Speaking from a distance : promoting oral skills out-of-class
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This study aims to explore whether students perceive that the computermediated communicative (CMC) out-of-class speaking activities support the development of their oral speaking skills, whether students consider that the out-ofclass speaking activities contributed to building their level of confidence with respect to using the target structures and vocabulary in the classroom, and the advantages and/or challenges they perceive in using computer-mediated communicative out-ofclass activities to improve their speaking skills. A further aim of this study is to investigate whether the use of CMC out-ofclass speaking activities supports the development of students’ willingness to communicate (WTC), measured by using students’ performance on PowerPoint (PPT) exercises over a period of five weeks. The research was conducted at a public university in Turkey with six participants, who were chosen among upperintermediate level students on a voluntary basis. The data for this research were collected via five different PPT slides, interviews at the end of each PPT and a final interview, which was conducted at the end of the study, one questionnaire and the rubric formed by the researcher to determine the CMC out-of-class activities’ impact on learners’’ WTC. Both qualitative and quantitative data analysis from the interviews and the criteria indicated that participants perceived positive pedagogical and academic contributions from these digitalized out-of-class speaking activities. Also the study showed that there was a significant contribution to the students’ WTC in the target language as they became more confident as well as more comfortable speaking English.
KeywordsWillingness to communicate (WTC)
technology in L2 and computer-mediated communication (CMC)