Useof CALL in English Language Teaching
Inthe past decade, there has been a significant rise in the use ofcomputers in the language learning process. Technologicaladvancements in multimedia and the internet have enabled privatecompanies and stakeholders to develop programs and software that haveenabled the integration of computers in the learning process.Computers now play an advanced role in instructional deliveryespecially in English language classes as the number of learnerscontinues to rise (Beatty,2013).
TheRole of CALL
Computerassisted language learning can be instrumental in promoting learnerautonomy. CALL allows English language learners to decide the time,the circumstances and the place that is conducive for them to learnbetter. The learning environment is a significant contributor to thesuccess of English language learners (Beatty,2013).Quick learners may find it easy to follow their English teachersduring class time. However, slow learners have trouble in trying tomatch the speed of the teachers as well as the fast learners. Inclasses consisting of a large number of students, it is difficult forteachers to give individual attention to learners who may bestruggling with grasping the language (Levy& Stockwell, 2013).Therefore, computer-aided language learning allows slow learners tocontinue with the learning process away from class, thus enablingthem to be at par with the rest of the class.
Computeraided learning can boost student motivation in English languageclassrooms by introducing diverse topics from areas that are ofinterest to the language learners (Levy& Stockwell, 2013).Moreover, CALL enables the implementation of diverse styles ofinstructional delivery thus reducing boredom. The most importantthing is that CALL encourages learners to take personalresponsibility to improve their vocabulary and English proficiency(Beatty,2013). Some learning programs incorporate games to enhance the fun factorin the classroom. Such initiatives enhance collaborative work amonglearners where learners can engage each other in small groups duringclass activities. Such activities boost the confidence of learners tocommunicate in English by mimicking characters and correcting eachother during fun and games (Lai& Gu, 2011).
Anotherimportant benefit of CALL is the enhancement of text reconstructionabilities among English language learners. NewReader from Hyperboleis an example of a program that enhances the text reconstructionabilities of students. In many cases, learners who encounterdifficulties in reconstructing texts will give up and look for newtext to reconstruct, or in other cases, they may have to seekindividual help from teachers. However, CALL programs can provide thestudents with hints as well as reconstruct a variety of activitiesinvolving text recognition, thus expanding the reading and practicematerial that the teacher has prepared for the learners (Beatty,2013).Other activities such as puzzles enhance the creativity of learners.An example of such a program includes the Crossword Creator.
CALLcan sharpen the pronunciation skills of English language learnersthrough multimedia. In recent years, software developers have come upwith friendly pronunciation programs that incorporate playback andvoice recording for students to compare their voice recording withthe model. Therefore, pronunciation programs promote fluency amonglearners without involving teachers. Examples of these pronunciationprograms include the American Speech Sounds and the Elis Masterpronunciation (Levy& Stockwell, 2013).Pronunciation programs enhance the chances of remembering vocabularyas well as correct spelling. Moreover, institutes such as the Fordlanguage Institute incorporate vocabulary enhancement programs intheir pronunciation programs, therefore sharpening vocabularyacquisition and retention skills (Lai& Gu, 2011).
Thewriting process can benefited greatly from technological innovations.Programs such as Inspiration and Idea Fisher enable students togenerate and outline ideas during the pre-writing stage (Lai& Gu, 2011).In English language learning classes, these programs provide spellingand grammar checks in word processors, which enable students to havea continuous learning process that emphasizes correct grammar andpronunciation (Beatty,2013).
Beatty,K. (2013). Teaching& Researching: Computer-assisted language learning.Routledge.
Lai,C., & Gu, M. (2011). Self-regulated out-of-class languagelearning with technology. ComputerAssisted Language Learning, 24(4),317-335.
Levy,M., & Stockwell, G. (2013). CALLDimensions: Options and issues in computer-assisted languagelearning.Routledge.