Future L2 Selves of Pakistani Learners of English: A Qualitative Perspective

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Muhammad Islam
Ahmad Sohail Lodhi
Abdul Majid Khan

Abstract

This study focuses on exploring various aspects of future L2 selves of Pakistani undergraduate students, which may be the critical components of their L2 motivation. It will also explain the socio-contextual factors which may be essential to shape the Future L2 selves of these Pakistani students. Qualitative method, based on semi-structured interviews as the tool, was used to collect data about the detailed visions of participants' future L2 selves. Thematic analysis was used to analyze the data.  The findings revealed strong motivational influences of future L2 selves on the participants. The presence of bright and plausible ideal selves among the participants was a crucial motivational indicator strengthened by the existence of accompanying action plans to achieve them. The participants also seemed to possess strong ought-to selves wrapped in their future responsibilities, fears of career, social status, personal image, and expectations of significant others. A strong connection between participants' Ideal and Ought-to L2 selves implies their deep internalization of the belief that English is essential to realize their future career dreams and reduce their fears of failure.

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