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Issues in Educational Research, 25(4), 2015 345!
Student satisfaction with EFL speaking classes: Relating
speaking self-efficacy and skills achievement
Ahmad Asakereh and Maliheh Dehghannezhad
Bu-Ali Sina University, Iran
This study investigated the relationship between student satisfaction with speaking
classes, speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs, and speaking skills achievement. To this end,
one hundred Iranian EFL undergraduate students filled out two questionnaires; a
research-made and pilot-tested questionnaire for student satisfaction with speaking
classes, and a questionnaire for speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs, adapted from Rahimi
and Abedini (2009), Gahungu (2007), Wang et al. (2013), and Saeidi and Ebrahimi
Farshchi (2012). Participants' final scores in speaking skills were collected from their
instructors and regarded as a measure of their speaking skills achievement. The results of
Pearson correlation analyses showed that both student satisfaction with speaking classes
and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs had significant positive correlations with speaking
skills achievement, with the latter being stronger. Moreover, the results of Pearson
correlation analyses also indicated the existence of a significant positive correlation
between student satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs.
Multiple regression analyses showed that between the independent variables of the study,
speaking self-efficacy beliefs was a significantly stronger predicator of Iranian EFL
students' speaking skills achievement.
In English as a foreign language (EFL) contexts such as Iran, where EFL students have
limited access to real and authentic contexts, speaking classes play a significant role in the
development of the EFL students’ speaking skills. Therefore, EFL students’ satisfaction
with such classes can be of paramount importance. Moreover, a multitude of research has
reported the importance of improving the self-efficacy beliefs of students, which results in
a positive influence on their achievement (Doordinejad & Afshar, 2014; Rahemi, 2007).
Available literature indicates a correlation of speaking skills with a number of factors for
which comprehensive investigation can provide a better picture of this language skill and
may make a significant contribution to teaching and learning in this complex area.
However, the literature on the relationship between affective variables and speaking skills
reveals the scarcity of research on the correlation between speaking skills self-efficacy
beliefs, student satisfaction with English speaking classes, and speaking skills achievement.
Therefore, this study seeks to bring these affective variables together, and determine the
extent to which such variables contribute to EFL students’ speaking skills achievement.
English speaking skills, as an international means of communication, are necessary for
effective interactions amongst people across the world. These are highly demanding,
complicated and multi-faceted skills, as one cannot communicate effectively unless he/she
is equipped with sufficient knowledge of vocabulary, grammar, culture, genre, speech acts,
346 Student satisfaction with EFL speaking classes
register, discourse, and phonology (Scrivener, 2005). Bygate (1987) also believed that
speaking skills are complicated, as in speaking, the presence of an interlocutor necessitates
the presence of two conditions: 1) reciprocity condition; and 2) time pressure condition.
The reciprocity condition refers to the idea that in speaking, more than one participant is
required. This means the speaker should adjust vocabulary, structure, style, etc., to suit the
listener, and allow the listener to participate actively by asking questions, and reacting to
the questions. Time pressure refers to the lack of preparation and planning in
spontaneous speech. Moreover, Fraser (2002, 2007) and Kolb and Kolb (2005) stated that
challenging, stimulating, and supportive environments can impact language learning in
general, and speaking skills learning in particular. Thus, providing a supportive and
satisfactory environment in the classroom is very important, in that it can contribute to
the process of language learning. Therefore, language instructors should consider
students’ linguistic and pragmatic competence, and also need to take their psychological
needs into account, and attempt to meet such psychological needs, identifying and
countering affective factors that can impact upon students’ learning (Mak, 2011).
During the 1960s and early 1970s, experts in the field began to direct an increasing focus
upon affective factors in EFL contexts. One affective factor is known as self-efficacy, which
refers to “people’s judgments of their capabilities to organize and execute courses of
action required to attain designated types of performances” (Bandura, 1986, p. 391).
Self-efficacy was derived from Bandura’s social-cognitive theory and suggests that individuals’
beliefs about their abilities significantly influence their subsequent achievement. It has
been examined in various disciplines and settings and has received support from a
growing body of findings in various fields. In past decades, self-efficacy has been studied
extensively in educational research, primarily in the area of academic performance,
motivation, and self-regulation (Bandura, 1986; Graham & Weiner, 1996; Lent et al., 1987;
Linnenbrink & Pintrich, 2002; Mills, 2004; Pintrich & Schunk, 1996; Schunk, 1991). In
EFL contexts, self-efficacy studies pivot around a number of variables, namely language
learning strategies, language anxiety, motivation, and language achievement.
