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A Pilot Study Exploring Augmented Reality to Increase Motivation of Chinese College Students Learning English

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2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Indianapolis, Indiana

Publication Date

June 15, 2014

Start Date

June 15, 2014

End Date

June 18, 2014



Conference Session

General Technical Session 1

Tagged Division

Computers in Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

24.85.1 - 24.85.15



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Paper Authors


Shanshan Li Purdue University

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I am a graduate student in computer graphics technology at Purdue University. My research interest is exploring and analyzing user experience in augmented reality, specifically using AR as a educational and marketing tool. Apart from that, I am also interested in interactive design and web construction, information architecture,persuasive technology.

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Yang Chen Purdue University


David M. Whittinghill Purdue University, West Lafayette Orcid 16x16

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Dr. David Whittinghill is an Assistant Professor of Computer Graphics Technology and Computer and Information Technology. Dr. Whittinghill' s research focuses on simulation, gaming and computer programming and how these technologies can more effectively address outstanding issues in health, education, and society in general.

Dr. Whittinghill leads projects in pediatric physical therapy, sustainable energy simulation, phobia treatment, cancer care simulation, and games as a tool for improving educational outcomes. Dr. Whittinghill is the director of

Prior to joining Purdue he was a senior software engineer in the research industry focused upon the fields of visualization, games, agent-based modeling, digital anti-tampering, robotics, pharmaceuticals, and web development. His primary skills expertise is in computer programming.

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Mihaela Vorvoreanu Purdue University, West Lafayette

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A Pilot Study Exploring Augmented Reality to Increase Motivation of Chinese College Students Learning EnglishWith the advent and accelerated development of augmented reality (AR), an increasing numberof studies have been conducted to test the effectiveness of this technique in education. Few,however, have investigated how AR might influence students’ motivation toward learning of asecond language. The goal of this research was to address this gap in the literature. We used acombination of convenience sampling and criterion sampling to select five Chinese collegestudents to evaluate an English vocabulary learning application built upon augmented realitytechnology. To assess student motivation, the ARCS motivational model was adopted. A semi-structured interview with open-ended questions was used to collect data. Participants indicatedthat though they were attracted by this tool at the beginning, their motivation level decreasedtoward the end of the study. An interpretation of our observations in the context of the ARCSmodel suggests three motivational issues. First, predefined AR materials failed to establishrelevance to subjects’ personal interests and previous experiences. Secondly, subjects’confidence seemed to have been negatively influenced due to their difficulty in achieving thestated learning objectives. Lastly, technical issues delayed the computer quickly identifying thetriggering image and thus resulted in a noticeable lack of system responsiveness. It seems thisdelay decreased subjects’ satisfaction and distracted their attention from the learning task. Thesefactors seemed most determinative in compromising AR’s effectiveness as a tool to increasestudent motivation toward English vocabulary learning. It must be stressed that this study is apilot with too low number of subjects from which to make any binding generalizations.Nonetheless, these findings should provide useful insights toward the successful application ofAR in the educational realm. The authors recommend further study with a larger number ofsubjects and a more powerful computer capable of more quickly identifying the trigger image.

Li, S., & Chen, Y., & Whittinghill, D. M., & Vorvoreanu, M. (2014, June), A Pilot Study Exploring Augmented Reality to Increase Motivation of Chinese College Students Learning English Paper presented at 2014 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Indianapolis, Indiana. 10.18260/1-2--19977

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