Appendix A: The questionnaire

Annika Hohenthal, Department of English, University of Turku, Finland

Dear Recipient,

I would like to find out more about language use and attitudes towards different languages in India.

I would really appreciate it if you could participate in the study by filling in this questionnaire, and thus help me gather data for my thesis.

It is VERY important that you are as accurate and honest as possible with your responses. It is only in that case that this study might have some value!

All the replies will remain absolutely confidential.

THANK YOU for your time!

My age:________
Home state in India:__________________ Occupation:__________________________
Highest Qualification (level of education):__________________________
When did you start to learn English (age), or how did you learn it (at school/at home, or some other way)?___________________________________________________________
Were you educated in English or in some other language (please specify)?_______________
What is your mother tongue?__________________________
List (in the order of confidence) all the other languages you can communicate (speak, read, write) in:

1. First Part of the Questionnaire (Domain Analysis): Language Use in Different Areas of Life

Which of the following languages:

English (EN), mother tongue or first language (L1), the regional language (eg. Punjabi) (REG), Hindi (HI), or any other language (please specify!)

do you use in the following situations?

Also, mark each statement from 1 to 5, depending on how often you use each language:

1=sometimes, 2=often 3=usually, 4=always (eg. EN 2, L1 3; which means that one uses English often in that situation, but the first language usually)


a) discussing with your family members at dinner___________________________________
b) commenting on a TV program which is in English________________________________
c) commenting on a TV program which is in your mother tongue/Hindi________________
d) the language I mostly use at home is_________________________________________
e) discussing a personal matter/problem__________________________________________


a) conversing and discussing general topics with friends/acquaintances_________________
b) discussing personal matters with friends/acquaintances____________________________
c) conversing with people I haven't met before in my home town at clubs/social gatherings________________________________________________________________
d) introducing friends to others_______________________________________________
e) writing a personal letter__________________________________________________


a) I talk in ______________to my neighbour whose mother tongue is different from mine.
b) I talk in ____________________to my neighbour whose mother tongue is same as mine.
c) Imagine a situation that in your neighbourhood, the mother tongue of the people in most cases differs. Which language do you use in eg. meetings or gatherings as a common language?_______________________________________________________________


a) in shops, at the railway station etc. I mostly use ________________________________.
b) at the market place, I use __________________________________________________.


a) My medium of education was mostly ________________________________________.
b) At high school I talked with my friends who spoke the same language as I do in ________________________________________________________________________.
c) At high school I talked with my friends who spoke a different language than I did in_______________________________________________________________________


a) I would always write official letters in ___________________.
b) If I was working for the government, I would probably mostly use ________________in my work.
c) If I went to see a government official, he would automatically talk to me in _________________________.


a) At a job interview, the language used would normally be __________________________.
b) With my colleagues who come form different parts of India, I would normally talk in ___________________________.
c) If my boss and me had different languages as mother tongues, we would speak with each other in ____________________________.
d) I'd write a business letter in __________________________.

2. Second Part of the Questionnaire: About attitudes...

Please tick the appropriate number from 1 to 4, depending on how much you agree/disagree with the statement.

1= I strongly disagree 2=I disagree 3=I agree 4=I strongly agree

Statement 1 2 3 4

  1. Speaking both Hindi and English is an advantage.
  2. Speaking English is an advantage.
  3. I like speaking English.
  4. I prefer using my mother tongue in most situations,whenever possible.
  5. I prefer using Hindi in all situations, whenever possible.
  6. I think it's important to maintain Hindi to enable India to develop.
  7. We owe it to our forefathers to preserve Hindi.
  8. We owe it to our forefathers to try to preservethe mother tongue of our people.
  9. I strongly identify myself with my mother tongue, and the group that speaks it.
  10. I identify myself with British and the Angloamerican culture.
  11. English offers advantages in seeking good job opportunities.
  12. Without the knowledge of English I could not get a job.
  13. Without a knowledge of Hindi I could not get a job.
  14. English provides a range of aesthetic experiences in literature.
  15. I think it is better for an Indian person to write creative writing (eg. books, poems) in his/her mother tongue, rather than in English. In English, it seems so artificial.
  16. English is important to India as a whole.
  17. To be admitted to a public post, one should be able to speak English.
  18. There should be more TV and radio programs available in English.
  19. English should be used on public signs, notices and adverts, always.
  20. All children should be required to learn English at school.
  21. If I had to choose whether my child would be educated in the medium of English or Hindi, I would definitely choose English.
  22. I think that the use of Hindi should really be encouraged throughout India as a whole.
  23. People who know English well have a significantly better chance of getting a good job.
  24. Hindi is less useful to know than English.
  25. Hindi should always remain as the official language of India.
  26. I feel proud to say I can speak Hindi: it is such a big part of our culture, heritage and identity. I could almost say, it symbolizes those.
  27. Most children resent having to learn English.
  28. The status of Hindi is higher than that of English in India.
  29. I would feel embarrassed if I couldn't speak any English.
  30. By speaking Hindi I show commitment to my country.
  31. I identify myself with modern, western values and thus I also find the knowledge of English important.
  32. 3Without the knowledge of Hindi, I would miss out on many rewarding and enjoyable parts of culture, such as folk music and indigenous literature.
  33. On the whole, I can say that English has been and continues to be an advantage to India.
  34. English makes up a significant part of our history and identity.
  35. When I use English, it is most often with native speakers or foreigners, not with Indian people.

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