What "seams" have been bridged in seamless vocabulary learning?: A review of the literature

Yanjie SONG, Gwo-Jen HWANG

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Despite seamless vocabulary learning studies having been implemented for about 10 years, little is known about what seamless vocabulary learning studies are, how they were conducted, what the learning outcomes were, or the issues and trends of seamless vocabulary learning. This literature review aimed at addressing these questions. Adopting Webster and Watson's (2002. Analyzing the past to prepare for the future: Writing a literature review. MIS Quarterly, xiii–xxiii) method of keyword searching and examination of refereed journals, 26 eligible articles were selected and analyzed under the framework of analyzing seamless vocabulary learning studies. The research findings show that the majority of reviewed studies focused more on the seamless features of "ubiquity and continuity" of artifact creation, situated and personalized learning, less on instructional designs on the features of "knowledge synthesis, activities that that apply multiple language skills in different combinations, and co-construction of linguistic knowledge" premised on vocabulary learning theories. In addition, more studies focused on vocabulary learning performance and perceptions of learners' learning experience in a short term in primary or higher education for prescribed learning tasks. Future research is encouraged to focus on innovative seamless vocabulary instructional designs premised on sound theoretical underpinnings to improve underexplored seamless features from varied perspectives in a longitudinal study, especially at a secondary level. Copyright © 2020 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1967-1983
JournalInteractive Learning Environments
Issue number10
Early online dateJul 2020
Publication statusPublished - 2022


Song, Y., & Hwang, G.-J. (2022). What "seams" have been bridged in seamless vocabulary learning?: A review of the literature. Interactive Learning Environments, 30(10), 1967-1983. doi: 10.1080/10494820.2020.1789667


  • Seamless learning
  • Vocabulary learning
  • Literature review
  • Mobile devices
  • Trends and issues


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