Innovation in Language Learning

Edition 17

Accepted Abstracts Solving Challenges of Integration with the Power of TV

Philipp Etzlinger, (Austria)

Francesca Sannazzaro, (Austria)


The Austrian social entrepreneurship startup is solving the obstacles of language learning by giving people an innovative approach to access television. Students often find language courses dull as textbooks and learning videos are based on curated and not authentic content. At the same time course participants are being taught the standard language and cultural as well as societal peculiarities cannot be covered within language courses which leaves them with a stereotypical picture and often old-fashioned view of the country and its society. But language learning is more than just learning a language – it’s about understanding the culture, it’s about tearing down prejudices, and TV is the best source for that as it’s a reflection of society. In fact is able to solve societal challenges through the medium of television. Highly acclaimed by experts solves obstacles of integration of migrants with a low threshold in a fun and easy way: Instead of attending integration courses people watch TV and thereby learn about the values and traditions of the host society. thereby overcomes language barriers: is a smartphone/tablet application that streams TV-broadcasts and equips them with interactive intralingual subtitles. If the user comes across a word he or she does not understand, the user can click on it and a contextual translation of the word is being displayed. Each word clicked is stored in the user's personal word catalog and can be retrieved later for learning purposes. is designed as well for autodidacts as well as for language courses. Educational institutions like Wiener Volkshochschulen, VHS Linz or bfi OÖ and universities like UNAM (MX), UFRP (BR) or UNRC (AR) already implemented in their language courses as a complementary source. In a meta-study on "Language Learning with Subtitles", the University of Vienna highlighted this approach as an essential tool for learning languages. Even today, 82% of those who learn English as a foreign language are also learning by means of TV and are using television as a medium of support. optimizes this process. One of the great advantages of is the variety of daily up-to-date content used as well as low-threshold access, as only a smartphone is required for successful use. Promo-video

Keywords: TV, interactive subtitles, integration, authentic content, broadcasts.

[1] Wiener Volkshochschulen – Implementation of within project Jugendcollege. Contact: Maria Gassner – [email protected]
[2] VHS Linz – implementation of – Contact: Astrid Diwischek - [email protected]
[3] Research study conducted by University of Vienna


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