The Use of Technology In-and-Outside of Second Language Classrooms: The Need for Teacher Training in Technology

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Mi Sun Park


Research has shown that the use of technology can be a pioneering and innovative means of language learning and teaching. Computer-assisted language learning (CALL) provides learners with individualized instruction, naturalistic linguistic environment, and greater opportunities to actively engage in interaction with peers and teachers A number of studies (see Bhatia & Ritchie, 2009 for more details) have reported that students in the CALL setting tend to show less negative affect but higher levels of interest, motivation, and participation in learning the target language. However, such encouraging findings were observed primarily with students who had positive attitudes toward technology, as pointed out by Bhatia and Ritchie (2009). This highlights the fact that the application of technology to language learning and/or teaching settings must be preceded by proper user education or training in materials and technology tools. In other words, both students and teachers need to be given sufficient opportunities to practice and become familiar with the technology in use in the first place; the absence of these prerequisites can render any argument for the effectiveness of CALL insufficient.

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