Cultural Identity in English Language Learning: A Systematic Review

Proceedings of The 6th International Academic Conference on Research in Social Sciences

Year: 2023



Cultural Identity in English Language Learning: A Systematic Review

Yu Xiao, Ng Lay Shi, Azianura Hani Shaari




English is a common lingua franca across the globe and the globalization of English has affected the cultural identity of the given group. The relationship between cultural identity and English language learning has been debated by educators for many years, particularly the construction and maintenance of learners’ cultural identity during the learning process. Few studies have examined the intricate and complex correlation between cultural identity and English learning, especially how these two factors interact in diverse linguistic and social situations; therefore, the purpose of this paper is to explore the current state of literature in academic journals on this topic and to provide an overview of how cultural identity and English learning interplay in different contexts. A total of 24 papers from 313 papers published from the year 2017 to 2022 in the two major databases namely the Web of Science and Scopus, were finally summarized and analyzed. Through a systematic review and analysis with ATLAS. ti 22, it revealed that 1) the construction and variation of an individual’s cultural identity could be influenced by various variables in language learning, such as learning motivation, learning investment, and learning strategies; 2) it was proved that the impact of cultural identity on English learning could be positive or negative; 3) conflicts between learners’ native cultural identity and western cultural identity were critical challenges in English learning. The findings imply that both English learners and educators should have a proper attitude towards learners’ cultural identity and take effective measures for the integration of language and culture in the process of learning.

keywords: cultural identity, English learning, language learning, systematic review, identity research