AN EXPLORATION OF DIGITAL HANDHELD GAME FEATURES FOR ENHANCING EFL VOCABULARY LEARNING OUTCOMES

Date

2023-11-18

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Abstract

This dissertation delves into the pedagogical implications of handheld/mobile game features on EFL learners' vocabulary learning outcomes. The research is segmented into two comprehensive studies. The first study, a systematic review spanning from 2011 to July 2022, scrutinizes empirical research detailing the correlation between various game features and vocabulary learning outcomes. Key findings highlight the effectiveness of Holograms, Customized Word Lists, Gamified Assessments, and In- game Hints in fostering enhanced vocabulary learning. In the subsequent study, the emphasis shifts to the practical application, where the impact of 'competition' as a game feature is critically assessed. Executed with 331 freshman students in China over four weeks, participants engaged with two variants of the game, 'Vocarena', designed to elucidate the meanings of a hundred unfamiliar English words. Crucially, one version incorporated a competitive element, spurring participants to vie against one another, while the counterpart lacked this feature. Quantitative analysis revealed three pivotal results: the competition feature augmented participants' game-playing duration, bolstered English vocabulary learning outcomes. Collectively, these findings underscore the potential of game-specific features in optimizing EFL vocabulary learning, offering valuable insights for future research, educational game development, and innovative teaching methodologies.

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Keywords

EFL, Vocabulary learning outcome. handheld game features,

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