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

A Memrise-based Case Study

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Maria Chojnacka

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»).

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Introduction

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Challenges to Language for Specific Purposes (LSP) pedagogy have received a lot of attention among researchers, with the first research accounts dating from 1960s. Presently, a comprehensive account of approaches towards LSP methodology can be found in a wide array of publications, e.g. Paltridge − Starfield (2013) or Gajewska − Sowa (2014), among the most recent ones. English for Specific Purposes is by far the fastest growing and the most common branch of LSP, e.g. there are over one hundred ESP coursebooks aimed at specific disciplines available from one of the biggest international publishing houses. An increasing number of universities offer courses, or even entire study programs in ESP. There also exist well-established, peer-reviewed ESP-dedicated journals and vigorous ESP communities are mushrooming throughout the world.

The ubiquity of mobile devices has opened the way to extending learning environments far beyond the constraints of the traditional foreign language classroom. The concepts of m-learning, mobile assisted language learning (MALL) or mobile assisted language use (MALU) have also received pronounced research attention, which has led to an ever-increasing number of publications regarding the use of mobile technologies in foreign language teaching (e.g. Gajek 2015, among the most recent publications). World-wide telecollaboration projects, or publications in peer-reviewed journals dedicated to e-, m- or u- learning are the bread and butter of the vigorous digital communities.

Studies have been undertaken to investigate the domains of English for Specific Purposes or the domain of mobile learning, yet there are only a few...

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