Mobile Assisted Language Use and Learning
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Computer-Assisted Language Learning as a Predictor of Success in Acquiring English as a Second Language

Computer-Assisted Language Learning as a Predictor of Success in Acquiring English as a Second Language.

Kim Field's insight:

This article available for download from jstor.org reports the effectiveness of CALL in the acquistion of English as a second language by Arabic and Spanish speaking students at the University of Illinois during 1982.  It investigated three key questions about CALL: Do students like it? Do they use it? and Does it work.  Like many studies in this field the mixed-methods research considered not only time spent using CALL but also student attitudes toward CALL.  The results indicated that certain types of learners are more suited to CALL materials than others and that it is necessary to consider many learner variables when researching the effectiveness of CALL.  I wonder if computer assisted drill and practice in grammar, reading and listening is any more or less effective when compared to more traditional classroom drill and practice... is one method more effective than another?  Is time and use the key or are attitudes of students towards the approach/tool a greater determining factor than was once thought?  With current research on student engagement, student inquiry and the need for differentiation of instruction and product I suspect the answer is as diverse for any one set of students as the tools themselves.

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Mobile Assited Language Learning: English Pronunciation at Learners' Fingertips

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This article out of Turkey addresses the recent revival of interest in pronunciation reserach as it links to second language acquistion.  Compared to other language components and skills focused on in research and in teaching it is pronunciation that has has tended to be periphery.  Since literature on second language acquistion solidifies that in-class activities are not sufficient for effective language learning, input and output opportunities are necessary outside of the classroom - mobile devices offer great potential for this component of the goal of proficiency.  Multimedia messaging was used to focus on improving pronunciation of language learners and was successful.  Since mobile devices are already imbedded into daily communication and entertainment routines across the globe, leveraging the same technology in educational settings is a logical next step.  Whether it is having students interface with one another, create audio or video files or engage with practice-based platforms like virual worlds and 3D talking head animations mobile devices have the potential to change the type and quality of homework required to solidify language acquistion learning in the 21st century and this includes the important component of pronunciation.

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5 Useful iPad Apps For ESL Students - Edudemic

5 Useful iPad Apps For ESL Students - Edudemic | Mobile Assisted Language Use and Learning | Scoop.it
What are some of the best iPad apps for ESL students? There's a ton out there but here are my personal favorites!

Via Tom D'Amico (@TDOttawa)
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EVittoz's curator insight, July 1, 2013 5:21 AM

Something to try ?

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Article: From Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) to Mobile Assisted Language Use (MALU)


Via Hamid Eusafzai
Kim Field's insight:

This study out of the UK recognizes the relevant role that Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) still plays in the context of acquiring new languages whereby learners are learning language in any context with, through or around computer technologies.  The results of the mixed-methods research on university students showed that Mobile Assisted Language Use (MALU) provided positive opportunities to practice and learn new language skills.  It is supported that personal, portable devices are enabling new ways of learning in ubiquitous and spontaneous ways.  There remains a need for more research in this area on how native mobile users might inform and leverage new teaching practice in flipped and non-traditional ways especially in language classrooms.

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Article: Mobile Devices For Language Learning: Multimedia Approaches PDF Book

Article: Mobile Devices For Language Learning: Multimedia Approaches PDF Book | Mobile Assisted Language Use and Learning | Scoop.it
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Reaching ELLs With Mobile Devices | District Administration Magazine

Reaching ELLs With Mobile Devices | District Administration Magazine | Mobile Assisted Language Use and Learning | Scoop.it
News, Articles and Community for district-level decision makers in K-12 education. Magazine published monthly, with daily news and blogs and online content. Archives available.
Kim Field's insight:

This article highlights the exemplary teaching practice of a teacher leveraging audio components of iPods to accelerated L2 learners and challenge higher functioning L2 learners.  She creates blended activities were students learn grammar as well as pronunciation and culture from a variety of different mainstream songs.  Examples are Shania Twain for adjective study and Barry White for cotractions.  Students were so engaged they quickly transitioned to audio books where they had books read to them first in their native language and then in their L2 language.  Students were paired together to interview one another using iPod voice recornding.  Within weeks the teacher was  seeing increasing in not only L2 language acquistition but also self-esteem and confidence as well as increased engagement and interaction with their learning and one another.  An excellent exemplar worthy of sharing to showcase how individual teachers, their time and creativity, truly can and do make a difference in student learning and life experiences. 

