Network Based Language Teaching (NBLT) represents a new and different side of Computer Assisted Language Learning (CALL), where human-to-human communication is the focus. Students with access to the Internet can now communicate with their classmates wherever they are, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week from home or at work. This form of networking provides suitable platforms for academic discussions and social interactions to continuing education adult learners. The theoretical assumption, which underlies social interaction on the online discussion, is based on the socio-cognitive theory derived from Vygotsky’s social development theory. The focus of the study is to identify the types and functions of interactions in an online forum among adult learners with their tutors and peers in two English language courses offered by a prominent virtual university in Malaysia. The learning environment at this university varies from face-to-face small group sessions to web-based online discussion sessions. The data for this study are the entries sent by the learners to this online forum collected over a period of one semester. These entries will be categorized according to the various interactional patterns and functions and the topics discussed. It is hoped that the findings of this study will inform educators and course designers that NBLT should be extended beyond virtual learning environment.
|Keywords:||Socio-Cognitive Theory, Second Language Learning, Network Based Language Teaching, On-Line Forum|
Associate Professor, School of Language Studies and Linguistics , Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia
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