Efficacy of Computer Games on Language Learning

 

ABSTRACT

Information and communication technologies (ICT) have become an inseparable part of peopleís lives. For children the use of ICT is as natural as breathing and therefore they find the use of ICT in school education as normal as the use of textbooks. The purpose of this review study is to explore the efficacy of computer games on language learning and list its benefits and limitations for foreign language learning. This was done by conducting a literature search in the databases Web of Science, Scopus, ScienceDirect and Springer, and consequently by evaluating the findings of the relevant studies. The findings indicate that computer games, especially the educational ones, are effective in the vocabulary acquisition in foreign language learning. In addition, there are other benefits of using computer games in classrooms such as exposure to the target language, increased engagement, or enhancement of learners' involvement in communication. On the contrary, the findings reveal certain limitations of their use in language learning such as the fact that high interactivity may hinder the vocabulary acquisition and learning, not all games are useful for language learning, or a lack of knowledge about computer games among language teachers and institutions hinders their proper use.