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Synchronous Computer Mediated Communication Captured by Usability Lab Technologies: New Interpretations.

Synchronous Computer Mediated Communication Captured by Usability Lab Technologies: New Interpretations

B. Smith and G. J. Gorsuch. 2004. System 40:553-575.

Research indicates that interaction through synchronous computer mediated communication (SCMC) may benefit second language learners. Typically, data collected in SCMC research comes from printouts of linear transcripts or chat logs generated by computer software, problematic because that data provides only a one-dimensional insight into learners' interactions. This study investigates using usability lab technology to video- and audiotape SCMC sessions between non-native English speakers as they participated in a task-based classroom activity through Yahoo Messenger. These tapes enabled researchers to observe details that transcripts and chat logs alone cannot always reveal, details such as how learners negotiate turns, how the interface affects message content, what learners attend to, what learners express through facial and body language, and what learners say to themselves as they are typing. Observing language learners as they engage in SCMC in a usability lab allows for better understanding of SCMC interaction. It also may assist teachers in using SCMC to enhance language learning.

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Title Annotation:RESEARCH
Author:Kepler, Kelley
Publication:Technical Communication
Date:Aug 1, 2005
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