Exploring the potential of VR in enhancing authentic learning for EFL tertiary students in Vietnam
Teaching English with Technology
the University of Nicosia (Cyprus) / Maria Curie-Skłodowska University (Poland).
School of Education
For language learners situated in contexts where there is limited exposure to the target language, an authentic learning environment is important. Virtual Reality (VR) has been increasingly used in education to simulate realistic scenarios; however, little is known about whether VR can enhance the nature of authentic learning for learners of English as a foreign language (EFL). Motivated by that reason, this study was conducted to examine the affordances of VR when integrated with language tasks to facilitate authentic learning for EFL learners. Herrington et al.’s (2010) model of authentic tasks was adopted to evaluate the VR-integrated tasks. Twenty-four students participated in the VR technology intervention and were followed up with individual interviews. The results showed VR has the potential to enhance many of the ten attributes of Herrington et al.’s (2010) authentic tasks. Suggestions are provided to further extend the model to be more applicable in EFL contexts, alongside implications for practice and future research.