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1 University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa
Tasks and Technology in Language Learning: Elective Affinities and (Dis)encounters Lourdes Ortega University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa 3rd International Task-Based Language Teaching Conference. Lancaster, September 13-16, 2009

2 Thanks to the organizers:
Martin Bygate Judit Kormos Andrea Révész Virginia Samuda

3 Powerpoint can be downloaded from my website.

4 I am not a techy… more like a technophobe…

5 Temperance & empirical qualification needed…
In fact… (Ortega, 1997, 2009; Ortega & Zyzik, 2008) Euphoric discourse Idyllic images Temperance & empirical qualification needed…

6 But we do live in a digital society…

7 sites: Facebook Newsgroups Wikis -ing: ing Internet surfing Web page viewing, maintaining, creating Skyping Chatting Blogging Instant messaging Texting Gaming Gadgets, e.g., iphones: with Internet, , MultimediaMessageService, ShortMessageService, recording, voice control, photo making, video making, and many applicationservers

8 “Coming of age with the Internet” McMillan & Morrison (2006)
I use it all the time, and I believe that my life would be very different without it. I would not be able to look up the things that I wanted to without calling to get a brochure, going to the library, or ordering a book or catalog. My phone bills would be extremely high, and I would not talk to my mom as much. I really do not see what people did before the internet was invented .

9 … Information & Communication Technologies have changed:
the nature of everyday communication the educational contexts afforded to our students opportunities for L2 learning

10 Tasks and Technology Doughty & Long (2003) Skehan (2003)

11 Technology and Tasks Chapelle (2003) Reinders & White (in press)

12 My interest and focus for today?

13 … affordances harnessed for L2 learners to support:
Language (Chapelle, 2003) “Culture” (Belz & Thorne, 2006) Digital literacies (Warschauer, 2006) Identities (Lam, 2000)

14 The social and humanistic (but not technocratic) value of educational technologies
(Friesen & Feenberg, 2007) The social, educational, and pragmatic (but not vulgar utilitarian) value of tasks in L2 learning (Norris, 2009; Samuda & Bygate, 2008; Van den Branden, 2006)

15 Tasks and New Technologies “elective affinities”
present many (realized and potential) “elective affinities”

16 Die Wahlverwandtschaften (1809)
certain chemicals attract each other and bond into a novel compound ~~ ~~ “human chemistry” ~~ ~~ Eduard & Charlotte The Captain & Ottilie

17 Elective Affinities (1933)
René Magritte‘s Elective Affinities (1933) Paolo Taviani (1996) Le affinità elettive (Isabelle Huppert as Carlotta)

18 between tasks & technology
Affinities between tasks & technology

19 Two affinities

20 Affinity 1: Affordances

21 … LLT and TBLT most unique affordances:
Motivation Authenticity Choice Feedback Community

22 Some examples

23 J. & K. Collentine (K. Collentine, 2009)

24 M. González-Lloret (2003, 2007)

25 Tight theorization of these five affordances would benefit LLT and TBLT in the future
Motivation Authenticity Choice Feedback Community

26 Affinity 2: Theoretical base

27 … in order to learn an additional language
LLT TBLT designing environments… … to do things with words supported by communication technologies… … to do things with words… … in order to learn an additional language

28 “doing things with words”
TBLT LLT “doing things with words” Emphasis on DOING language… Emphasis on learning BY DOING…

29 Emphasis on DOING language

30 Obvious theoretical links of TBLTwith use-oriented theories of SLA

31 TBLT-specific: Peter Skehan Peter Robinson
Processing Trade-off Hypothesis Cognition Hypothesis

32 Language learned Doing Language used Cognition

33 TBLT-complementary: Interaction in SLA
Pica Gass Mackey McDonough

34 Interactional Doing Language used
Language learned Interactional Doing Attention Language used

35 L2 learning LLT work at TBLT 2009: Interaction Task complexity Monday
Maria-Elena Solares-Altamirano Yu-Chuan Joni Chao Ann Keller-Lally Shannon Sauro Tuesday Nik Aloesnita Nik Mohd Alwi & Rebecca Adams Yuksei & Yu

36 Cross-fertilization in a certain direction

37 But we also have TBLT–expanding theories, or broader use-oriented SLA theories…

38 Systemic-Functional Linguistic theory
Byrnes (2006) Mohan (1986, 1992)

39 CA-for-SLA and other discourse-based theories of L2 learning
John Hellermann (2008) Simona Pekarek-Doehler (& Ziegler 2007)

