Exploring Effects and Learner Attitudes of Gadget-Based Internet Multimedia Reading

Document Type: Research Paper

Authors

English Department, Faculty of Persian Literature and Foreign Languages, Islamic Azad University, South Tehran Branch, Tehran, Iran

Abstract

This mixed-methods study aimed at investigating the effects of a gadget-based Internet multimedia extensive reading program on promoting language proficiency. In so doing, a pretest-posttest design was applied in the quantitative phase to comparatively analyze outcomes of three classes of college-level EFL learners (two experimental groups and one control, each including 30 university students) on how much they improved in their receptive proficiency, before and after the general English language course they were taking. The first group took the General English course along with a multimedia-based Internet extensive reading program as the study’s treatment, and the second group took a linear text (traditional) extensive reading program with their English course. The posttest scores showed that students in experimental group 1 (extensive reading using multimedia texts) outperformed both experimental group 2 (extensive reading using linear texts) and the control group. Furthermore, experimental group 2 had higher scores in comparison to the control group. As for the qualitative phase, results of the follow-up interviews and open-ended questionnaires also indicated that the learners liked, and would prefer to substitute traditional reading programs by gadget-based multimedia ones. EFL teachers may be most interested in outcomes of this study since insights may be gained regarding the extent to which Internet-based reading should enter language courses.

Keywords