|dc.description.abstract||In this study, we propose a learning model called Authentic supported Learner-oriented Language Learning (ALLL) which targets helping students to learn and apply English in both real-life situations as well as in an authentic context. To evaluate this model, we employed two mobile apps, namely ezTranslate and ezVision, which have been previously developed. ezTranslate supports English as a Foreign Language (EFL) students in speaking, whereas ezVision aims to assist students in EFL writing. We conducted two studies:
One study we performed included a case-control design that examined how EFL learners’ cognitive abilities advanced from a basic level, such as conceptual remembering and understanding, to a more advanced applied level. This was achieved by implementing a peer-tutoring strategy in the experimental group that paired high-achieving students with low-achieving students, with an evaluation using the mobile application, ezTranslate, in a similar authentic context. The results showed that the experimental students (i.e., the students who received peer tutoring) significantly outperformed the control students (i.e., the students who worked individually) on the post-test. Furthermore, throughout the learning activity, the majority of the experimental students’ cognitive abilities transitioned from a basic to a higher level. Given these results, we suggested that educators could design learner-oriented authentic learning activities that involve peer-to-peer help. This will not only close the gap between high and low cognitive students but will also help cognitive diffusion cross the chasm.
Our second study explored EFL writing skills in relation to self-experience in an authentic learning context. Two authentic writing activities (‘tell your story’ and ‘describe your context’) were designed and compared to see if they resulted in significant differences in EFL writing performance and writing behaviour. The results showed that the experimental group who completed the “tell your story” exercise exhibited significantly better writing performance than the control group who completed the “describe your context” exercise’. More specifically, the experimental group used more vivid words and vocabulary to write about their surrounding contexts than the control group. Our observation and study results showed that using authentic materials in storytelling exercises motivate students to share their experiences, which not only improves students′ general EFL writing skills but also enhances their confidence to use English in real situations.||en_US|