Computer-Assisted Programs for English Language Learning.

Olga Yu. Shilova

The idea of using PCs in English language learning has a great interest nowadays. Computers became an important tool for many educational purposes.

The using of  computer technology by teachers of second language has many benefits, one of which includes the increase in the amount of exposure and potential interaction with the target language outside the classroom.

Computer-assisted activities can be introduced into standard teaching techniques to enhance language learning.

These programs were designed to make interactive exercises.

Paragraph Create

The program “Paragraph Create” helps students learn to write a paragraph.

Paragraph Create is easy-to-use writing improvement software that helps students develop their paragraph writing skills. Students learn how to write an effective paragraph through reason, detail, sequence, example, and cause and effects. Students develop an idea, and write their own topic sentence, body, and conclusion. Program prompts guide students step by step through pre-writing, writing, organizing, editing, rewriting, and publishing. Students' completed paragraphs can be transferred to their own disks or to a word processing program.

Multiple-choice quizzes.

Each question has up to four answers. Specific feedback is given to the students in      

respond to each answer, and a percentage score is displayed after each correct  answer chosen.

 

Gap-fill exercises.

Students are asked to enter the words that are missing. The student can ask for a hint and see a letter of the correct answer. Automatic scoring is also included.

Jumble-sentence exercises.

Jumble exercises are exercises of scramble sentences, paragraphs, or stories. Students drug and drop the sentence fragments to put them in order, or they can click on the fragments to put the text together. A hint button prompts the student with the next correct word in the sentence (or phrase) if needed.

Matching or ordering exercises.

A list of fixed items appears on the left, and next to each one there is a drop-down list box containing a jumbled set of pieces of text. This is used for matching vocabulary to animated pictures, or ordering sentences to form a sequence or a conversation.

Computers have the potential role in foreign language learning and instructions. With computer-assisted teaching, there are changes in both a teacher and student roles. Students are given more responsibility for their own learning, while the teacher serves as a guide and resource expert who circulates among students, working individually or in small groups with a technology-assisted lesson. Teachers observe more of the learning process in action and serve as a guide in that process.