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Volume 9 Number 1, Spring 2012, Pages 1-197   

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An Instrument for EFL Reading Anxiety: Inventory Construction and Preliminary Validation


This article is an account of the development of a new measure entitled English as a Foreign Language Reading Anxiety Inventory (EFLRAI) that indicates levels of EFL reading anxiety among non-English major students. It also discusses the concept of foreign language reading anxiety and defends the development of such a measure specifically related to tertiary-level settings where English is taught as a foreign language and, most importantly, where reading anxiety is believed to impact non-English majors' reading performance. First, two intact classes consisting of 61 students were recruited from Islamic Azad University - Ahar Branch located in the eastern Azerbaijan province of Iran. Based on the qualitative data analysis of questionnaire interviews, an initial pool of items was generated for the new instrument that comprised three anxiety-provoking factors. Then, the preliminary draft of the EFLRAI was pilot-tested on a group of 33 students. Finally, it was used in the major study that had been planned for further refinement and evaluation. A sample of 251 non-English major students enrolled in the same university participated in the major study. Given the internal consistency, test-retest reliability, and construct validity indices obtained, it was found that the EFLRAI exhibits acceptable reliability and adequate validity.

Keywords: reading anxiety, scale development, validation.