School of Education


Doctor of Philosophy


Kristy Motte


Foreign language anxiety, Xenoglossophobia, Foreign language, Anxiety, Qualitative


Education | Higher Education


The purpose of this hermeneutic phenomenological study was to understand the lived experiences of foreign language anxiety or xenoglossophobia, for college students enrolled in foreign language courses at The Southern University. The topic was guided by Krashen’s theory of second language acquisition, as it relates to many aspects of the actual process of second language learning. The sample consisted of 10 college students enrolled in foreign language courses at the university level. Qualitative data collection occurred through semi-structured interviews, journaling, and document collection. Data analysis procedures were derived from methods set forth by Van Kaam, and modified by Moustakas, including horizonalization, delimiting horizons, organizing consistent qualities and themes, and constructing textural descriptions. Member checks, audits, and a codebook were used to ensure the trustworthiness and validity of the study. From the data, themes of outlook, goals, and structure emerged. The findings led to the conclusion that participants' perceptions, goals, relationships, and structure impacted their perceptions of xenoglossophobia, whether positive or negative. Recommendations for future research were provided, as future studies would prove beneficial to shed more light on xenoglossophobia.