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Teachers’ attitudes and motivations for using call in and around the language classroom


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Teachers’ attitudes and motivations for using call in and around the language classroom

  1. 1. TEACHERS’ ATTITUDES TO AND MOTIVATIONS FOR USING CALL IN AND AROUND THE LANGUAGE CLASSROOM What motivates the teachers’ use of CALL both in and around the language classroom? What are the main criticisms and doubts that teachers have? What are the institutional and social pressures upon teachers to use CALL and other multimedia in their classrooms? Are CALL applications perceived as more motivating to students of the ‘digital native’ generation? What type of ‘motivational’ activities are being used? Based on surveys sent to a distribution list of teachers interested in CALL, interviews conducted with teachers at a private language school in the UK and short informal observations about how CALL was being incorporated into class, this paper aims to get an understanding of how teachers perceive CALL as a motivational factor. In particular the focus is on the young ‘digital native’ students verses the often less technologically adept ‘digital immigrant’ teachers (Prensky, 2001) and the possible shift to a more learner centred class this facilitates.
  2. 2. Context • CALL has a growing role in Language Teaching and research (Levy & Stockwell, 2006) • Teachers are central to successful CALL application and If the Internet is an information practice (Hubbard, 2008) superhighway, then teachers just might be the road-kill on the asphalt of the So, what are teachers’ information superhighway. attitudes to CALL? (Kirschner & Selinger, 2003: 5)
  3. 3. Research Questions • What are teachers’ attitudes to CALL applications in general? • Why do they use them in class? • Is there any institutional pressure to use them? CPD for example. • Is there any social pressure? • Is there any pressure from students? • To what extent do teachers feel CALL applications contribute to student motivation? Why?
  4. 4. Methodology • Qualitative research to gain an insight into the multifaceted nature of CALL and motivation – Semi-structured interviews – Open questions in survey • Qualitative research to examine if results are generalisable outside of context. – Descriptive data
  5. 5. Data Collection • Interviews collected from 4 teachers in a private adult English language school in London – 2 male and 2 female – All aged between 30 – 45 – Teaching experience 3-12 years • Questionnaires sent to several distribution lists: – TESL-L – TESLCA-L – IATEFL LTSIG – King’s College ELT and Applied Linguistics MA students – Personal list compiled of teachers known through work
  6. 6. Results Respondents : 179 Gender male female
  7. 7. Respondents’ L1 Portuguese Other 2% 15% Korean Greek 2% 2% Arabic 2% Chinese 3% Spanish 4% English 70%
  8. 8. Survey Participants’ Digital Literacy Have you taken any courses in educational uses of technology? Yes No Crosstabs
  9. 9. Age (50+) Crosstab Digital Literacy 12 10 8 6 50 -54 55 – 60 4 over 60 2 0 I am very confident about I am confident in everyday I use computers but I am My knowledge of I am not at all confident my ability with most uses of computers not really an expert computers is pretty basic with computers aspects of computer use but I can do some things okay
  10. 10. Gender Crosstab Digital Literacy 50.0 45.0 40.0 35.0 30.0 25.0 % Male 20.0 % Female 15.0 10.0 5.0 0.0 I am very confident about I am confident in everyday I use computers but I am My knowledge of I am not at all confident my ability with most uses of computers not really an expert computers is pretty basic with computers aspects of computer use but I can do some things okay
  11. 11. Survey participants – digital literacy data set Choose the statement that best describes your own level of computer literacy: Please select one for both personal and teaching contexts I am very My confident I am I use knowledge of I am not at all about my confident in computers computers is confident Response Answer Options ability with everyday but I am not pretty basic with Count most aspects uses of really an but I can do computers of computer computers expert some things use okay For personal use 84 73 17 3 0 177 In a teaching context 61 67 36 8 2 174 Other (please specify) 3 answered question 177 skipped question 2
  12. 12. Definition of CALL • Working definition: CALL is used to refer to the way teachers use computers both in and around their classrooms (Following Levy, 1997) • For the interviews and analysis, focus was on data about the use of CALL in class and as a self-access resource.
  13. 13. Survey participants’ CALL usage
  14. 14. Survey participants’ CALL usage – data set How would you characterise the main purpose of your CALL usage? Response Response Answer Options Percent Count Using computers as a teaching tool in class 33.7% 55 Using computers as a resource for preparing 45.4% 74 lessons Using computers to refer to students for self-study 8.6% 14 Don’t know 3.1% 5 Other (please specify) 9.2% 15 answered question 163 skipped question 16
  15. 15. CALL usage – comments
  16. 16. Survey participants – CALL Motivating for students Crosstabs
  17. 17. Older participants – CALL motivating
  18. 18. Low Digital Literacy – CALL motivating
  19. 19. CALL motivating – data set Do you think using computer based language learning applications in class is more motivating for students than classes which do not utilise technology? Response Response Answer Options Percent Count Definitely 47.2% 75 Yes, a little 29.6% 47 Neither 13.2% 21 No 6.3% 10 Definitely not 0.6% 1 Don’t know 3.1% 5 Why / why not? 50 answered question 159 skipped question 20
  20. 20. CALL motivating for students - comments “ Hands Ss. more self-directed learning control & promotes independent learning within in a ” supportive environment. “ It connects to young learner's experiences with ” IT in everyday life - very relevant for them.
