first culture, and how their accents affect their identities and sense of belonging in Canada. Eighty-one percent indicated that they would like to sound like a native speaker if possible, but in response to another question, 25% said they would not be happy to be mistaken as native speakers (NSs). The majority (67%) said they would feel more Canadian if they sounded like a NS. They reported valuing both their first culture and Canadian culture, demonstrating a pattern of ‘integration’ in Berry’s (2005) acculturation styles. Participants’ sense of belonging was modest. This may be attributed to their relatively short average time in Canada: 2.5 years. Overall, attitudes were found to be more complex than some research has suggested. Implications are discussed in terms of L2 users’ intelligibility, and instructional materials in the ESL classroom.
Date created
2013/04/22
DOI
doi:10.7939/R3H12V722
License information
Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 3.0 Unported
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File size: 668552
Last modified: 2015:10:12 11:41:26-06:00
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Page count: 43
File language: en-CA
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