Twenty years of personalized language learning: Topic modeling and knowledge mapping

Xieling CHEN, Di ZOU, Haoran XIE, Kwok Shing CHENG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

69 Citations (Scopus)


Personalized language learning (PLL), a popular approach to precision language education, plays an increasingly essential role in effective language education to meet diverse learner needs and expectations. Research on PLL has become an active sub-field of research on technology-enhanced language learning and artificial intelligence applications in education. Based on the PLL literature from the Web of Science and Scopus databases, this study identified trends and prominent research issues within the field from 2000 to 2019 using structural topic modeling and bibliometrics. Trend analysis of articles demonstrated increasing interest in PLL research. Journals such as Educational Technology & Society and Computers & Education had contributed much to PLL research. PLL associated closely with mobile learning, game-based learning, and online/web-based learning. Moreover, personalized feedback and recommendations were important issues in PLL. Additionally, there was an increasing interest in adopting learning analytics and artificial intelligence in PLL research. Results obtained could help practitioners and scholars better understand the trends and status of PLL research and become aware of the hot topics and future directions. Copyright © 2021 Educational Technology & Society. All right reserved.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205-222
JournalEducational Technology & Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2021


Chen, X., Zou, D., Xie, H., & Cheng, G. (2021). Twenty years of personalized language learning: Topic modeling and knowledge mapping. Educational Technology & Society, 24(1), 205-222.


  • Personalized language learning
  • Topic modeling
  • Knowledge mapping
  • Bibliometrics
  • Precision education
  • PG student publication


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