Numerous studies have shown that high levels of self-efficacy are associated with good
performance in language learning tasks in different language domains (Rahimi & Abedini,
2009; Farjami & Amerian, 2013; Ghonsooly & Elahi, 2010; Hsieh & Schallert, 2008; Liu,
2013; Mills, Pajares & Herron, 2006, 2007; Wang, Kim, Bong & Ahan, 2009). Considering
the issue that students with higher degrees of self-efficacy exert greater effort in order to
perform the required tasks (Pajares, 2000), many researchers have conducted studies in
EFL contexts to determine its possible correlation with students’ learning achievement.
Ghonsooly, Elahi and Golparvar (2012), for instance, examined the relationship between
university students’ self-efficacy and their achievement in general English. The results
showed a significant positive relationship between university students' self-efficacy and
their achievement in general English. Similar results were also reported in other studies,
which emphasised self-efficacy as a strong predictor of academic achievement
Asakereh, & Dehghannezhad 347
(Doordinejad & Afshar, 2014; Hsieh & Schallert, 2008; Rahemi, 2007; Rahimpour &
Nariman-Jahan, 2010; Wigfield, 1994; Zimmerman, Bandura & Martinez-Pon, 1992).
A number of other studies also investigated relationships between EFL learners’ self-
efficacy and their language skills achievement. Some studies (Kargar & Zamanian, 2014;
Naseri & Zaferanieh, 2012; Shang, 2011) revealed a positive relationship between self
efficacy beliefs and reading comprehension skills achievement. However, unlike the
previous studies, Asadi Piran (2014) examined the relationships between self-efficacy, self-
esteem, self-concept and reading comprehension achievement of 92 EFL learners and
found no significant relationship between self-efficacy and reading comprehension score.
The relationship between self-efficacy and EFL listening achievement was investigated by
Chen (2007). The results indicated a significant positive relationship between EFL
learners’ self-efficacy beliefs and their listening achievement. In line with the results
obtained by Chen (2007), Rahimi and Abedini’s (2009) findings revealed that listening
comprehension self-efficacy was significantly correlated with listening proficiency. Several
researchers in the field have also taken writing self-efficacy into consideration. Hosseini
Fatemi and Vahidnia (2013), for example, found a significant relationship between
learners’ writing performance and their English self-efficacy beliefs.
However, it seems little research has been conducted on the relationship between
speaking skills achievement and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs. One of the few studies
conducted on speaking self-efficacy is a recent study by Liu (2013), who investigated the
effects of a campus “English Bar” on college students’ speaking self-efficacy. Using a
questionnaire and in-depth interviews, it was revealed that students who often speak
English at the "Bar", showed a considerably higher level of self-efficacy compared to their
peers who seldom or never visited the “Bar”. The positive effects of frequenting the
“Bar” were described by Liu as follows: first, students were free to choose the partners as
well as the topics to reduce their anxiety. Second, students with poor speaking skills were
encouraged by the foreign teachers and their partners. Third, students’ self-confidence and
self-efficacy was increased as they observed “similar others” who were fluent English
speakers. Finally, students were motivated and worked harder as they realised that they
were making progress in their use of English for self expression.
Satisfaction with classroom environment
Another important factor which influences EFL students’ performance is their
satisfaction with the classroom environment. By definition, satisfaction is “the extent to
which a students’ perceived educational experience meets or exceeds his/her
expectations” (Juillerat, 1995, as cited in Demaris & Kritsonis, 2008, p. 5). This definition
suggests that satisfaction is a subjective perception, on the students’ part, of how they feel
about the learning experience and how their needs are met in the classroom. Satisfaction is
also defined as the willingness to continue the learning process because the expectations
and personal needs are met in the classroom environment (Rashidi & Moghadam, 2014).
In EFL contexts, satisfaction is concerned with EFL learners’ conceptions of the actual
learning environments. Both individual and environmental characteristics (i.e. teaching
348 Student satisfaction with EFL speaking classes
and learning styles and classroom environment, etc.) can influence learners’ satisfaction.