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Article: Using Mobile Phones For Vocabulary Activities - Examing the Effect of the Platform

Kim Field's insight:

In today's world, mobile phones/technology have practically become a part of our very being. They are physically attached to our person all day. Given the fact we carry technology with us, this article discusses the research and finding behind how students learn in relation to using mobile technologies between 2005 and 2009.  This article begins by outlining the research that has tested types of devices and outcomes (Culligan,(2008), types of activities on various devices and outcomes (Stockwell, 2007b),  test scores using various devices and outcomes (Chen, Hsieh, and Kinshuk, 2008), frequency of acquiring information via mobile devices and outcomes  (Thorton and Houser, 2005 & Kennedy & Levy, 2008) and the relationships between device, learner as well as social aspects and outcomes (Koole, 2009).  Glen Stockwell analyzed these results but still wanted further information about the differences in the scores achieved in activities completed on mobile and PC platforms; the differences in the time required to complete activities on mobile versus PC platforms and he wanted to know if learners improve in speed and scores over time on each platform.  Over a three year period and through the option of using Moodle on a PC or a mobile device, Stockwell had 175 first-year English language students study five vocabulary word activities, outside of class, for 15 weeks. The Moodle tracked number of attempts of each activity on each platform per student, time taken and the scores per student. Results showed that most students preferred to use the PCs over mobile devices for activities. Timing indicated that students using PCs completed the activities faster but overall scores were not significantly different between the two platforms.  The same results were drawn over the three year period.

Overall, mobile phones are a great use for quick research and quick answer scenerios. They could also be good for practice but are still not perceived as an ease of use innovation designed for actual assignments.  Apps are the best way to go for practicing and they are specifically designed to be used on mobile platforms. They are also more engaging.

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Emerging Vocabulary Learning: From a Perspective of Activities Facilitated by Mobile Devices

Kim Field's insight:

This article is a peer reviewed research study that examines how mobile devices are being used to support L2 vocabulary learning when integrating mlearning.  When integrating mlearning and vocabulary learning needs into instructional practice, a number of considerations are determined in this article as necesary to be considered: portability, social interactivity, context sensitivity, connectivity and individuality.  L2 mlearning is identified as an efficient tool with the potential to have great impact on the teaching and learning of L2 languages.  The graphic on page 49 illustrates how people engage in informal mlearning more than any other type of learning.  The illustration on page 50 shows how teachers might leverage what research is showing with respect to informal learning and alignment with L2 vocabulary learning with MALL.  It provides specifics uses for PDAs for example.  Personally I am wondering about how teachers might promote collaborative aspects of learning within both L2 and MALL seeing the number one function of mobile technology remains communication... might students be more apt and more proficient apllying collaboration skills with L2 learning on an mlearming platform?  Certianily MALL provides an opportunity for extended and potentially rich informal learning beyond traditional classroom walls.

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Article: Contextualizing MALL Practice Design and Evaluation

Kim Field's insight:

This study was conducted in Taiwan with 35 students in grade 6 learning English.  This research design highlights how with considerable pre-thought and construction of learning goals mobile devices can be incorportated into language learning classrooms in extremely creative and experiential ways.  Students participated in a strategically designed problem-solving task.  Specifically, it was a crime solving task where in groups of four (where each were assigned roles) students were expected to use the localized context provided by the teacher in conjunction with a variety of stage completion tasks in the game where mobile technology was used to engage, provide information and a recording platform.  Students were able to communicate with one another as well as their teachers for collaboration, feedback, guidance etc.  Students had files loaded onto their phones by the teacher and in each task they had to do something with or discover something with their phone and then communicate to their teacher their answer before moving onto the next task... sometimes they were required to report task progress/completion by using SMS to text their teacher and other times they were required to call their teacher and use their L2 language to communcate orally.  This activity would have required intense preparation but it illistrates how teacher creativity can extend into MALL activities too.  In addition to being a contextual, experiential and an application-based demonstration and use of new language learning one can ensure it was also one of the most memorable and engaging lessons this class had in their entire gr.6 year... School Garden "Clue" with a MALL emphasis... creative, inspiring and truly impressive!

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Article: A Study of Contextualized Mobile Information Delivery for Language Learning

Kim Field's insight:

Research is showing that mlearning has the potential to deliver learning content in aunthentic ways but as in any learning tool determining the cost/benefit analysis as it relates to the learning goal is an important one.  Teachers of language learners are well versed in the need to balance opportunities for interactions in learning and practice as well as various output opportuities (written, oral) to practice and demonstrate both input and experiential learning.  The Mobile phrase book on the iPhone 3G device in this study afforded language learners the opportunity to learn new vocabulary through written, visual and auditory modalities.  Although participants purported some of the shortcomings of the technology (need for better categorization of words and the addition of a translation component) there was merit to phrasebook.  Since this study, beneficial innovation continues in this field whereby learners can access through their mobile devices immeidate new vocabulary and pronunciation knowledge when necessary to apply to their current situation or context.  Although a valuable tool for that purpose it is understandable how it would not necessarily generate long term resonance of the learning... a very localized approach to language learning - beneficial only certain contexts however.  I not even sure one should consider this localized learning for an immediate purpose learning at all if it is not retained or transferable.  Personally I see it more as a potentially valuable resource/reference rather than a tool for learning.

