Academic journal article Journal of Education and Learning

The Effect of Smartphone Video Camera as a Tool to Create Gigital Stories for English Learning Purposes

Academic journal article Journal of Education and Learning

The Effect of Smartphone Video Camera as a Tool to Create Gigital Stories for English Learning Purposes

Article excerpt


The integration of smartphones in the language learning environment is gaining research interest. However, using a smartphone to learn to speak spontaneously has received little attention. The emergence of smartphone technology and its video recording feature are recognised as suitable learning tools. This paper reports on a case study conducted with 67 English as Foreign Language undergraduate students at Tohoku University, Japan. Students were encouraged to use their smartphone video recording feature to produce one 30-second video per week over a 12-week period addressing a teacher-selected theme. The results indicate that students were able to produce video digital stories to express their opinion regarding the teacher-selected themes, in the target language. The implications for teaching and learning clearly indicate that smartphone-based video storytelling is a relevant task for language learners who will have to become conversant with this medium of learning.

Keywords: digital storytelling, mobile-assisted language learning, smartphone-based learning, video production, English as foreign language, speaking skills

1. Introduction

Using video in the classroom has a long history, ranging from viewing third party videos (in-class, YouTube, iTunes) to reinforcing or extending learning (Barron et al., 1998; Herron et al., 2000; Merkt et al., 2011; Rosell-Aguilar, 2013), to teacher self-produced videos to explore or reflect on teaching practices (Baecher, Kung, Jewkes, & Rosalia, 2013; Halter & Levin, 2014). With online video services emerging, teachers began to explore self-produced videos to deliver video lectures, supplement or to compliment classroom content (Kay, 2012; Walls et al., 2010). Parson, Reddy, Wood and Senior (2009) reported that psychology students agreed that video podcasting was beneficial for their studies. Walls et al. (2010) report similar findings indicating that students enjoyed utilizing supplemental podcasts to extend their learning on a regular basis.

Filmmaking or video production to prepare pre-service teachers, has also received research attention (see Coniam, 2001; Jordan, 2012; Kondo, 2002). Kamhi-Stein et al. (2002) reported on language learners' use of video production and Levy and Kennedy (2005) filmed Italian language learners to enhance their reflection of their performance. The evidence is compelling, supporting the idea that language learners can get much by reflecting on their audio-visual output. Baecher et al. (2013), Green, Inan and Maushak (2014) and Halter and Levin (2014) concur that student-produced digital videos, can help learner to improve their reflective and critical thinking skills. Since students are in the role of producers, they have control over the script, story development and the content to be expressed; they are in control of language use and creativity. Until recently, teachers and students were required to use digital video camcorder which demanded significant time investment to film, edit and upload (Baepler & Reynolds, 2014; Gromik, 2006; Levy & Kennedy, 2005), with more recent technological advances and convergence, smartphones now include a digital photo and video-capturing feature, which could be utilised to record authentic digital video stories.

Emerging in 1999, Kyocera designed the first videophone (Okada, 2005, p. 56). Since the emergence of smartphone, international research concerning the integration of Mobile-Assisted Language Learning focused predominantly on vocabulary acquisition through student smartphone interaction (Stockwell, 2010; Thornton & Houser, 2005), to expose learners to grammar exercises (Zhi & Hegelheirmer, 2013), or for improving listening comprehension (de la Fuente, 2014). In order to establish a new field of investigation, this paper reports on a project conducted at a Japanese university, that encouraged 67 English as a Foreign Language learners to use their smartphone video recording feature to produce digital stories in the target language. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed


An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.