Effects of tasks and multimedia annotations on vocabulary learning

Di ZOU*, Mark Feng TENG

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


This research examines the interaction effect and main effects of time, tasks, and annotations on annotation-supported vocabulary learning using multimedia. Three task types (reading comprehension, cloze exercises, and sentence writing) and four annotation types (text, picture, graphics interchange format (GIF), and video annotations) were investigated. A total of 360 working adults in Hong Kong participated in the project and were randomly assigned to 12 groups with different vocabulary learning activities to learn 10 target words. Participants’ target vocabulary knowledge was measured by an immediate posttest after the treatment and a delayed posttest one week later. The results showed statistically significant interaction effects between time, tasks, and annotations. Time has a significant effect on the vocabulary learning outcome. Regarding the main effects of the task type, sentence writing exercises were significantly more effective than cloze tasks, which in turn were significantly more effective than reading comprehension exercises. As for the main effects of the annotation type, pictures, GIFs were significantly more effective than video annotations, while text annotations were the least effective. Picture annotations were similarly effective to GIF annotations. Most participants displayed positive attitudes towards multimedia annotation-supported vocabulary learning finding it interesting and effective. Suggestions for teachers, teaching material developers, and learners are proposed based on the results.

Original languageEnglish
Article number103050
Early online date22 Apr 2023
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2023
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research is funded by SCOLAR (Standing Committee on Language Education and Research) for the Research and Development Project ( EDB(LE)/P&R/EL/175/2 ) and The Education University of Hong Kong, Seed Funding Grant ( RG64/21-22R ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023


  • Cloze
  • Involvement load hypothesis
  • Multimedia annotation
  • Reading
  • Vocabulary learning
  • Writing


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