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ELL to Go

ELL to Go | Mobile Assisted Language Use and Learning | Scoop.it
Two schools transform their ELL programs by giving students around-the-clock access to some of the latest mobile devices.
Kim Field's insight:

The Transforming Education Through Technology journal acquired an article in 2011 titled ELL on the Go.  It followed the progress of two temporary stop-over schools in Ilonois where recently immigrated students with little-to-no English skills spend a year or two at the centre building profiency to transfer them to a mianstream high school.  In 2010 the centre initiated an iPad initiative for all students.  and 130 iPod Touches were distributed to students and the results in instant interactivity with text, speaking and listening progression as well as writing and creating growth was evident in students who participated.  The leaders in the program did extensive preparatory work to ensure evidence-based interventions would inform this initiative's success.  There are a variety of examples and stories shared in the article that are inspiring, engaging and motivating.  I can't comprehend how with easy accessibility to this type of L2 learning support that an educator would not be willing to consider MALL as a valuable, ubiquidous and sophisticated elarning tool.  

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Article: Integrating Cell Phones into a Chinese High School EFL Classroom: Students' Attitudes, Technological Readiness, and Perceived Learning

Kim Field's insight:

Recognizing that the integration of cell phones into the curriculum is as varied as cell phones and students themselves, this research study aimed to integrate c-learning into a traditional English language course in China.  High school students used cell phones to take pictures of English words in their communities and created powerpoint projects to present to their class.  The study found that students were skillful with cell phone use, highly engaged in the assignment and allowed for differentiation and self-selection in their learning.    All teachers could benefit from considering where the technology of their student's cell phones might augment and enhance 21st century learning in traditional classrooms.  In addition to accessing or receiving instructional materials what other possibiliities exist for thinking, understanding, learning and communicating with cell phones when learning a new language?

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Article: Limitations of Mobile Phone Learning

Kim Field's insight:

Wang and Higgins identify m-learning as an exciting trend with the potential to play an important role in life-long learning processes.  Accepting that m-learning cannot replicate or replace traditional classroom learning, this article highlights many of the limitations of MALL.  The intent to not only bring to light existing barriers but also challenge researchers and educators to adopt and embrace MALL possibilities inspite of exisiting barriers such as health concerns, equipment limitations, programming confines and learner/teacher perceptions of ease of use.  As digital immigrants, contemporary classroom teachers must face and persist through the inevitable implementation dip and lack of confidence that comes with adopting any new change process... in this case, m-learning and MALL.

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Article: Adopting Cell Phones in EFL Teaching and Learning

Kim Field's insight:

This article investigates mobile learning and in particular mobile phones as additonal tools to enhance language teaching and learning in the 21st century.  An overview of mobile history illustrates how rapidly portable technoloiges and mobile technologies have advanced in the last four decades.  In the past decade and especially since the 2008 Bejing Olympics, China has seen a rise in the increasing popularity of English learning and subsequently an explosion of private language institutes and companies.  The supply of qualified EFL teachers - particularly at the univesity level - has struggled to meet the demand for people of all ages wanting to learn English.  Leveraging MALL in China has become - in addition to supplementing/enhancing current L2 learning in classroon - an accessibility response point.  MALL learning in China is also being used to address the gaps in speaking and listening proficiency that students have post-high school.  Reasons for these gaps are also explored.  Seeing that China owns some of the world's most up-to-date technology and resources, it is an understandable impetutus to seek technology and in particular MALL (and specific to this article cell phones) to support and augment traditional language learning in this country.  In addition to ideas seen in a variety of other articles, leveraging programmers and game designers to help meet the needs of this learning and mobile market are also discussed.  The current gaming generation is postively responding to more advanced skill acqusition offered by a growing educational gaming marketplace and extention into language learning makes sense... particularly because of the ubiquity that mobile technology offers and that gamers consume in.

