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TV or not TV? The impact of subtitling on English skills

Author

Listed:
  • Rupérez Micola, Augusto
  • Aparicio Fenoll, Ainoa
  • Banal-Estañol, Albert
  • Bris, Arturo

Abstract

We study the influence of television translation techniques on the worldwide distribution of English-speaking skills. We identify a large positive effect for subtitled original version broadcasts, as opposed to dubbed television, on English proficiency scores. We analyze the historical circumstances under which countries opted for one of the translation modes and use it to account for the possible endogeneity of the subtitling indicator. We disaggregate the results by type of skills and find that television works especially well for listening comprehension. Our paper suggests that governments could promote subtitling as a means to improve foreign language proficiency.

Suggested Citation

  • Rupérez Micola, Augusto & Aparicio Fenoll, Ainoa & Banal-Estañol, Albert & Bris, Arturo, 2019. "TV or not TV? The impact of subtitling on English skills," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 158(C), pages 487-499.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:158:y:2019:i:c:p:487-499
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2018.12.019
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Television; Subtitling; Foreign language skills;

    JEL classification:

    • I21 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Education - - - Analysis of Education
    • Z11 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economics of the Arts and Literature

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