Exploring the Relevant Factors of Willingness to Communicate (WTC) in Language Learning—A Systematic and Bibliometric Approach


  • Chuhan Xu

    Beijing Language and Culture University, Beijing, 100083, China

  • Zhonggen Yu

    Beijing Language and Culture University, Beijing, 100083, China


Received: 18 March 2024 | Received: 1 May 2024 | Accepted: 10 May 2024 | Published Online: 20 June 2024


Recent years have witnessed a surge of interest in learners’ Willingness to Communicate (WTC) within the L2 learning environment. This study aims to explore current trends, remarkable subjects, influential authors, sources and interplay of WTC variables in L2 learning from 1985 to 2023. A total of 259 articles were selected through PRISMA for the visualization of VOSviewer, and 221 publications for the citation network analysis with CitNetExplorer. The findings revealed 3 major variables with the capacity to influence WTC: individual traits, teachers’ roles, and learning environments. Prominent themes include the rising trend of positive psychology, the importance of motivation, confidence, attitudes, the application of teacher immediacy and WTC in L2 learning. The study also highlights the significance of considering peer and cultural factors in future research. By providing a rigorous overview of the literature, this study contributes valuable insights into the current state of WTC in L2 learning education.


Willingness to Communicate (WTC); PRISMA; Bibliometric; Relevant Factors; Language Learning


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