Affordances and limitations of technology: Voices from EFL teachers and learners

Document Type : Research Paper

Author

Assistant Professor of TEFL, University of Isfahan

Abstract

With the developments of new technologies appearing very quickly, the attention has been focused more on technology than learning. English centers and institutes have mostly been busy accommodating new programs and technologies and hence have not spent enough time to evaluate the CALL programs and technologies employed to find their affordances and limitations. The present study was an attempt to study the perceptions and evaluation of the Iranian EFL learners and teachers about CALL. To this end, 240 students and teachers of two big institutes in Iran where CALL is used in their English learning program participated in the study. The required data were collected through a mixed-method design. The results of data analysis showed that CALL can enhance language learning and English listening, reading, and writing skills. It can also increase students' motivation and interest in learning and their exposure to language. However, it cannot improve speaking skill well. It also causes technology addiction, lacks good standards and an interactive nature necessary for the development of communicative proficiency, and may give the confidence to the teachers that everything is prepared by CALL courseware designers and hence they may come unprepared. The present study argues that the mere focus on technological support is not adequate, and a pedagogical understanding of language teachers’ and learners’ new roles and identities in CALL environment should be developed. 

Keywords


Article Title [فارسی]

نقاط ضعف و قوت تکنولوژی: دیدگاه مدرسین و زبان‌آموزان انگلیسی

Author [فارسی]

  • محمد امیریوسفی
استادیار گروه آموزش زبان انگلیسی، دانشگاه اصفهان
Abstract [فارسی]

در طول سالهای گذشته در سراسر دنیا خصوصا در کشورهای رو به گسترش مانند ایران، علافه زیادی به استفاده از آموزش زبان از طریق کامپیوتر جهت ایجاد علاقه و کارآمدی بیشتر بوده است. اما متاسفانه با پیدایش سریع تکنولوژیهای نوین، بیشتر توجه صرف اتخاب تکنولوژی گردیده تا یادگیری که از آنها حاصل می­گردد. مدارس و مراکز آموزش زبان بیشتر مشغول فراهم نمودن تکنولوژیهای نوین بوده و از ارزیابی تکنولوژی­های به کارگرفته شده جهت پی بردن به نقاط ضعف و قوت آنها غافل بوده­اند. تحقیق حاضر به بررسی نقاط و ضعف تکنولوژی مورد استفاده در امر آموزش زبان انگلیسی از منظر مدرسین و زبان­آموزان پرداخته است. بدین منظور 240 مدرس و زبان­آموز انگلیسی از دو مرکز آموزش زبان در ایران که در آنها از تکنولوژیهای نوین جهت آموزش زبان انگلیسی استفاده می­شد، انتخاب گردیدند. داده­های مد نظر از طریق مصاحبه و پرسشنامه جمع­آوری گردید. نتایج تحقیق نشان داد که آموزش زبان انگلیسی از طریق کامپیوتر می­تواند مهارتهای شنیداری، خوانداری و نوشتاری زبان انگلیسی را تقویت نموده، باعث افزایش علاقه و انگیزه زبان­آموزان گردیده و میزان ارتباط آنها را با زبان انگلیسی افزایش دهد. اما نمی­تواند مهارت گفتاری را به خوبی افزایش داده و ممکن است باعث ایجاد اعتیاد به تکنولوژی گردد. همچنین آموزش از طریق کامپیوتر فاقد استانداردهای لازم بوده و نمی­تواند باعث ایجاد ارتباط معنادار که لازمه زبان­آموزی است گردد. این تحقیق دارای یافته­های مهمی می­باشد.

