Ivana Nesic

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Abstract. Language learning diaries have become a very popular source for collecting qualitative data in foreign language learning research. The data cannot be easily obtained in another manner since it involves the process of introspection. Since many aspects of language learning are not easily accessible or observable, introspection sheds light on the language learning process. The evidence which can be obtained by diary studies proves that students’ experiences in learning a foreign language can significantly influence their attitudes and motivation for learning a foreign language. Furthermore, it can have major pedagogical and practical implications for the outcomes of foreign language learning. The aim of this paper is to identify the linguistic and non-linguistic factors from students’ diaries which influence their learning process. In this study, the students’ diaries were analyzed in terms of the themes (recurring patterns) which appeared most frequently. After the data from students’ language learning diaries were categorized into themes, each theme was analyzed separately both in terms of the count of mentions (frequency) in the students’ diaries (numerical/quantitative data) and qualitatively, by interpreting students’ opinions, feelings, experiences, expectations and attitudes towards learning English.

Key words: language learning diaries, diary studies, introspection, linguistic and non-linguistic factors

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