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Demonstrating The Scholarship Of Pedagogy

How can a candidate demonstrate that computer-based learning developments are scholarship, especially in language learning?

The Computer-Assisted Language Learning or CALL field involves research, development, and practice. These may all be separate activities in the CALL field, in that a researcher explore the effects of using a new technology developed by someone else, or develop materials that are implemented by someone else and evaluated by yet another party.

1. CALL Development: CALL development (e.g. design, programming, and/or incorporation of lesson content) is perhaps the least understood CALL activity and, as a result, is often excluded from the candidate's professional dossier. However, just as in the case of applied linguists who regularly engage in developing curricular materials as part of their professional profile, CALL developers must necessarily study and choose among theoretical options. Scholars who do CALL work should be encouraged to include an evaluation phase to all CALL development. But in practice, this evaluation phase may be carried out by different researchers.

2. CALL Research: CALL research now encompasses a great many types of questions, less and less of which seek to answer the question, "Which [program] is better?" The field is much more interested today in process: What does the particular instantiation of a given technology allow students to do that they could not before. Data collection for CALL research can be of a quantitative or qualitative nature.

3. CALL Practice: CALL practice describes how new technologies are used in support of language learning. CALL practice focuses on the interaction between students, instructors, and technological innovations. To a large measure, this area of CALL deals with action research.

The CALL field supports journals that regularly vet CALL work in all three areas: Language Learning & Technology, The CALICO Journal, ReCALL, The Sloan Report, Journal of Online Learning, CALL Journal, On-CALL Journal, and Foreign Language Annals. Quite often, a researcher will have to develop specific CALL materials and then put them into practice in order to carry out a research project. See EUROCALL Research Policy Statement.

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