Keywords [فارسی]

  • آموزش از طریق کامپیوتر
  • ارزیابی
  • نگرش مدرسین و زبان‌آموزان
 
Ahmadian, M. J. (2011). The effect of ‘massed’ task repetitions on complexity, accuracy and fluency: does it transfer to a new task? The Language Learning Journal, 39(3), 269-280.
Al-Kahtani, S. (2004). Deterrents to CALL in Saudi Arabia. Essential Teacher, 1, 26–30.
Amiryousefi, M. (2016). The differential effects of two types of task repetition on the complexity, accuracy, and fluency in computer-mediated L2 written production: a focus on computer anxiety. Computer Assisted Language Learning29(5), 1050-1066.
Armstrong, T. (2009). Multiple intelligences in the classroom (3rd ed.). Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.
Beatty, K. (2010). Teaching and researching computer-assisted language learning ( 2nd ed.). England: Longman.
Bembenutty, H., & White, M. C. (2013). Academic performance and satisfaction with homework completion among college students. Learning and Individual Differences 24, 83–88.
Blake, R. (2011). Current trends in online language learning. Annual Review of Applied Linguistics, 31, 19-35.
Borg, S. (2003). Teacher cognition in language teaching: A review of research on what language teachers think, know, believe, and do. Language Teaching, 36(2), 81–109.
Brett, P. (1996). Using multimedia: An investigation of learners’ attitudes. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 9(2-3), 191-212.
Brown, H. D. (2007). Principles of language learning and teaching (5th ed.). United States: Longman.
Brown, H. D. (2014). Principles of language learning and teaching (6th ed.).White Plains, NY: Pearson Education.
Brown, J. D. (2001). Using surveys in language programs. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Browne, C., & Geritty, S. (2004). Setting up and maintaining a CALL laboratory. In S. Fotos & C. M. Browne (Ed.), New perspectives on CALL for second language classrooms (pp. 171-197). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Burston, J. (2006). Working towards effective assessment of CALL. In R. P. Donaldson & M. A. Haggstrom (Eds.), Changing language education through CALL (pp.249-270). England: Routledge.
Carmean, C., & Haefner, J. (2002). Mind over matter: Transforming course management systems into effective learning environments. Educause Review, 37(6), 27-37.
Chen Hsieh, J. S., Wu, W. C. V., & Marek, M. W. (2016). Using the flipped classroom to enhance EFL learning. Computer Assisted Language Learning, 1-25.
Comas-Quinn, A. (2011). Learning to teach online or learning to become an online teacher: An exploration of teachers’ experiences in a blended learning course. ReCALL23(03), 218-232.
Cowie, N., & Sakui, K. (2013). It’s never too late: an overview of e-learning. ELT Journal, 67(4), 459-467.
Gips, A., DiMattia, P., & Gips, J. (2004). The effect of assistive technology on educational costs: Two case studies. In K. Miesenberger, J. Klaus, W. Zagler, & D. Burger (Eds.), Computers helping people with special needs (pp. 206-213). Berlin: Springer.
Gündüz, N. (2005). Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL). Journal of Language and Linguistic Studies, 1(2).
Greenfield, R. (2003). Collaborative e-mail exchange for teaching secondary ESL: A case study in Hong Kong. Language Learning & Technology, 7(1), 46-70.
Horwitz, E. K., & Gregersen, T. (2002) Language learning and perfectionism: anxious and non-anxious language learners’ reactions to their own oral performance. The Modern Language Journal, 86(4), 562-70.
Jahromi, S. A. F., & Salimi, F. (2013). Exploring the human element of computer-assisted language learning: An Iranian context. Computer Assisted Language Learning 26(2), 158–176.
Kitsantas, A., & Zimmerman, B. J. (2009). College students’ homework and academic achievement: The mediating role of self-regulatory beliefs. Metacognition and Learning4(2), 97-110.
Kagan, D. M. (1992). Implications of research on teacher beliefs. Educational Psychologist, 27(1), 65-90.
Kitsantas, A., & Zimmerman, B. J. (2009). College students' homework and academic achievement: The mediating role of self-regulatory beliefs. Metacognition Learning, 4(2), 97–110.
