Online English Language Learning: Theory-Based Course Design and Pedagogy

Maureen Snow Andrade


The demand for higher education is increasing worldwide. To meet this demand, and to provide increased access, flexible forms of delivery are needed. Although online courses are criticized for a lack of interaction, when intentionally designed, they can provide learners with opportunities for collaboration that supports the achievement of desired learning outcomes. The latter may focus on only content mastery, however, rather than on specific learner needs. The diverse learners entering higher education institutions today due to widening access often need help with how to learn and particularly how to learn in an online context. Inclusion of this element in course design supports immediate and future academic success. This study illustrates how online English language courses, based on distance education, learning, and language acquisition theories and related pedagogical approaches, can result not only in improved linguistic skill, but also broader educational outcomes. The significance of this approach is its focus on how to learn and how to facilitate learning rather than simply on what to learn. The theoretical framework is introduced followed by application of the theories for course design and illustrations of instructor/learner interaction.

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Journal of Education and Training Studies  ISSN 2324-805X (Print)   ISSN 2324-8068 (Online)

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