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Bilingual news and shares about the brain, languages and coaching

The Affective Filter Hypothesis

as proposed by Stephen Krashen

“What we learn with pleasure we never forget.”

― Alfred Mercier

Descendez dans la page, c'est en français juste en dessous

The affective filter hypothesis is one of the five hypotheses of the Monitor Model on second language acquisition proposed by Stephen Krashen.

It states that language learning can be affected by key emotional factors such as anxiety, motivation, attitude and self-confidence.

Essentially, elevated emotions such as anxiety, fear, or embarrassment create a barrier, hindering language acquisition by impeding input and blocking cognition.

Conversely, when the affective filter is lowered, creating a sense of safety, language acquisition is facilitated.

Long story short: we learn better in a stress free and positive environment.


L’hypothèse du filtre affectif est une des cinq hypothèses de la théorie de l’acquisition naturelle des langues proposée par le linguiste Stephen Krashen.

Selon cette hypothèse, les facteurs émotionnels et psychologiques influencent la capacité des apprenants à recevoir et à utiliser ce qui leur est présenté.

Un filtre affectif élevé, causé par des sentiments négatifs comme la peur, l’anxiété, le manque de motivation ou de confiance en soi, bloque l’acquisition d’une langue seconde.

Au contraire, un filtre affectif bas, favorisé par un environnement positif, détendu et stimulant, facilite l’acquisition d’une langue seconde.

En bref : on apprend mieux dans un environnement positif et sans stress.

Want to find out more?

Source (en langue française):

Un chercheur, un concept #1 - Le "filtre affectif" et l'acquisition de langues étrangères | Site des langues vivantes (

For those who are further interested:

Stephen Krashen in his own words : principles_and_practice.pdf (

If you prefer a summary of the Monitor Model : Input hypothesis - Wikipedia

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