Teaching and Learning English Phonetics and Pronunciation Through Serious Games

Conference: The European Conference on Language Learning (ECLL2022)
Title: Teaching and Learning English Phonetics and Pronunciation Through Serious Games
Stream: Educational Technologies
Presentation Type: Live-Stream Presentation
María de los Ángeles Gómez González, University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Alfonso Lago Ferreiro, Univerisity of Vigo, Spain


According to several international reports (PISA, EF EPI, ESLC, and PIRLS), Spain is one of the European countries with the biggest English skill gaps, particularly regarding phonological awareness and pronunciation that are also essential skills for comprehension (Rossiter et al., 2010, Huensch & Thompson, 2017). Among the reasons adduced are the disparities existing between the sound inventories, spelling systems and prosody of English, on the one hand, and Spanish, Galician, Catalan and Basque, on the other, in addition to the application of allegedly inadequate methodologies (Gómez González & Sánchez Roura, 2016; Calvo Benzies, 2016). Computer-Assisted Pronunciation Training tools (Levy, 2007; Setter, 2008) have been shown to contribute to improving the perception and production of (supra)segmental contents, while favoring lifelong learning, collaboration, innovation and the acquisition of digital skills (Kim, 2012; Luo, 2016; Mompean & Fouz-González, 2016; Gómez González & Lago Ferreiro, submitted) . Likewise, previous studies have proven that serious games designed for educational purposes motivate students to get involved in the learning process and improve their results (Filella et al., 2017; Fraga -Varela et al., 2021). We shall present an intelligent multiplatform app and the corresponding learning analytics backend, which have been specially developed for Spanish and Galician learners of English as FL, in order to improve their phonological competence and pronunciation in English while walking Sst James Way through serious games. Users will face a series of challenges along the Way conceived as minigames targeting three phonetic skills: (i) perception, (ii) production, and (iii) transcription of English sounds.

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