Monday, February 6, 2012

E-C-402 English Language Teaching-2

v  Assignment paper:E-C-402-English Language Teaching-2 
v Topic                     : CALLritique on "Black Skin, White Masks" 
v Student’s Name   : Gandhi Pooja S.
v Roll No                : 08
v URL                     :
v Semester              : 4
v Batch                   : 2011-12

                    Submitted to,                                 
                          Dr. Dilip Barad                                           
                       Department of English              
                        Bhavnagar University

v What is CALL?
                           CALL stands for Computer Assisted Language Learning. It is a term used by teachers and students to describe the use of computers as part of a language course.
                                                                                      -  Hardisty & Windeatt
It is traditionally described as 'presenting, reinforcing and testing' particular language items. The learner is first presented with a rule and some examples, and then answers a series of questions which test her/his knowledge of the rule and the computer gives appropriate feedback, which may be stored for later inspection for the teacher. According to, Jones & Fortescue “the traditional description of CALL is unfortunate and they present the computer as flexible classroom aid, which can be used by teachers and learners, in and out of class, in a variety of ways and for a variety of purposes. However, work with the computer, as any other teaching aid, needs to be linked with ordinary classroom work and CALL lessons, like the other lessons, need to be planned carefully.”
v The brief History of CALL:
                         Though computers have been used for the early 20th century but they were not used for educational purposes till the 1960s. The 1970s witnessed the evolution of CALL as a result of development in research related to the use of computers for linguistic purposes and for creating suitable language learning conditions. In America the computer based introductory courses in the 1960s were original projects in CALL, and were referred to as computer Assisted Instruction (CAI). The 1980s have witnessed the spread of computers both in educational institutions and in people's homes. Since the beginning of the '80s computers have also found their way into many schools. CALL software has also become available on the market. The emergence of inexpensive computer technology and mass storage media, including optical videodiscs and compact disks, has given instructional technologists better tools to work with. Compact disks are used to store large amounts of data, such as encyclopedias or motion pictures.
                          In CALL centers with computers and software such as CD-ROM, CD-I, or videodiscs, a student who is interested in a particular topic can first scan an electronic encyclopedia, then view a film on the subject or look at related topics at the reach of a button. Thus, such learning centers present students with the advantages of reference materials and popularize computer-aided instruction. The computer laboratory has become an integral component of foreign-language programs in most educational institutions. Computers have been used for language teaching for more than three decades. According to Warschauer & Healey the history of CALL can be divided into three stages: Behaviouristic CALL, Communicative CALL and Integrative CALL.
v Stages of CALL based on History:
1.      Behavioristic CALL:
Behavioristic CALL is recognized as the first phase of CALL. It was introduced in the 1950s and implemented in the 1960s when the audio-lingual method was widely used in language instruction. Most of CALL programs in this phase entailed repetitive language drills-and-practice activities. Taylor (1980) referred to drill and practice courseware as a tutor presenting drill exercises without feed-back component. In this regard, the computer serves as a vehicle for delivering instructional material.
2.      Communicative CALL:
 Communicative CALL the second phase of the development of CALL, emerged in the late 1970s and early 1980s. The focus of CALL in this phase is placed on using the language or functions rather than analysis of language forms. The first communicative CALL software (e.g., text reconstruction and language games) continued to provide students with language skill practice, but not in a drill format like in the first phase. In other words, computers provide context for students to use the language, therefore, grammar is taught implicitly rather than explicitly, allowing students create originality and flexibility in their output of the language. The computer, thus, functions as stimulus, where the computer stimulates students’ discussion and writing through role-playing games.
3.      Integrative CALL:
