Monday, 10 March 2014

Technology and TESOL: Key Terms

The purpose of this entry is to bring clarity (and trigger my memory) to words/concepts and acronyms that I come across within the course readings.  In the future, I hope to make the time to attach links to the terms which are clearly only superficially delt with here.


The behaviourist: learning is defined as behavioural changes from external stimuli – teaching and training.

CALL: Computer Assisted Language Learning -- relates to the body of literature regarding the use of technologies in language learning. 

CMLL: Computer Mediated Language Learning -- no surprise -- implementing computer tools to facilitate the learning process.

Cognitive-Apprentice Model: aligns itself to the concepts of scaffolding and has potential for designing technology enhanced learning environments where both technology ability and language are foci of the learning process.

Three Phases:
1.   Modeling: an expert serves as a model for the learner.
2.   Coaching: the "expert" supervises and guides the learner in relevant activities.
3.    Fading: the "expert" gradually removes support and the learner gains the freedom to experiment and experience the undertaken activities 

The cognitivist: the mind is a “black box” where the learner model is one of an information processor.

CoP: Community of Practice is the process of social learning that occurs when people who have a common interest collaborate over an extend period of times sharing ideas and strategies and determining solutions and building innovations.  Learning does not require intentionality – often is an incidental outcome that accompanies these social processes.

CSCL: Computer-supported collaborative learning is a pedagogical approach wherein learning takes place via social interaction using a computer or through the internet.  Characterized by the sharing and construction of knowledge among participants using technology as their primary means of communication or as a common resource.  CSCL can be implemented online and classroom learning environments and can take place synchronously or asynchronously. 

Connectivism:  Knowledge exists in the world rather than in the head of an individual.  Similar to the activity theory of Vygotsky, knowledge is viewed as existing within system which are accessed through people participating in activities.    A central metaphor is the use of a network with nodes and connections.  
A node: is anything (information, data, feelings, images) that can be connected (strong and weak) to another node within a network (organization).  
Learning is the process of creating connections between nodes and developing a network.   The notion of "know-where" to find knowledge when needed supplements the notions of "know-what" and "know-how".

The constructionist: learning by doing (active learning with the added element of technology).  Two main processes: assimilating and accommodating knowledge.   Learning is perceived to be most effective when part of an activity the learner experiences is constructing a meaningful product – more specifically using technology.  Why do we need to internalize knowledge when it can be finger tip accessed?

Digitally expectant:  students' technological demands and expectations.

Digital natives:  current generation who seamlessly transition between their real and digital lives.

Digital immigrants:  self-taught, with limited skills that are applied in their work and living environments.

Digital Pedagogy:  the study of how to teach using technologies -- an attitude towards and aptitude with digital technologies.  Howell (2012) highlighted the pedagogy to hinge on teachers' willingness to use them effectively and to understand how and why they should be used.  The platform provides teachers with the ability to meet new digital technologies and be able to use them effectively in the classroom. 

Distributed Cognition:  proposes that human knowledge and cognition are not confined to the individual.  They are distributed by placing memories, facts or knowledge in our environment.  A system is a set of representations, and distributed cognition models the interchange of information between these representations (either in the mental space or externally).

Distributed Constructionism:  places the construction (not information) at the centre of learning interested with how computers can be used to support the shared construction of knowledge.

ICTs: Information Communication Technologies -- used interchangeably with technology -- stress the role of unified communications and integration of telecommunications 

ISD: Instructional Systems Design -- in the associationist perspective, Gange developed learning tasks arranged in sequences based on their relative complexity according to task analysis, with simpler components as prerequisites for more complex tasks.

MKO: More Knowledgable Other

OCoP: Online Community of Practice must include active members who are practionners or ‘experts’ within their domain.   Social structures must be created within the community to assist in knowledge creation and sharing. Knowledge must be shared and meaning negotiated within an appropriate context – learning involves both instruction based learning and group discourse. To become a full member of a CoP, a process or transformation must occur.  

Social media:  Dates back to early human communication (ex. pictorials that remain have been found in caves across the globe), but in today's vernacular refers to Internet technologies and services that focus on Web 2.0 services.   These services allow for the creation and exchange of user-generated content (Blogger, Diigo, Facebook etc.). 

Social networking:  an aspect of social media focusing on the connections between people and the creation of networks.

Tech-less, no tech: without technology

Technology: tools that enable something to be accomplished.  In the TESOL context anything that can aid learner participation and support out of class communication.

Technology-enhanced, technology-supported:  used to augment and facilitate learning – rather than be the object of the learning  (use videoconferencing software to connect classroom participants).

Technology-integrated, technology-integrations:  used to support and enhance the learning – not seen as a distraction, or as an “add-on”, to the learning activity.

TELL: Technology-Enhanced Language Learning -- an attempt to differentiate “new technologies” (e.g. the Internet) from general computer technology.

TPACK: Technological Pedagogical and Content Knowledge is framework to understand and describe the kinds of knowledge needed by a teacher for effective pedagogical practice in a technology enhanced learning environment.   The model builds on Shulman (1986) PCK model and argues that effective technology integration for teaching specific content or subject matter requires understanding and negotiating the relationships between three components: technology, pedagogy and content.   Books have been written on the topic.  I am going to stop here. 

Web 2.0.:  describes websites that use technology beyond the static pages of earlier websites (Web 1.0) which encourage collaboration, cooperation, two-way communication, and community.

Tech-less, no tech: without technology


Poole, T (2013) Course Notes Technology in TESOL EML 515, Charles Sturt University

Howell, J. (2012). What is a digital pedagogy and why do we need one? Teaching with ICT: Digital pedagogies for collaboration and creativity (pp. 3-40). South Melbourne, Victoria: Oxford University Press.

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