Students’ satisfaction with the classroom environment can suggest that appropriate
teaching methods and efficient facilities are employed. Students may be discouraged and
marginalised in an unsupportive environment. As Gao (2010) put it:
Those who are satisfied with their language learning progress are likely to be those who
are able to successfully create and maintain a supportive social learning space for their
language learning efforts. (p. 150).
Jannati and Marzban (2015) conducted a study to investigate EFL learners’ perception of
learning environment and its possible relationship with their language achievement. A
total of 100 intermediate EFL learners participated in the study using the “What is
happening in this class” (WIHIC) questionnaire (Fraser, 1998) and a shortened version of
a paper-based TOEFL was used to measure the participants' English proficiency level.
The results indicated a large difference between the learners’ actual learning environment
and the environment in which they were willing to learn the language. According to the
researchers, the reason for the students’ dissatisfaction was the classroom environment
not being personalised or/and conceptualised for both EFL teachers and students in the
educational context of Iran.
Moreover, the results of the study revealed that there was a significant relationship
between their satisfaction with the classroom environment and their language
achievement. Similar results have been reported by other researchers (Efe, 2009; Fraser,
1994; Heikkilä & Lonka, 2006; Schaal, 2010; Waldrip & Fisher, 2003), who found that
student performances were significantly affected by their satisfaction.
In summary, the literature indicates students’ satisfaction with classroom environment and
their self-efficacy are significantly related to their academic performance. However, the
relationship between the above-mentioned variables and speaking skills achievement has
remained unclear and requires further research.
Statement of the problem and research questions
As already stated, in spite of the fact that many studies have been conducted to investigate
the relationship between self-efficacy beliefs and foreign language learning in general and
reading, listening, and writing skills in particular, studies on the relationship between self-
efficacy and speaking skills achievement appear to be scarce. Furthermore, few studies
have investigated students’ satisfaction with speaking classes and its possible relationship
with speaking skills achievement. Therefore, it is potentially worth shedding light on the
relationship between speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs and satisfaction with speaking
classes. To this end, the following research questions were formulated:
1. Is there a significant relationship between Iranian EFL students’ satisfaction with
speaking classes and their speaking skills achievement?
2. Is there a significant relationship between Iranian EFL students’ speaking skills self-
efficacy beliefs and their speaking skills achievement?
Asakereh, & Dehghannezhad 349
3. Is there a significant relationship between Iranian EFL students’ satisfaction with
speaking classes and their speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs?
4. Concerning satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking self-efficacy, which is a
stronger predictor of Iranian EFL students’ speaking skills achievement?
One hundred Iranian EFL first year undergraduate students majoring in English language
participated in the study. The participants were selected on a convenience sampling basis
from several universities in Iran, during the 2014/2015 academic year. Their language
proficiency level was at an intermediate level, according to the Oxford Proficiency Test. Ages
ranged from 18 to 35 years (mean=20.4), and 57 of the participants were female and 43
Two questionnaires in the English language were used for data collection. The pilot-tested
and validated satisfaction with speaking classes questionnaire developed for this study
comprised 38 items, based on a Likert scale ranging from one (very unsatisfactory) to five
(very satisfactory). The speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs questionnaire was adapted from
Rahimi and Abedini (2009), Gahungu (2007), Wang et al. (2013), and Saeidi and Ebrahimi
Farshchi (2012). It comprised 28 items, based on a Likert scale ranging from one (strongly
disagree) to five (strongly agree).
To develop the satisfaction with speaking classes questionnaire the following steps were
1. Before the study commenced, 20 EFL students from the same broad population as the
participants were engaged in semi-structured interviews, with questions which had
been reviewed by two experts in the field. The rationale behind the interviews was to
“draw up an item pool” (Dörnyei, 2007, p. 112). A forty-six item questionnaire was
2. The questionnaire was first judged by two experts in the field and then an initial pilot
study was conducted with 15 EFL students from the same broad population as the
participants in order to ensure its comprehensibility and clarity. Some inappropriate
items were omitted, and poorly understood items were modified. Ultimately, the
number of items in the questionnaire was reduced to 38.
3. The 38-item questionnaire (Appendix A) was administered to 100 EFL students, none
of whom had participated in the pilots. The data were subjected to exploratory factor
analysis, and the Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin (KMO) measure of sampling adequacy and
Bartlett’s Test of Sphericity were calculated. Results are summarised in Table 1. As can
350 Student satisfaction with EFL speaking classes
be seen from Table 1, the results indicate an acceptable KMO index (0.74). A principal
component factor analysis was also conducted.
