Augmented reality and visuospatial bootstrapping for second-language vocabulary recall
Larchen Costuchen, Alexia
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Larchen Costuchen, A., Darling, S. & Uytman, C. (2020) Augmented reality and visuospatial bootstrapping for second-language vocabulary recall. Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching (In Press).
This paper examines second-language vocabulary memorisation using two technology-driven flashcard-based vocabulary learning tools. The use of augmented reality (AR) under visuospatial bootstrapping (VSB), a novel approach developed from work on the cognitive psychology of working memory, was contrasted with an application, Quizlet. Both were implemented using mobile devices. Quizlet has been extensively used in foreign-language teaching and learning practice. The experimental AR-VSB technique offered superior vocabulary learning compared with the Quizlet method in delayed post-tests, although statistical data indicate a somewhat higher forgetting rate after a week in the AR-VSB method. Even so, the experimental technique still offers superior retention compared with the method used in the control group and could be used as an effective initial input method for acquiring vocabulary items in second-language learning. These results imply communication between cognitive systems involved in storing short-term memory for verbal and visual information alongside connections to and from knowledge held in long-term memory when the target information is shown in a familiar array, which are deployed during the AR task and which support enhanced vocabulary learning. The main novel finding in this research has been that the integration of immersive AR experiences into familiar physical space has been seen to improve vocabulary recall test performance among a sample of twenty-first-century university students attempting to learn a second language. The evidence gathered from the experiment can have future practical applications and might contribute to immersive educational technology and innovative material development in second-language instruction.