Designing a Mobile Website to Teach Phrasal Verbs to English Learners

Author/Creator ORCID



Type of Work


University of Baltimore. Yale Gordon College of Arts & Science


University of Baltimore. Master of Science in Interaction Design and Information Architecture

Citation of Original Publication


Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 United States
This item may be protected under Title 17 of the U.S. Copyright Law. It is made available by the University of Baltimore for non-commercial research and educational purposes.


English language learners (ELLs) face many challenges in their English learning journey. For ELLs living in the United States or working with English speakers from this country, one of those challenges is learning and understanding the widely used phrasal verbs due to their number and polysemy. Once ELLs have reached an intermediate or advanced level, they are ready to learn phrasal verbs, but they often find themselves frustrated and anxious by the very difficult nature of these complex grammatical structures. Using research-based design, this study reviews the literature of methodologies used for teaching phrasal verbs and uses it in conjunction with user research to prototype a mobile website that teaches phrasal verbs to ELLs. Through a user survey of phrasal verb knowledge, a competitor analysis and in-depth interviews with ELLs, the study collects important qualitative and quantitative data for the creation of the initial prototype that is later tested iteratively with ELL participants. At the end of the iterative testing process, this thesis reports the changes made to the prototype based on the data collected through user research and notes the limitations of the study as well as the research that is still needed to create the phrasal verb teaching website.