Optimizing the Process of Teaching English for Medical Purposes with the Use of Mobile Applications

A Memrise-based Case Study

by Maria Chojnacka (Author)
Monographs 205 Pages


The ubiquity of mobile devices has opened the way to extending learning environments far beyond the constraints of the traditional foreign language classroom. This book seeks to advance the knowledge about effective learning and teaching of English for Medical Purposes supported by mobile environments. The author investigates the effectiveness of the use of a mobile version of a flashcard spaced-repetition learning platform. In conclusion, she presents core principles of an educational solution that supports the ongoing and situated learning of English for Medical Purposes by designing a mobile spaced-repetition medical vocabulary tutor («Mobile Medical English Companion»).

Table Of Content

  • Cover
  • Title
  • Copyright
  • About the author(s)/editor(s)
  • About the book
  • This eBook can be cited
  • Table of Contents
  • List of tables
  • List of figures
  • List of abbreviations
  • Introduction
  • Chapter One: An Overview of Key Concepts Pertaining to Teaching English for Specific Purposes
  • 1.1 Introduction
  • 1.2 To ESP or not to ESP
  • 1.3 Characteristics of ESP
  • 1.4 ESP Methodology
  • 1.5 ESP Research History
  • 1.5.1 Register Analysis Research
  • 1.5.2 Rhetorical or Discourse Analysis Research
  • 1.5.3 The Recent Past Research
  • 1.5.4 Target Situation Analysis (Needs Analysis)
  • 1.5.5 Towards the New
  • 1.6 Concluding Remarks
  • Chapter Two: Key Features of English for Medical Purposes
  • 2.1 Introduction
  • 2.2 Core Features of English for Medical Purposes
  • 2.2.1 Impact of Latin on Medical Terminology
  • 2.2.2 Core Lexical Features of EMP
  • 2.2.3 Core Grammatical Features of EMP
  • Passivization and Personalization
  • Conditional Clauses
  • Hedging
  • The Use of Tenses
  • Sentence Complexity
  • The Use of Prepositions
  • 2.3 Doctor’s English, Patient’s English
  • 2.4 Standardization of Medical Writing
  • 2.5 EMP Language Ability
  • 2.5.1 sTANDEM Certification
  • 2.6 Concluding Remarks
  • Chapter Three: Motivation, Learner Autonomy and the Role of the Teacher in Learning and Teaching English for Medical Purposes
  • 3.1 Motivational Dimensions
  • 3.2 Types of Motivation
  • 3.2.1 Intrinsic and Extrinsic Motivation
  • 3.2.2 Integrative and Instrumental Orientation
  • 3.2.3 Other Theories of Motivation
  • 3.3 Motivation in Mobile Learning
  • 3.4 Learner Autonomy
  • 3.5 The Role of the Teacher in EMP
  • 3.6 Concluding Remarks
  • Chapter Four: Key Tenets of Mobile Assisted Language Learning
  • 4.1 Introduction
  • 4.2 Definitions of Mobile Learning
  • 4.3 Review of Research on M-learning
  • 4.4 The Nature of Mobile Learning
  • 4.5 Intelligent Vocabulary Trainers
  • 4.6 Flashcard Software
  • 4.6.1 Memrise
  • 4.7 Technology in Teaching ESP
  • 4.8 Concluding Remarks
  • Chapter Five: A Memrise-based Case Study
  • 5.1 Introduction
  • 5.2 Research Goals
  • 5.3 Research Method
  • 5.3.1 Participants
  • 5.3.2 Research Instrument and Procedure
  • 5.4 Group Profile
  • 5.4.1 Group Characteristics
  • 5.4.2 Concluding Remarks
  • 5.5 Statistical Analysis of Research Questions
  • 5.5.1 Answer to Research Question 1: To what extent are medical students open to the use of (mobile) technology in learning English for Medical Purposes?
  • 5.5.2 Answer to Research Question 2: Can self-paced Memrise-based homework enhance the acquisition of course material?
  • The Analysis
  • Concluding Remarks
  • 5.5.3 Research Question 3: How did learners evaluate the Memrise-rooted MALL as an EMP learning experience?
  • 5.5.4 Limitations of the Study
  • 5.5.5 Concluding Remarks
  • Chapter Six: Pedagogical Implications
  • 6.1 Introduction
  • 6.2 Student Comments Analysis
  • 6.3 New Educational Framework
  • 6.4 App Design
  • 6.5 Concluding Remarks
  • References
  • Appendix A (Questionnaire 1, Questionnaire 2)
  • Series index

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List of tables

Table 1: Variation in medical terminology (after Džuganová 2013)

Table 2: Appropriate tense use in IMRD sections (after Rogers 2007: 43)

