Effects of Technology-Enhanced Language Learning on Second Language Composition of University-Level Intermediate Spanish Students

Setting
The University Setting
The setting was a major metropolitan university in the Southwest. The Department of
Foreign Languages and Literatures offers majors in Spanish, French and German. Semesterly
enrollments for the department as a whole are approximately 2800 of which roughly 300 students
are in the intermediate-level Spanish class, SPAN 2040. The students enrolled in the university
score at or slightly above national measures on the American College Testing (ACT) and
Scholastic Assessment Tests (SAT) (National ACT: 21, University ACT: 22; National SAT:
1020, University SAT: 1086); the average age is 22.5. Fall 2003 enrollment figures indicate
undergraduate enrollment at the university was 68% White, 10% Black, 9% Hispanic, 4% Asian
Pacific Islander, 1% American Indian, and 8% Unknown or Other.
Consistent with the goals of providing a comprehensive, relevant education, the College
of Arts and Sciences prepares students to acquire certain basic proficiencies including a working
knowledge of a foreign language and foreign culture beyond the two years expected before
entering college. The Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures encourages oral
communicative proficiency following national trends, yet the curriculum has a strong grammar-
based assessment in the first and second year sequence. The emphasis on grammar is not unusual
and is often seen as a precursor to developing other literacy skills in Spanish as a foreign
language.
The Lab Setting
Writing compositions in a lab setting ensures that the students are doing their own work
as well as allowing for control of actual time spent composing. The three in-class compositions
were written in the whole classroom lab of the Foreign Language Learning Center (FLLC). The

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Oxford, Raquel Malia Nitta. Effects of Technology-Enhanced Language Learning on Second Language Composition of University-Level Intermediate Spanish Students. Denton, Texas. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc4688/. Accessed December 20, 2014.