No Talking, Please, Just Chatting

The paper describes the collaborative writing and discussion of community college students in an English as a Second language course by means of networked computers and Aspects software. Synchronous and asynchronous electronic chats can increase student participation, teamwork, awareness of language, and critical thinking skills. Comparisons are made between face-to-face discussion and electronic chatting. Tasks suitable for synchronous and asynchronous collaboration are suggested. Tips for planning and preparing for electronic chat sessions are provided, and specific examples for lessons appropriate for native and non-native English users are given. Use of chat transcripts for review, reference and evaluation are explained. Excerpts of actual student chats are included in the Appendix.

Read the paper at the 1996 TCC-L On-Line Conference "Innovative Instructional Practices."

Marsha Chan's Presentations