Table 3: Appropriate tense use (after Rogers 2007: 43)

Table 4: CEFR descriptors tailored to the sTANDEM project

Table 5: Sample terminological issues

Table 6: Weiner’s attribution matrix (after Zybert 2012: 112)

Table 7: Motivational matrix (Bailey 1986, in Brown 2000: 166)

Table 8: Motivational dimensions (after Ushioda 2001 and Noels 2003)

Table 9: Memrise ranks (adapted from http://www.memrise.com/thread/1291880/)

Table 10: Activities that foster autonomy (Benson 2001, in Dörnyei 2001: 107)

Table 11: M-learning typology after Kukulska-Hulma and Traxler (2005: 182)

Table 12: Attitudes towards mobile learning – Rotated Component Matrix (Varimax)

Table 13: Mean equality test

Table 14: Correlation between U3 Memrise score and U3 post-test

Table 15: Correlation between U5 Memrise score and U5 post-test

Table 16: Results in U3 post-test for groups with/without minimum in Memrise U3

Table 17: Results in U3 post-test for groups with/without maximum in Memrise U3

Table 18: Regression analysis of the U5 post-test results

Table 19: U5 post-test results in sub-groups chosen on the basis of U5 Memrise score and Unit 3 task in the end of term test performance

Table 20: Regression analysis of voluntary Memrise use

Table 21: Regression analysis of voluntary Memrise use

Table 22: Correlation between ‘test’ variable and Memrise scores

Table 23: Scores in U5 Memrise in sub-groups chosen on the basis of Memrise U3 score and post-test performance

Table 24: The aspects of innovative educational practice (after Milrad 2006) with regards to MMEC ← 9 | 10 →

Table 25: Ten principles for the design and implementation of mobile applications and tasks using native mobile functionalities by Stockwell − Hubbard (2013: 8–10)

Table 26: Design issues in Mobile Medical English Companion

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List of figures

Figure 1: Categorization of ESP (after Basturkmen 2006)

Figure 2: ESP classification by experience (Dudley-Evans − St John 1998, after Robinson 1991: 3–4)

Figure 3: The expanding focus of EST (Parkinson 2013, after Halliday 1993)

Figure 4: Motivation dichotomy (after Brown 2000, Dörnyei 2001)

Figure 5: Gardner’s conceptualisation of the integrative motive (after Dörnyei 2001: 17, Dörnyei 2005: 69)

Figure 6: The relationship between computer literacy and willingness to adopt new technologies for learning

Figure 7: Factors affecting motivation in m-learning

Figure 8: Classification of educational spaces (after Kuzmicz – Skrzydlewski 2012: 82)

Figure 9: M-learning components matrix

Figure 10: The Language Partner (after Presson et al. 2013: 158)

Figure 11: Why did you choose to study medicine?

Figure 12: What motivates you to learn English for Medical Purposes?

Figure 13: Dendrogram of student motivation to learn English for Medical Purposes

Figure 14: Factors influencing success in foreign language learning

Figure 15: Apart from English, what foreign languages do you know?

Figure 16: The knowledge of foreign languages other than English (Latin included)

Figure 17: The knowledge of foreign languages other than English (Latin excluded)

Figure 18: Apart from regular classes, how much time do you spend learning English for Medical Purposes?

Figure 19: The ownership of digital devices among the study participants

Figure 20: The number of digital devices owned

Figure 21: Frequency of use of social networks

Figure 22: How often do you use a mobile phone/smartphone to use the Internet?

Figure 23: How do you access web content on your mobile phone?

Figure 24: Which devices do you use to learn English? And how often?

Figure 25: Would you be interested in learning EMP via a mobile app? ← 11 | 12 →

Figure 26: Which three features of a mobile learning app do you think are most important?

Figure 27: Dendrogram of the most important features of a learning mobile app

Figure 28: Mobile learning makes learning personalized

Figure 29: M-learning is a convenient and efficient way of learning

Figure 30: In the future, mobile learning will play an important role in English language learning

Figure 31: Mobile devices can be a good supplementation of a language course


ISBN (Hardcover)
Publication date
2017 (July)
ESP Mobile Apps Medical English Learner Motication Task Design M-Learning
Frankfurt am Main, Bern, Bruxelles, New York, Oxford, Warszawa, Wien, 2017. 205 pp., 47 b/w ill., 26 b/w tables

Biographical notes

Maria Chojnacka (Author)

Maria Chojnacka is an Assistant Professor at the Institute of English Studies, University of Social Sciences, Warsaw, Poland. Her research interests include current trends in ELT, the use of technology in teaching English for Medical Purposes and developing learner autonomy through mobile assisted language use.


Title: Optimizing the Process of Teaching English for Medical Purposes with the Use of Mobile Applications