Interactive CALL the third phase of CALL, started in the 1990s. Integrative CALL was developed in an effort to address some criticisms of the communicative approach by both integrating the teaching of four language skills into tasks to provide direction and coherence and the development of multimedia technology. That is, CALL in this stage allows for a combination of sound, graphics, text, and video presented in one computerized program together with computer-mediated communication and further facilitates efforts to teach the four macro skill including listening, speaking, reading and writing. In this phase, the computer serves as tool, in which the computer does not provide learning material, but empowers users to actually use language. CALL in this period is regarded as a shift from the use of the computer for drill and tutorial purposed into a medium for extending education beyond the language classroom. In other words, in integrative approaches, students learn how to use a variety of technological tools as part of an ongoing process of language learning and use, rather than visiting the computer lab on a once a week basis for isolated exercises. 
v CALL and language skill:
 Computers offer learners various activities for developing different language skills. They can provide a useful and motivating medium for both integrated skills and separate activities.
1.      Reading Skills:
 There are three main ways in which computers are useful in helping language learners develop reading skills.
a)      Incidental reading.  
Most of the CALL programs, whether oriented towards reading or not, involve the learner in reading text for the successful completion of the activity.
b)      Reading comprehension.  
Traditional question and answer CALL programs are used for reading comprehension as well as grammar and vocabulary development.
c)      Text manipulation.  
There are a number of ways in which computers can manipulate continuous text which involve the learner in close study of the content and structure of the text. An example might be dark reading which provides students with authentic texts. Additionally, sentence structure, speed reading and cloze-reading are some of the alternative ways of developing reading skills.
2.      Writing Skills:   
                     The Word Processing program is one of the most common purposes for which computers are used and it is regarded as the most powerful to use when starting to work with CALL. In order to use word processors learners have to be familiar to the keyboard of the computer and they also have to learn the following before using the computer:
Ø  Learn how to start a word processor
Ø  Learn how to delete and insert a letter, a word or a larger chunk of text
Ø  Learn how to save text
Ø  Print a text
Ø  Moving words, lines, sentences, etc. around.
                    Word-processing programs transform the computer into a complicated and flexible writing help that can improve learners' writing skills and their attitude toward writing. The main principle of word-processing programs is based on the ability to manipulate text freely. By writing text into the memory of a computer, the writer can play round with his text until entirely satisfied. The word-processor provides useful practice for guided and free writing.
3.      Speaking Skills:  
Oral communication is very important in language learning process. In today's language classrooms, significant stress is given to oral activities in which learners use the language and also they have learned to communicate with each other. These activities include simulations, role-plays and discussion. Computer simulations provide a stimulus for such a work, as they offer both a focus for oral activity and a repeatedly changing scenario for learners to talk about. Computers have a useful contribution to the development of oral skills if they are used wisely Dialogue studies can be made by the computers with the help of the movies; students watching these dialogues can see the conversation, setting and cultural atmosphere clearly. They can also see the body movements and the semiotic background of the conversations and earn a powerful experience and thus improve their communicative competence. The main advantage of computer simulations is that they are very motivating. They give learners instant feedback on the effects of their decisions, and this feedback itself stimulates arguments and comments, suggestions and counter suggestions.
4.      Listening Skills:
 Listening activities that use the computer are more complex than the other kinds of CALL materials since they involve equipment other than the computer itself. One of the simplest ways of giving practice in listening comprehension is to use a multiple-choice. In addition to the normal feedback given after a wrong answer, the computer can let the learner hear the relevant part of the tape again. If a separate cassette recorder is used, the error message can give the learner appropriate counter numbers. Another simple technique is to use a tape with a test-reconstruction program which enables learners to reconstruct a summary of a recorded anecdote on screen by the help of the tape. Such activities not only help to integrate listening and writing skills but also evaluate learners' listening comprehension skills in a more active way than is generally possible in a non-CALL class.
5.      Grammar Development through CALL:
Computer software and the World Wide Web provide both students and teachers with materials which integrate language skills, as well as with separate activities for grammar, vocabulary, reading, and the like. Some grammar activities that can be done on the computer might be: matching, multiple choice, fill in the gaps or complete the following. Sample multiple choice grammar quizzes are provided in The quizzes can be done either online or after printing them. After finishing the exercise you can ask for immediate feedback by clicking on the submission button. The tests can be done either online or after printing them. However, you cannot ask for immediate feedback if you print the material. Vocabulary related Computer software such as guessing games, do-it-yourself dictionaries or word building activities provide a nice challenge for students.