Table 1: Results from KMO and Bartlett's Test for
satisfaction with speaking classes questionnaire (N=100)
Measure of sampling adequacy
Bartlett’s Test of Sphericity
4. The reliability of the questionnaire (Appendix A) was calculated using Cronbach’s
alpha consistency, which reveals the questionnaire enjoyed an acceptable internal
consistency (r = 0.97).
In order to design the speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs questionnaire (Appendix B),
items were adapted from questionnaires by Rahimi and Abedini (2009), Gahungu (2007),
Wang et al. (2013), and Saeidi and Ebrahimi Farshchi (2012). The questionnaire was
piloted with 100 EFL students from the same broad population as the participants. The
results of the pilot study indicated that the questionnaire enjoyed acceptable validity, with
Kaiser-Meyer-Olkin (KMO) measure of sampling adequacy being 0.71. Using Cronbach’s
alpha, the internal consistency was found to be 0.84.
A proficiency test (Oxford Proficiency Test) was also employed to determine the participants’
language proficiency level.
First, the Oxford Proficiency Test was administered to the participants in order to ascertain
they are homogeneous. Before distributing the questionnaires to the participants, they
were informed that their personal information would remain strictly confidential and
would be used only for research purposes. Then, the questionnaires were distributed
among the participants and they were asked to write their required personal information
on the front page of the questionnaires. Names of participants were sought in order to
match with their final scores in speaking skills that were obtained later. To safeguard this
information, it was not disclosed to their instructors or anyone else, it was kept protected
from unauthorised access, and was not retained longer than required for processing.
Although the instructions were clearly stated in each questionnaire, questions related to
the items of the questionnaires were answered and information on how to complete the
questionnaires was further explained to the participants. No time limit was specified,
though most respondents required about 20 minutes. After receiving each participant's
consent, their final scores in speaking skills were requested and collected from their
instructors. These scores provided the measure of their speaking skills achievement.
Asakereh, & Dehghannezhad 351
Data were analysed using SPSS software version 16. A bivariate (Pearson product-
moment) correlation coefficient was run to investigate the relationship between
satisfaction with speaking classes, speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs, and speaking skills
achievement (i.e. to answer the first three research questions respectively). Then, a
multiple regression analysis was run in order to examine which one of satisfaction with
speaking classes, and speaking skills self-efficacy was the stronger predictor of Iranian
EFL students’ speaking skills achievement (i.e. to answer research question 4).
To answer the first research question, a Pearson product-moment correlation coefficient
was run; the results are summarised in Table 2.
Table 2: Pearson product-moment correlation investigating the relationship
between satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills achievement
Table 2 indicates that there was a positive correlation between participants’ satisfaction
with speaking classes and their speaking skills achievement, r = .459, N = 100, p ˂ .05.
To answer the second research question, a Pearson product-moment correlation
coefficient was run, with results summarised in Table 3.
Table 3: Pearson product-moment correlation investigating the relationship
between speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs and speaking skills achievement
Table 3 shows that there was a positive correlation between participants’ speaking skills
self-efficacy beliefs and their speaking skills achievement, r = .560, N = 100, p ˂ .05.
352 Student satisfaction with EFL speaking classes
The third research question set out to investigate the probable relationship between
Iranian EFL students’ satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy
beliefs. To answer the third research question, a Pearson product-moment correlation
coefficient was run, with results summarised in Table 4.
Table 4: Pearson product-moment correlation investigating the relationship
between satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy
Table 4 demonstrates that there was a positive significant correlation between participants’
satisfaction with speaking classes and their speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs, r = .625, N
= 100, p ˂ .05.
The fourth research question sought to investigate satisfaction with speaking classes and
speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs, which one is a significantly stronger predictor of
Iranian EFL students’ speaking skills achievement. To this end, a multiple-regression
analysis was run, the results of which are presented in Tables 5, 6 and 7.
Table 5 shows multiple correlation coefficients as well as the adjusted and unadjusted
correlation of satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs,
with speaking skills achievement.
