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Two types of CASLR


?Gather evidence about the effects of instructional conditions of learning


?Assessment; to make inferences about aspects of learners?language ability and learning (vocabulary, metacognitive strategies)


Investigating conditions for SLA


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Doughty’s characterization of the three facets of her computer


Design the CASLR tasks intended for students?language learning


Description the process of computer-assisted data description replies on a computer program to assist in identifying, tabulating, and organizing SLA data which were gathered through a computer-assisted research task or through other means.


Discovery refers to the use of computer for statistical analysis of data (Davidson, 16).


CASLA for investigating instructional conditions;


Dekeyser (15) investigated whether explicit-deductive or implicit-inductive learning worked better for simple categorical grammar rules and for linguistic prototypes.


Dekeyser (17) investigated the hypothesis that explicitly learned morphosyntactic rules (gender, case marking) would become gradually automatized through practice.


Graaff ( 17) controlled the instructional treatments in his comparison of implicit and explicit instruction throughout a course that lasted approximately 15 hours.


Robinson (16) four conditions of instruction implicit (memorize sentences containing the relevant grammatical structure), incidental (to read input sentences for meaning), rule-search (asking learners to identify the rules that were illustrated by the input sentences), and instructed condition (providing learners with explicit rules about the target grammatical points.


The selection of participants, control of conditions, and testing that can be done in an experiment exceeds that which is possible in the language classroom, and therefore results may from a more stable basis for theory.


Other condition for SLA


Hulstijn (17) made a distinction between two types of studies 1) ‘pertinent of theories of SLA?) applied studies such as investigations into CALL


Both investigate theory-based predictions of the effects of specific psycholinguistic conditions on learning outcomes.


Ayoun found some support for ‘recast?CALL materials designed to operationalize one of the three condition


Hulstijn (000) 1. automaticity of lexical access through CALL materials (computer games)


. compares incidental acquisition of words looked up during reading and during writing, both of which were perceived as instructional tasks by learners.


Evaluation of learning condition CASLA


Hulstijn (17)?instructional conditions


1. the quality of operationalizaiton of the learning condition. . the participation of the learners in the condition. . the generalizability of result.


Operationalization of learning conditions


The researcher has correctly constructed the operational conditions theorized to produce particular effects and that the learners actually participate as intended in those conditions.


The quality of a learning condition depends on the extent to which learners actually took part in the conditions available during instruction.


Generalizability also called external or ecological validity, refers to the extent to which results can be considered relevant to contexts beyond the research setting.


Laboratory SLA studies trade the authenticity of the learning environment for the control of the laboratory design in which learner’s prior knowledge and the conditions of their learning are carefully monitored.


Evaluation of generalizability relies on the authenticity of the research task relative to the other tasks to which generalization might be made.





Difficulty level needs to evaluated in two dimensions the difficulty of the language for the learner, and the difficulty of the conditions for performance.


Impact and practicality are aspects of research tasks that are sometimes overlooked because of overriding concerns for obtaining result at whatever cost. The researcher faced the same set of challenges that confront commercial testing programs attempting to deliver tests in locations where computers are not available.


Summary


Results have overwhelmingly favored explicit learning conditions in these settings; however, researchers have cautioned that results from laboratory setting may have limited generalizability to L classrooms. Generalizability is one of the criteria for evaluation of these research tasks. Others are quality of operationalization of learning conditions, difficulty level, impact and practicality.


Computer-assisted research tasks for assessment


CASLR tasks designed for assessment are used to draw inferences about aspects of learners?language ability, which can be defined as language knowledge and strategies (Bachman 10; Bachman & Palmer, 16). The inferential process used in SLA assessment is the same as that used in language testing observed performance on a carefully designed task is summarized and treated as evidence for particular underlying capacities of the learner about which the user wants to make an inference.


