Foreign Language Acquisition in a Multi-User Virtual Environment

Abstract

Learning a language is best achieved when learners can practice the target language in a natural context, or immersed in the target language culture. This will help their L3 acquisition process. Yet, when living in the target country is not possible, a virtual environment depicting target language culture needs to be developed. This paper is to present foreign language acquisition process in Second Life, one of multi-user virtual environment. It is a case study involving four L3 learners enrolled in a virtual class in Second Life called Language Lab, where they can join a formal course. Learners, represented with their avatars, participated in formal classes, virtual practice, and free activity in Second Life. The learners' activities were videotaped to observe their online participation in those activities. The video was then transcribed, coded, and analyzed. Result shows that living in Second Life help them acquire foreign language while communicating with others in a series of engaging activities . They acquire new vocabularies, language functions, and new culture. The research also shows that learning foreign language in Second Life is more effective, though needs more time, due to authentic practice. Further research needs to be carried out with larger participants to triangulate this result.



Author Information
Puji Rahayu, Universitas Islam Indonesia, Indonesia

Paper Information
Conference: ACTC2015
Stream: Education in a virtual world

This paper is part of the ACTC2015 Conference Proceedings (View)
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Posted by amp21