Using electronic storybooks to foster word-learning in Turkish children

Burcu Sarı, Handan Asûde Başal, Zsofia K. Takacs, Adriana G. Bus

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


A growing body of electronic storybooks,with different multimedia additions such as animation, background music and sound effects, has become available in online stores for an international community. The current study was designed to disentangle the effects of multimedia features that are rather common: animation on the one hand, music and sound effects on the other. Furthermore, we aimed to assess whether multimedia-enhanced stories that have been shown to facilitate word learning in other samples (Takacs, Swart & Bus,2015) are similarly effective for Turkish children. A sample of 99 4- and 5-year-old kindergarten children were randomly assigned to one of five conditions: (1)animated stories with background music and sounds, (2) animated stories without background music and sounds, (3) stories with static illustrations and background music and sounds, (4) stories with static illustrations without background music and sounds and (5) a control group who did not listen to the stories. In the intervention conditions, two electronic storybooks were each presented twice. Preliminary results show cognitive overload from the electronic books. In contrast to previous studies,animated illustrations were not helpful in acquiring new word meanings and children gained more vocabulary in the conditions without music or sound. In particular,background music and sounds seem to interfere with Turkish children’s learning.Possible explanations are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Digital Literacy and Multimodal Practices of Young Children: Engaging with Emergent Research
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the first Training School of COST Action IS1410, University of Minho, Braga, Portugal, 6th - 8th June, 2016
EditorsÍris Pereira, Altina Ramos, Jackie Marsh
PublisherCentro de Investigação em Educação
ISBN (Electronic)9789898525482
Publication statusPublished - 8 Jun 2016


  • electronic storybooks
  • multimedia learning
  • vocabulary development
  • language development
  • cognitive overload


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