About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 1242-1247
Publication year: 2009
ISBN: 978-84-612-9801-3
ISSN: 2340-1117

Conference name: 1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2009
Location: Barcelona ,Spain

TECHNOLOGY-ENABLED CREATION: WEBPAGE PROJECTS IN LANGUAGE LEARNING

M. Schcolnik

Tel Aviv University (ISRAEL)
The powerful information and communication technologies available in the 21st century open up new social and educational opportunities and provide new tools for knowledge construction. In the last decade there has been a shift from student consumption of ready-made content towards autonomous student creation of technology-enabled content. One example of such creation is student authoring and publication of webpages. Now that the Internet has become a primary medium of communication, this activity is an authentic, communicative activity (Mishan, 2004). By creating content in the target language for a broader audience than their teacher or classmates, students learn responsible writing. Moreover, while they research a topic, synthesize the information, organize it, find visuals to accompany the text, decide on the layout, and publish their pages, they learn “the rules of the game” while learning the target language purposefully (Schcolnik, forthcoming). Students need the ability to interact with and produce technology-based media so as to be prepared for their futures outside the classroom (Egbert, 2007). The process of webpage production allows students to learn valuable web literacy skills as well as language skills.

This paper reports on a pilot study in which advanced English for Academic Purposes engineering students were given the option to develop a webpage as an alternative to a more traditional final project of oral presentation accompanied by PowerPoint. First semester students did the project individually. In the second semester, the project was done in pairs. The students were provided with guidelines for webpage development (DOs and DON’Ts and a list of required and optional components) as well as a checklist of the assessment criteria. At the end of each semester an attitude questionnaire was administered, tapping the time spent on development, student satisfaction, reasons for choosing to do a webpage, whether the process contributed to their language learning, what specific skills they felt improved, and what they found difficult.

The aim of the pilot was to determine whether this type of project was feasible for alternative assessment, and to see how students felt about the effort required and the benefits of the project. The results of the questionnaire showed that there was great satisfaction with the choice of task in spite of the effort it took to develop the page. Students chose to do a webpage for a variety of reasons, the most prevalent one being that they preferred working in front of a computer rather than presenting in front of the class. Students felt that both their English and their technical skills improved while doing the project.

In this presentation I will give the rationale for webpage projects in language learning, describe the pilot, report on the results and demonstrate a few of the student-produced webpages.
@InProceedings{SCHCOLNIK2009TEC,
author = {Schcolnik, M.},
title = {TECHNOLOGY-ENABLED CREATION: WEBPAGE PROJECTS IN LANGUAGE LEARNING},
series = {1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies},
booktitle = {EDULEARN09 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-612-9801-3},
issn = {2340-1117},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Barcelona ,Spain},
month = {6-8 July, 2009},
year = {2009},
pages = {1242-1247}}
TY - CONF
AU - M. Schcolnik
TI - TECHNOLOGY-ENABLED CREATION: WEBPAGE PROJECTS IN LANGUAGE LEARNING
SN - 978-84-612-9801-3/2340-1117
PY - 2009
Y1 - 6-8 July, 2009
CI - Barcelona ,Spain
JO - 1st International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
JA - EDULEARN09 Proceedings
SP - 1242
EP - 1247
ER -
M. Schcolnik (2009) TECHNOLOGY-ENABLED CREATION: WEBPAGE PROJECTS IN LANGUAGE LEARNING, EDULEARN09 Proceedings, pp. 1242-1247.
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