The Future of Education

Edition 12

Accepted Abstracts

The Benefits of ICT in Foreign Language Teaching and Learning

Mohammed Benkhedda, phd student/ Abou bakr Belkaid University/Tlemcen/Algeria (Algeria)

Abstract

        In  the  last  decade,  changing  conceptions  of  learning  and  rapid  technological advances have been accompanied by changes  in  language teaching and learning.  Language classrooms are increasingly turning into blended learning environments that focus on active learning. It is commonly known that active learning advances the learning process and thus raises the quality of the language learning experience.  Blended  language  learning  uses  multiple teaching  and  guiding  methods  by  combining  face-to-face  sessions  with online activities and utilizing a mix of technology based materials. The growing use of ICT (Information and Communication Technology) in blended language learning environments has changed the face of language teaching and learning in a beneficial way and will continue to do so along with future technological innovations.  The main benefits of ICT to language learning are presented below by drawing some perspectives.

         First  and  foremost,  ICT and  the  Internet  in  particular provides  language learners with the opportunity to use the  language that they are  learning  in  meaningful ways  in  authentic  contexts.  The Internet provides an easy and fast access to the use of current and authentic materials in the language being studied, which is motivating for the language learner. Such authentic materials include, for instance, online newspapers, webcasts, news- room video clips or even video sharing websites like YouTube. Where language teachers earlier searched and carried authentic materials like maps and train timetables to a classroom, they can now ask learners to access such information online, thus helping them learn with current and real-time materials.  Another motivating language learning opportunity using ICT is provided by chat rooms and virtual environments such as Second Life where the  language learner can practice not only the written use of the language, but also practice speaking and pronunciation, without the fear of making mistakes.

       A second important benefit derived from the use of ICT in a language class- room  is  based  on  the  opportunities  it  affords  for  cooperation  and  collaboration  with  one’s  peers. 

       A third major benefit of the use of ICT in blended language learning classrooms is the opportunity that ICT-based tools give to language teachers so that they can tutor their learners more effectively. 

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