  21. 21. CALL motivating for students - “ comments The main advantage is that students can work at their own pace and at their own level. It's usually more motivating than sitting behind a desk, though it should not replace the classroom entirely. The computer can be used as a self- ” access tool that students can access at home in their own time. “Because you can pretty much stand back and organise themselves. And obviously PowerPoint, that’s something they are going to have to do when they go to university. So ” they should be using that all the time. … so it prepares them a bit more and makes it a bit more relevant to them. - Matt
  22. 22. CALL motivating for students - comments “ By themselves, no… *computers+ are not a motivation, but they can be used as part of a course to facilitate motivation. By providing a more immediate focus and then for encouraging the students to achieve that ” result, I suppose. - Daniel
  23. 23. CALL motivating for students - comments “ They do seem to focus more, in fact I’m sure that if you compared two groups doing an open cloze CAE for example. The ones on computers would be more focused. It’s the ” immediacy of the media, is what helps that. - Daniel
  24. 24. Pressure “No, I don’t feel the pressure from *the students], no. But I think every teacher wants to make their lessons interesting and ” relevant. And you know, you want to keep [students] motivated, happy and learning. “ - Matt I hope that there is institutional pressure for us to get skilled up on ” those and use them in class, that’d be awesome. - Matt
  25. 25. Efficacy “I mean, in terms of skills well I think that’s development. Yeah, definitely. And I think it adds depth to your knowledge, if you can use… it’s more tools really, more tools at your ” disposal. - Matt
  26. 26. Why do teachers use CALL? “ [CALL] opens up a lot of opportunities for the students, you can show them different websites where they can practice at home, and I think it’s good because it allows them access to a lot of different paths where they can get instant access to real life ” English – Agnes
  27. 27. Why do teachers use CALL? “ Computers are an everyday part of life and is rapidly becoming ” necessity in today's world. By bringing it into the classroom we can “ show students how to utilise these technologies in their learning. I think the main advantage is flexibility and variety with CALL. I can save anything we do in a word document if I use the laptop + projector at my college. I have more choice in listening texts. I have access to an online dictionary which I can then show on the board via the laptop. If anything comes up in conversations, we can find out more information on the Internet. Honestly, I think possibilities are ” endless.
  28. 28. Why do teachers use CALL? “ Students living away from English speaking countries now have the chance to interact authentically and meaningfully with native/non-native speakers ONLY if ” teachers realized of this advantage!!!
  29. 29. Why do teachers use CALL? “Our students will use computers in most aspects of their study/work life. But the fact is that most of our students, or indeed any language learners will use a computer for the majority of their ” communication in English. It's appropriate that we teach in the same context. - Kat
  30. 30. Why do teachers use CALL? “ The reason is to give them access to a wider ” range of material. – Daniel “ It’s good because it allows the student to take their own ” initiative and try and find the answers to their questions. It gives them a bit of independence. - Agnes
  31. 31. Why do teachers use CALL? “ Like I said before, it’s just to change things up from the day to day, to make it more relevant to the students, because that’s something they are involved with, technology all the time, and they’re going to be involved with technology all the ” time. - Matt
  32. 32. Teachers’ Motivation • Predominantly intrinsic motivation – pressure not present or perceived as negative • Student response to technology – Students’ expectations featured less heavily than their response to the medium • A tool to access resources –Variation & power of media access – Authentic – Autonomous – Shift student centeredness
  33. 33. Discussion • Teachers believe CALL is more motivating for students • Teachers are intrinsically motivated to use CALL – authenticity – empowering student – Variety – Autonomy • Efficacy is seen as important • Support, training and facilities are vital • Facilities especially are seen as vital by more skilled practitioners Problems: • Skewered sample • Generalisable? • More detailed study into individual factors
  34. 34. References • Hubbard, P. (2008) ‘CALL and the future of language teacher education’ CALICO Journal, 25(2): (pp. 175– 188) • Levy, M. and Stockwell, G. (2006) Call Dimensions: Options and Issues in Computer-Assisted Language Learning. New York: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates • Kirschner, P. & Selinger, M.(2003) ‘The state of affairs of teacher education with respect to information and communications technology’ Technology, Pedagogy and Education, 12(1) (pp. 5 – 17) accessed 10/01/2010
  35. 35. Thank you Slides available at my blog: and on