Learning processes in interactive CALL systems: Linking automatic feedback, system logs, and learning outcomes

Hui, B., Rudzewitz, B., & Meurers, D. (2023). Learning processes in interactive CALL systems: Linking automatic feedback, system logs, and learning outcomes. Language Learning &Technology, 27(1), 1–23.

The overall purpose of this research project was to demonstrate how the system logs that are available through online learning platforms can be used to better understand language learning processes and the association of those processes with learning conditions and outcomes. While instructors in settlement language classes in Ontario may not have access to a tutoring system like the one described in this research report, system logs are widely available to users with admin access and can provide information about users’ learning processes.

The authors contend that system logs are currently underused in Second Language Acquisition (SLA) research and that such research should include both learning products and learning processes to better understand what they describe as “… the complex relationship between learning conditions, processes, and outcomes.”

The authors make a distinction between learning products which focus on the results of a task, and the learning process which focuses on what happens during learning and teaching and how the learner achieves their goals over time.

The research project examined and analysed the detailed system logs of student interaction, including number of attempts by a student for each activity, the answers submitted and the systems feedback and other responses based on the following research questions:

  RQ1: To what extent can learning process variables, as extracted from system logs, directly account for learning outcomes?

  RQ2: Can we meaningfully distinguish clusters of learners based on the learning process variables?

  RQ3: To what extent does specific feedback relate to the learning process clusters?

The authors recommend further that SLA research focused on the analysis of system logs be used to identify and understand what happens in the learning process to support more productive interventions and improved system design.

Retrievable from: https://www.lltjournal.org/item/10125-73527/