An Online Writing Platform for Language Teachers
David Wible (Graduate Institute of Western Languages and Literature, Tamkang University, Tamsui, Taiwan)
Chin-Hwa Kuo (Computer and Networks (CAN) Laboratory, Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering, Tamkang University, Tamsui, Taiwan)
Nai-lung Tsao (Computer and Networks (CAN) Laboratory, Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering, Tamkang University, Tamsui, Taiwan)
Anne Liu (Graduate Institute of Western Languages and Literature, Tamkang University, Tamsui, Taiwan)
Abstract: Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to describe one module in a highly integrated language learning environment. The module described is an asynchronous interactive online environment for EFL writing which integrates the potential of computers, Internet, and linguistic analysis to address the highly specific needs of second language composition classes. The system accommodates learners, teachers, and researchers. A crucial consequence of the interactive nature of this system is that users actually create information through their use, and this information enables the system to improve with use. In addition to the tools provided for teachers to mark essays and automatically track the feedback they have given each learner, the system supports the automated capture of a learner corpus of written English in the process. The essays written by users and the comments given by teachers are archived in a searchable online database. Learners can retrieve this information to examine their own recurring problems in the target language. Teachers can do the same in order to discover these problem areas for individual learners and for a class as a whole. The modular system provides interfaces with functions to facilitate an array of user tasks such as teachers' correction of essays and learners' writing and revision processes. Error analysis of learner essays has led to content creation for automated online help. One sort of help feature can detect certain errors automatically and offer appropriate help pages. Another type of help feature can track the number of times a teacher has marked the same error type in one learner's writing and, when this number reaches a threshold, automatically offer help on this error to this learner.
Keywords: CALL, EFL writing, corpus linguistics, web-based learning environments