Syncronous Interaction: Chat Room Versus Face to Face Interaction

Dr. Luisa C. Perez
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Which form of interaction, CMC through chat room activities or face-to-face, is more effective in increasing vocabulary development in foreign language learning? Which form of interaction do participants in this study prefer? This quasi-experimental study was carried out in an attempt to test whether face-to-face classroom interactions or chat room conversations yielded greater quantity of vocabulary. Measurement instruments were a second semester vocabulary pre-test and post-test to find out the difference between students' vocabulary knowledge in each group, experimental and control respectively.

Researcher counted the number of new words students had used in each conversation class in both groups during twelve Fridays in the semester. Two-second semester intact classes were observed with the same instructor. The experimental group used chat room conversations once a week as vocabulary treatment and the control group had no chat room activities, but they had a face-to-face conversation class once a week. Chat room logs were recorded and printed while students in the control group had written conversations that were collected at the end of each class. Students were grouped in pairs in both control and experimental groups. Researcher kept classroom written conversations and chat logs for later analysis.

All 54 subjects were college students studying second semester Spanish at a mid western university. Subjects included males and females between 19 and 33 years of age. Regarding chat room activities or treatment, students interacted for fifty minutes every week, by negotiating meaning about topics already introduced in class. The activity consisted in asking their partner each fifteen questions they had previously prepared as homework.

The online interaction replicated classroom discussions.

The statistical analysis showed that there were significant differences between pre and posttests in the control and experimental group. In addition, it was also found that there were significant differences between both groups that favored the treatment group.

Keywords: Synchronous, Chat, Face-To-Face, Vocabulary
Stream: Technology in Education
Presentation Type: Paper Presentation in English
Paper: Syncronous Interaction

Dr. Luisa C. Perez

Associate Professor, Modern Languages and Literatures, Emporia State University

Dr Perez Sotelo obtained her Ph.D in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Kansas in 1994. She was Academic Coordinator at the University of Kentucky, Spanish and Italian Department from 1994 to 1996. Then, she moved to Kansas obtaining an Assistant professor position at Emporia State University. Her publications include the following: "Como incrementar el vocabulario con charlas electrónicas", published in September 2004,ASELE, Burgos, Spain. "Electronic Writing in L2: accuracy versus other outcomes", co-authored with Manuela González-Bueno, published by Hispania, vol. 86.4, ps.869-872, Dec. 2003. "Asynchronous versus Synchronous Computer-Mediated Communication in Foreign Language Productivity", published by CALICO Journal, September 2003. "La encuesta de la democracia en América Latina por Fitzgibbon", co-authored with Phil Kelly, published by Argentina Global, Argentina, 2002. "El uso del correo electrónico y de las salas electrónicas de conversación en la clase de español como lengua extranjera", published by ASELE, Valencia, Spain in September 2002. "Electronic Mail Revisited" co-authored with Manuela Gonzalez-Bueno, published by ERIC Clearing House, 2002. "El Impacto de la Democratización de la Geopolítica en América del Sur", co-authored with Dr Phil Kelly, published by GeoSur Journal in Montevideo, published in January/February 2002. "Estructura para la Paz", co-authored with Dr Phil Kelly, published by Argentina Global in Argentina, December 2001. "Proficiencia Linguística y Cultural", published by ASELE, Zaragoza, Spain, published in September 2001.

Ref: T05P0225