Online comments as input enhancement
Keywords:online comments, input enhancement, help options, listening comprehension
Chapelle (2003) proposed three general types of input enhancement that help L2 learners “acquire features of the linguistic input that they are exposed to during the course reading or listening for meaning” (p. 40): input salience, input modification, and input elaboration. In 2010, Cárdenas-Claros and Gruba argued that Chapelle’s different types of input enhancement “can be and have been operationalized through help options” primarily utilized in the teaching of reading, listening, writing, grammar, and vocabulary such as glossed words, video/audio control features, captions, subtitles, and grammar explanations (p. 79). As understood from Cárdenas-Claros and Gruba’s classification of help options, input enhancement can only be accomplished through one process: salience, modification, or elaboration. In this article, we argue that YouTube comments have the potential to be (1) a help option that facilitate both listening comprehension of the videos and vocabulary learning and that (2) input enhancement accomplished by comments can be achieved by a combination of different types of input enhancement. Put another way, the aural input of a YouTube video can be salient, modified, and elaborated, thanks to the various types of comments YouTube videos often receive.
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