A review of MALL: from categories to implementation. The case of Apple’s iPad

Valentina Morgana


The use of mobile devices inside and outside formal settings is often associated to innovative practices in the design of language learning activities. This often implies the reconceptualization of language learning tasks and of the role of the teacher in the mobile classroom. In order to investigate current research and practices in secondary and higher education a review of recent studies in the field of MALL has been undertaken with the main aim of identifying main trends, implementation practices and research gaps.

This paper presents a synthesis of the literature by analysing the four different MALL categories, as presented in Pegrum (2014) and selecting a series of case studies and trends that may be implemented in various educational settings with a specific focus on the use of the iPad in second language settings. The review sought to provide a picture of the various options of MALL task-design and recent implementation practices in secondary and higher education using a specific tablet device. General findings show that many studies are more descriptive than innovative and advocate the implementation of larger and long-term research studies on how mobile devices, and the iPad in particular, are impacting language teaching and learning. Keywords: Mobile-assisted language learning, review, iPAD, task design.


Speaking skills; EFL; MALL; CALL; English language teaching

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