Use of Glosses for Reading with Computers by Turkish Pre-Service English Language Teachers

Salihoğlu U. M. , Yalçın I.

Indonesian Journal of English Language Teaching and Applied Linguistics, vol.7, no.1, pp.91-106, 2022 (Peer-Reviewed Journal)


This study investigates the use of L1 glosses during computerized reading in

the English Language Teaching (ELT) context. A group of 26 ELT students at

a large Turkish public university read three short texts and used pop-up

glosses to promote their comprehension. Web pages were designed for

reading and glosses, and a screen capture tool recorded the participants' on-

screen actions. The glossed-items that the participants clicked were examined

for word-type selections to see whether the clicked items were useful, high-

frequency words in the main parts of sentences or if they were in the

supporting details. Three nonsense words replacing three main lexical items

were also employed to observe the students’ purposeful clicking to understand

the texts. The findings indicated that ELT pre-service teachers were careful

and meticulous in their selection of look-ups. However, there was a

discrepancy between the words that students claim to know and the words

that they actually checked during glossed reading. The study confirmed the

tendency for more look-ups with pop-up glosses as mentioned in the

literature, even though the glossed items were not visually enhanced. The

genuine look-up behavior was also confirmed with the moderately high clicks

on the nonsense words. We can conclude that trainees are able to determine

the types of words to be checked for better text comprehension but they seem

to need training and more practice for using other strategies other than relying

solely on gloss-type information sources. We suggested implications for

further studies.