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Augmented Reality and English Language Teaching

Augmented Reality (AR) is a cutting-edge technology that seamlessly blends the physical and digital worlds, providing users with an enhanced visual experience by overlaying virtual objects in real time. By leveraging advanced graphic computing and object recognition technologies, AR enables the integration of digital information into users' real-world surroundings (Ruan & Jeong, 2012). It offers a dynamic and interactive learning environment where learners can engage with virtual elements and gain a deeper understanding of various phenomena.

There are two types of the AR applications: the marker-based AR applications and the location-based AR applications (Siltanen, 2012). Marker-based AR utilizes QR codes and barcodes to trigger the overlay of digital content onto physical objects (Ruan & Jeong, 2012). On the other hand, location-based AR relies on Global Positioning System (GPS) technology to deliver virtual information based on users' real-time geographical location. Notably, location-based AR experiences, exemplified by popular games like Pokemon Go, leverage GPS data to create immersive learning environments that align with learners' physical surroundings (Wu et al., 2013).

In the realm of language teaching and learning, AR has gained significant traction as a powerful tool for both classroom-based and outdoor learning experiences. Its unique ability to blend virtual and real elements provides language learners with unparalleled opportunities to engage with multimedia content, interact with virtual information in authentic contexts, and cultivate a deeper understanding of the target language (Cheng & Tsai, 2013). Contextualized EFL learning, which emphasizes the application of language skills in real-life situations, is greatly enhanced by AR technology, as it facilitates seamless interactions between virtual and physical environments, thereby promoting effective language acquisition (Hsu, 2017). Additionally, AR has demonstrated its potential to heighten learner motivation, foster curiosity, and foster collaborative and interactive learning experiences (Bacca et al., 2014; Huang et al., 2016).

In conclusion, AR offers a compelling platform for language learning, enabling learners to bridge the gap between virtual and real worlds, engage with immersive multimedia content, and significantly enrich their language learning experiences. By incorporating AR into EFL education, teachers can create engaging and interactive learning environments that promote contextualized language learning and empower learners to develop a deeper proficiency in the target language.

There are several Augmented Reality (AR) tools available that can be utilized to create engaging language teaching content. Here are some popular AR tools for language teaching:

Augmented Reality Tools



  • Bacca, J., Baldiris, S., Fabregat, R., & Graf, S. (2014). Augmented reality trends in education: A systematic review of research and applications. Journal of Educational Technology & Society,17(4), 133–149.

  • Chen, C. M., & Li, Y. L. (2010). Personalised context-aware ubiquitous learning system for supporting effective English vocabulary learning. Interactive Learning Environments,18(4), 341–364.

  • Chen, M. P., Wang, L. C., Zou, D., Lin, S. Y., Xie, H., & Tsai, C. C. (2022). Effects of captions and English proficiency on learning effectiveness, motivation and attitude in augmented-reality-enhanced theme-based contextualized EFL learning. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 35(3), 381-411.

  • Cheng, K.-H., & Tsai, C.-C. (2013). Affordances of augmented reality in science learning: Suggestions for future research. Journal of Science Education and Technology, 22(4), 449–462.

  • Hsu, T. C. (2017). Learning English with augmented reality: Do learning styles matter?. Computers & Education, 106, 137–149.

  • Ibanez, M. B., & Delgado-Kloos, C. (2018). Augmented reality for STEM learning: A systematic review. Computers & Education, 123, 109–123.

  • Ruan, K., & Jeong, H. (2012). An augmented reality system using QR code as marker in Android Smartphone. 2012 Spring Congress on Engineering and Technology (S-CET).

  • Siltanen, S. (2012). Theory and applications of marker-based augmented reality. VTT Science 3, Finland: VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.

  • Wu, H.-K., Lee, S. W.-Y., Chang, H.-Y., & Liang, J.-C. (2013). Current status, opportunities and challenges of augmented reality in education. Computers & Education, 62,41–49.

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