The Influence of Integrating Technology in Language Learning Courses.

Yulin Chen, Ph.D., The University of Kansas, 2011.

Abstract


Second language learning (L2) in many parts of the world often involves students in rote memorization and repetitive tasks that are not motivational. This study investigated how technology can be integrated into teaching to support active language learning and personal engagement that benefits motivation, course satisfaction and enhances social experiences.

Theories guiding this investigation included Gardner’s Integrative theory of language learning involving social construction, cooperative learning and communicative competence, and Dörnyei’s L2 Motivational Self System that involves successful engagement with the ideal self, ought-to-self, and L2 learning experience. Participants included 315 students in two Taiwanese universities taking night courses in year 1-4 English courses. Both universities integrate technology across the courses with video clips, audio listening, web searching and creating presentations. Students completed a 66 item "Motivation to Learn English with Technology" survey near the end of the term that included these sections: 1) Desire to Learn English, 2) Preference of Learning Strategies, 3) Social Experience, 4) Course Satisfaction, 5) Level of Engagement, 6) Technology Experience, and 7) Demographics. Data was analyzed using multiple and simple regression as well as correlation analysis.

Desire to Learn English had a positive relationship with Preference of Learning with Technology; r =.37, p<.05. Learning with Technology also has a positive relationship with Activity Engagement r=.33, p<.05. Preference of Learning with Technology was a positive predictor of Course Satisfaction; R2=.22, F(1, 313)=86.75, p<.05. Technology Experience was also a positive predictor of course satisfaction; R2=.03, F(1, 313)=9.50, p<.05. Preference to Learn with Traditional Methods was also a positive predictor of Course Satisfaction (r=.49), p<.05. Desire to Learn English also shows positive relationship with social experience r=.35, p<.05; and Social Experience shows positive correlation with Course Satisfaction r=.55, p<.05. The Demographics (gender, academic major, academic year, and English level) were not significant predictors.

Students with a higher preference for learning with technology are more likely to become actively involved in class activities, have greater desire to learn English, and gain a higher degree of course satisfaction. Because learning with technology appears to benefit motivation and course satisfaction, educators might consider integrating technology throughout their language-learning curriculum.