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Developing cross‐cultural communicative competence via computer‐assisted language learning: The case of pre‐service ESL/EFL teachers

By Abdelilah Sehlaoui

Abstract

Based on a qualitative research project, this article presents a view on the use of computer technology to develop a critical cross‐cultural communicative competence in English as a Second Language (ESL) / English as a Foreign Language (EFL) for pre‐service teachers. The article includes a brief critical theoretical framework, some classroom pedagogical implications, and a data‐based discussion of pre‐service teachers’ views. These views included: (1) critical views and an awareness of cultural power relations in computer‐assisted language learning (CALL), (2) uncritical views and a lack of awareness of cultural power relations in CALL, and (3) uses of metaphors in CALL. The powerful contribution of CALL can be found in its potential for providing ways to connect people and build communities, for offering opportunities for cross‐cultural communicative competence to be developed and used, and for improving processes of democratization via computer‐mediated communication. However, a socio‐cultural criticism revealed that this powerful tool, like any other media, is non‐neutral because it can serve to reinforce further the hegemonic aspects of education, that is, the dominant culture will be strengthened and protected via computer technology. Computer‐based technologies and software are increasingly incorporated into the curricula of ESLIEFL teacher education programmes. However, this integration is often done in ways that seem to leave unquestioned the potential cultural and hegemonic ramifications of such technology. Hence there is a need for a more critical technological competence

Topics: LB Theory and practice of education, LC1022 - 1022.25 Computer-assisted Education
Publisher: University of Wales Press
Year: 2001
DOI identifier: 10.1080/0968776010090306
OAI identifier: oai:generic.eprints.org:360/core5

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