An Integrated Approach to Effectiveness Research in CALL
Chapter 7 - Case Study 2: Evaluating programs 167
Chapter 7 Case Study 2: Evaluating programs Introduction The case for evaluating software The evaluation of the impact of CALL software must be tied to the role this software plays in the teaching and learning process. As early as 1988 Pederson said: ‘The point, however obvious, needs to be restated: CALL, in and of itself, does not result in more and better learning, it is the specific way instruction is coded in CALL software that has the potential of af fect- ing learning positively, for specific learners in specific contexts’ (p. 107). Software is not dismissed in the CALL impact equation; it is merely that one must be careful when ascribing causality, and focus on its ef fects, and ef fectiveness, in situ. Pederson goes on to say that ‘one obvious problem in CALL is to provide evidence that a given software package is designed and programmed ef fectively’ (p. 108). She adds that ‘the wise language teacher should examine evaluative research reports carefully for clear edu- cational objectives, a specific target audience, and an adequate evaluative consensus from classroom teachers, students, and CALL experts’ (p. 109). In other words, the evaluation of CALL programs should be intercon- nected with CALL pedagogy and the two should not be mutually exclusive activities. Pederson’s core thesis is built upon the CAL work done by Salo- mon. His contribution to ef fectiveness research generally derives from his insights into the relationship between the software coding and cognition. He defines coding, or the ‘coding...
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