Researching emergent practice among mobile language learners

Kukulska-Hulme, Agnes and de los Arcos, Beatriz (2011). Researching emergent practice among mobile language learners. In: mLearn2011 Conference Proceedings, pp. 74–77.



Within the phenomenon of widespread adoption of mobile technologies to support informal and personally relevant learning, we seek to identify instances of innovation where emergent practices point to productive ways of learning that in the longer term may also have an impact on formal education. The paper reports our ongoing research focusing on language learners, for whom mobile devices represent a liberating technology that prompts them to rethink and redefine their foreign language learning. Building on the outcomes of 30 interviews with language learners using mobile devices, we share findings from our continued exploration of emergent practice, and include two contrasting case studies of independent learners of Japanese and Chinese. Our findings lead to reflections on authenticity in language learning and we note the strong motivations that lead learners to explore ways of learning that truly correspond to their personal preferences and needs. The research is a contribution to mapping the territory of informal mobile language learning, as we continue to investigate the mobile-enabled resources available to language learners and the strategies they adopt for learning.

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