Language Teachers and Their Trajectories Across Technology-Enhanced Language Teaching: Needs and Beliefs of ESL/EFL Teachers

Karamifar, B., Germain-Rutherford, A., Heiser, S., Emke, M., Hopkins, J., Ernest, P., Stickler, U., & Hampel, R. (2019). Language Teachers and Their Trajectories Across Technology-Enhanced Language Teaching: Needs and Beliefs of ESL/EFL Teachers. TESL Canada Journal/Revue TESL du Canada,  Vol.36(3), pp.55 – 81.
This article presents the initial results of an International Research Network  survey exploring the current perceptions of ESL/EFL instructors in relation to their training needs to enable more robust integration of technology in their instruction.
An online survey was conducted in summer 2018 through national and international networks and Facebook and Twitter social media platforms. Of a total of 285 respondents, (28% from Canada), 250 self-identified as language educators, (55% English language instructors) and the majority of whom worked in universities.
Analysis of the survey responses indicate overall satisfaction with existing training but educators noted a need for post-training follow-up. Educators are also interested in training on “learning task design” and in learning management software such as Moodle. In addition the survey investigated the respondents’ perception of an ideal language teacher and, interestingly, findings indicate that technology was not identified as a general characteristic or skill of an ideal teacher.
While the majority of respondents teach at the university level the survey provides a useful insight into the current and perceived training needs of language educators in relation to technology and should be of interest to educators and teacher-trainers across the second language field.

 

Retrievable from:

https://teslcanadajournal.ca/index.php/tesl/article/view/1375/1201

Learning Styles of Online Students in a Distance LINC Program

Elsageyer, N. (2020) Learning Styles of Online Students in a Distance LINC Program. M.A. Thesis. University of Ottawa.

This thesis describes and provides the findings of a small scale study examining the characteristics and learning style preferences of 27 students enrolled in an online LINC program in Ontario. The study also examined the perspectives of their teachers in relation to the learning styles of their students.

Overall the student group identified their preferred learning styles as kinesthetic and auditory, whereas the teacher group perceived their students’ preferred learning styles as visual. The author suggests that the discrepancy between the student and teacher perceptions may result from the lack of a shared understanding of learning styles and students’ low level of awareness of their own learning styles and preferences.

Based on the findings of the study the author concludes that enhanced training and professional development for online LINC teachers in relation to learning style preferences; strategies to work with students to support them to identify their preferred learning styles, and how they can refine their instructional strategies to address a range of learning styles would be a useful contribution to an improvement in outcomes for online LINC students.

Retrievable from:

https://ruor.uottawa.ca/bitstream/10393/40194/3/Elsageyer_Nasren_2020_thesis.pdf

 

ESL Teachers’ Self-efficacy toward Pedagogical Use of Digital Technologies: An Exploratory Case Study in the Ontario Context

Chen, Aide, “ESL Teachers’ Self-efficacy toward Pedagogical Use of Digital Technologies: An Exploratory Case Study in the Ontario Context” (2019). Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository. 6422. https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/etd/6422

 

A small-scale study exploring  how  some EAP instructors  in Ontario  perceive their own abilities in using digital technologies in daily life and in their teaching practice and how such perceptions influence their use of technology in the classroom.  Using surveys and semi-structured interviews, the researcher focused on the role of teacher self-efficacy, defined as,  “people’s beliefs of the extent to which they are able to accomplish certain behaviors”(p.14) to explore  why and how these instructors were actually using technology in their classroom and the challenges they encountered, both in using technological tools and in effectively integrating technology in teaching.

Based on the findings the researcher proposes the need for further research on the role of  teacher self-efficacy, and on professional development which focuses on combining training on specific technology tools with pedagogy.  As  participants in the study noted, “teachers should have backup plans, even for presentations. It requires abilities to improvise. It may be unfair to say that technology itself poses this challenge. The actualized technology use is dependent on how flexible we are. You need to be able to develop your skills and make wise use of it.” (p.43)  and, “we need to carefully plan technology-enhanced teaching practices rather than just using them for the sake of being fashionable” (p.52).

