Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Type



Eberly College of Arts and Sciences


World Languages, Literatures and Linguistics

Committee Chair

Cynthia Chalupa

Committee Co-Chair

Maria Amores

Committee Member

Jennifer Orlikoff


Research has shown that authentic audio-visual materials have had a positive effect in foreign language classroom on learners' motivation and their confidence. Studies have also shown that humor can aid learners' memorization and improve their motivation, whether it is used in course material or through the instructor's interaction with the learners. Few researchers have focused, however, on the effect of humorous audio-visual material on foreign language learning. The aim of this thesis is to research the effects of humor in authentic video programming on the learning of French. In particular it examines the genre of the shortcom and how its use in French language instruction can positively impact learners' (1) motivation, (2) affective filter, and (3) cultural understanding. This study shows that humorous videos motivate students to learn the language, help them feel more comfortable in class, and develop tolerance toward the target culture. All of these factors make the short-com an ideal for promoting students' interest in the target language and culture outside of the classroom and helping them to become lifelong learners.