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Posted by JASMANSYAH pada Juli 24, 2008

INDIVIDUAL DIFFERENCES: In Computer – Assisted Language Learning (CALL)

July 5, 2007 at 8:07 am | In Books published | No Comments

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Summary

This book is addessed to those who are concerned with the utilization of multimedia and computer technology for the sake of learning purposes, which in a modern academic setting, known as Computer – Assisted Learning (CAL). The initial part of this book provides the historical review of the hypertext system which encompasses concept of the hypertext and hypermedia and application of hypertext in education, particulary in language learning. This book also provides a discussion on Computer – Assisted Language Learning (CALL) that includes the discussion on advantages of CALL, and a discussion of individual differences in CALL Following the discussion on CALL is review highlighting the importance of individual differences in language lerning, particulary in the context of CALL and some technical aspects and principles of designing CALL.

Preface

At the beginning of this preface, I would like to share my long journey and experience about why I am interested in utilising computer and multimedia for the sake of educational and learning purposes. Following this is a brief explanation about the idea of writing this book. Finally, overall information of the whole book is presented to provide a clear description on what this book is all about. I used to be a novice person who knew nothing about a hypertext system, multimedia and computer technology. Before going to the U.K. to pursue my study, I was a bit nervous every time I used a computer; feeling so worried about breaking the computer and having troubles with it. All my worries went away after I got used to using it – practising a lot, using computers very often, and seeking assistance whenever I was in trouble, until I felt a computer is a part of my life. My interest in Computer – Assisted Language Learning (CAL) initially started when I was attending the lecture of “Computer and Information” at the Department of Information Studies, the University of Sheffield (U.K.) in 1992 from which I began to realise that computers can be utilised to facilitate learning, particularly learning language. Since then, I have gotten more interested in knowing more about merging computers and multimedia into language learning, until I could finally create a computer – assisted learning program using hypertext system: a CAL tutorial program for learners of English. I got more confident when the users of my CAL program responded positively towards the program I had created. Moreover, encouragement given by my Ph.D. supervisors, Dr. Howard Nicholas and Dr. Lloyd Holliday, had a particular role in stimulating my interest in this area. This brief story of my journey of bringing computers and multimedia into a language classroom, should not be seen as a frustrating process, but a challenging one; a challenging process in altering “knowing nothing” about a hypertext system, multimedia and computer technology into “knowing something” about them, and even loving them. This book is addressed to those who are concerned with the utilisation of multimedia and computer technology for the sake of learning purposes, which in a modern academic setting, known as Computer – Assisted Learning (CAL). The book provides you with theories, empirical studies and practical plans of action. In part 1, I begin by establishing the historical review of the hypertext system which encompasses concept of the hypertext and hypermedia, advantages of hypertext, problems with hypertext, and discussing the application of hypertext in education, including the application of hypertext in language learning. Part 2 provides a discussion on Computer – Assisted Language Learning (CALL) that includes the discussion on computers and language learning, issues regarding the change of methods of language teaching, the underlying considerations of CALL, advantages and disadvantages of CALL, and students’ views and perceptions towards the CALL program. Part 3 is devoted to a discussion of individual differences in CALL which starts by reviewing models of second language learning and their variables, models with independent learner variables, and models with interdependent learner variables. Following this review is a summary highlighting the importance of individual differences in language learning, particularly in the context of CALL. Part 4 presents a technical aspect of designing CALL which comprises initial planning and principles for designing and testing the CALL program. Part 5 provides a summary of the book which highlights the roles of individual differences in CALL and some points to be taken into consideration when designing the CALL program. Finally, I do hope that this book will be able to serve as a reference for anyone who is interested in learning, designing and developing CALL.

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