Retrievable from:

https://ir.lib.uwo.ca/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=8849&context=etd

View of Building a Community of Connected ELT Professionals on Twitter

Nicholas, B.,  Avram, A., Chow, J., Lupasco, S. (2018). View of Building a Community of Connected ELT Professionals on Twitter. TESL Canada Journal/Revue TESL du Canada,Vol. 35 (2), pp.166-178.

This article describes the experiences of four language instructors who have created their own personal learning network using  Twitter.  Social media and particularly this platform has allowed these practitioners to bridge distances and to reduce the sense of isolation often experienced by educators. This personal learning network has become an important component of their continuing professional development.  Each describes her experiences in connecting with peers through Twitter and reflects on the benefits of such connections for their professional learning and teaching .practice.  As they put it,

“Although the chats themselves are brief (no more than an hour) and fast-
paced, the ideas generated can lead not just to change in practice but to
professional introspection and reflection.”

 

Retrievable from:

https://teslcanadajournal.ca/index.php/tesl/article/view/1319/1141

 

 

https://teslcanadajournal.ca/index.php/tesl/article/view/1319/1141

The authors of this article are four such educators. Augusta, Jennifer,
Svetlana, and Bonnie met online through a bi-monthly, pan-Canadian Twitter chat, #LINCchat (now rebranded #CdnELTchat, for Canadian ELT chat). Svetlana Lupasco and Nathan Hall were the original co-moderators of
#LINCchat (Language Instruction for Newcomers to Canada), fi rst under the auspices of LISTN (Language Instruction Support and Training Network) and then BC TEAL (British Columbia Teachers of English as an Additional Language). Augusta, Jennifer, and Bonnie were enthusiastic participants who
joined the team some time after the chats were well-established. Jennifer and
Augusta both work in the lower mainland of British Columbia, so they knew
each other professionally. Svetlana is in Ontario and Bonnie, in Alberta.
These four instructors created a supportive professional relationship
online. They knew each other for some time only online, until they all met
for the fi rst time at a BC TEAL conference in Vancouver where they were
presenting together about how they had connected and built a community
of practice on TwiĴ er, having planned and prepared the presentation using
online tools. Each of these ELT practitioners has now been active on TwiĴ er
for a few years, forging collaborative professional relationships and creating
a PLN that has become an essential part of their CPD. PLNs are character-
istically “individualized and user-centered” (Davis, 2015, p. 1553). Svetlana
discusses how she came to discover this user-centred effi cacy of TwiĴ er for

Empowering English Language Learners through Digital Literacies: Research, Complexities, and Implications

 

Chang,Y., Wang, L. & Eagle, J. (2019). Empowering English Language Learners through Digital Literacies: Research, Complexities, and Implications. Media and Communication. Vol 7(2).128-136.

This article provides an accessible overview of issues related to the digital literacies of English Language Learners (ELLs) in the U.S. The article highlights issues that are of increasing importance for adult settlement language learning in Canada and includes a description of evolving definitions of digital literacies and fluency and a short review of literature focusing on language teaching practices that support the development of digital literacies.
The authors argue that digital literacies and digital fluency can support language learner autonomy and provide authentic language learning experiences that meaningfully reflect the daily lives of the learners. The inclusion of digital literacies as part of the language learning process in the language classroom not only provides opportunities for authentic learning in the classroom but also supports learners to extend their language learning beyond the classroom. Furthermore, in an increasingly digitized society, digital literacies are essential for employment and ongoing learning and communication in day-to-day life. In order to effectively incorporate digital literacies as part of language teaching practice the authors highlight the need to support language instructors to engage in ongoing professional development in relation to the use of digital tools for teaching and learning.

Retrievable from:

https://www.cogitatiopress.com/mediaandcommunication/article/view/191

 

The Use of Dictionary Applications on Smartphones as a Tool to Enhance English Vocabulary Learning Skills

Charernsuk,J.,Surasin,J.,Kewara,P. The Use of Dictionary Applications on Smartphones as a Tool to Enhance English Vocabulary Learning Skills. HRD Journal, 10 (1),8-21

