The Application of Virtual Reality to Foreign Vocabulary Learning Making Use of the Loci Method.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Arts
An experiment was conducted to evaluate the potential for virtual reality-based enhancement of the mnemonic method of loci to yield improvements in performance in the learning of Swedish vocabulary. Groups of 15 participants were given a set of concrete nouns in the Swedish language along with their English translations. They were asked to learn both the gender of the Swedish words and their English translations, using one of four variants of the loci mnemonic. These variants comprised the presence or absence of a virtual environment and the prior grouping of the words into semantically related categories. The manipulation of virtuality did not provide statistically significant results, although the trends were in the direction of enhanced learning in the virtual environment. The manipulation of prior grouping into semantically related categories yielded statistically stronger effects than the manipulation of virtuality. The implications for future research using virtual-reality-based enhancements of the method of loci are discussed.