Netflix and L2 learning: A case study

Gilbert Dizon


The evolving video viewing habits of consumers combined with advances in mobile technology have resulted in the growth of video on demand (VOD) services. While these video streaming services potentially offer several benefits for L2 learners, little is known about them in the context of language learning. Thus, this study fills this gap in the literature by examining EFL students’ views of Netflix, the leading provider of subscription VOD. The study also investigates the extent to which EFL learners use Netflix for L2 learning and the means by which they access the service. Nine Japanese EFL students participated in the study and were given three months to use Netflix. The participants were then interviewed to obtain their opinions of the video streaming service. Four themes were extracted from the interview data: (1) enhanced learning effectiveness, (2) increased L2 motivation, (3) better access to L2 knowledge, and (4) hindered convenience. It was also found that the learners watched primarily through mobiles devices rather than PCs, and viewed more L2 titles than L1 programming. These results illustrate that subscription VOD has the potential to foster L2 learning and underscore the necessity for more research into their use for language learning.


L2 Video; CALL; L2 learning; EFL; Netflix

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