This study explored the use of dictionary applications on smartphones to support vocabulary acquisition. Using both quantitative (pre-and post- testing) and qualitative (researcher observation and semi-structured interviews with student participants) the researchers report that the use of dictionary applications by students did result in enhanced vocabulary acquisition and in helping students to improve their English pronunciation skills. The researchers also noted that although students were initially uncertain about how to use the applications, with experience they became quite comfortable in their use, and that their willingness to engage in more autonomous language learning increased.  Based on their observations the researchers recommend that instructors wishing to introduce dictionary applications on smartphones devote some time to thoroughly reviewing the applications for appropriateness to avoid initial confusion.  Although this study was conducted in a Gr. 9 English language class in Thailand, given the ubiquity of smartphones and the availability of a range of dictionary applications, this study demonstrates the usefulness of this tool  in vocabulary acquisition and points to the potential of using dictionary applications that will be of interest for instructors at all levels of English language teaching and learning.

Retrievable from: http://hrdjournal.buu.ac.th/public/backend/upload/onlinejournal/file/14062019_156049645556314400.pdf

 Integrating Mobile Assisted Language Learning (MALL) into a Non-formal Learning Environment to Support Migrant Women Learners’ Vocabulary Acquisition.

Ahmad, Kham Sila (2019) Integrating Mobile Assisted Language Learning (MALL) into a Non-formal Learning Environment to Support Migrant Women Learners’ Vocabulary Acquisition. PhD thesis, Murdoch University

This Ph. D Thesis describes a small-scale research project to explore the effect of Mobile -Assisted Language Learning) MALL on migrant women’s vocabulary acquisition in an Australian context. Using a case study approach, using semi-structured interviews and observation a group of migrant women attending a conversational English class were divided into 3 groups. The first group attended a regular class in which no MALL was used, the second group consisted of students who had attended the regular class and then attended a MALL -integrated or hybrid class in which they used a tablet computer and a language App. The third group attended a wholly Mall integrated class. The hybrid model was found to be the most effective, providing students with enhanced exposure and opportunities to use English and more intensive vocabulary practice and repetition using the exercises and learning activities in the language App. Based on the findings of the research a MALL-enhanced framework for vocabulary acquisition for migrant women in a non-formal learning environment was developed. This framework could be a very useful starting point for instructors and researchers to investigate the use of a MALL-integrated process for settlement language learning in a Canadian context.

Retrievable from: http://researchrepository.murdoch.edu.au/id/eprint/43153/

Migrants and Mobile Technology Use: Gaps in the Support Provided by Current Tools

Demmans Epp, C., (2017). Migrants and Mobile Technology Use: Gaps in the Support Provided by Current Tools. Journal of Interactive Media in Education, 2017(1), 2.

This article describes the findings of  a small-scale research project to examine how recent migrants to Canada make use of mobile technologies to support their English language learning.

The study indicates that recent migrants can and do make use of mobile technologies to access information, but that there is a need for more extensive supports to enable them to make better use of these technologies to support language language learning, including comprehension, production and language acquisition.

The researcher concludes that there is a need for, and an opportunity to create, more mobile technology tools and applications to help scaffold the development of new skills.There is also a need for mobile tools that could help language learners to better understand and communicate across a variety of forms of English and tools that would allow them to practice their communication skills, receive feedback which would, in turn, enable them to plan for future learning.

Retrievable from: https://www-jime.open.ac.uk/articles/10.5334/jime.432/

 

 

 

ESOL and EFL: An unhelpful distinction?

Williams, E., & Williams, A. (2007). ESOL and EFL: An unhelpful distinction?

This review of the current state of ESOL in the UK and brief historical overview of the development of ESOL and EFL, outlines the distinctions between these two terms and points to the need for convergence and/or integration of ESOL and EFL to meet the current needs of students in the UK. The report also provides an outline of the authors’ understanding of ESOL provision in Canada, Australia and New Zealand, tracing the historical, policy-related and ideological strands in each country that led to the current model of provision.

Retrievable from: https://esol.britishcouncil.org/content/policy-and-research/policy/uk/esol-and-efl-unhelpful-distinction

 

 

 

 

Teaching Workplace Cultural Communication (Online).

Nawaz, M. (2014). Teaching Workplace Cultural Communication (Online). Contact, 40(1), 24–28.

