Susan Moore EDET780, Maymester Dr.

Smyth May 29, 2013 The Effectiveness of Technology in ESOL Instruction Dissertation Reviews Introduction Students whose primary language is not English or whose home environment does not support the English language are chosen to participate in ESL (English as a Second Language) or ESOL (English to Speakers of Other Languages) programs. Theses programs are available at every public primary and secondary school in the United States. These courses provide English language training to children, and may also provide assistance in core classes when language barriers cause the subject matter difficult to understand. In today’s society, there are a number of ways to English to non-English speakers. One of the evolving methods that is continuing to grow more and more popular is through the use of technology. Due to this rise in popularity, there are numerous dissertations that relate to the use and effectiveness of utilizing technology in ESOL instruction.

Dissertation #1:
A comparative research study on the effects of technology on student achievement in teaching English to students of other languages Toland, C. S. (2010). A comparative research study on the effects of technology on student achievement in teaching English to students of other languages. The University of Mississippi. Retrieved May 27, 2013 from ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Full Text. (Dissertation number 3447106). http://search.proquest.com.pallas2.tcl.sc.edu/docview/858250473?accountid=13965 Summary This dissertation was a quantitative study conducted with the purpose of identifying the impact of using technology as a component of ESOL instruction as it relates to achievement. This study intended to determine whether student achievement in language learning due to technology outweighed the high cost for implementing the ESOL technology in two Texas schools grades 3-5. One of the schools was identified as using technology at a high level (incorporated the use of computers, iPods, web-based and software-based applications, video technology, digital cameras, interactive whiteboards, and audio technology), while the opposing school utilized a low level of technology. The

Texas state achievement test (TAKS) was the evaluation tool used to determine student achievement in both schools. The results showed that the students from the school that utilized a high level of technology had higher scores on TAKS in the Reading Composite sections. Review The dissertation is thorough and not only produces an in-depth literature review relating to trends in ESOL today and the growth of technology in education, but it also objectively identifies limitations in the study and suggests further research. It would be beneficial to conduct similar research that studies a qualitative review, such as in-class observations or surveys from students, teachers, and parents. Hand in hand, the quantitative results produced in this study and the qualitative results from observations and surveys would create a much stronger conclusion that technology truly does yield student achievement. Also, the technological programs utilized by teachers were not all streamlined, as the teachers had a choice of which programs to use. A more streamlined study with minimal variables would also yield a much more reliable results. In my own opinion, I have seen the benefits of using technology in a general education setting, and would only assume that utilizing technology in an ESOL environment would produce the same gains, as identified in this study.

Dissertation #2:
Comparing traditional and technological methods for studying English as a second language (ESL) Manko, B. A. (2010). Comparing traditional and technological methods for studying English as a second language (ESL). Robert Morris University. Retrieved May 27, 2013 from ProQuest Dissertations &Theses Full Text. (Dissertation number 3425881.) http://search.proquest.com.pallas2.tcl.sc.edu/docview/759244275?accountid=13965 Summary This dissertation was a quantitative study that assessed the benefits between traditional methods and technological methods of instruction for studying ESL at the university level. The researcher strived to identify a method that was not only effective, but which would keep learners motivated while reducing frustration and improving learning outcomes. Data was collected quantitatively and revolved around a questionnaire that included both demographics and questions regarding the English language. English fluency tests as were distributed both in person and online to measure the effectiveness of each mode for learning ESL. Instead of determining which method was most effective in producing student achievement, the study found that “the most effective strategy for

learning ESL was influenced by the individual participant’s number of languages spoken, age, gender, and highest level of education.” Review I was surprised at the findings of this research study. I was expecting a cut-and-dry determination of whether traditional in-class, lecture-based learning or the new global, online method of teaching ESL was most effective at the college level. Instead, the dissertation yielded results that do not answer this question at all. The researcher was open-minded and realized during the study that effectiveness does not rely solely in the method in which something is taught, but in the individuals’ personal background and history. This presents room for additional research, revolving around how to develop the classroom in order to create a motivating learning environment and equalize all students, regardless of prior languages learned and level of education. Especially in today’s global society, our education system needs to nurture all who desire to learn English, and produce achievement which would lead to success for society.

Dissertation #3:
The effectiveness of a multimedia-based self-paced instructional module in helping English Language Learners to acquire literacy in their native language and English as a second language Christiansen, D. K. (2009). The effectiveness of a multimedia-based self-paced instructional module in helping English language learners to acquire literacy in their native language and English as a second language. Idaho State University. Retrieved May 27, 2013 from ProQuest Dissertations &Theses Full Text. (Dissertation number 3357385.) http://search.proquest.com.pallas2.tcl.sc.edu/docview/305058139?accountid=13965 Summary This dissertation recognized the need for successful English language learning programs due to the growth of minorities and new federal education mandates. This study assessed the effectiveness of a technological program for teaching English literacy skills to elementary schools students. The researcher utilized a multimedia-based, self-paced instructional module, and sought to determine whether this module would present a significant change in performance, as well as whether the module met the criteria within each phase of the ADDIE instructional design model in contrast to the traditional textbook method of learning. The technological method is called BASE Education (Basic Academic Spanish English Education), and the results of the study were measured based on the outcomes of the Woodcock-Munoz Literacy test. The researcher collected quantitative and qualitative data, which produced rather mixed conclusions.

Review The researcher produced a very in-depth study regarding the effectiveness of technological vs. traditional methods of teaching ESL. The dissertation is complete with a thorough literature review, but perhaps even more impressive was the extensive results displayed a number of tables, charts, and explanatory paragraphs. It was positive to see that the researcher analyzed both quantitative and qualitative results, and it was rather interesting to find that these results did not necessarily agree. Qualitatively, the participants in the study claimed that the BASE Education technology was both helpful and engaging in instructing ESL. However, the quantitative results did not yield a significant difference in achievement in comparison with the traditional method of teaching. Also interesting was the incorporation of ADDIE. The use of this instructional design model supports the intention of the project as a whole and ensured that the researcher carried out the project in a thorough, steady, and accurate manner throughout.

Master your semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Special offer for students: Only $4.99/month.

Master your semester with Scribd & The New York Times

Cancel anytime.