Language learning and virtual reality: A scoping review


  • Mehrasa Alizadeh International Professional University of Technology
  • Neil Cowie Okayama University



virtual reality, scoping review, language learning, higher education, K-12


This paper describes the rationale, process and results of a scoping review of journal articles researching aspects of language learning and the use of Virtual Reality (VR) from 2020 onwards. Twenty-four articles were chosen for data extraction, including five previous systematic reviews. The analysis confirmed that VR has a positive effect on the motivation of language learners to study but there is less clear-cut support for specific language gains. The most frequently mentioned language target is vocabulary acquisition, and although VR certainly facilitates initial vocabulary learning there is less evidence of long-term retention of new lexis. This scoping review has helped to focus the next stage of this VR project on working with students in the long term on improving specific speaking skills and to clarify the most appropriate pedagogical strategies for the use of VR for language learning.