We use virtual reality (VR) to study second language (L2) learning, and the effects of learning in an immersive, interactive, 3D virtual space on constructing embodied, native-like representations. Learning a second language presents a significant challenge to many people in adulthood. While real-life immersion is often emphasized as an effective L2 learning platform, little is known about the features of immersive contexts that contribute to the L2 learning process. Immersive virtual reality offers a flexible platform to simulate a real-life immersive learning situation, while allowing the researcher to have tight experimental control for stimulus delivery and learner interaction with the environment. Our immersive virtual reality conditions currently focus on participants learning Mandarin Chinese words but these can be extended to the learning of other languages and other linguistic domains. The following videos show snapshots of the VR Kitchen and the VR Zoo.
Legault, J., Fang, S., Lan, Y., Li, P. (2018). Structural brain changes as a function of second language vocabulary training: Effects of learning context. Brain and Cognition (in press).
Hsiao, Y., Lan, Y, Kao, S., & Li, P. (2017). Visualization analytics for second language vocabulary learning in virtual worlds Education Technology and Society, 20(2), 161-175.
Lan, Y.-J., Fang, S.-Y., Legault, J., & Li, P. (2015). Second language acquisition of Mandarin Chinese vocabulary: context of learning effects. Educational Technology Research and Development, 63(5), 671–690.