The role of learners’ memory in app-based language instruction: the case of Duolingo.

Research output: Contributions to collected editions/worksArticle in conference proceedingsResearch


The current study investigated the role of visual short-term memory, working memory, and declarative memory as individual differences in the earliest stages of vocabulary and syntactic learning in Duolingo-based language instruction. Thirty-eight L1-Greek adults completed memory tasks and engaged in learning Navajo on Duolingo. Subsequently, vocabulary and syntax were assessed respectively via a word recognition, a word translation, and a grammaticality judgement task. Multiple regression analyses revealed an advantage for distributed practice both in vocabulary and syntax, after controlling for amount of practice. Further, declarative memory played a significant role in learning syntax and vocabulary, when measured in a word translation task. Extending the analysis for the first time to app-based environments, the results of the present study confirm the importance of declarative memory and distributed practice in adult acquisition of L2 vocabulary and syntax.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationIntelligent CALL, granular systems and learner data : short papers from EUROCALL 2022
EditorsBirna Arnbjörnsdóttir, Branislav Bédi, Linda Bradley, Kolbrún Friðriksdóttir, Hólmfríður Garðarsdóttir, Sylvie Thouësny, Matthew James Whelpton
Number of pages6
Place of PublicationVoillans
Publication date12.12.2022
ISBN (electronic)978-2-38372-015-7
Publication statusPublished - 12.12.2022
EventEUROCALL Conference 2022: Intelligent CALL, granular systems and learner data - University of Iceland (online), Virtuell, Iceland
Duration: 16.08.202219.08.2022