Modern technologies in teaching FLT — страница 11

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can make provision for their influence on learner perception of difficulty by providing texts and tasks that range across these levels, and by ensuring that learners with lower language proficiency can ease themselves gradually into the more contextually difficult tasks. This can be achieved by reducing the level of difficulty of other parameters such as text or task difficulty, or by minimizing other aspects of contextual difficulty. Thus, for example, learners of lower proficiency who are exposed for the first time to a task based on a broadcast announcement would be provided with appropriate visual support in the form of graphics or video to reduce textual difficulty. The task type would also be kept to a low level of cognitive demand (Hoven, 1991, 1997a, 1997b). In a CELL

environment, this identification of parameters of difficulty enables task designers to develop and modify tasks on the basis of clear language pedagogy that is both learner-centred and cognitively sound. Learners are provided with the necessary information on text, task, and context to make informed choices, and are given opportunities to implement their decisions. Teachers are therefore creating a CELL environment that facilitates and encourages exploration of, and experimentation with, the choices available. Within this model, learners are then able to adjust their own learning paths through the texts and tasks, and can do this at their own pace and at their individual points of readiness. In sociocultural terms, the model provides learners with a guiding framework or community

of practice within which to develop through their individual Zones of Proximal Development. The model provides them with the tools to mediate meaning in the form of software incorporating information, feedback, and appropriate help systems. By taking account of learners' needs and making provision for learner choice in this way, one of the major advantages of using computers in language learning--their capacity to allow learners to work at their own pace and in their own time--can be more fully exploited. It then becomes our task as researchers to evaluate, with learners' assistance, the effectiveness of environments such as these in improving the their listening and viewing comprehension as well as their approaches to learning in these environments. REFERENCES Adair-Hauck, B.,

& Donato, R. (1994). Foreign language explanations within the zone of proximal development. The Canadian Modern Language Review 50(3), 532-557. Anderson, A., & Lynch, T. (1988). Listening. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Armstrong, D. F., Stokoe, W. C., & Wilcox, S. E. (1995). Gesture and the nature of language. Cambridge: University of Cambridge. Arndt, H., & Janney, R. W. (1987). InterGrammar: Toward an integrative model of verbal, prosodic and kinesic choices in speech. Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter. Asher, J. J. (1981). Comprehension training: The evidence from laboratory and classroom studies. In H. Winitz (Ed.), The Comprehension Approach to Foreign Language Instruction (pp. 187-222). Rowley, MA: Newbury House. Bacon, S. M. (1992a). Authentic listening in

Spanish: How learners adjust their strategies to the difficulty of input. Hispania 75, 29-43. Bacon, S. M. (1992b). The relationship between gender, comprehension, processing strategies, cognitive and affective response in foreign language listening. Modern Language Journal 76(2), 160-178. Batley, E. M., & Freudenstein, R. (Eds.). (1991). CALL for the Nineties: Computer Technology in Language Learning. Marburg, Germany: FIPLV/EUROCENTRES. Ellis, R. (1985). Understanding second language acquisition. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Faerch, C., & Kasper, G. (1986). The role of comprehension in second language learning. Applied Linguistics 7(3), 257-274. Felder, R. M., & Henriques, E. R. (1995). Learning and teaching styles in foreign language education. Foreign Language

Annals 28, 21-31. Felix, U. (1995). Theater Interaktiv: multimedia integration of language and literature. On-CALL 9, 12-16. Fidelman, C. (1994). In the French Body/In the German Body: Project results. Demonstrated at the CALICO '94 Annual Symposium "Human Factors." Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ. Fidelman, C. G. (1997). Extending the language curriculum with enabling technologies: Nonverbal communication and interactive video. In K. A. Murphy-Judy (Ed.), NEXUS: The convergence of language teaching and reseearch using technology, pp. 28-41. Durham, NC: CALICO. Fish, H. (1981). Graded activities and authentic materials for listening comprehension. In The teaching of listening comprehension. ELT Documents Special: Papers presented at the Goethe Institut