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Language Learning Applications for Smartphones, or Small Can Be Beautiful


Via Aga Palalas
Kim Field's insight:

If you are interested in investigating a variety of MALL applications then this is the website for you.  The site is a catch-all hub  for learners and educators with go-to links for: where to get apps, built-in apps, instructional apps, social netwroking apps, repurposed apps, make your own exercises and general references.  Included in the hub is not only the url but also a description of each application, for example: top 50 iPhone Apps for Educators, learn numbers in Farsi, Audio flashcards with game, animation of Japanese writing strokes, complete language lessons and animated proasebooks.  Having investigated a few of them I would definitely spend time connecting to the links on this site when considering applying MALL to my own L2 learning or my teahcer's L2 instructional practices.  Claire Bradin Siskin who manages the site is a senior English Language Fellow in India, a researcher, linguistic professor and leading expert in CALL learning, applications and research.  A comprehensive and gateway website.

 

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Article: Twenty Ideas for Using Mobile Phones in the Language Classroom

by Hayo Reinders
These days it seems mobile phones are used everywhere by everyone, which leads to the obvious question: How can mobile phone technology support learning in the second language classroom? The answer is “in a number of ways” because mobile phones come with ever-increasing functions that most students are adept at using.

 

In this article I describe 20 practical ways to use mobile phones to support second language learning, both inside and outside the classroom. Most of the activities will work with most mobile phones and do not require special 
knowledge or additional software or hardware. I will also discuss drawbacks such as cost, increased workload, and other problems that might impact the use of phones in the classroom, and will suggest ways of mitigating them . . .


Via Diana Turner
Kim Field's insight:

This is a practical, succinct and colloquial article encouraging teachers in traditional language classrooms to embrace the mobile technology being brought into their classrooms everyday by 21st century digital natives.  The practical ideas shared by the author are cited as evidence-based applications that are fairly simple to implement and thus negate the avoidance barrier for many teachers in their percieived difficulty of use and subsequent dismissal of MALL as a viable tool for learning at the point of instruction and learning.  I have personally distributed this article to the enitre International Languages deparment at my high school and was impressed not only with how the article sparked conversation amongst my teachers but also how appreciative they were to be provided with specific  frameworks to support the ideas around MALL that were already developing in their professional discourse.  Many have shared with with me at least one of the ideas they adopted, augmented and applied to language acquisiton lessons in their traditional classrooms.  This article opened the door for some reluctant and laggard teachers to take a small step in adopting MALL into their practice.  Direction and practice have led to increased proficiency and new risk-taking with MALL in my buidling.  Fantastic first-step, idea-igniting resource.

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Article: Successful Learning of Academic Word List via MALL - Mobile Assisted Language Learning

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This article disucsses the advantage of learning langauge by mode of SMS texting.  Long term memory of language learning was seen to improve with the use of SMS texting.  The fact that this current generation utilizes SMS as their main form of communication,  it would only make sense that acquiring language would be enhanced communicating in learing environments this way.  Students' common use and familiarity of SMS tools allows learners to elimimate any barriers  associated with communication that can typically be present with traditional means of L2 language learning.  Learners are comforatble with these SMS tools, giving them a sense of self- efficacy and control over their learning presents an opportunity to foucs on content rather than context or learning processes. 

 

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Article: Prospect for Cell Phones as Instructional Tools in the EFL Classroom: A Case Study of Jahangirnagar University, Bangladesh

Kim Field's insight:

As suggested in this article learning English continues to be an extremely relevant and important academic pursuit across non-English speaking countries.  With the rapid technological advances in mobile technologies as well as increased accessibility to mobile devices, researchers at Jahangirnagar University in Bangladesh studied the viability of using simple SMS texting functions on mobile devices as a platform for instruction and assessment.  Students received concise grammar instruction from an instructor through SMS text messaging and were assessed post-instruction on the same platform.  Despite known limitations, this study, like so many others determined that m-learning and in particular mobile assisted language learning has great potential as an instructional tool in the 21st century.  In addition,  other prospects for cell phones as instructional/learning tools were listed from downloading ebooks and dictionaries to translations, capturing class notes by camera, using cameras on field trips, accessing browsers, recording speech and accessing language games.  With increased exposure comes increased opportunity to for engagement, meeting learners in their comfort domain and ulitmately, increased opportunities for new and enhanced language learning in traditional and ubiquitous environments.

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Article: Integrating Mobile Phones into the EFL Foundation Year Classroom in King Abdualaziz University

Kim Field's insight:

This study focuses on collecting data on student perception of using mobile phones in the classroom and not the effectiveness of using mobile phones on achievement results.  Further research is needed to examine the effects of such devices on achievement results. In Dominic McGladdery article Moble phones in MFL classroom by Picardo, he states that there are a variety of uses that teachers can use when creating learning opportunities for students: voice recording, video recording, sending files via Bluetooth, downloading,  and using the web. All of these purposes are authentic, meaningful and useful for intentional purpose.

