Communication Apprehension: A Comparison between English Majors and Non-majors in China

Peng Shi-Yong, Muhamad Sham Bin S. Ali


Using the scale of communication apprehension developed by McCroskey, a comparative study has been conducted between English majors and non-majors of different English learning experiences in a Chinese university. Whereas all the subjects remain at the medium level of communication apprehension, no significant difference was found across different communication scenarios among students of different majors as well as different grades. The results imply that the cause of communication apprehension might not be necessarily associated with differences in learning experience, syllabi or even teaching approaches. The characteristics of the high-contextual Chinese culture may be interpretable to this non-difference result. Thus, we may hypothesize with confidence that psychological approaches may be more effective to reduce the phenomenon of mute English of Chinese learners and their reticence in English class.


Communication apprehension, mute English, Chinese

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