When subject teachers and language specialists meet : Building an online content-based language learning environment

Research output: Conference Papers (RGC: 31A, 31B, 32, 33)32_Refereed conference paper (no ISBN/ISSN)Not applicablepeer-review

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Author(s)

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2 Dec 2008

Conference

TitleTertiary Writing Network Biennial Colloquium 2008
PlaceNew Zealand
CityAuckland
Period2 - 3 December 2008

Abstract

Traditionally subject learning and language learning are treated as two separate processes and subject teachers and language specialists work independently of each other. Although subject teachers have noticed incompetence in their students’ academic writing, for various reasons they merely focus on the content of an essay and tend not to give feedback on the language component. On the other hand, the academic writing courses designed by language specialists may focus on generic writing skills but fail to meet students’ specific academic needs in terms of content.Against this background, an online content-based language learning system was developed with the aim of bridging the gap by providing subject teachers and language specialists with a platform of collaboration to improve the student’s English writing ability within the context of courses in the student’s chosen discipline. The subject teacher and the language specialist collaboratively design a writing assignment and give it to the student. Before submitting the assignment to the subject teacher, the student has a chance to submit drafts to the language specialist for feedback. A blog-based interface in Blackboard has been adopted to provide a platform for the student to submit and retrieve drafts and for the language specialist to provide feedback and language advice on student’s writing over the internet. In this paper, the implementation of the system is described in detail. It also discusses how successful the blog-based interface facilitates the interaction between the language specialist and the student as well as how effective the language specialist’s feedback help improve the student’s academic writing ability in English. Suggestions for further development are offered at the end of the presentation.

Citation Format(s)

When subject teachers and language specialists meet : Building an online content-based language learning environment. / CHAN, Angela; Webster, Jonathan; Yu, Jerry; Vrijmoed, Lilian; Wong, Eva.

2008. Paper presented at Tertiary Writing Network Biennial Colloquium 2008, Auckland, New Zealand.

Research output: Conference Papers (RGC: 31A, 31B, 32, 33)32_Refereed conference paper (no ISBN/ISSN)Not applicablepeer-review