Table 5: Model summary indicating the multiple correlation coefficients, the adjusted and
unadjusted R of satisfaction with speaking classes and self-efficacy beliefs in speaking
skills, with speaking skills achievement
Std. error of
Given Table 5, the multiple correlation coefficient (R), using the two predictors (i.e.
satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs) simultaneously, is
0.58 (R2 = 0.33) and the adjusted R2 is 0.31. It indicates that 31% of the variance in
learners' speaking skills achievement can be predicted from the combination of the above-
ANOVA was run to see whether the combination of the predictors (i.e. satisfaction with
speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs) significantly predicted Iranian
EFL learners' speaking skills achievement (Table 6).
Asakereh, & Dehghannezhad 353
Table 6: ANOVA for the prediction of the speaking skills achievement of
the participants by the combination of satisfaction with speaking classes
and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs
Sum of squares
Regarding Table 6, the combination of satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking
skills self-efficacy beliefs predicated speaking skills achievement of the participants, F (2,
96) = 20.74, p = .000 < .05.
The amount of the contribution of each of the two independent variables (satisfaction
with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs) to the dependent one
(speaking skills achievement) is summarised in Table 7.
Table 7: Multiple regressions for the predictive power of speaking skills
self-efficacy beliefs and satisfaction with speaking classes
Concerning Table 7, satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy
beliefs, the latter was a stronger predictor of speaking skills achievement of the
participants, (beta = .44, t = 3.9, p = .000 < .05).
The present study investigated the relationships between student satisfaction with
speaking classes, speaking skills self-efficacy, and speaking skills achievement. The
findings show positive relationships between the dependent variable (speaking skills
achievement) and the independent variables (satisfaction with speaking classes and
speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs). The results also indicate a significant relationship
between the independent variables, and that speaking skills self-efficacy belief is a stronger
predicator of Iranian EFL students’ speaking skills achievement.
As the results have shown, students expressing high satisfaction with speaking classes
received high scores in speaking skills, and those expressing low satisfaction received low
scores. Although little research has been conducted to investigate the relationship between
EFL students’ satisfaction with speaking classes and their speaking skills achievement, a
354 Student satisfaction with EFL speaking classes
number of studies (e.g. Efe, 2009; Fraser, 1994; Heikkilä & Lonka, 2006; Schaal, 2010;
Waldrip & Fisher, 2003) investigated the relationship between student satisfaction and
their academic performance, with results in accord with the findings of the present study.
As stated by Rashidi & Moghadam (2014), student satisfaction with their learning
environment can contribute to their willingness to continue their learning process; in that
students feel their expectations are met. On the other hand, when students find the
learning environment unsatisfactory, they may be discouraged and lose their motivation to
continue learning. Thus a satisfactory classroom environment can encourage students to
develop a good command of speaking skills.
A number of factors can affect students’ satisfaction with their speaking classes, including
educational system and facility-related, instructor-related, socially-related, psychologically-
related, and linguistically-related factors. Therefore, speaking instructors and
administrators should take these factors into account and attempt to meet students’ needs
in order to create a satisfactory speaking classroom for EFL students. However, it is not
an easy task for EFL instructors and administrators to consider every factor which can
affect EFL student satisfaction. Training competent speaking teachers who can create a
satisfactory speaking classroom environment may be part of the solution. Administrators
and education policy-makers need to exert more emphasis on student satisfaction with
facilities and education system, by investigating and addressing EFL students’ needs.
Results of this study show that students with higher speaking skills self-efficacy are more
likely to receive higher scores in speaking skills. Bandura (1986) stated that it can be due to
the fact that self-belief in general can help students to participate in tasks, and students
with high self-efficacy set higher goals and engage themselves in tasks which require
considerable effort, persistence, and interest (Linnenbrink & Pintrich, 2003; Pajares, 1996,
2003). Moreover, self-efficacy beliefs determine the amount of effort, perseverance and
resilience individuals spend on an activity, and self efficacy-beliefs can affect an
individual’s thought patterns and emotional reactions. With the aforementioned facilitative
effects of self-efficacy beliefs in mind, high speaking self-efficacy beliefs can contribute to
students’ speaking skills achievement as those with high self-efficacy enjoy high self-
confidence and are encouraged to carry out speaking tasks with different difficulty levels.
Students with a high sense of self-efficacy have confidence to approach difficult tasks,
while those with low self-efficacy might think things are tougher than they really are,
which can lead to a sense of stress and depression (Pajares, 1996).