40 Are they “incommensurable or complementary” …?
(Tuesday, 2:00pm)

41 Sociocultural theoretical influences on LLT are particularly rich

42 Open University group:
Robin Goodfellow, Marie-Nöelle Lamy, Regine Hampel

43 also in Europe: Andreas Müller-Hartmann, James Simpson, Gabriela Adela Gánem Gutiérrez

44 In the US: Carla Meskill Mark Warschauer Steven Thorne

45 Reversed engineered influence?

46 Emphasis on learning by DOING

47 In TBLT, educational philosophies of experiential learning
Explicit acknowledgement: Norris (2009), Samuda & Bygate (2008), Van den Branden et al., 2009) John Dewey (1938) Experience and Education

48 Obvious and sustained theoretical links of LLTwith experiential learning theories from ICT and Ed Tech

49 Experiential Learning Theory
David & Alice Kolb’s ELT Experiential Learning Theory

50 experiential learning theories
Another reversed engineered influence? experiential learning theories ICT TBLT LLT Ed Tech

51 Two Affinities 1: Affordances 2: Theoretical base

52 between tasks & technology
(Dis)Encounters between tasks & technology

53 A happy encounter An inexplicable disencounter Tasks-in-Technology Technology-in-Tasks

54 CMC & TB interaction research
A happy encounter: CMC & TB interaction research

55 Negotiation for Meaning in TB LLT
Jill Pellettieri (2000-CUP) Bryan Smith (2003-MLJ) M. González-Lloret (2003) Bob Blake (2000-LL&T)

56 Negative impact on noticing? Positive impact on noticing?
(Ortega, 2009) Negative impact on noticing? Fundamental similarities NfM does happen in CMC as in F-t-F Fundamental differences disrupted turn adjacency  split negotiation routines (Smith, 2003), non-contingent recasts (Lai & Zhao, 2006), delayed uptake (Smith, 2005) lean medium  more explicit marking of communicative trouble (Fernández-García & Martínez Arbelaiz, 2003) Positive impact on noticing?

57 (Ortega, 2009) How much NfM? 1 or 2 episodes % of all turns per session/dyad Task as a source of such huge variability?

58 Attention to form in TB LLT: Dyadic CMC
Bryan Smith (2005-TQ) Chun Lai (Lai & Zhao, 2006; Lai et al., 2008)

59 Iwasaki & Oliver (2003) Shannon Sauro (2009)

60 Attention to form in TB LLT: Teacher/tutor-mediated CMC
Shawn Loewen, Rosemary Erlam, et al. (Loewen & Erlam, 2006; Loewen & Reissner, 2009)

61 Insufficient accumulated evidence, so many more questions than answers
(Ortega, 2009) Fundamental similarities re. negative feedback Recasts overwhelmingly preferred to more explicit corrections Uptake results inconclusive Some (tentative) differences  Amounts of negative feedback are more often than not reported lower on CMC than F-t-F (although there is high variability across studies) CMC factors may damp noticing: non-contingent, incorporated recasts (Lai et al., 2008) Insufficient accumulated evidence, so many more questions than answers

62 Neglected role of tasks
Strangely, many pending questions may involve task explanations, but no seeming effort at studying tasks per se

63 An inexplicable disencounter:
Where is CAF in TB CMC?

64 or TB cognitive frameworks
Research on “complexity/richness” of L2 practice in CMC (Ortega, 1997) Educational benefits  CMC may be an equalizer of participation SLA benefits  egalitarian participation may bring about higher productivity and more complex discourse SLA fears  accuracy may suffer But no precise application of either CAF research measures (Housen & Kuiken, 2009) or TB cognitive frameworks (Skehan vs. Robinson) e.g., Zsuzsanna I. Abrams, Olaf Böhlke, David Coniam, Michael Fitze, Mark Freiermuth, Ann Keller-Lally, Lina Lee, Susana Sotillo, Rafael Salaberry, Ilona Vandergriff

65 Might task design matter after all?
However, a definite concern with accuracy & CMC for L2 learning Might task design matter after all?

