Volume 2, Issue 1 December 2020, pp. 3–21 Download PDF

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Engagement in PC-based, smartphone-based, and paper-based materials: Learning vocabulary through Chinese Stories

Yijen Wang https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6876-54271

1 Waseda University, JAPAN yijenwang79@toki.waseda.jp

DOI: https://doi.org/10.29140/tltl.v2n1.319


Various studies have discussed learners’ attitudes and achievement in CALL and MALL (Kiernan & Aizawa, 2004; Lu, 2008; Huang & Lin, 2011, but there has been little research into a combination of these with paper-based materials to date in terms of their attitudes and the factors leading to decisions about which to use. Research has suggested that learners show generally positive attitudes towards using technology for learning, but this is not necessarily reflected in actual usage (e.g., Stockwell, 2010), and there have been few studies that have looked at all three of these methods within a single study. Thus, this study investigated 70 Japanese learners of Chinese to examine their task engagement and attitudes toward PC-based, smartphone-based, and paper-based materials designed to supplement their learning outside the classroom, as well as to identify the potential reasons behind their choice of method. All of the materials were largely the same, but the materials on the website and mobile application included several interactive activities that were not possible to replicate with the paper-based materials. The study was carried out over an eight-week period in three classes, and the learners could choose which materials to use at any point throughout the period. Data collection included weekly, pre- and post- surveys, along with interviews to determine how they framed the activities as a supplement of their courses. The results revealed that learners made informed decisions about what materials they used, with which technological difficulties, learning strategies and conditions had varying effects on engagement and attitude.


© Yijen Wang

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Suggested citation

Wang, Y. (2020). Engagement in PC-based, smartphone-based, and paper-based materials: Learning vocabulary through Chinese Stories. Technology in Language Teaching and Learning, 2(1), 3–21. https://doi.org/10.29140/tltl.v2n1.319

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