Effects of using mobile devices on English listening diversity and speaking for EFL elementary students

  • Wu-Yuin Hwang
  • Yueh-Min Huang Dean of Health & Information College, Chia Nan University of Pharmacy and Science Distinguished Professor of Engineering Science Department, National Cheng Kung University
  • Rustam Shadiev Department of Engineering Science, National Cheng Kung University
  • Sheng-Yi Wu
  • Shu-Lin Chen


This study designed learning activities supported by a mobile learning system for students to develop listening and speaking skills in English as a foreign language (EFL). How students perceive learning activities and a mobile learning system were examined in this study. Additionally, how different practices relate to students’ language proficiency was also explored. It was found that students had positive perceptions and intentions toward learning activities; thus, students were motivated to practice English skills more when using a mobile learning system. The results demonstrated how students’ speaking and listening skills practices using mobile devices had different correlations depending on their proficiency levels. For example, listening diversity, defined as the number of other classmates a student listened to, was found to have an inverse correlation with speaking and listening proficiency. This finding does not support previous research and indicates that students who carefully selected their listening partners performed better than those who did not. It was further found that the better students performed in English learning, the fewer partners they would choose. EFL instructors can use the insights of this study to design more effective language learning activities for students using mobile devices.



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Author Biographies

Yueh-Min Huang, Dean of Health & Information College, Chia Nan University of Pharmacy and Science Distinguished Professor of Engineering Science Department, National Cheng Kung University

Ray Yueh-Min Huang is a Distinguished Professor in Department of Engineering Science, National Cheng-Kung University, Taiwan, R.O.C. His research interests include e-Learning, multimedia communications, wireless networks, and artificial intelligence. He received his MS and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from the University of Arizona in 1988 and 1991 respectively. He has co-authored 3 books and has published more than 130 refereed journal research papers. Dr. Huang has received many research awards, such as the Best Paper Award of 2007 IEA/AIE Conference, Best Paper Award of the Computer Society of the Republic of China in 2003, the Awards of Acer Long-Term Prize in 1996, 1998, and 1999, Excellent Research Awards of National Microcomputer and Communication Contests in 2006. He also received many funded research grants from National Science Council, Ministry of Education, Industrial Technology of Research Institute, and Institute of Information Industry. Dr. Huang has been invited to give talks or served frequently in the program committee at national and international conferences. Dr. Huang is in the editorial board of 10 international journals in the area of networking, communications, and web intelligence. In e-Learning area, except of publishing more than 30 journal papers and editing 2 special issues in SSCI-indexed journals, he is also serving as the coordinator of SIG of Innovations Design of Learning Software in Taiwan. Dr. Huang has enthusiastically involved in organizing many e-learning conferences, including serving as the general chair of TeLearn2009 and TPC chair of ACM Workshop of Multimedia Technologies for Distance Learning, etc. Dr. Huang is a member of the IEEE as well as IEEE Circuits and Systems, Communication, Computer, and Computational Intelligence societies.

Rustam Shadiev, Department of Engineering Science, National Cheng Kung University

Dr. Rustam Shadiev graduated from the Graduate Institute of Network Learning Technology of National Central University, Taiwan in January of 2012. He was awarded with Student Research Achievement Award twice by National Central University, Taiwan, for the period of 2010-2011 and of 2011-2012. At present, Dr. Rustam Shadiev is the postgraduate research fellow at the Department of Engineering Science of National Cheng Kung University, Taiwan. His research interests include learning and instruction in online synchronous learning environment, human-computer interaction for collaboration, and speech-to-text recognition technology for learning.