66 Enza Tudini, University of South Australia
(2003) (2007) n=9 2 semesters 49 sessions 3,687 turns 61 NfM (9%) 1.2 NfM/session n=27 8 weeks 120 sessions 10,644 turns 232 NfM (10%) 1.9 NfM/session Enza Tudini, University of South Australia


68 Task design... Tudini (2003) Tudini (2007) “Students were simply asked to chat with NS with a view to evaluating the live chat as a possible teaching and learning tool” (p. 148). required to submit their best 6 sessions for evaluation assignment = 10% of course grade encouraged explicitly to seek assistance from the L1 chatters given a list of cross-cultural topics to use during the chat conversations

69 CMC task design does matter
Negotiate-over-lexis-first principle countered with post-task stakes? (Skehan & Foster, 1997)

70 Just instructions may help “foreground a focus on language form”…
Paige Ware & Rob O’Dowd (2008) asynchronous feedback on form LREs for “partnering” vs. “tutoring” e-conditions

71 Maybe things will begin to change?

72 Mohd Alwi & Rebecca Adams
Ann Keller-Lally jig-saw vs. decision-making vs. opinion exchange Shannon Sauro Syntactic complexity lexical richness Nik Aloesnita Nik Mohd Alwi & Rebecca Adams CAF

73 Karina Collentine (2009, LL&T)
interrupted & uninterrupted reasoning & interaction cycles

74 Encounter or disencounter?

75 Tasks-in-technology, neglected dimension
“… the large majority of studies of CMC […] deal with task design only tangentially and teachers frequently transfer tasks used in face-to-face settings to online environments without adapting them to the new setting” (Regine Hampel, 2006, p. 106)

76 Bryan Smith Jig-saw task Decision-making task
Each student has 3 different pictures – (a) Describe all 6 to sequence them into a “bus trip” story; (b) End with discussion of public transportation in the US and your countries. Jointly decide on 4 gifts for 4 members of home stay family in the US (a) Each student has specific parameters and 4 gift suggestions, all of which must be negotiated into consensus; (b) End with discussion of gift-giving customs in your countries

77 Smith (2003, 2005): Seeded target words

78 “jig-saw tasks”: info-gap with closed solution
Blake (2000): Find an apartment in Madrid by sharing Web ads and personal preferences (see URL). Summarize the results using TEXTPAD. Blake (2000) Share the activities from two different personal calendars: Antonio Banderas and Madonna. Identify the events done in common by the two people. Then develop a story written in the past about those common activities. “jig-saw tasks”: info-gap with closed solution Smith (2003): Each student has 3 different pictures Describe all 6 and sequence them into a “bus trip” story; discuss public transportation in the US and your countries.

79 “discussion tasks”: info-gap with open-ended
Freiermuth & Jarrell (2006): Plan out three ways to spend a 500,000 yen gift certificate and decide which way is better and why. Blake (2000): Find an apartment in Madrid by sharing Web ads and personal preferences (see URL). Summarize the results using TEXTPAD. Vandergriff (2006): The moral dilemma of the Alligator River Story (used originally by Gee, 1989) Sauro (2009): Write each other on one of two themes (Swedish culture or global warming) and use bank of related words, including 10 abstract nouns Freiermuth (2001) Discuss which of 4 cities in the US would be ideal for opening a new business (with parameters) “discussion tasks”: info-gap with open-ended Fitze (2006): Discussion of essay topics prior to writing (e.g., professional sporting) Dekhinet (2008): Browse through a website with many links about Scottish culture and discuss them with your chat pal. Sachs & Suh (2007): Read L1 story, retell in L2 with sequenced pictures & lexical help (to NS chat pal)

80 from tasks to projects…?

81 Task-based e-mail tandem exchange
Appel & Gilabert (2002) Task-based tandem exchange e.g, (4-week task): A night out in Barcelona/Dublin GOAL: route and budget for a night out on a trip to Barcelona or Dublin Discussed places where young people go out in their own towns ed tandem partners with options and description of their usual routine on a weekend night Decided on what places they would like to go to on the hypothetical night out in Barcelona or Dublin, drew a budget for the night scanned entrance tickets, leaflets, etc for the venues and shared them on webpage OUTCOME: presentation of their final planned night out

82 Appel & Gilabert (2006) Task-based exchanges probably afford more language productivity and affective engagement than conversational exchanges

83 Task-based email-mediated role-play
Leahy (2004) Task-based -mediated role-play BA European business students (L2 German), 3 to 4 weeks: GOAL: develop a marketing strategy for how to introduce a product to a new market 5 f-t-f dyads communicating through each dyad took on different roles in charge of different elements of the whole task/goal Internet used as a source for task data OUTCOME: presentation of results by dyads orally, per individual in written summary

84 Develop marketing strategy
Dyad 1: UK company “Christmas pudding” Develop marketing strategy Dyads 3, 4, 5: Research assistants to Dyads 1 & 2 3-Similar products on WWW 4-Market conditions 5-Cultural & economic problem shooting Dyad 2: German marketing company Consultant to Dyad 1

85 new questions: Pedagogy: What are the consequences of changing from tasks to projects? Research: How do we investigate projects from TBLT perspectives?

