Type Paper
License CC BY 4.0

Digital video in the language classroom


Video-based methodologies are well-established in second language teaching. Perhaps most common is the use of video as an alternative to more traditional cassette tape and CD listening comprehension activities. Video allows learners to see the context of the discourse and the speaker’s body language as well as other visual aids to comprehension. It is thus hard to question Stempleski’s (1987) assertion that video aids learners’ comprehension of English. Another use of video is to record student projects, such as role-plays, documentaries and TV commercials (Brooke, 2003). As video technology becomes more accessible and editing on computers simpler, such projects are becoming increasingly attractive for the language classroom. Video also offers several other possibilities for language learning. One interesting use of video is to document and assess students’ productive performance of a second language. Video naturally lends itself to the assessment of presentations and public speaking, but it can also be applied to pairwork and group discussion tasks. Furthermore, to help students develop their speaking skills, teachers can make ‘model videos’ which visually demonstrate what students are expected to do in an oral task. Finally, digital video technology allows teachers to manipulate authentic video, which can be edited, subtitled and simplified to make it more suitable for language learners. With relatively inexpensive equipment, and easily acquired skills, teachers and learners can employ a wide range of effective and motivating video methodologies. This paper will outline the practical aspects of choosing hardware, the basics of using video editing software and a range of methodological applications for the language classroom.


Shrosbree, M. (2008). Digital video in the language classroom. The JALT CALL Journal, 4(1), 75-84. https://doi.org/10.29140/jaltcall.v4n1.56