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The effectiveness of computer-based multimedia instruction in Chinese character recognition

, University of Northern Colorado, United States

University of Northern Colorado . Awarded


The purpose of this study was to examine second language learners' learning achievement and attitudes toward two different types of dual coding designs (image plus on-screen text versus image plus narration) in Chinese character acquisition. Student learning achievement was measured via the immediate and delayed post-tests. In addition, students' attitudes toward the dual coding designed tutorials were assessed by the attitude survey and focus group interview.

A total of 66 (33 per group) college students who did not have prior knowledge in Chinese language participated in this study. Participants were randomly assigned to either the text group or narration group. In the first day of the study, each participant viewed either the text group (image plus on-screen text) or the narration group (image plus narration) tutorial, which included 20 Chinese pictographic characters. After viewing the tutorial, participants completed the immediate post-test and filled out the attitude survey. The delayed post-test was completed one week after the treatment. Three months later, eight participants were selected for the focus group interviews.

The repeated measures ANOVA results indicated that there was no interaction between the treatments (text group versus narration group) and test occasions (immediate and delayed post-tests), and there was no significant difference between the treatment groups in the immediate post-test and in the delayed post-test. However, there was a significant difference between the test occasions. Participants' average score in the immediate post-test was significantly higher than their average score in the delayed posttest. The high achievement scores from both groups in the post-tests indicated that the image plus on-screen text and image plus audio narration designs were both effective in Chinese character acquisition.

Furthermore, the 10 Likert-type survey items were loaded into two factors: tutorial design and cognitive load. Based on the MANOVA results, there was no significant difference between these two groups in both the tutorial design factor and the cognitive load factor. Overall, participants in both groups showed positive attitudes toward the dual-coding tutorials.

The results of this study proved that the dual coding design (either image plus onscreen text or image plus audio) is an effective way to design Chinese character instruction materials. Participants in this study showed positive attitudes toward the tutorial design in the attitude survey responses and high achievement scores in the immediate post-test. Furthermore, the high retention rate in the delayed post-test confirmed that the combination of dual coding design and Chinese pictographic characters were effective.


Chuang, H.Y. The effectiveness of computer-based multimedia instruction in Chinese character recognition. Ph.D. thesis, University of Northern Colorado. Retrieved July 25, 2021 from .

This record was imported from ProQuest on October 23, 2013. [Original Record]

Citation reproduced with permission of ProQuest LLC.

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