The IPAD and the Development of Speaking and Writing in the Secondary EFL Classroom

Morgana, Valentina (2018). The IPAD and the Development of Speaking and Writing in the Secondary EFL Classroom. EdD thesis The Open University.



Recent research (Kukulska-Hulme & Viberg, 2018) indicates that mobile technology can support second language learning and educational literacy. The iPad is a mobile device that is having a large distribution in schools and an important impact on second language formal and informal learning. However, studies focused on the use of the iPad to specifically enhance and support second language learning and teaching are still scarce. Against this backdrop, this study sought to investigate learners’ and teachers’ perceptions of mobile learning, the implementation of technology-mediated language tasks and the potential impact of the iPad in developing writing and speaking skills in an English as a foreign language classroom in a secondary school in Italy. The data was collected through classroom observations, interviews, recorded teacher meetings, students’ written assignments, and lesson plans. The data collected has been analysed from a socio-cultural theory perspective. The analysis of written data was also informed by Hallidayan Systemic Functional Linguistics (SFL), and a Task-based language teaching (TBLT) framework was used to design writing and speaking tasks. Results show a positive influence on student motivation towards the performance of speaking tasks and improvements on technology-mediated second language writing tasks. In addition, the study found that the use of the iPad had a positive impact on the design of speaking and writing tasks for teachers. Moreover this action research study contributes to mobile assisted language learning by providing further understanding of how the iPad can enhance foreign language learning, especially teaching speaking and writing in the context of secondary education, and provides educators with recommendations on how to design specific language tasks.

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