Bandura (1997) proposed four sources from which self-efficacy beliefs are developed:
mastery experience, vicarious experience, social persuasion, and psychological states. The
first source, mastery experience, suggests that past experiences play a significant role in
developing self-efficacy beliefs. People who have accomplished a task successfully tend to
have higher sense of self-efficacy. Thus, in order to improve students’ speaking skills self
efficacy beliefs, in the beginning, speaking instructors need to provide students with
speaking tasks which are not arduous and do not require considerable effort, thereby
increasing the likelihood of their success in performing the task. This can have a
facilitative effect, improving their speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs.
Asakereh, & Dehghannezhad 355
Secondly, vicarious experience is received when learners observe the performances of
their peers and friends. This enables them to appraise their own capabilities in relation to
the attainments of others. Observing friends and peers performing a task successfully can
develop positive feelings about their own capabilities, which in turn results in a higher
sense of self-efficacy. Therefore, helping students to be attentive in speaking classes and
encouraging them to monitor the speaking tasks performed by their classmates can boost
their speaking skills self-efficacy.
Social persuasion, received from others, is the third source of influence, which pivots
around initiating a task, trying hard to succeed, and employing new strategies (Pajares,
2002). Positive persuasion suggests that success is achievable, while negative persuasion
impinges upon self-beliefs (Vaezi & Fallah, 2011). In EFL language classrooms, the
teacher’s feedback and evaluation can take the form of either positive or negative
persuasion. Thus, speaking instructors should attempt to persuade students by providing
them with facilitative feedback which results in the improvement of their speaking skills
Lastly, psychological and affective states, namely stress, fear reactions, anxiety, fatigue and
excitement can affect self-efficacy. For instance, learners with low levels of stress and
anxiety tend to perform task more successfully. Therefore, transforming debilitative states
to facilitative states is one of the key factors in improving perceived self-efficacy beliefs
(Bandura, 1997). As students in speaking classes may encounter many negative affective
factors such as stress, anxiety, shyness and so on, speaking instructors should create a
congenial atmosphere for students; so that students can boost their self-efficacy beliefs.
The present study is also an examination of the relationship between Iranian EFL
students’ satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs. The
results reveal a significant positive relationship between the above-mentioned variables.
Apparently, no study in the field has examined the relationship between these variables;
therefore, further research is required to shed light on the relationship between these two
The fourth research question sought to investigate satisfaction with speaking classes and
speaking skills self efficacy, which one is a stronger predictor of Iranian EFL students’
speaking skills achievement. The results demonstrate that Iranian EFL students’ speaking
skills self-efficacy is a stronger predictor of their speaking skills achievement. The findings
emphasised the significance of students’ beliefs in their ability in general, and in their
speaking skills in particular.
Conclusion and implications of the study
This study set out to examine the relationship between Iranian EFL students’ satisfaction
with speaking classes, speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs and speaking skills achievement.
The results demonstrated a significant positive relationship between the variables. That is,
a positive relationship between the independent variables (satisfaction with speaking
classes, speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs) and dependent variable (speaking skills
356 Student satisfaction with EFL speaking classes
achievement) was found. The findings also revealed a positive relationship between
satisfaction with speaking classes and speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs. The results also
indicated that speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs was a significantly stronger predicator of
Iranian EFL students’ speaking skills achievement than satisfaction with speaking classes.
The findings of the present study suggest that EFL instructors and administrators need to
provide students with satisfactory learning environments in order to better contribute to
students’ speaking skills achievement. EFL instructors also need to assist students to
nurture their speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs, in order to help them deal with exacting
speaking tasks in both real life and classroom contexts. Furthermore, the findings can also
raise EFL language learners’ awareness of the importance of speaking skills self-efficacy
beliefs, and encourage them to seek opportunities to improve their self-efficacy beliefs.
Limitations of the study and suggestions for further research
Although the study shed light on an area in which little research has been conducted, it
has limitations which further research can illuminate. In this study, factors which lead to
student dissatisfaction and to negative speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs were not
investigated. Therefore, the following suggestions are proposed for further research:
1. Investigation of the factors that contribute to EFL students’ dissatisfaction with their
2. Inquiry into factors contributing to negative speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs.
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Appendix A: Student satisfaction with speaking classes
Name: ....................................................................... Gender: ............. Age: .............
