Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Granting Department

Secondary Education

Major Professor

Tony Erben, Ph.D.


Cognitive, Modality, Attention, Look-up, Noticing, Task type, ESL, Dual-coding


This dissertation investigated the effects of multimedia annotation on L2 vocabulary learning and reading comprehension. The overarching objective of this study was to compare the effects of text-picture annotation and audio-picture annotation on L2 vocabulary immediate recall and reading comprehension. This study also sought to examine the different effects under incidental and intentional learning conditions. The participants were 78 intermediate adult ESL learners from three universities in northwest U.S. The participants read an Internet-based English text. Twenty target words, annotated in either text-picture or audio-picture, were embedded in the reading text. The participants accessed the annotations by clicking on the highlighted target words. Two instruments were used for measuring vocabulary immediate recall: Vocabulary Knowledge Scale and Word Recognition Test.

Two measurements were used to assess reading comprehension: Multiple-choice Reading Comprehension Questions and L1 Written Recall. In term of annotation types, the results indicated that the audio-picture annotation group did significantly better than the text-picture group in L2 vocabulary immediate recall. However, there was no significantly different effect between the two annotations on L2 reading comprehension. In terms of learning conditions, the intentional learning condition resulted in significantly better performance in L2 vocabulary immediate recall than the incidental learning condition. However, the incidental learning condition resulted in significantly better L2 reading comprehension than the intentional learning condition only in the Written Recall measure, but not in the multiple-choice Reading Comprehension Test.

In terms of interaction between annotation type and learning condition, there was not interaction between annotation type and learning condition on L2 vocabulary immediate recall. The interaction between annotation type and learning condition on L2 reading comprehension was not significant in multiple-choice Reading Comprehension Text. However, the interaction was found to be significant in Written Recall: in the incidental learning condition, the difference between text-picture annotation and audio-picture annotation was not significant; in the intentional learning condition, participants in text-picture did significantly better than those in audio-picture on Written Recall.