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

Micola, A. R., Fenoll, A. A., Banal-Estanol, A. & Bris, A. (2016). TV or not TV? The impact of subtitling on English skills (491). Turin, Italy: Collegio Carlo Alberto.


We study the influence of television translation techniques on the quality of English spoken worldwide. We identify a large positive effect for subtitled original version broadcasts, as opposed to dubbed television, on English profficiency 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 for listening comprehension. Our paper suggests that governments could promote subtitling as a means to improve foreign language profficiency and therefore economic performance.

Publication Type: Monograph (Working Paper)
Additional Information: Published in final form, as Rupérez Micola, A., Aparicio Fenoll, A., Banal-Estanol, A. and Bris, A. (2019). TV or not TV? The impact of subtitling on english skills. Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, 158, pp. 487-499.
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HD Industries. Land use. Labor
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN1990 Broadcasting
Departments: School of Policy & Global Affairs > Economics
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