This chapter presents culture-based language-learning objects (CLLOs) in computer-assisted language learning (CALL), supported by user-centered interaction design. CLLOs’ design has been drawn on (a) social constructivist pedagogical theories, (b) self-organised strategies in social contexts, and (c) Scandura’s structural analysis and Gange’s instructional events. This chapter discusses culture-based language-learning principles and the rationale on which the construction and use of CLLOs are founded on. It also makes suggestions about the ways CLLOs can be constructed by second/foreign language (L2) teachers. A CLLO example was designed and presented for the context of the Greek Diaspora in the United Kingdom (UK). Furthermore, this chapter introduces the combination of norm-based and culture-based language learning in CALL, the grey zone as the distance between second and foreign language learning, the open nature in Learning Objects with the use of forums or chats. Lastly, it suggests CLLOs networks use in the age of ubiquitous computing.
L2 Learning And Call
Social constructivist theorists such as Bruner (1966) and Vygotsky (1978) view learning as a process in which students are actively involved and learn through interaction with their peers, assisted by teachers. However, the discovery of knowledge as such springs from their intrinsic motivation and personal past- and present-life experiences.
Kern and Warschauer (2000) claim that the foundations of the social constructivist language pedagogy in CALL and L2 learning have created teaching principles according to which the target language is acquired through both interaction among the learners via computer (the socio-cognitive perspective in CALL) and interaction between the learner and the computer (the cognitive perspective in CALL). Since learners view the computer as a tool of learning and a means of communication, the intrinsic motivational aspect of the computer is seen as an important quality of CALL. Furthermore, research has shown that the socio-cognitive applications of CALL offer learners opportunities to use the target language in meaningful situations. It has also been observed that in these applications, there is an increased language input and output as well as learners’ active participation and self-expression (Vlachos, Athanasiadis, & Ganetsos, 2004). Finally, the social constructivist perspective in CALL has created principles, according to which:
Learners may exhibit behavioral changes after being involved in CALL learning processes.
Process-based learning is identified in the context of ‘becoming’ an energetic member of discourse communities. Mimesis of community members’ language may lead to behavioral changes and language learning.
Social construction of meaning occurs as a mode of internalisation of simulated language forms of communication.
Internal reciprocity may result in creative collaborative textual production.