Despite the ever-increasing penetration of smartphones in developed countries, nowadays, few studies have been conducted to explore the pedagogical potentials of game applications for English as a second language (ESL) learners’ vocabulary development in the Mobile-assisted Language Learning (MALL) environment. This paper aims to examine Hong Kong ESL tertiary students’ perspectives on the popular Draw Something app and provide suggestions to optimize its design for vocabulary learning purposes. Results of the questionnaire show that Hong Kong ESL learners hold positive attitudes towards MALL and notice that the app can help improve their vocabulary ability to a certain extent. To efficiently and effectively improve ESL learners’ vocabulary ability, suggestions are made to its design regarding the choice of vocabulary, presence of phonological forms and illustrative sentences, as well as additional rules regulating the drawing of compound words. The implications of this study can also give inspirations to mobile phone app developers who are interested in developing educational apps for m-learning.
|Keywords:||Second Language Learning, Vocabulary Development, Mobile-assisted Language Learning, Incidental Vocabulary Learning|
The Open University of Hong Kong, Lee Shau Kee School of Business & Administration, Hong Kong, Hong Kong