5 Conclusions

The communicative approach has been the foundation of foreign language teaching since the 1970s. This approach focuses less on grammar and translation, while “a holistic approach that teaches through modeling and contextualizing building blocks of language (both lexical and syntactical) in authentic communicative practices (as opposed to utterances of increasing complexity abstracted from their living social and cultural contexts) (Binotti & Chambless, 2023, p. 99). With the advance of emerging technologies, especially Extended Reality (XR) technologies, there is an enormous potential to provide authentic, contextualized, and realistic learning experiences using a more holistic language teaching approach.

In a recently published report (Lee et al., 2021), however, it was stated that there are a few major obstacles to the successful implementation of AR and VR technologies:

  • Access (to quality immersive technologies)
  • Affordability (cost of technologies)
  • Inadequate teacher training (early adopters of immersive technologies can teach themselves how to use these technologies, but for most people, extensive training is required)
  • Interoperability (different structures around different hardware and software, which makes it difficult to operate between platforms)
  • Lack of Content (much of the content for existing immersive technologies is developed for non-educational markets, although there are some encouraging developments in health and art-related subjects)
  • Lack of infrastructure and technology support (most institutionally supported immersive technology projects at higher education are limited to early adopters)

In addition to these obstacles, there is another challenge that faces educators: how to design language learning environments using immersive technologies. Learning design has always been an ignored component of the education process and recent discussions around emerging technologies also neglect the importance of laying out clearly what it means to implement a teaching approach with the use of a new technology. The author hopes to bridge this gap, by providing learning design examples and resources for other instructors and researchers, so they, too, can integrate immersive technologies into their curriculum.

Future Steps

Similar to Open Education Resources (OERs), Learning Object Repositories (LOR) provide free access to educational materials, but LORs focus on the technical resources, rather than the texts, syllabus, or course materials represented in the OERs. There is much need to create a LOR for immersive learning materials, as they can be produced only by a large group of highly specialized teams. With the lack of common technical standards, it may take longer than usual to create such a repository but for immersive learning to be mainstream, they are highly needed.



Binotti, L., & Chambless, A. (2023). From Immersion to Immersive: Blending the XR in the Foreign Language and Culture College Classroom. In Cherner, T., & Fegely, A. (Eds). Bridging the XR Technology-to-Practice Gap: Methods and Strategies for Blending Extended Realities into Classroom Instruction. Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education. (p. 97-118), (AACE).

Lee, M. J. W., Georgieva, M., Alexander, B., Craig, E., & Richter, J. (2021). State of XR & Immersive Learning Outlook Report 2021. Walnut, CA: Immersive Learning Research Network. Retrieved April 12, 2023, from https://pure.bond.edu.au/ws/portalfiles/portal/83700909/State_of_XR_Outlook_Report_Final.pdf