Examples of CASLR for assessment


Language knowledge


In a study investigating learners?developing linguistics knowledge, learners were instructed to use specially designed software for writing their essays in French (Bland et al., 10). This program include bilingual dictionary. Longitudinal observation of learners?queries to the dictionary, which the researcher interpreted as indicators of learners?stages of lexical development.


The lowest level ?‘token matching?


The second level ?‘type matching?


The third level ?‘relexicalization?


Strategies and processes


Hulstijn (1) investigated vocabulary strategies through learners?use of an on-line dictionary.


Doughty & Fought (184) Automaticity of access to grammar.


Doughty & Fought (184) Inferencing and hypothesis-testing


Examples of research assessing learners?knowledge and strategies with CASLR tasks (p.144)


Automaticity in language processing in hypothesized to be indicative of language knowledge efficiently stored for expedient retrieval; as an aspect of the target language is better learned, restructuring of knowledge occurs, making access more automatic and therefore quicker (McLaughlin, 187; 10)


Evaluation of CASLR for assessment


Evaluation of new forms of assessments such as those used in CASLR requires reexamination of the tenets of measurement theory.


Advance preparation When performance such as the amount of time the learner waits before responding to a question is interpreted as an advance preparation strategy.


When students?queries to an on-line dictionary are interpreted as a level of vocabulary ability.


A logical usefulness analysis


Reliability the construct is hypothesized to be consistent over time and the task is not expected to introduce any construct unmotivated variance because of its consistency.


Construct validity the construct is clearly defined and procedure for assessing the construct appear appropriate.


Authenticity the activity was authentic relative to learners?normal class assignments, but not relative to language use outside the classroom.


Intercativeness the activity requires to little interaction among aspects of language knowledge and strategies, and only narrow aspects of language knowledge (e.g., phonology, syntax)


Impact the assessment was unobtrusive and conducted during normal class work; it did not produce a score which would affect their grades. Therefore, it would be expected to have little impact on students and teachers. It would be affect the SLA profession to the extent that the research is read, and drawn upon, in subsequent work.


Practicality Given the technology and personnel resources, the assessment was very practical at the time and location where it was conducted.


Empirical usefulness analysis


The reliability was estimated as the degree of internal consistency of the assessment.


Construct validity was supported to some extent through the theoretically predicted correlation with a style variable ‘reflectivity-impulsivity.?


In addition to construct validity argument, the usefulness analysis requires empirical data pertaining to authenticity, intercativeness, impact, and practicality.


Usefulness issues in CASLR assessment


Construct validity


Trait-oriented definition vs interactionalist definition (p. 15)





Reliability


The reliability of assessment in SLA research needs to be considered in view of construct theory. In the example of advanced preparation, the expected strong reliability of the assessment across time was hypothesized because of the trait-type definition of advance preparation.


Authenticity and interactiveness


CASLR assessment hold strong potential for authenticity because they can be built into instructional materials that are seen by learners to be a normal and useful part of their learning.


The degree of interactiveness can be strengthened by looking toward instructional materials with a clear meaning focus.


Impact and practicality


One has to consider the possibility that learners?knowledge of data collection may disturb some students, particularly those who are less accustomed to using the computer.


The more interesting and important issue is the need to use assessments made during instruction to improve instruction.


the complementarity between language testing and SLA research


1. SLA researchers tend to focus on assessment of specific aspects of language abilities whereas educational uses of assessments often measure more broadly defined constructs.


. The greater interest of SLA researchers in assessment of processing aspects of language ability relative to educational language testers, who have tended to define constructs in term of static abilities.


. In practice SLA researchers are often interested in assessment for the purpose of detecting change in specific aspects of ability over time.


Conclusion


Early CASLR investigating some questions of interest in SLA (assessment of learners?language knowledge & strategies)


CASLR used the same principles as those of language testing and is therefore subject to the same evaluation principles as CALT.


Engaging these fundamental measurement issues is essential if the next generations of CASLR assessment are to move beyond what has been done in the past.





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