Learning Chinese Formulaic Expressions in a Scenario-Based Interactive Environment

Naoko Taguchi, Qiong Li, Xiaofei Tang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


This study examined the effectiveness and usability of a scenario-based interactive practice in teaching Chinese formulaic expressions. Thirty students enrolled in Chinese classes in a U.S. university interacted with characters in videos featuring scenes recorded in Shanghai. Students were prompted to use formulaic expressions during their text-based interactions with built-in characters. Several game-like features were incorporated into the practice (e.g., a plot and settings, character selections, and point systems). Pre-, post-, and delayed posttest results showed that students made significant gains in their knowledge of formulaic expressions after the practice, and their knowledge was maintained 2 weeks later. Interviews with individual students revealed some features that motivated them with the practice (e.g., videorecordings of authentic situations, interactions with the characters). However, some students did not perceive the practice as a game-like experience because of the linear, structured nature of the practice and limited decision-making power, leaving room for design improvement in the future.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)641-660
Number of pages20
JournalForeign Language Annals
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • Chinese
  • formulaic expressions
  • gaming
  • pragmatic competence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Linguistics and Language


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