CALICO Journal, Vol 23, No 3 (2006)

Facilitating the Learning Process: An Evaluation of the Use and Benefits of a Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)-enhanced Independent Language-learning Program (ILLP)

Elena Polisca
Issued Date: 7 Aug 2014


This study describes the use and assesses the benefits of a virtual learning environment (VLE)-enhanced independent language learning program (ILLP), based on the WebCT platform, for three groups of first- and second-year Italian students. It considers the positive outcomes of the program for the students' learning abilities. These outcomes suggest that the program's online element helps improve the quality of students' independent work, as well as their learning motivation: not only do students seem to develop better language skills, they also acquire and develop precious transferable skills. Similar success has been identified with a pilot VLE scheme used to support prescribed homework activities for first-year students. Findings suggest that VLE-supported group work produces better results than individual, non-VLE-enhanced work. So the VLE has come to assume an irreplaceable pedagogic role within the language courses, producing significantly more positive results than a traditional classroom-based approach.

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DOI: 10.1558/cj.v23i3.499-515


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