Vlogging as Instructional Strategy: Improving English Oral Communication Skills of Generation Z Students: A Case Study
One of the long-standing communication challenges among Thai students is their low proficiency in English, specifically oral communication skills, brought about by limited opportunities for practice, use of traditional teaching strategies, and students’ lack of confidence. Different approaches to teaching and learning have been utilized to cater to the needs and challenges of this new generation of learners, the Generation Z. In this study, vlogging is introduced as an instructional strategy. It aimed to assess the effectiveness of vlogging in improving the oral communication skills and to explore the perception of students on the utilization of vlogging as instructional strategy. In this case study, a quasi-experiment and focus group discussions were conducted among forty-two first year hospitality college students enrolled in Principles of Communication class. After a pre-vlogging speaking activity, participants created and shared four vlogs in a private Facebook group throughout the semester. A post-vlogging speaking activity was conducted at the end of the semester. Two sets of instruments were utilized: 1) a four-point scale standardized scoring rubric used to evaluate pre-vlogging (pretest) and post-vlogging (post-test) activities; and 2) an expert-validated focus group discussion guide to explore the students’ perception. Data were analyzed using paired sample t-test for the quantitative data and thematic analysis for the qualitative data. Results revealed that the students' nonverbal communication, verbal communication, and organization of content improved significantly. Overall, the most significant improvement was organization of content. Specifically, the most substantial improvements were in the subskills of purpose, time management, composure, enthusiasm, and vocabulary. The majority of the participants perceived vlogging as a positive experience and as an effective strategy to improve their oral communication skills. Apart from improving English oral communication skills and boosting their self-confidence, vlogging also enhanced self-awareness, socialization, comprehension of the course content, writing skill and creativity. Instructional designers and teachers can adopt vlogging in different courses to improve English communication skills of students. The challenges on preparation time, exchange of peer feedback, attitude of the students, and topics assignment should be appropriately addressed. Effectiveness of integration in other disciplines and assessing improvement in other related skills are recommended for further studies.