Researching Into the Use of Real-Life Materials in Language Learning Apps

Tang, Xiaolong and Kan, Qian (2022). Researching Into the Use of Real-Life Materials in Language Learning Apps. In: Xu, Xiaoge ed. Applying Mobile Technologies to Chinese Language Learning. IGI Global, pp. 91–122.



The study reported in this chapter investigates how mobile language apps facilitate the learning of L2 Chinese, focusing on the use of real-life materials in the design of HANZI – a mobile app specifically developed for this study. Guided by the pedagogy of using authentic materials in language learning and some key design principles of language mobile apps, this chapter explores beginner Chinese learner experiences of mobile-assisted Chinese language learning. It is a qualitative-led case study with multiple datasets including descriptive statistics from 111 survey responses, student focus group discussions, and teacher interviews. The analysis reveals that real-life materials can promote learners' motivation, personalised learning, and social interaction, which improve language proficiency. Such materials should be included in language activities in both digital and print media because they are central to overcoming the challenges of learning Chinese characters.

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