Kumaravadivelu, B. (2009). Beyond method: Macrostrategies for language teaching. New Havan and London: Yale University Press.
Lasagabaster, D., & Sierra, J. (2003). Students’ evaluation of CALL software programs. Educational Media International, 40(3-4), 293-304.
Lee, K.W. (2000). English teachers’ barriers to the use of Computer assisted language learning. The Internet TESL Journal, 6(12), 1-8.
Levy, M. (2006). Effective use of CALL technologies: Finding the right balance. In R. P., Donaldson & M. A., Haggstrom (Eds.), Changing language education through CALL (pp.1-18). England: Routledge.
Mangubhai, F., Marland, P., Dashwood, A., & Son, J. B. (2004). Teaching a foreign language: One teacher’s practical theory. Teaching and Teacher Education, 20(3), 291– 311.
Meyer, H. D., John, E. P., Chankseliani, M., & Uribe, L. (2013). Fairness in access to higher education in a global perspective: Reconciling excellence, efficiency, and justice. Sense Publishers.
Mokhtari, H. (2012). Iranian EFL learners' attitude towards CALL. Procedia -Social and Behavioral Sciences, 70, 1630 – 1635.
Mohebi, S. G., & Khodadadi, E. (2011). Investigating university students’ beliefs about language learning. RELC Journal, 42(3), 291–304.
McMurry, B. L. (2012). Evaluation in computer-assisted language learning (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). USA: Brigham Young University
Nation, I. S. P., & Macalister, J. (2010). Language curriculum design.New York, NY: Routledge.
Ng, E. K. J., & Farrell, T. S. C. (2003). Do teachers’ beliefs of grammar teaching match their classroom practices? A Singapore case study. In D. Deterding, A. Brown, & E. L. Brown (Eds.), English in Singapore: research on grammar (pp.128–37). Singapore: McGraw Hill.
Riley, P. (2009). Shifts in beliefs about second language learning. RELC Journal, 40(1)102-124.
Roblyer, M. (2003). Integrating Educational Technology into Teaching. Columbus, Ohio: Person Education.
Robertson, E. B., Ladewig, B. H., Strickland, M. P., & Boschung, M. D. (1987).Enhancement of self-esteem through the use of computer-assisted instruction. Journal of Educational Research, 80(5), 314-316.
Robinson, L.K. (2007). Diffusion of educational technology and education reform: Examining perceptual barriers to technology integration. In L. Tomei (Ed.), Integrating information and communication technologies into the classroom (pp. 272–288). New York: Information Science Reference.
Stockwell, G. (2010). CALL and the learner. Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching, 4(3), 177-179.
Taylor, R., & Gitsaki, C. (2004) Teaching well and loving IT. In S. Fotos, & C. M. Browne (Ed.), New perspectives on CALL for second language classrooms (pp. 131-147). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Tatiana Dina, A., & Ciornei, S. I. (2013). The advantages and disadvantages of computer assisted language learning and teaching for foreign languages. Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, 76, 248 – 252.
Tomlinson, C. A. (2010). Leading and managing a differentiated classroom. Alexandra, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum.
Van Braak, J. (2001). Factors influencing the use of computer mediated communication by teachers in secondary schools. Computers & Education, 36(1), 41-57.
Visser, B. A., Ashton, M. C., & Vernon, P. A. (2006). Beyond g: Putting multiple intelligences theory to the test. Intelligence, 34(5), 487–502.
Vohs, K. D., & Baumeister, R. F. (2011). Handbook of self-regulation. New York: The Guilford Press.
Warschauer, M. (2004). Technological change and the future of CALL. In S. Fotos, &C. M. Browne (Ed.), New perspectives on CALL for second language classrooms (pp. 15-27). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
Warschauer, M. (1996) Computer-assisted language learning: An introduction. In Fotos, S. (Ed.), Multimedia language teaching (pp. 4-17), Tokyo: Logos International.
Williams, M., & Burden, R. (1997). Psychology for language teachers. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.