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Encouraging autonomy through technology-enhanced tools

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Encouraging autonomy through technology-enhanced tools

  1. 1. John Blake Center for Language Research, University of Aizu Encouraging autonomy in CompSci students through technology-enhanced tools Texts and Tools Lab
  2. 2. 02 Background: Problem analysis Autonomy-focus: Learner-centric, learner-directed Course notes: Open-access online course eTools: • Reading: Feature visualizer • Writing: Feature detector • Writing: Error detector • Reading aloud: Pronunciation scaffolder Overview
  3. 3. Background Situation Problem Cause Proposed Solution The thesis writing course suffers from: 1. low enrolment 2. poor attendance 3. high drop-out rate Two categories of causal factors are: 1. disjuncture • stage: e.g. results vs. introduction • software: e.g. Word vs. LaTeX • examples: e.g. experimental vs. proof 2. Listening difficulties • attention • language Develop independent learners through: • Autonomy-focus • Open-access model • Web-based materials • eTools Some of the problems include: 1. comprehension 2. relevance 3. timing 4. perception
  4. 4. 04 Autonomy Teacher – You have complete autonomy to deliver this course in your preferred manner. You can select to use all, some or none of the suggested materials. Student – You have complete autonomy to study this course in your preferred manner. If you attend class, you are expected to follow the instructions of your teacher. If you do not attend class, do not expect to receive one-to-one assistance on your graduation thesis.
  5. 5. Learner autonomy 05 “Autonomy is the ability to take charge of one's own learning” Holec (1981, p.3) “Autonomy is perhaps best described as a capacity … because various kinds of abilities can be involved in control over learning.” Benson (2003, p.290) “Autonomous language learning is an act of learning whereby motivated learners consciously make informed decisions about that learning.” Reinders (2011, p.48) Benson, P. (2003). Learner autonomy in the classroom. In Nunan, D. (Ed.) Practical English Language Teaching. New York: McGraw Hill. Holec, H. (1981). Autonomy and Foreign Language Learning. Oxford: Pergamon Press. Reinders, H. (2011). From autonomy to autonomous language learning. Teaching English in multilingual contexts: Current challenges, future directions, 37-52.
  6. 6. Learner training and autonomy: A nine-step program 06 1. Make instruction goals clear to learners 2. Allow learners to create their own goals 3. Encourage learners to use their second language outside the classroom 4. Raise awareness of learning processes 5. Help learners identify their own preferred styles and strategies 6. Encourage learner choice 7. Allow learners to generate their own tasks 8. Encourage learners to become teachers 9. Encourage learners to become researchers Nunan, D. (1988). The learner-centered curriculum. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
  7. 7. 07 Course design Lockstep Workshop The course is designed to move: • from teacher-controlled whole-class activities • to student-directed independent learning. This transition occurs over each session and throughout the course. Students working on same task simultaneously to achieve same goal.
  8. 8. EN08 Thesis writing and presentations Pronunciation Scaffolder Feature visualizer Course notes eTools  Modular  Flexible  Front-loaded  Student-centered  Teacher-friendly Feature detector Error detector Modes Web | Print Full | Activity Day | Night Contents Objectives Activities (hide) Resources Review quiz • Optional classroom activities provided • Embedded video, audio and urls • Web-based, so easy to update 300 words 500 words 700 words 1000 words Assignments Students can discover type of language used in GTs Students can check for common errors themselves Students can check the generic integrity themselves Students can read their script more easily
  9. 9. 09 Course notes Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 learning styles & goals set goals L2use process strategies choice tasks teachers researchers Learning objectives Icons for skills Instructions in italics https://john6938.github.io/ThesisWritingEN08/Unit01.html
  10. 10. 10 Course notes Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 learning styles & goals set goals L2use process strategies choice tasks teachers researchers Embedded video Tips on using online tools Interactive review Actionable tip or feel-good quote Embedded urls JavaScript will be used to enable students to receive feedback on any interactive element
  11. 11. 11 eTool 1: Pronunciation scaffolder researchers Input text Select pronunciation feature Click to hear the text Pronunciation visualized in output http://www.jb11.org/pronunciationScaffolder.html Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 L2use
  12. 12. 12 eTool 1: Pronunciation scaffolder researchers Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Pronunciation features are visualized Key is provided L2use
  13. 13. 13 eTool 2: Error detector Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 set goals L2use learning process choice teachers Select error category Categories are explained on hover Input text to check Feedback provided inline http://web-ext.u-aizu.ac.jp/~jblake/ErrorDetector.html
  14. 14. 14 eTool 2: Error detector Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 set goals L2use learning process choice teachers Emoticon and code shown inline Actionable advice given in separate feedback box Instantaneous feedback Simplified buttons New version (from Nov.)
  15. 15. 15 eTool 2: Error detector Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 set goals L2use learning process choice teachers Emoticon Key Code key Example errors Actionable advice given in separate feedback box
  16. 16. 16 eTool 3: Feature detector Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 set goals L2use choice tasks researchers http://web-ext.u-aizu.ac.jp/~jblake/FeatureDetector.html Select language feature Feature explained here This sentence is overly personal. Students can instantly see this when pronouns and possessive adjectives are visualized.
  17. 17. 17 eTool 4: Feature visualizer Nunan`s steps 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Set goals L2use choice tasks researchers Select language feature Select 1 of 4 types of thesis Written explanations are revealed Multimedia explanations are revealed Text highlighted Online version to be released in October

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