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Showing posts from August, 2009

Integrating a Web-based Concordance in Word Processor as Part of Teacher Feedback on Students’ Writing

IN an earlier post I mentioned the positive effects the generic tool- the word processor- has in improving language learners’ writing skills. I also described how to use the ‘comment’ feature in MS Word as a teacher feedback (or peer response) on a language learner writing piece.
This post will take it a step further by exploiting the ‘comment’ feature, hyperlink, and a web-based concordance as an innovative writing and linguistic feedback. The web-based concordance that I chose is The reason for that is the simplicity and flexibility of such a concordance that gives the language learner, or researcher the ease to analyze a certain collocation or language use. One can choose from drop down menus the kind of corpus included ( Brow, BNC written or spoken or both depending on the query or correction context). One can choose the number of lines that the concordance turns out since so many lines might confuse the language learner/rese…

Corpus Linguistics, Concordance and Data-Driven Learning: An innovative Language Teaching Approach!

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The Corpus linguistics refers to a body of text. This text can be written or spoken or a combination of both. Corpora ( plural of corpus) can be based on brief text on a narrow topic or can run into millions of words such as BNC ( British National Corpus, a 100- million words of British English) or Cobuild Corpus.
To access, or make use of a corpus one should use a concordancer to look at linguistic patterns. A concordancer is a software that show instances of words in a body of text. In addition, it allows to show collocations and frequencies of words. This approach can be called Key word in context ( KWIK). Now web-based concordancers are being increasingly available, such as Cobuild and lextutor.
The following screenshots are from the Cobuild web-based Corpus
1. Write the word you want to query in the box, then click “show conc”

2. A pop-up window will appear with the instances of the word
Click here to view it ( …

Introduction to Word Processing: Enhancing Language Learners’ Writing by Means of Comment Feature in Word Processor

Word Processing has been proven by many researches in CALL that it enhances language learners’ writing skills. Though the word processor is not intended for language learning it affords itself into aiding learners to enhance their writing and linguistic skills. As with all tools, word processor cannot teach learners writing skills unless the teacher is there to act as a moderator, manager, orienteer, and observer.According to many researchers and studies on the nature of word processor to enhance language learning, the following are evident:Word processingmitigates learners’ apprehension of revising and editing since they do not need to rewrite everything. All they need to do is to cut, paste, move blocks with a click of a button strengthens learners’ confidence that words are not permanent and that they can be changed gives learners better visibility of the whole writing process the public nature of the computer encourages class collaboration as opposed to the private nature of the p…

On CALL (Computer Assisted Language Learning)

This is the first post on this blog, so I would like to maintain it as an introduction to Computer assisted language learning (CALL) and how language teachers and practitioners can harness the power of CALL to enhance language learning.
Most if not all teachers now are called “technology immigrants” since technology was not around in their time when they were learners. Our students, in contrast, are called “technology natives” as they experience technology on a daily basis whether in an educational setting or for personal use. Two things are obvious with regard to our students:
They will know about technology more than we will ever know They expect their teachers to be knowledgeable in technology

CALL is a part of applied linguistics that is gaining momentum so rapidly as technology changes. Researchers on CALL are increasing as technology is becoming attainable to all ( open source software, internet, web 2.o). Still, many teachers are technophobic since they did not experiment with…