Academic Perseverance in Foreign Language Learning: An Investigation of Language-Specific Grit and Its Conceptual Correlates

Ekaterina Sudina, Luke Plonsky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The emerging interest in grit, referred to as sustained perseverance and passion for reaching long-term goals and conceptualized as a facet of conscientiousness, has shown that language-specific grit is positively linked to foreign language (FL) achievement. Evidence from recent studies on intended effort and academic buoyancy—constructs conceptually related to grit—suggests that they also play a meaningful role in FL learning. Drawing on the framework for noncognitive factors in academic performance and academic perseverance in particular, this study examines grit and its conceptual correlates. A total of 360 FL learners responded to a survey assessing their FL grit, conscientiousness, intended effort, and buoyancy. The results demonstrated that grit largely overlapped with intended effort but was found to be conceptually distinct from buoyancy and the industriousness facet of conscientiousness. Contrary to previous research, the consistency-of-interest facet of grit demonstrated superior predictive and incremental validity with regard to FL achievement compared to the perseverance-of-effort facet. The findings suggest that the role of academic perseverance in FL learning is a fruitful area of investigation that merits further exploration and research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalModern Language Journal
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • academic buoyancy
  • academic perseverance
  • conscientiousness
  • foreign language achievement
  • industriousness
  • intended effort
  • language-specific grit

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language

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