VU = very unsatisfactory; U = unsatisfactory; N = neutral; S = satisfactory; VS = very satisfactory
How satisfactory do you find:
The spoken vocabulary you learn in your
The effect of your speaking class on the
improvement of your pronunciation
The effect of your speaking class on your
accuracy in speaking
The effect of your speaking class on the
improvement of your fluency in speaking
The impact of your speaking class on your
ability to exchange ideas in English
The contribution of your speaking class to
your knowledge of idiomatic expressions,
collocations, and proverbs
The effect of the atmosphere of your speaking
class on you
The level of your self-confidence to speak
English in the classroom
Your ability to make use of the stuff you have
learnt in the classroom for real life
The cooperation between you and your
Your classmates’reactions to your mistakes
Your speaking class in providing the
opportunity for you to speak in English with
your classmates and instructors
The effect of your speaking class on your
ability to communicate with native speakers
Asakereh, & Dehghannezhad 361
The proficiency level of your classmates
The level of the course book introduced to
The sufficiency and efficiency of speaking
exercises in the course book
Your instructor's motivation for teaching
The help of your instructor when you face
speaking skills problems in the classroom
The way your instructor evaluates your
Your access to your instructor after class time
The speaking activities you are asked to do by
your instructor in the classroom
The way your instructor makes use of audio-
visual faculties in the classroom
Your instructor's explanation and clarification
of the target culture
The balance your instructor considers in using
English and Persian
Your instructor's feedback on your mistakes
The speaking homework your instructor asks
you to do at home
Supplementary materials such as story books,
language CDs, introduced to you by your
The amount of time your instructor allocates
to speaking skills activities during a session
Your speaking instructor's methods of
Your speaking instructor's relationship with
Your speaking instructor's accent
The encouragement you get from your
instructor to speak
The topic your instructor presents in the
classroom for discussion
The contribution of your speaking class to the
improvement of your weaknesses in speaking
The efficiency and sufficiency of the audio-
visual facilities used in your speaking class
The number of students in your classroom
362 Student satisfaction with EFL speaking classes
The time when your speaking classes are
The physical appearance of your speaking
Appendix B: speaking skills self-efficacy beliefs
Name: ....................................................................... Gender: ................ Age: .............
SD = strongly disagree; D = disagree; N = neutral; A = agree; SA = strongly agree
I have enough ability to improve my speaking skills.
I am sure that if I practice speaking more, I will get better
grades in the course.
I can speak better than my classmates.
Even if the speaking task is difficult and I don’t have the
required vocabulary, I can find the strategy to get the
I am not stressed out when speaking English in the
I enjoy speaking with a proficient partner.
I am one of the best students in speaking courses.
I enjoy meeting tourists because I can speak with them
The more difficult the speaking practice is, the more
enjoyable it is.
When the instructor asks a question, I raise my hand to
answer it even if I’m not sure about it.
I'm confident about my ability to interact with other
While speaking, I can deal efficiently with unexpected
While speaking, I can remain calm when facing difficulties.
When I’m talking with fluent speakers, I let them know if
I need help.
I'm confident I can communicate what I mean easily.
I feel confident that I can achieve a native-like accuracy in
I'm able to actively participate in my speaking classes.
I'm sure I can use English outside the classroom.
I believe I am a good English speaker.
I strongly believe that I can achieve native-like fluency in
I can describe my university to others in English.
I can tell a story in English.
Asakereh, & Dehghannezhad 363
I can ask my teachers questions in English.
I can produce sentence with idiomatic expressions.
I can introduce my teacher to someone else in English.
I can discuss subjects of my interest with my classmates
I can introduce myself in English.
I can answer my teachers’ questions in English
Ahmad Asakereh is an MA graduate in Teaching English as a Foreign Language
(TEFL) from Bu-Ali Sina University, Hamedan, Iran. His research interests include
speaking skills and materials evaluation.
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Web: http://www.basu.ac.ir/?lang=en-US
Maliheh Dehghannezhad is a holder of an MA degree in Teaching English as a
Foreign Language (TEFL) from Bu-Ali Sina University, Hamedan, Iran. Her research
interests include psycholinguistics and second language skills and strategies.
Email: email@example.com Web: http://www.basu.ac.ir/?lang=en-US
Please cite as: Asakereh, A. & Dehghannezhad, M. (2015). Student satisfaction with
EFL speaking classes: Relating speaking self-efficacy and skills achievement. Issues in
Educational Research, 25(4), 345-363. http://www.iier.org.au/iier25/asakereh.pdf