Difficulties in learning English by EFL students in Turkey.

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Ankara Üniversitesi Eğitim Bilimleri Fakültesi Dergisi, vol.54, no.1, pp.141-173, 2021 (Peer-Reviewed Journal) identifier


The  purpose  of  this  study  is  to  identify  the  English  language  learning  difficulties.  2317 

secondary  and  high  school  students  from  the  state  schools  of  the  Ministry  of  Education  in 

Ankara  were  included  in  this  study.  The  data  was  gathered  through  the  Foreign  Language 

Learning  Difficulties  Scale  (LLDS)  developed  (2017)  by  researchers  and  semi  structured 

interviews. Mixed-method research was used   which utilizes both quantitative and qualitative 

methods.  Quantitative data was analyzed through SPSS, a statistical program for social sciences 

research, and the qualitative data was analyzed through MaxQda 12, software for qualitative 

and  mixed  methods  research  with 70  students  in  total.  It  was  found  that  7


and  11



students had high levels of difficulties in  learning English. When the difficulties between the 

two grades were compared, it was found  that 7


grade students had  lower  levels of language 

learning difficulties than  11


grade students. According to the semi structured interview results, 

the  most  common  difficulties  experienced  by  students  were  insufficient  communicative 

practice  in  textbooks,  insufficient  use  of  visual  and  audio  instruments  in  the  classrooms, 

insufficient  practices  of  listening  and  speaking  abilities,  lack  of  language  learning  teaching 

strategies, low self-confidence, crowded classrooms and disciplinary problems. 

Keywords:  Foreign  language  learning,  curriculum  and  instruction,  mixed  methods  research, 

foreign language learning difficulties scale, scale development study. 

The  Ethical  Committee  Approval:  Ethical  consent  was  obtained  from  Hacettepe  University 

Ethical  Committee,  No:  35853172/  433-1058,  Date:  08.04.2016  and  from  the  Provincial 

Directorate  of  National  Education-Ankara,  No:  14588481-605.99-E.5149315,  Date: