The effect of adding same-language subtitles to recorded lectures for non-native, English speakers in e-learning environments

  • Gordon Matthew Faculty of Humanities, School of Languages, North-West University, Vanderbijlpark Campus, Gauteng, South Africa
Keywords: same-language subtitles, e-learning, cognitive load, performance, information accessibility, non-native speakers

Abstract

Globally, online (or e-learning) environments are growing in popularity in schools and universities. However, the language of instruction in these environments is mostly English. This is a problem as most of the students enrolling into online learning environments in South Africa are non-native English speakers. For these students, English is their second or sometimes third proficient language, which puts them at a disadvantage while accessing information for certain modules. A possible solution is to add same-language subtitles (SLS) to recorded lectures in these online environments to facilitate student learning. Unfortunately, previous studies provided no conclusive evidence of the advantages or disadvantages of adding SLS to a recorded lecture with regard to performance.

The participants in this study1 were first-year students (n = 64) in Academic Literacy, majoring in Economics. They were non-native speakers of English with an average English proficiency and were divided into four groups. Each group watched the same recorded lecture in one of the four presentation modes (PMs) (audio, video and video with two types of subtitles). The findings of the study showed no significant effect either on performance or on perceived cognitive load for the students watching a recorded lecture with added subtitles compared to watching without subtitles.

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

References


Ayers, P. Sweller, J. & Mayer, R. E. (eds) (2005) The split-attention effect in multimedia learning, The Cambridge handbook of multimedia learning, Cambridge University Press, New York. pp. 206–227.


Bisson, M. J., et al., (2014) ‘Processing of native and foreign language subtitles in films: an eye tracking study’, Applied Psycholinguistics, vol. 35, no. 2, pp. 399–418.


Casali, J. G. & Wierwille, W. W. A. (1982) ‘Sensitivity intrusion comparison of mental workload estimation techniques using flight task emphasizing perceptual piloting activities’, in Proceedings of the 1982 International IEEE Conference on Cybernetics, IEEE, New York, pp. 598–602.


Council on Higher Education (CHE). (2010), Higher Education Monitor: Access and Throughput in South African Higher Education: Three Case Studies, HE Monitor Number 9, CHE, Pretoria.


Department of Education. (1997) Language in education policy, Announcement by the Minister of Education, 14 July.


De Jong, T. (2010) ‘Cognitive load theory, educational research, and instructional design: some food for thought’, Instructional Science, vol. 38, no. 2, pp. 105–134.


Díaz-Cintas, J. & Remael, A. (2007) Audiovisual Translation: Subtitling, St. Jerome, Manchester.


d’Ydewalle, G. & Van de Poel, M. (1999) ‘Incidental foreign-language acquisition by children watching subtitled television programs’, Journal of Psycholinguistic Research, vol. 28, no. 3, pp. 227–244. doi: 10.0090-6905/99/0500-0227


Etemadi, A. (2012) ‘Effects of bimodal subtitling of English movies on content comprehension and vocabulary recognition’, International Journal of English Linguistics, vol. 2, no. 1, p. 239. doi: 10.5539/ijel.v2n1p239


Gottlieb, H. (1998) ‘Subtitling’, in Routledge Encyclopaedia of Translation Studies, eds M. Baker, Routledge, London, pp. 244–248.


Gottlieb, H. & Perego, E. (eds) (2012) Subtitles–Readable Dialogue?, Eye tracking in audiovisual translation, Roma: Aracne. pp. 37–82.


Harji, M. B., Woods, P. C. & Alavi, Z. K. (2010) ‘The effect of viewing subtitled videos on vocabulary learning’, Journal of College Teaching & Learning (TLC), vol. 7, no. 9. doi: 10.19030/tlc.v7i9.146


Hayati, A. & Mohmedi, F. (2011) ‘The effect of films with and without subtitles on listening comprehension of EFL learners’, British Journal of Educational Technology, vol. 42, no. 1, pp. 181–192. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-8535.2009.01004.x


Hefer, E. (2011) Reading Second Language Subtitles: A Case Study of South African Viewers Reading in Their Native Language and L2-English, Doctoral Dissertation, North-West University, Vanderbijlpark, South Africa.


Hwang, Y. & Huang, P. (2011) ‘Using subtitles to enliven reading’, English Language and Literature Studies, vol. 1, no. 1, p. 2. doi:10.5539/ells.v1n1p2


Jaffer, S., N’gambi, D. & Czerniewicz, L. (2007) ‘The role of ICTs in higher education in South Africa: one strategy for addressing teaching and learning challenges’, International Journal of Education and ICT, vol. 3, pp. 131–142.


Kilborn, R. (1993) ‘Speak my language: current attitudes to television subtitling and dubbing’, Media, Culture & Society, vol. 15, no. 4, pp. 641–660. doi: 10.1177/016344393015004007


Koolstra, C. M. & Beentjes, J. W. (1999) ‘Children’s vocabulary acquisition in a foreign language through watching subtitled television programs at home’, Educational Technology Research and Development, vol. 47, no. 1, pp. 51–60.


Kruger, J., Hefer, E. & Matthew, G. (2014) ‘Attention distribution and cognitive load in a subtitled academic lecture: L1 vs. L2’, Journal of Eye Movement Research, vol. 7, no. 5, pp. 4, 1–15. doi: 10.16910/jemr.7.5.4


Kruger, J. & Steyn, F. (2014) ‘Subtitles and eye tracking: reading and performance’, Reading Research Quarterly, vol. 49, no. 1, pp. 105–120. doi: 10.1002/rrq.59


Kruger, J., Szarkowska, A. & Krejtz, I. (2015) ‘Subtitles on the moving image: an overview of eye tracking studies’, Refractory: A Journal of Entertainment Media, vol. 25, no. 5, [online] Available at: http://refractory.unimelb.edu.au/2015/02/07/kruger-szarkowska-krejtz/


Kruger, J. L. (2013) ‘Subtitles in the classroom: balancing the benefits of dual coding with the cost of increased cognitive load’, Journal for Language Teaching= IjenaliYekufundzisaLulwimi = TydskrifvirTaalonderrig, vol. 47, no. 1, pp. 29–53.


Kvitnes, I. E. N. (2013) Subtitles in the Second Language Classroom: An Experimental Study with Norwegian Learners of English, Master’s Thesis, Norwegian University of Science and Technology.


Leahy, W. & Sweller, J. (2011) ‘Cognitive load theory, modality of presentation and the transient information effect’, Applied Cognitive Psychology, vol. 25, no. 6, pp. 943–951. doi: 10.1002/acp.1787


Leight, J. (2017) Applying Consumer Theory: Labor, 1st term, Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA, [online] Available at: https://ocw.mit.edu/courses/economics/14-01sc-principles-of-microeconomics-fall-2011/unit-2-consumer-theory


Leppink, J. & Van den Heuvel, A. (2015) ‘The evolution of cognitive load theory and its application to medical education’, Perspectives on Medical Education, vol. 4, no. 3, pp. 119–127. doi: 10.1007/s40037-015-0192-x


Linacre, J.M. (2006) WINSTEPS Rasch Measurement Computer Program, Winsteps.com, Chicago, IL.


Markham, P. (1999) ‘Captioned videotapes and second-language listening word recognition’, Foreign Language Annals, vol. 32, no. 3, pp. 321–328. doi: 10.1111/j.1944-9720.1999.tb01344.x


Matielo, R., Collet, T. & D’ely, R. C. S. F. (2013) ‘The effects of interlingual and intralingual subtitles on vocabulary learning by Brazilian EFL learners: an exploratory study. Intercâmbio’, Revista do Programa de EstudosPós-GraduadosemLinguísticaAplicada e Estudos da Linguagem, vol. 27.


Matthew, G. D. (2019) Measuring the Cognitive Load Induced by Subtitled Audiovisual Texts in an Educational Context, Doctoral Dissertation, North-West University.


Mayer, R. E. (2002) ‘Cognitive theory and the design of multimedia instruction: an example of the two-way street between cognition and instruction’, New Directions for Teaching and Learning, vol. 1, no. 89, pp. 55–71. doi: 10.1002/tl.47


Mayer, R. E., Lee, H. & Peebles, A., (2014) ‘Multimedia learning in a second language: a cognitive load perspective’, Applied Cognitive Psychology, vol. 28, no. 5, pp. 653–660. doi: 10.1002/acp.3050


Miller, J. & Levine, S. (1952) ‘A study of the effects of different types of review and of “structuring” subtitles on the amount learned from a training film’, Human Resources Research Laboratories Memo, Report, vol. 1, no. 17.


Mitterer, H. & McQueen, J. M. (2009) ‘Foreign subtitles help but native-language subtitles harm foreign speech perception’, PLoS One, vol. 4, no. 11, p. e7785. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0007785


Mousavi, S. Y., Low, R. & Sweller, J., (1995) ‘Reducing cognitive load by mixing auditory and visual presentation modes’, Journal of Educational Psychology, vol. 87, no. 2, p. 319. doi: 10.1037/0022-0663.87.2.319


Northrop, D. S. (1952) Effects on Learning of the Prominence of Organizational Outlines in the Instructional Film, Technical Report SDC 269-7-33, Instructional Film Research Reports, U.S. Naval Special Devices Centre, Port Washington, NY.


O’Brien, S. (2006) ‘Eye tracking and translation memory matches’, Perspectives – Studies in Translatology, vol. 14, no. 3, pp. 185–205. https://doi-org.nwulib.nwu.ac.za/10.1080/09076760708669037


Rokni, S. J. & Ataee, A. J. (2014) ‘The effect of movie subtitles on EFL learners’ oral performance’, International Journal of English Language, Literature and Humanities, vol. 1, no. 4, pp. 201–215.


Roussel, S., et al., (2017) ‘Learning subject content through a foreign language should not ignore human cognitive architecture: a cognitive load theory approach’, Learning and Instruction, vol. 52, pp. 69–79. doi: 10.1016/j.learninstruc.2017.04.007


Stewart, M. A. & Pertusa, I. (2004) ‘Gains to language learners from viewing target language closed-captioned films’, Foreign Language Annals, vol. 37, no. 3, pp. 438–442. doi: 10.1111/j.1944-9720.2004.tb02701.x


Tabbers, H. K., Martens, R. L. & van Merriënboer, J. J. G. (2004) ‘Multimedia instructions and cognitive load theory: effects of modality and cueing’, British Journal of Educational Psychology, vol. 74, pp. 71–81. doi: 10.1348/000709904322848824


Van der Walt, C. & Klapwijk, N. (2015) ‘Language of learning and teaching in a multilingual school environment: what do teachers think?’, Language Matters, vol. 46, no. 2, pp. 293–318. doi: 10.1080/10228195.2015.1050058


Van Rooy, B. & Coetzee-Van Rooy, S. (2015) ‘The language issue and academic performance at a South African University’, Southern African Linguistics and Applied Language Studies, vol. 33, no. 1, pp. 31–46. doi: 10.2989/16073614.2015.1012691


Winke, P., Gass, S. & Syderenko, T. (2013) ‘Factors influencing the use of captions by foreign language learners: an eye tracking study’, The Modern Language Journal, vol. 97, no. 1, pp. 254–275. doi: 10.1111/j.1540-4781.2013.01432.x


Zanón, N. T. (2006) ‘Using subtitles to enhance foreign language learning’, Porta Linguarum, pp. 41–52.


Zarei, A. A. (2009) ‘The effect of bimodal, standard, and reversed subtitling on L2 vocabulary recognition and recall’, Pazhuhesh-e Zabanha-ye Khareji, vol. 49, no. 1, pp. 65–85.
Published
2020-02-11
How to Cite
MatthewG. (2020). The effect of adding same-language subtitles to recorded lectures for non-native, English speakers in e-learning environments. Research in Learning Technology, 28. https://doi.org/10.25304/rlt.v28.2340
Section
Original Research Articles