RESEARCH ON TECHNOLOGY-BASED LANGUAGE EDUCATION IN THE SULTANATE OF OMAN: PERSPECTIVES FOR STUDENT SKILLS’ ENHANCEMENT - INTRODUCTION

Victoria Tuzlukova, Saleh Al-Busaidi, Christine Coombe, Nadežda Stojković

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Abstract

The technological boom has had a significant impact on education. The ever expanding pool of technological choices has shown the potential to create successful learning experiences for students. Language education has also benefited from this revolution. Having offered “the means to help reshape both the content and processes of language education” (Warschauer & Meskill, 2000), contemporary computer, internet and mobile technologies have provided language educators and foreign language learners with unprecedented opportunities for teaching and learning. This is particularly true in language education in the Sultanate of Oman that features computer laboratories, a wide range of software and programs for computer-assisted and mobile language learning, and high levels of teachers‟ and students‟ enthusiasm for technology-based language teaching and learning (Al-Busaidi & Tuzlukova, 2013; Beatty & Nunan, 2004; Emerson & Tuzlukova, 2012; Scully, 2008, etc.). In addition, there is evident teacher pursuit in helping students gain apprenticeship into new technology-mediated discourse communities, creating opportunities for authentic and meaningful interaction both within and outside the classroom, and providing “the tools for their own social, cultural, and linguistic exploration and for the kinds of international cross-cultural interactions which are increasingly required for success in academic, vocational, or personal life” (Warschauer & Meskill, 2000). However, according to Al-Issa (2011), computer-assisted language learning and the use of technology in language education in general are “among weaknesses and problems which ELT education systems in the GCC States have suffered from” (p.67). To meet the existing local challenges (Al-Issa, 2011) and examine the technology-based language education in Oman “available for public scrutiny” (Nunan, 1999 cited in Al-Issa & Al-Bulushi, 2010:59), this special issue of the Journal of Teaching English for Specific and Academic Purposes is about searching for knowledge, putting isolated facts, practice and experience in perspective, helping make connections across academic and language teaching communities, and contributing to the scientific value and social significance of the local community of language educators and pedagogues in the Sultanate of Oman and around the world.
Original languageEnglish
Article number1
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalJOURNAL OF TEACHING ENGLISH FOR SPECIFIC AND ACADEMIC PURPOSES
Volume4
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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Oman
language education
language
student
learning
Teaching
educator
community
apprenticeship
teacher
interaction
foreign language
education system
new technology
experience
linguistics
Internet
classroom
discourse
Values

Keywords

  • Skills development

Cite this

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title = "RESEARCH ON TECHNOLOGY-BASED LANGUAGE EDUCATION IN THE SULTANATE OF OMAN: PERSPECTIVES FOR STUDENT SKILLS’ ENHANCEMENT - INTRODUCTION",
abstract = "The technological boom has had a significant impact on education. The ever expanding pool of technological choices has shown the potential to create successful learning experiences for students. Language education has also benefited from this revolution. Having offered “the means to help reshape both the content and processes of language education” (Warschauer & Meskill, 2000), contemporary computer, internet and mobile technologies have provided language educators and foreign language learners with unprecedented opportunities for teaching and learning. This is particularly true in language education in the Sultanate of Oman that features computer laboratories, a wide range of software and programs for computer-assisted and mobile language learning, and high levels of teachers‟ and students‟ enthusiasm for technology-based language teaching and learning (Al-Busaidi & Tuzlukova, 2013; Beatty & Nunan, 2004; Emerson & Tuzlukova, 2012; Scully, 2008, etc.). In addition, there is evident teacher pursuit in helping students gain apprenticeship into new technology-mediated discourse communities, creating opportunities for authentic and meaningful interaction both within and outside the classroom, and providing “the tools for their own social, cultural, and linguistic exploration and for the kinds of international cross-cultural interactions which are increasingly required for success in academic, vocational, or personal life” (Warschauer & Meskill, 2000). However, according to Al-Issa (2011), computer-assisted language learning and the use of technology in language education in general are “among weaknesses and problems which ELT education systems in the GCC States have suffered from” (p.67). To meet the existing local challenges (Al-Issa, 2011) and examine the technology-based language education in Oman “available for public scrutiny” (Nunan, 1999 cited in Al-Issa & Al-Bulushi, 2010:59), this special issue of the Journal of Teaching English for Specific and Academic Purposes is about searching for knowledge, putting isolated facts, practice and experience in perspective, helping make connections across academic and language teaching communities, and contributing to the scientific value and social significance of the local community of language educators and pedagogues in the Sultanate of Oman and around the world.",
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