Teaching CLIL Courses Entirely in Virtual Reality

Educator Experiences





Professional Development, virtual reality (VR), Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL), educator experiences


Virtual reality (VR) has been found to be effective for increasing student motivation and engagement (Parong & Mayer, 2018), experiential learning (Hu-Au & Lee, 2018), and even improving spatial memory (Pollard et al., 2020). However, few studies have moved beyond the novelty of single-lesson VR experiences, nor have they used VR as the primary method of lesson delivery in language learning curricula (Kavanagh et al., 2017). Longitudinal data will help to elucidate a VR-specific pedagogy, providing evidence to support best practices, but they will not necessarily ensure that VR is actually adopted in classroom contexts. For that to take place, teacher buy-in is necessary, but there is also a lack of literature investigating the teacher side of planning and delivering VR lessons. The authors designed a longitudinal case study at a language focused university, in order to investigate the experiences of university lecturers who conducted eight-week Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) courses in VR using Immerse (www.immerse.online), a multi-user VR language learning platform. The study analyzes teachers’ perspectives on planning and implementing a VR curriculum. Post-lesson surveys and semi-structured interviews were conducted with the instructors. The analysis findings for both the instructors’ experiences will be discussed, along with their implications for integrating VR into extended course curricula.

Author Biographies

Euan Bonner, Kanda University of International Studies

Euan Bonner is an educational technology researcher for the Center for Learning and Teaching Innovation and lecturer at Kanda University. His research interests include the use of artificial intelligence and spatial computing (virtual and augmented reality) in education, improving digital literacies, educational app development, and in-the-moment engagement measuring.

Ryan Lege, Kanda University of International Studies

Ryan Lege currently lectures at Kanda University of International Studies in Chiba, Japan, and oversees professional development for information and communications technologies (ICT). His research interests include the use of design to support learning, Maker Education, and using technologies such as artificial
intelligence (AI) and virtual reality (VR) for education.

Erin Frazier, Meiji University

Erin Frazier, MSc, from the University of Edinburgh, currently lectures at Meiji University’s School of Global Japanese Studies. Her research interests include innovative materials design, Maker Education, the use of newer technologies to enhance education (AI, AR, VR), and the effects these technologies can have on


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How to Cite

Bonner, E., Lege, R., & Frazier, E. (2023). Teaching CLIL Courses Entirely in Virtual Reality: Educator Experiences. CALICO Journal, 40(1), 45–67. https://doi.org/10.1558/cj.22676