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Article: Effects of Presentation Mode on Mobile Language Learning - A Performance Efficacy Perspective

Kim Field's insight:

This study compared the beneficial effects of listening comprehenstion for students learning English when paired with identical and concurrent text.  Results should that through the use of mobile learning students showed positive ability to immediately recall listening comprehension better when accompanied by text but that the listening comprehension was not a transferable or retained demonstration of learning over time.  Aligned with other research on working memory, this study revealed that activating both modalities (audio and visual) only has positive effects when in isolation one or the other modalities was unintelligable.  This has been deemed a redundancy effect whereby the working memory becomes strained by needing to process/filter superfluous or redundant information.  This is an important distinction for educators who often, with the goal of activiating greater depth in learning over a greater number of students concurrently teach the same learning goal in multiple modalities... audio, visual, kinesthetic etc.  I can see how learning that is brand new to a student... whether it be new language acquisiton or content that a student does not connect to prior knowledge or a personal context could actually become more stressed, overwhelming and challenging by the overpresentation to their working memories.  This would be particularly difficult for students with learning disabilities and communication disabilities... keep it simple becomes the bottom line in learning that is truly new... a required and intentional focus.  Multi-modality experiences clearly are more appropriate once some level of proficiency or mastery is present as was seen in this study with the use of audio and text features on mobile devices to determine impact on listening comprehension recall and the ability to retain and transfer new learning.

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Article: iPod in Education - The Potential for Language Acquisiton

Kim Field's insight:

This article begins by identifying how essential the need for effective language teaching is in today's society as a response to the globalization of the world-wide marketplace.  It also acknowledges however that despite the benefits of second language skills in the work place that few students graduate from high with more than a rudimentary knowledge of a second language.  The article shares how i-techonlogies and in particular the iPod might support L2 learning in a way consistent with best practices in new language instruction and learning.  It acknowledges that the technology field must respond to these in responsible ways by ensuring a solid understanding of how languages are and are not acquired prior to determining how technologies can be best exploited.  I-technological innovations for L2 learning for instance have stemmed from concrete determinations that the ideal second language acquistion environment must invlove the use of almost entirely the target language during instruction.  Highlighted within the article are the many applications that make iPods in particular "acquistion-friendly" such as: providing hundread of hours of audio-only language input, audio recordings for assessment and instruction, displaying extra-linguistic support through graphics, pictures etc, motivating video content, access to text, audio and video as well as applications where teachers can create materials to supplement textbooks all in the target language.  With the focus on inquiry-based learning in Ontario schools at this time I see many of the ideas presented in this article as ways to engage students through i-technology in inquiry-based language acquistion... I actually see the potential for the roll reversal of students becoming the teachers and teachers becoming the students in an initiative such as this... and all in the name of meaningful, accurate and sustained language acquistion.

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Article: 3D Talking-Head Mobile App - A Conceptual Framework for English Pronunciation Learning among Non-Native Speakers

Kim Field's insight:

This article researches the  effectiveness of the 3D Talking-Head Mobile app as sufficient instructional material for supporting language learning and in particular in the learning of pronunciation for non-native speakers.  The app addresses the critical issue pertaining to successful learning of English as a Second Language which is pronunciaiton.  It was found to be active, creative and socially interactive where students were able to learn at their own pace by watching, listening and pronouncing in a ubiquitous environment.  Mastering a new language's pronunciation is recognized as not only difficult but also a potential  barrier to successful communication - particularly in the workplace.  The use of m-learning, in this example the 3D talking head, continues to provide learning enhancement, ease of learning and allows for the extension of learning beyond the traditional classroom walls.  Techonological advancements in this type of application is drawing a greater audience who in our "gaming society" are far more comfortable and adept with interacting with and using as a learning interface digital simulations/simulators and avatars in virtual realities.

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From Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) to Mobile Assisted Language Use (MALU)


Via Hamid Eusafzai
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Kim Field's curator insight, November 11, 2013 8:21 PM

This study out of the UK recognizes the relevant role that Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL) still plays in the context of acquiring new languages whereby learners are learning language in any context with, through or around computer technologies.  The results of the mixed-methods research on university students showed that Mobile Assisted Language Use (MALU) provided positive opportunities to practice and learn new language skills.  It is supported that personal, portable devices are enabling new ways of learning in ubiquitous and spontaneous ways.  There remains a need for more research in this area on how native mobile users might inform and leverage new teaching practice in flipped and non-traditional ways especially in language classrooms.