Effects of Closed-caption Programs on EFL Learners’ Listening Comprehension and Vocabulary Learning


Islamic Azad University, Shiraz, Iran


This study aimed at investigating the impact of closed-caption program on listening comprehension of English movies and vocabulary learning. Sixty-four graduate students studying at Shiraz Islamic Azad University were selected as the participants of the study. The participants were divided into two groups: experimental group (with closed caption program) and control group (without closed caption program). A BBC documentary movie (EARTH PLANET), was selected based on the content and level of difficulty of the language (matched to level of proficiency of the participants (advanced level)). Both classes watched the movie, but class one with closed-caption and the other one without closed-caption. Two researcher-designed tests (one listening comprehension test and one vocabulary test) were employed as the instruments. To ensure the reliability of the tests, the researcher conducted a pilot study. The results of the Guttmann reliability indicated that the tests were highly reliable. The participants answered the relevant multiple-choice vocabulary and listening comprehension questions. The results of independent sample t-test analysis clearly indicated that closed-caption program had a positive impact on participants’ listening comprehension. It can be said that the participants of the experimental group comprehended the movie better than the participants of the experimental group. However, closed-caption program did not have an effect on participants' vocabulary learning or vocabulary recognition and there wasn’t any difference between the performance of male and female participants of the experimental group in listening comprehension and vocabulary learning tests.