Importance of aesthetics in language learning websites: Students' preferences regarding kana learning websites
Yoshie Arima, University of Colorado at Boulder, United States
University of Colorado at Boulder . Awarded
In the past couple of decades, Internet technology has had a significant impact on second/foreign language acquisition, and many Japanese language learning websites have been created and utilized. However, these websites often lack instructional design fundamentals such as simplicity, consistency of the interface, and ease of navigation. With the younger generations depending heavily on technology, there will be demand for more attractive and user-friendly websites. This thesis compares five kana learning websites: Kanji Game, Gahoh, Kanji Step, Kana Chart, and lastly, Kana!, which I developed based on instructional design guidelines as discussed by Fleming & Levie (1993), Gillani (2003), Hemard (1997), Mayer (2001), and Smith (2006). In order to assess students’ preferences regarding kana learning websites, students of Japanese at the University of Colorado at Boulder were asked to use the five selected sites for studying kana and then complete a survey at the end. The survey asked the students for their preferences regarding websites and what factors determined their selections. The survey results indicated that preferences for learning websites differ by gender and that aesthetics and functionality of learning websites were important factors during the selection process.
Arima, Y. Importance of aesthetics in language learning websites: Students' preferences regarding kana learning websites. Master's thesis, University of Colorado at Boulder.
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