Social Networking Sites and Language Education
The use of social networking sites for second and foreign (L2) language learning and teaching has recently gained attention by practitioners and researchers of applied linguistics and L2 education. Informed by socially oriented theories of language learning and computer-assisted language learning (CALL) studies, researchers have examined L2 learning and its use in non-educational or vernacular sites like Facebook, L2 pedagogy using vernacular sites, and the use of commercial social networks designed specifically for language learning, like livemocha. Findings implicate the role of self-organized, autonomous learning processes, the development of socio-collaborative learning communities, and the challenges of balancing the learning benefits emergent from the user-driven agency of everyday use with the demands to meet formal curriculum-driven objectives. After a brief discussion of influences and definitions, this chapter examines, analyzes, and synthesizes selected research that illustrates these findings, concluding with problems and future directions.
KeywordsComputer-assisted language learning Facebook Social networking sites Second language learning Web 2.0
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