This article describes the Workplace Cultural Communications (Online) course offered by Immigrant Settlement and Integration Services (ISIS) to new and pre-arrival immigrants who are at Canadian Language Benchmarks 7/8. The course, on the Moodle platform, consists of 10 modules offered over a 10-week period. Each module focuses on a specific workplace cultural value and focuses on language, interchange and social norms in the Canadian workplace. Participants complete written and audio-recorded assignments in each module and also participate in a discussion forum where they can interact and share information about their current locations, professional background and workplace experiences.

Retrievable from: http://www.teslontario.net/uploads/publications/contact/ContactSpring2014.pdf

ATESL Adult ESL Curriculum Framework E-Learning.

Chambers, E., Grida, S., Ilott, W., Messaros, C., & Dawson, K. (2011). ATESL Adult ESL Curriculum Framework E-Learning. Alberta Teachers of English as a Second Language.

The ATESL ESL Curriculum Framework, Section 8, focuses on E-learning. This section offers a comprehensive review of the essential elements for the successful integration of technology in ESL instruction. It includes an examination of the benefits of E-Learning and a discussion of the guiding principles for the design of effective learning activities and assessment strategies. The review also includes an overview of the importance of supporting the development of digital literacy for students to enable them to participate productively in E-Learning. Finally the review describes the role of instructor “e-practices” in relation to the successful integration of E-Learning and highlights the critical importance of professional development for instructors to enable them to take advantage of the full potential of E-Learning.

Retrievable from: https://www.atesl.ca/resources/atesl-adult-esl-curriculum-framework/

 

Video-conferencing Research Community of Practice Research Report.

Alberta Education. (2006). Video-conferencing Research Community of Practice Research Report.

This report looks at the potential of video-conferencing technology and other technologies to enhance and improve education practice and systems. Alberta SuperNet makes videoconferencing a feasible option for K-12 schools in areas previously limited by bandwidth restrictions. It presents a number of case studies illustrating the use of videoconferencing in schools in Alberta, Canada. This report provides an example of how videoconferencing could be used to connect adult ESL learners in remote locations to others in more richly resourced urban settings.

Retrievable from: https://education.alberta.ca/media/3115440/vccopreport.pdf

Developing an ESL Literacy Blended online Course for LINC Learners.

Lupasco, S. (n.d.). Developing an ESL Literacy Blended Online Course for LINC Learners. Contact Magazine, November 2013, 31–35.

In this article Lupasco describes an assignment for Post TESL accreditation for which she develops e-Materials for Language Training. As she walks the reader through the different sections of the blended ESL Literacy course that she created, there are echoes of the theory and examined practice that appear in other resources included in this bibliography.

Retrievable from: http://www.teslontario.net/uploads/publications/contact/ContactFall2013.pdf

Web 2.0 and Four Paths Beyond

Hubbard, P., P. (2011, March 18). Web 2.0 and Four Paths Beyond. PowerPoint Slides presented at the TESOL Conference, New Orleans.

A presentation about Web 2.0, emerging technologies and the critical importance of incorporating technology and learning with technology deeply in language teacher training in order to support teacher flexibility, to prepare teachers for long careers in language teaching during which they are likely to continually encounter new technologies, new technological modes, and in which they will need to have the confidence and skills to approach these technologies successfully. The presentation also highlights the importance of situated learning theory in ensuring that teachers learn in the same environment in which they will teach.

Retrievable from: http://web.stanford.edu/~efs/tesol-11.pdf

Language Learning and Technology Special issue on Teacher Education and CALL

Language learning & Technology Special issue on Teacher Education and CALL

Volume 19 Number 1 February 2015

This is a special issue of the online journal that addresses the topic of teacher education and computer assisted language learning.

Retrievable from:

http://llt.msu.edu/issues/february2015/index.html

 

Language Learning & Technology: 20th Anniversary Special Issue

Volume 20 Number 2 (June 2016)

This special anniversary issue of the Journal used a crowdsourcing and survey approach to determine the content of this special issue. there are four review articles, including one that provides examples of how Second language acquisition and CALL have been explored during the last 20 years. Seven commentaries appear from scholars whose articles received the most citations over the life of the journal.

http://llt.msu.edu/issues/june2016/

Evaluating the Impact of Blended Learning on Performance and Engagement of Second Language Learners.

