Assessment of online reflections: engaging english second language (ESL) students

Birch, Dawn and Volkov, Michael (2007) Assessment of online reflections: engaging english second language (ESL) students. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 23 (3). pp. 291-306. ISSN 1449-3098

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Online discussion boards are increasingly being used by tertiary educators as a tool for encouraging greater student interaction and developing learning communities. In particular, educators who have adopted a learner-centered, socio-constructivist approach to teaching have sought to facilitate collaborative learning in which students reflect upon and share their experiences and perspectives, and construct knowledge together through developing shared meanings. In this paper, the findings of an electronic survey of the perceptions of 70 distance education EFL and ESL students concerning a compulsory assessment item involving contribution to an online course discussion board are presented. The study revealed that the majority of the students enjoyed the assessment item and agreed that posting to the online course discussion board had allowed them to achieve a range of cognitive and social learning outcomes, as well as, to develop some important graduate skills. In particular, ESL students reported the benefits of posting to the discussion board in terms of sharing their experiences with others and reducing the feeling of isolation. Further, when considering social outcomes, ESL students perceive the discussion board provided them with an opportunity to meet and develop a closer relationship with other students in the course and encouraged them to keep up with their studies.

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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Published version deposited in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Business - School of Management and Marketing (1 Apr 2007 - 31 Dec 2010)
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Business - School of Management and Marketing (1 Apr 2007 - 31 Dec 2010)
Date Deposited: 31 Oct 2007 01:45
Last Modified: 02 Jul 2013 22:50
Uncontrolled Keywords: English as a second language students; ESL students; online discussion boards; tertiary education; distance education students
Fields of Research (2008): 13 Education > 1302 Curriculum and Pedagogy > 130207 LOTE, ESL and TESOL Curriculum and Pedagogy (excl. Maori)
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2003 Language Studies > 200303 English as a Second Language
13 Education > 1399 Other Education > 139999 Education not elsewhere classified
Fields of Research (2020): 39 EDUCATION > 3901 Curriculum and pedagogy > 390108 LOTE, ESL and TESOL curriculum and pedagogy
47 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 4703 Language studies > 470306 English as a second language
39 EDUCATION > 3999 Other Education > 399999 Other education not elsewhere classified
Socio-Economic Objectives (2008): E Expanding Knowledge > 97 Expanding Knowledge > 970108 Expanding Knowledge in the Information and Computing Sciences

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