Mobile Testing System for Developing Language Skills

Mobile Testing System for Developing Language Skills

Svetlana Titova (Far Eastern Federal University, Russia)
Copyright: © 2018 |Pages: 11
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2255-3.ch444
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Abstract

This paper investigates the pedagogical impact of both the mobile testing system PeLe and enquiry-based approach on language skills development in the context of mobile-assisted language learning. The study aims to work out a methodological framework for PeLe implementation into language classroom through immediate feedback and formative assessment. The framework was developed and pilot tested in a joint research project MobiLL by EFL teachers at Lomonosov Moscow State University (Russia) and University College HiST (Norway). The analysis based on quantitative research data demonstrated that PeLe supported language classes resulted in language skill gains. The qualitative data analysis highlighted the positive effect of mobile formative assessment and of post-test activities on learner motivation and collaboration skills. This study suggests that the use of technology was effective in engaging students in enquiry-based tasks to cultivate collaboration.
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Background

Today teachers who would like to meet the expectations of a new generation of mobile natives need to follow a transformational approach (Puentedura, 2011) to the development of language skills based on creative use of mobile technologies within the learner-oriented environment. The main prerequisite of this environment functioning is collaborative peer-learning approach. The social framework, learners’ expertise, and cultural practices are gaining importance, the role of the devices is becoming less important. Mobility is no longer defined through the devices, but through “the learners’ abilities to act flexibly in ever changing and self-constructed learning contexts” (Seipold, 2011, p.32). Seipold argues that only if teachers provide spaces to learners to act according to their interests, agency, and cultural practices, innovative use of the devices can be discovered by learners (2011).

The research framework is also based on Mishra and Koehler's model for implementing new technologies into teaching - Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPCK)(2006). This approach suggests teachers should be aiming to reach a point where their traditional content and pedagogical knowledge is enhanced by technological knowledge. According to TPCK framework, a new tool complements teachers' knowledge and skills. This theoretical perspective suggests that learning is affected and modified by the tools employed for it and that reciprocally these tools are adjusted in the way they are used for learning. As Stockwell and Hubbard argue: “Let the language learning task fit the technology and environment, and let the technology and environment fit the task” (2013, p.9). The Substitution Augmentation Modification Redefinition model developed by Puentedura (2011) can be used as a complement to TPCK. According to this model the use of new tech tools in education may lead either to the enhancement of education (augmentation and substitution phases) or to the real transformation (redefinition and modification phases). Redefinition is the highest transformation phase which allows for a completely new format of tasks and activities that were previously impossible. This approach also offers a perspective in which the pedagogical considerations shape the design of mobile learning.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Mobile Testing System: mobile apps design specifically for testing skills and knowledge.

Summative Assessment: evaluates student learning at the end of an instructional unit by comparing it against some standard or benchmark.

Enquiry-Based Approach: a learner-centered approach that emphasizes higher order thinking skills.

MALL: mobile assisted language learning.

Formative Assessment: monitors student learning to provide ongoing feedback that can be used by instructors to improve their teaching and by students to improve their learning.

Interactive Learning: is a pedagogical approach that incorporates social networking into course design and delivery.

Mobile Learning: earning methods and materials that involve the use of mobile phones or handheld devices.

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