Integrating E-Learning in the Teaching of English Language Classes

Integrating E-Learning in the Teaching of English Language Classes

Shimey Shawna Masters (University of the West Indies Mona Campus, Jamaica)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 27
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-9228-0.ch010
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The purpose of this research was to investigate how the integration of e-learning in the teaching of English Language could benefit teachers and students at the high school level. This study was done using mixed methods in the form of an exploratory sequential action research where an exploration of teachers' experiences who used e-learning strategies in the teaching of English Language classes was observed and assessed to identify successes and challenges. A total of 15 teachers were trained to use e-learning approaches to improve the teaching and learning process and provided with a training manual after revising the literature relating to the problem. This was accomplished in the study, and an evaluation of the impact was conducted. The findings revealed that the teachers commenced integrating the technologies in their classes and that they are utilizing the strategies that they were exposed to in the training process.
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There remains some concern in Jamaica over the performance of students in the Caribbean Secondary Examination (CSEC) (Gilpin, 2015; Thompson, 2015). For a number of years, concerns have been raised over the lower than expected passes in English Language and Mathematics (Gilpin, 2015; Thompson, 2015). These subjects are considered chief among the requirements to matriculate into many institutions of higher learning. They are also basic requirements for many jobs. Officials in the Ministry of Education in Jamaica have noted fluctuations in the passes of students who sat English Language and maintained that the passes remain low, when compared to what they would like them to be (Thompson, 2015). There have been claims that some Jamaican teachers use ineffective methodologies that hinder effective learning in some subject areas (Gilpin, 2015). As a teacher of English Language for over ten years, I have reflected on the use of effective strategies that allow my students to grasp different aspects of the English Language. Using and encouraging the use of technologies among students has been of benefit. While I may have decided to use e-Learning approaches, there is anecdotal evidence from my experience as well as other teachers of the subject that supports the under use of technologies.

The process of integrating e-Learning into subjects that are taught in schools, has been found to improve students’ learning outcomes (Lal, 2000).Teachers in a California school district have reported that because technology brings books to life, students are also motivated to participate in the lessons that teachers deliver (Harrison, 2005). Teachers in Scotland have also reported greater competencies in calculating skills and have been able to motivate students to attend school and classes (Lal, 2000). There is evidence to show that teachers in other countries have tried integrating e-Learning into classrooms for better results (Lal, 2000; Harrison, 2005).

If the situation of lower than required passes in CSEC English Language continues, it could be to the disadvantage of students, teachers, parents and Jamaica as a country. A call for action into exploring the intentional use of e-Learning in English Language in the teaching learning process is important. In this research, I am not declaring that no research has been done in the area I am seeking to explore. I am therefore open to continuing my search in the discovery of any such work that would provide insights into my interest.

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