Innovation in Language Learning

Edition 16

Accepted Abstracts

The Rise of Social Audio Apps: A Tool for Language Learning

Luciana Lousada, Linguaffin / HNEE (Germany)


Since the first quarter of 2020, the social media sphere has seen the rise of audio social spaces. Apps and platforms that privilege voice over images and texts have been launched by both newcomers and social giants. As audio social spaces become as normal as posts, stories, and short videos, it’s worth questioning how the teaching and learning of languages can benefit from them. Filling the gap left by lockdown restrictions, Clubhouse – an audio-only app that allows users to drop into a chatroom and listen to content in real-time – saw an immediate success. This present work shares the experience of using Clubhouse to its fullest – from opening a club up to offering regular practice rooms – in order to teach a foreign language in a non-formal approach from February 2021 on. The first results indicate that the app can be a powerful tool to improve listening skills and promote a cultural interchange. Even if it is still early to say if Clubhouse and other audio social services alike are going to be the future of social platforms, these apps provide us with meaningful information about the role of voice in real-time communication, applied to learning a language.

Keywords: audio drop-in app, varieties of Portuguese, cultural awareness, listening skills.


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