The Learning Potential of a TV Series in Promoting L2 Incidental Learning of Idiomatic and Non-Idiomatic Phrasal Verbs
Background: The bulk of past studies, which have shown that audiovisual materials are potential sources for phrasal verb learning, have focused on short materials. However, the incidental learning of idiomatic and non-idiomatic phrasal verbs through extensive viewing of a complete season of a TV series has remained underexplored.
Purpose: The main aim of the present study is to explore the learning potential of viewing an entire season of a TV series in incidental learning of idiomatic and non-idiomatic phrasal verbs.
Method: The study recruited 75 second language (L2) learners and placed them randomly into an experimental group and a control group. Data were gathered through the updated vocabulary levels test and two vocabulary tests. Over one month, the experimental group viewed an entire season of a TV series, and the control group followed their regular learning routine. Immediately after the end of the eight viewing sessions, the experimental and control groups completed the form and meaning post-tests.
Results: The results indicated that viewing a TV series contributed to the development of phrasal verb knowledge. The experimental group developed both form and meaning knowledge of the target phrasal verbs, and greater gains were made at the form recognition level. The research also revealed that although repetition of the target phrasal verbs in the series significantly correlated with the learning gains reported from both the form and meaning tests, its role in meaning was greater.
Implications: The study provides further valuable insights into how watching a TV series affects the learning of idiomatic and non-idiomatic phrasal verbs. It also advances our understanding of how repetition impacts phrasal verb uptake.
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