Using Blogs to Practice Grammar Editing Skills

by Christopher Harwood
Centre for English Language Communication
National University of Singapore

Abstract
This paper reports on the pedagogic reasons for using blogs as a learning aid and how blogging was integrated into a curriculum at the National University of Singapore to support the learning of grammar editing skills of music students. To begin, the idea that blogging encourages learner autonomy by facilitating the practice and negotiation of meaning of ‘comprehensible output’ (Swain, 1995) is discussed. Next, the integration of blogging into the curriculum is considered and rationale given for the various pedagogic and administrative decisions that were made. Finally, the positive findings from a student attitudinal survey about blogging are discussed and a brief document analysis of the students’ blog posts in the course is given.


View full paper (PDF)

Pedagogical Blogging: Implementation in a Tertiary-level Professional Communication Course

by Brad Blackstone
Centre for English Language Communication
National University of Singapore

Abstract
This paper presents a pedagogical blogging process that was implemented in a tertiary-level professional communication course. It describes blogging and its key components, provides a rationale for pedagogical blogging, and summarizes the course blogging activities and two novel elements, the blogging buddy and the blogging group. It also provides a description of how student blogging was evaluated, discusses student impressions of the blogging activity and provides links to student blogs.


View full paper (PDF)

Mission Possible: How to Make Writing More Meaningful and Fun for Learners

by Maria Luz Elena N. Canilao
Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines

Abstract
How do you make writing a more relevant learning experience for learners? How do you make it more enjoyable for them? How do you make them fall in love with it? These are some of the questions that this paper addresses. It discusses the complex writing process and offers a creative option that will enable teachers to design more innovative activities by following a task-based language teaching framework. It illustrates how life-like tasks may empower students in the classroom and help them overcome blocks to writing and produce interesting anthologies. Through the use of authentic and imaginative communication activities, teachers can make writing more meaningful and fun for learners.


View full paper (PDF)

Using Wikis with Student Research Projects and Portfolios


Abstract
A wiki is a powerful, free Internet tool that allows users to quickly create web pages organized into websites without special training. The web page editing screen has recognizable formatting tools. Although these tools are limited, wikis have a number of exceptional features that enhance web page creation for educational use, both individually and collaboratively.

This article begins with an introduction of some key features of Wikispaces and then looks at how wikis are implemented in the ESL classroom. Examples of student assignments such as research projects and portfolios using Wikispaces demonstrate that wikis enhance collaborative work in project-based learning, allowing students to practice critical researching and writing skills in pairs and small groups.


View full paper (PDF)