v Advantages and Disadvantages of CALL:
1.      Advantages of CALL:
                             One of the most important advantages of the growth of CALL is that software sellers no longer feel bound to grammar practice as the main goal of computer use in the language classroom. The movement towards communicative teaching with computers is clearly expanding. The vocabulary software has started to be contextualized and to include graphics, audio recording and playback, and video. More sophisticated error-checking can provide students real help in the feedback they receive, directing them to further practice or moving them to the next stage. The writing process is another area where computers have added a great deal of value. Some programs help students in the pre-writing stage to generate and outline ideas. Most word-processors now come with spelling checkers, giving weak spellers some help in finding their errors and recognizing the correct spelling from a list of options.
Most pronunciation programs now incorporate some sort of voice recording and playback to let students compare their recording with a model. Most computer programs stimulate some discussion among group of learners even if oral practice is not the main purpose of the activity. Most drills now include games, as well, using the power of the computer and competition for collaboration toward a goal, the fun factor, to motivate language learning. The other advantages of CALL are:
• Multimodal practice with feedback,
• Individualization in a large class,
• Pair or small group work on projects,
• The fun factor,
• Variety in the resources available and learning styles used,
• Exploratory learning with large amounts of language data,
On a more general note, CALL programs ,besides teaching a foreign language, will provide the learner with some sort of computer literacy, which is becoming essential in our modern society and which could be of great help in future training and career prospects. The difference between the computer and other pieces of equipment, such as tape recorders and film projectors is its interactive capability as highlighted in the quotation. The computer gives individual attention to the learner and replies to him. Traditionally it acts as a tutor, assessing the learner's reply, recording it, pointing out mistakes, giving explanations. It guides the learner towards the correct answer. It offers interactive learning; it can assess the learner's response.
2.      Disadvantages of CALL:
               There are some disadvantages of CALL,
 Once computer laboratories are established, it is not possible to re-equip them for several years. There are many limitations of equipment and facilities, and many teachers may not be able to do what they want to do. Computers are not very good at teaching themselves, and the software does not run the lesson for the teacher. The teacher can adapt, improve for shortcomings in the software. It can take longer to learn a piece of CALL software than handle a textbook, because s/he has to work through it, rather than just over viewing through it. The teacher must feel comfortable in the computer lab and with the medium in order to be able to use it effectively. In addition, it is important to use the appropriate program for the students' level. If it is not correct for their level, the activity cannot be prevented from becoming a chaos of uncertainty. No matter how simple computers and software are, students need to learn a great deal to use them. Some students can never really adjust to using computers. They are never comfortable with them so these students often make mistakes. On some occasions the computer programs used with learners can be overtaken by a power cut, or mechanical failure. Therefore, teachers should be trained in the use of computers. Some other disadvantages can be listed as following:
 • Learners who do not have prior experience in using the keyboard may waste a lot of valuable time identifying in order to print their responses.
• Working with computers normally means that the learners work in isolation. This obviously does not help in developing normal communication between the learners, which is a crucial aim in any language lesson.
• Computers cannot conduct open ended dialogues and cannot give feedback to open ended questions.
 • The time and effort required to develop CALL programs could be considerable, and thus their cost and effectiveness becomes questionable. It requires competence in the target subject area, academic skills and computing experience.
v  Conclusion:
                                 CALL is emerged as the replacing effect of direct modes of direct student-teacher interaction. CALL has its advantages as well as disadvantages. Learners sometimes cannot adjust to computer and also we say that it can help in solving problems of grammar. It also is helping in developing soft skills of  learner.                         


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