University of Tasmania
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Mobile-assisted language learning in Chinese higher education context: a systematic review from the perspective of the situated learning theory

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-21, 09:10 authored by Li, F, Si FanSi Fan, YanJun WangYanJun Wang
Recent years have witnessed numerous systematic investigations on mobile-assisted language learning (MALL). However, very few research synthesis studies focused on the higher education context in mainland China. This paper provides a systematic review of the findings of 23 studies published between 2015 and 2020 in mainland China. The aim of this review is twofold: 1) to examine prevalent researched elements in extant MALL studies; and 2) to investigate ways in which the two original components of the Situated Learning Theory (SLT), including Legitimate Peripheral Participation and Communities of Practice (Lave & Wenger, 1991), have a bearing on MALL. This systematic review resulted in two major findings. First, five key researched elements were revealed, e.g., target language teaching areas, and adopted applications/software. Second, guided by the two original elements of SLT, four derived elements were identified, namely authenticity, social interactions and collaborations, apprenticeship learning, and beliefs and behaviours. The findings suggest the need to develop sound MALL pedagogies associated with sociocultural aspects of language learning in relevant contexts. This review study also provides insights into how Chinese language professionals and practitioners can improve curriculum design and resource development to adapt to future trends in MALL.


Publication title

Education and Information Technologies








Faculty of Education


Springer New York LLC

Place of publication

United States

Rights statement

© The Author(s) 2022. This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made.

Repository Status

  • Open

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