Rebecca Y Jee, Gabriele O’Connor. (2014). Evaluating the Impact of Blended Learning on Performance and Engagement of Second Language Learners. International Journal of Advanced Corporate Learning (iJAC), 7(3), 12–16.

This article is based on a small-scale research study using Voxy a commercial Web and mobile platform within a Task-Based Language Teaching framework. The Voxy platform, designed for the self-study learner, provides authentic, personalized content and includes one-one-one video tutoring sessions online group classes
The study is focused on the following research questions
To what extent does blended learning impact the performance of language learners?
To what extent does blended learning impact the engagement of language learners?
The study, albeit limited in scope, indicates that language learners who access synchronous language instruction along with self-study demonstrate greater increases in proficiency than those who engage only in self-study.

Retrievable from: http://online-journals.org/index.php/i-jac/article/view/3986

(Articles in the International Journal of Advanced Corporate Learning (iJAC) are available at no cost , users need to register for a free account)

A Typology of Tasks for Mobile-Assisted Language Learning: Recommendations from a Small-Scale Needs Analysis.

Moonyoung Park, & Tammy Slater. (2014). A Typology of Tasks for Mobile-Assisted Language Learning: Recommendations from a Small-Scale Needs Analysis. TESL Canada Journal, 31(Special Issue 8).

This study explored how college-level ESL students are currently using their mobile devices for language learning and the attitudes and opinions of their instructors in relation to Mobile-Assisted Language Learning (MALL). The study included semi-structured interviews with students and instructors, an online survey and a task-based needs analysis focused on what learners and instructors want and need in relation to mobile-assisted language learning. Based on this research a set of language tasks in the areas of listening, speaking, reading and writing were identified. The researchers created a MALL-based task typology to support the future development of pedagogic tasks for academic ESL courses and to support the development of MALL-based curricula and lesson plans. The study found that while ESL learners are using mobile devices for a variety of learning and personal purposes, including communications and as reference tools, instructors need ongoing professional development to support them in realizing the potential of mobile devices in language teaching and to effectively incorporate mobile device use in task development for academic ESL courses.

Retrieved from:

http://teslcanadajournal.ca/index.php/tesl/article/view/1188/1008

 

Issues emerging from the pilot of an online module on vocabulary learning by low-educated adult immigrants.

Martha Young-Scholten,. (2015). Issues emerging from the pilot of an online module on vocabulary learning by low-educated adult immigrants. Language Issues: The ESOL Journal, 26(2), 41–45.

A report of an international pilot of online learning module for second-language instructors in North America and the European Union, conducted over a 5-week period in 2015. The instructors are working with learners who have been designated as low-educated and literacy acquisition (LESLLA). Based on two extensive surveys of the professional development and training needs of these instructors the online training module focused on vocabulary teaching and learning. The module, Topics in Vocabulary Learning for LESLLA Learners, (in English, Dutch German, Finnish and Spanish). was delivered using MOODLE. Learning materials were drawn from publications in each of these languages as well as translations of some English materials into the other languages. The author states that while more research is required to better understand how LESLLA learner develop vocabulary and move from fast-mapping to the use of new vocabulary in their daily lives, the value of this pilot is in support instructors in carrying out their own research to extend understanding of vocabulary acquisition this pilot. In addition, participants in the pilot, although it was of short duration, reported positive results based on their learning and experimenting with new techniques. The pilot also set the groundwork for the future development of a curriculum framework for LESLLA instructors, at the international level, which will allow instructors to share and exchange their experience and knowledge.

Cost: $USD 38.16

Retrievable from:

http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/natecla/esol/2015/00000026/00000002/art00007?crawler=true&mimetype=application/pdf

 

Study on the Impact of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and New Media on Language Learning.

Stevens, A., & Shield, L. (2009). Study on the Impact of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and New Media on Language Learning (No. EACEA 2007/09). European Commission. Education and Culture Executive Agency.

A study of the impact of ICT and new media on language learning conducted by the European Commission in 2008/09. The study comprised a comparative study of the potential of ICT and new media in language learning; a quantitative study of their use; a qualitative survey of current trends and a set of case studies illustrating good practice in the use of ICT and new media for language learning.

Retrievable From: http://eacea.ec.europa.eu/llp/studies/documents/study_impact_ict_new_media_language_learning/final_report_en.pdf