86 Reinders & White (in press)
What’s needed to understand and inform the design of sociocollaborative tasks in multimodal environments? Theoretical pluralism Interactionist as well as sociocultural theories + ICT & CMC theories of medium

87 tasks-in-technology…
So, maybe tasks-in-technology… an improvised encounter thus far… but one with a future

88 An imminent encounter:

89 Cognitivist preference for control & structure, but…
less structured, more inquiry-based task space encourages learners to exercise agency and enact identities, to do learning from sociocultural and social semiotic perspectives that address the “whole” learner (Marie-Nöelle Lamy, 2007)

90 Imagination Lamy & Goodfellow’s Simuligne project (group competition)
Imagine, design, and create a French city with the necessary attributes to host a residential course Create self-character for the city and describe community role Invent history and anthem of city Visit all cities and vote to choose recipient of city award Imagination

91 Task-based NetMeeting-mediated web creation project
Levy & Kennedy (2004) Task-based NetMeeting-mediated web creation project

92 4 Australian students (L2 Italian):
Levy & Kennedy (2004) 4 Australian students (L2 Italian): GOAL (chosen by participants): produce web pages for the Italian Studies site of these students’ university Useful to students (in Australia) visiting Bologna and Perugia for a certain period of time With “live” material (audio & video) collected from informants in cities

93 conferencing software
e.g., NetMeeting, with text/audio chat, graphics, & desktop sharing jointly browsing of the same on-screen material (e.g., websites) while talking jointly creating documents & alternating the control of the application

94 Task-based mobile phone interactions
Kiernan & Aizawa (2004) Task-based mobile phone interactions

95 Narrative & invitation tasks done via:
Kiernan & Aizawa (2004) Narrative & invitation tasks done via: F-t-f, (b) PC , (c) mobile phone Less language produced via mobile phone (using thumb pad), but Similar approach to task And most motivating: Most students wanted to experience the mobile phone condition

96 Importance of social context for technologies
Only 4 of 54 Japanese college participants did not own a mobile phone with Almost all 50 owners used mobile phone daily and primarily for texting and ing Many Japanese college students know how to use the mobile thumb pad to text but not a PC keyboard In Japan & Europe, speaking on mobile phones is expensive, texting is cheap (the opposite is true in the US)

97 Open social spaces, gaming, immersive environments
“Part of the difficulty in drawing conclusions within CMC research is that results are often based on tasks or laboratory experiments that do not easily generalize to the real world” (Luppicini, 2007, p. 174) Alternative, more “real-world”: Open social spaces, gaming, immersive environments

98 Open social spaces, gaming, immersive environments
The look to the future: Open social spaces, gaming, immersive environments

99 James Gee Marc Prensky

100 Sage Sage Routledge

101 In LLT too D. Zheng (Zheng et al. 2009) NfM… Negotiation for Action
Douglas Coleman (2002)

102 from tasks to projects…
to virtual worlds…?

103 here-and-now vs. there-and-then
How tractable for existing TBLT frameworks? here-and-now vs. there-and-then time-less & space-less “Always On” (Baron, 2008) “From Always-On to Always-There” (de Lange, 2009)

104 Gaming, simulations, & other immersive new technologies
Motivation Authenticity Choice Feedback Community

105 Affinities (Dis)encounters
tasks & technology Affinities (Dis)encounters What does the future hold?

106 Elective Affinities (1933)
René Magritte‘s Elective Affinities (1933) “unfulfilled potentials… trapped within superficial barriers” (blescarmona, 2009)

107 Will future research fulfill the potential between tasks and technology?
Will the TBLT and LLT research communities break away from superficial barriers?…

108 Thank You

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114 Copyright © Lourdes Ortega, 2009
Please cite as: Ortega, L. (2009). Tasks and Technology in Language Learning: Elective Affinities and (Dis)encounters. Plenary delivered at the 3rd International Task-Based Language Teaching Conference. Lancaster, September Copyright © Lourdes Ortega, 2009

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