This study investigated the English learning motivations and self-perceived English proficiency between two types of college students in Taipei. Students from public, private, comprehensive, and vocational colleges were selected and 720 effective samples were obtained. Factor analysis, t-test, MANOVA, and multiple regression were used to conduct the data analysis. A scale with 15 items of English learning motivations was designed and 12 items were retained after an item analysis and exploratory factor analysis. Using exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis, three factors-intrinsic motivation, instrumental motivation, and passivity towards requirements motivation-were extracted. This scale had high internal consistency reliability (α = .850-.913), test-retest reliability (r = .88-.93), and good construct validity. The research findings are as follows: First, intrinsic motivation had the highest intensity, whereas passivity towards requirements motivation had the lowest intensity. This result differed from those of many studies that found that East Asian students had low intrinsic motivation. Second, among the three motivations, intrinsic motivation differed significantly based on sex (female students > male students) and between the type of college (comprehensive college students > vocational college students). For instrumental motivation, comprehensive college students had significantly higher motivation than vocational college students did. Third, students’ self-perceived English proficiency was not high (1.64 on a 3-point scale). The female students’ mean score was significantly higher than that of male students. Moreover, college students’ comprehensive mean score was significantly higher than that of vocational college students. Furthermore, the results also revealed the strong predictive power (31.9%) of background variables (gender and college type) and three types of motivations on students’ self-perceived English proficiency. Finally, this study offered suggestions for increasing students’ English learning motivation.
- College students
- English learning motivation
- Self-perceived English proficiency