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”When CALL is the better choice”. Jane Vinther, Ph.D. University of Southern Denmark [email protected] CALL 2008 conference 29.08-02.09.2008 University of Antwerp. Level C1 European Framework. Students …

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when call is the better choice

”When CALL is the better choice”

Jane Vinther, Ph.D.

University of Southern Denmark

[email protected]

CALL 2008 conference 29.08-02.09.2008

University of Antwerp

level c1 european framework
Level C1 European Framework

Students …

  • Can understand with ease virtually everything heard or read. Can summarise information from different spoken and written sources, reconstructing arguments and accounts in a coherent presentation. Can express him/herself spontaneously, very fluently and precisely, differentiating finer shades of meaning even in more complex situations. (Common European Framework, p.24. http://www.coe.int/t/dg4/linguistic/Source/Framework_EN.pdf.)
“In its original sense, communicative competence certainly includes grammatical competence, but unfortunately the term communicative competence is now widely understood in language pedagogy to mean the ability to communicate; to get meaning across” (Garrett,1995:350).
the role of and need for metalinguistic knowledge
The role of (and need for ?) metalinguistic knowledge
  • Færch (1985: 190):

”an important heuristic tool” .

  • Basturkmen, Loewen & Ellis (2002:11):

”The more explicitly a linguistic item is addressed, the more likely students are to notice and incorporate it in their production”.

the role of and need for metalinguistic knowledge1
The role of (and need for ?) metalinguistic knowledge
  • Sharwood Smith (2004:276):

”metalinguistic knowledge is as open to automatisation as any other domain of knowledge”

the study
  • Primary study :

large comparative study of CALL effective ness

  • Secondary study:

small subsequent study focused on achievement groups

the study primary and secondary
THE STUDY(primary and secondary)
  • Subjects:

Danish advanced learners of English

  • Treatment:

10 weeks of metalinguistic input – 57 sentences processed

Instructional language: English

  • Assessment:

a. pre-test and post-test

b. explicit and implicit test sections

call framework
CALL framework
  • Chenu, Gayraud, Martinie & Wu (2007):

Acquisition of French relative clauses

* similar achievements for CALL and


* the less proficient students

benefited most from CALL

call framework1
CALL framework

CALL appears to be more supportive of less proficient students than the traditional approach


  • Chenu:

1) learners work in their own pace

2) single modality medium (written)

call framework2
CALL framework
  • The present study:

1) learners work in their own pace

2) single modality medium (written)

3) immediate and individual feedback

4) supportive features of the interface

5) the interface supports structural


6) task completion

call framework3
CALL framework
  • CALL efficacy and achievement groups


  • Is it related to metalinguistic knowledge?
  • Is it related to student type?
  • Is it related to more focused attention?
  • Basturkmen, H., Loewen, S. & Ellis, R. (2002). Metalanguage in focus on form in the communicative classroom. Language Awareness, 11, 1-13.
  • Chapelle, C. A. (2001). Computer Applications in Second language Acquisition. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
  • Chapelle, C. A. (2003). English language learning and technology. Amsterdam & Philadelphia: John Benjamins.
  • Chenu, F., Gayraud, F., Martinie, B. & Wu, T. (2007). Is computer assisted language learning (CALL) efficient for grammar learning? An experimental study in French as a second language [Electronic Version]. The JALT CALL Journal, 3(3).
  • Færch, C. (1985). Meta talk in the FL classroom. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 7, 184-199.
  • Garrett, N. (1995). ICALL and second language acquisition. In M. V. Holland, J. D. Kaplan, & M. R. Sams (Eds.), Intelligent Language Tutors. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates.
  • Sharwood Smith, M. (2004). In two minds about grammar: On the interaction of linguistic and metalinguistic knowledge in performance. Transaction of the Philosophical Society, 102, 225-280.