ICT AS A TOOL FOR REDUCING ANXIETY IN PRE-SERVICE FOREIGN LANGUAGE TEACHERS’ PRACTICUM
Pre-service teachers who have grown up with ICT all around them are considered to be digitally literate. In this case, they are supposed to be proficient in their use of ICT for learning and teaching. This article explores ICT as the factor that influences pre-service teachers’ anxiety. Additionally, it aims at determining the role of ICT in reducing the level of pre-service foreign language teachers’ anxiety during their teaching activities. Anxiety is considered to have a powerful impact on people’s everyday life and on learning and teaching process in particular.The research tools were close-ended questionnaires filled by the respondents.The first one was used to measure pre-service teachers’ anxiety scale in different everyday life situations. The second questionnaire was based on the authors’ socio-psychological experiment, aiming at revealing the influence of ICT on pre-service teachers’ anxiety during their teaching practicum. The study was carried out with 120 pre-service EFL teachers studying at Vasyl Stefanyk Precarpathian National University and Pavlo Tychyna Uman State Pedagogical University who completed their teaching practicum as part of their graduation requirement at the Departments of Foreign Languages.The data obtained from the questionnaires were grouped into two main categories: the general level of students’ anxiety and the anxiety connected with using ICT in teaching English. The latter was categorized into “Very positive”, “Positive” and “Negative” groups based on pre-service teachers’ experience gained during their teaching practicum. ICT use was found to be positively and significantly related to reducing teachers’ level of anxiety. The results of the research proved that the students who did the ICT-related course as a part of their curriculum felt more confident while conducting classes and their level of anxiety was reduced while using modern information technologies.
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