Online synchronous communication in the second-language classroom

Murphy, Elizabeth (2009) Online synchronous communication in the second-language classroom. Canadian Journal of Learning and Technology , 35 (3). ISSN 1499-6677

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The study reported on in this paper used a framework of benefits, challenges and solutions to categorize data from a design experiment using synchronous online communication for learning French as a second language (FSL). Participants were 92 Grade 6, FSL students and four teachers from urban and rural areas of Newfoundland, Canada. Data collection relied on online observation, teachers’ use of blogs and an online discussion forum, face-to-face planning and reflection meetings for teachers as well as interviews with all participants. Benefits included independence and peer-learning; authenticity and motivation; anonymity and confidence; enhanced self-esteem. Challenges related to teacher multi-tasking; poor sound quality; technical problems; momentum; grouping; scheduling. Solutions included use of student moderators; audio tutorials and direct messaging; activity tutorials; technical support and capacity building. The categories and their subcategories were grouped into two themes of positive affect and student-centered learning.

Item Type: Article
Item ID: 2442
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: 2009
Date Type: Publication
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