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Online Assessment and Final Reflexions

Chapelle-Douglas (2006) talks about the importance of technology in language assessment and its future. It is explained that developing assessment is important because this will help students develop strategies for self-assessment. However, teachers need to be aware on how to evaluate an assessment to ensure proper validity and reliability. Teachers can develop their own assessments to reflect the materials that were taught in class. In my opinion, schools need to invest not only in technology, but also in training so that teachers can receive proper training to take advantage of the available technology. There are many factors to consider not only about the development of assessments but of the use of Computer-Assisted Language Learning (CALL) in general. In this context, how do you think the cost of technology affects computer-assessment development? How do you think the cost of technology affects CALL in general? Do the school systems offer adequate training to teachers to fully take advantage of available technology for teaching and assessment? Finally, can you give your insight about CALL and its importance?

Lorenzo Manzano


Apr. 15th, 2009 06:48 pm (UTC)
Well in this economic environment, many people are afraid to spend money, or simply unable to, so any extra costs (including technology) is being looked at twice before signing the check. By no means do I know exact prices, but technology incurs a lot of "added" or overhead costs. Aside from the equipment, software and hardware, construction costs for proper outlets and wiring of rooms needs to be paid for, as well as the personnel to sit and monitor the rooms. Maintenance of the equipment and the rise in electricity use also incur costs. After all of these and any other costs are taken into account, this most likely negatively affects computer-assessment development.

Major universities do not let costs get in the way of providing adequate technology, there is always a way. Funding is out there, even if technology fees need to be raised, there is always a way, so for bigger universities, the costs I don't believe affect CALL very much.

I'm not sure what the school systems are offering and whether the teachers are signing up to learn about the available technology, but many of my past professors had no idea about the technology they sometimes attempted to use. Showing DVDs on a lab-top that was connected to a projector would give some of my professors difficulty. This was just a more recent example, but other times professors would simply state they were unfamiliar with Web CT and therefore they would have to hand all of the coursework out in hard copy. So I do not know if they were given the opportunity by the University or not to learn about the technology at their disposal, but many times they were not trained on the technology.

What I have learned about CALL has been very insightful. It's by all means a very important aspect of language learning and will continue to gain importance in the future. Technology is the way of the future and computers will continue to play a vital role in all aspects of education.
Apr. 16th, 2009 05:01 pm (UTC)
Hi there. You make a very good point. Technology incurrs in cost not only in the software and hardware itfels, but also in construction, proper outlets, and wiring as well as electricity. I agree with you that for Universities, technology is not necessarily a factor. However, training it is. I have had the same or similar experiences as you where professors do NOT know how to use basic technology. Now, who's responsibility is to learn, the University's or the professor? Perhaps both. Also, although students in the University pay the same for technology, not all departments have the same technology available to them. For example, when i was in the Spanish department, we had the worse classrooms, with a manual projector and that's it. This while the education department had all kinds of new stuff that I was not even aware we had at the University.


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