Calico Journal <p>Founded in 1983, <em>CALICO Journal</em> is the official publication of the Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium (CALICO) and is devoted to the dissemination of information concerning the application of technology to language teaching and language learning.</p> Equinox Publishing Ltd. en-US Calico Journal 2056-9017 Unprecedented times Ana Oskoz Bryan Smith Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. 2020-06-04 2020-06-04 37 2 i vii 10.1558/cj.41524 Learning Technology Review: <p style="font-weight: 400;"> (<a href=""></a>) is an application (hereafter app) designed to promote English vocabulary learning. The primary learning activities users can engage in with the app include: 1) taking short personalised online quizzes; and 2) learning or consolidating vocabulary by accessing immediate feedback. The website describes the strengths of learning vocabularies using the app by stating it as “the quickest, most intelligent way to improve vocabulary”. To help users to learn vocabulary efficiently, adopts “sophisticated algorithms” to choose the essential words for each user from over 14,000 words. Based on the results, the app then creates personalised quizzes for each user.</p> <p style="font-weight: 400;">In addition to the quiz, provides multiple functions to promote user vocabulary learning including: 1) online dictionaries; 2) vocabulary lists; 3) vocabulary games; 4) spelling practice while listening to the pronunciation; and 5) progress reports. The app provides both computer- and smartphone-based platforms (both iPhone and Android). The computer-based platform is free; whereas, users are required to purchase the smartphone-based platform. However, accessing the app via a smartphone allows users to use their downtime efficiently to learn English vocabulary anytime and anywhere. “Educator Edition” provides educators with useful functions to promote online and blended learning courses, including the capability to monitor the progress of each learner on the platform.</p> Hiromi Nishioka Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. 2020-06-04 2020-06-04 37 2 205 212 10.1558/cj.38229 Rock or Lock? Gamifying an online course management system for pronunciation instruction <p>This one-group quasi-experimental study aimed to determine the effectiveness of using a gamified course management system with points, badges (and consequently competition) to facilitate the development of English phonology in a foreign language context in Japan. To implement this idea, we focused on the acquisition of English segments /r/ and /l/ in production (as in /r/ock and /l/ock respectively). During the study, participants were asked to engage in gamified pronunciation activities over a period of two weeks, using a popular learning site (<em>Moodle</em>). The data collection instruments included pre- and posttests to examine the production development of /r/ and /l/ (using controlled aural elicitation tasks), a written follow-up questionnaire, and user logs to investigate users' perceptions of the pedagogy utilized. The results indicate that participants benefited from the proposed gamified system for L2 pronunciation instruction, as they improved their production of the target English /r/ and /l/ segments. In addition, responses from the interviews and user logs revealed that participants perceived using the site as enjoyable, anxiety-reducing, and pedagogically useful.&nbsp;</p> Michael Barcomb Walcir Cardoso Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. 2020-06-04 2020-06-04 37 2 127 147 10.1558/cj.36996 Oral Language Proficiency in Distance English-Language Learning <div> <div>Online learning environments are changing the landscape of education, with evidence supporting their efficacy (Means, Toyama, Murphy, Bakia, &amp; Jones, 2009). However, research that focuses entirely on online distance English-language programs is sparse, especially in regards to oral proficiency. The purpose of this study is to investigate the efficacy of an online distance-learning program in helping students develop oral English-language proficiency as they prepare to attend a university in the United States.&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>The curriculum for the distance-learning program was built upon Moore’s (1993) transactional distance theory, with an emphasis on interpersonal dialogue as a key tool in promoting oral proficiency. Students participated in synchronous and asynchronous interaction with fellow students, tutors, and their instructors. The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) computer-assisted Oral Proficiency Interview (OPIc) provided the pretest and posttest measures for this study. To supplement this data, course surveys provided information concerning student opinions of course activities. OPIc results showed that students made significant gains in their oral proficiency from pretest to posttest. In surveys, students rated interaction with other tutors and teachers as instrumental in assisting them with their language learning, but rated interaction with their peers as less helpful.&nbsp;</div> </div> Jared Marcum Yanghee Kim Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. 2020-06-04 2020-06-04 37 2 148 168 10.1558/cj.37788 Using Grammar Checkers in an ESL Context <p>Our study examines written corrective feedback generated by two online grammar&nbsp;checkers (GCs), Grammarly and Virtual Writing Tutor, and by the grammar&nbsp;checking function of Microsoft Word. We tested the technology on a wide&nbsp;range of grammatical error types from two sources: a set of authentic ESL compositions&nbsp;and a series of simple sentences we generated ourselves. The GCs were&nbsp;evaluated in terms of (1) coverage (number of errors flagged), (2) appropriacy of&nbsp;proposed replacement forms, and (3) rates of “false alarms” (forms mistakenly&nbsp;flagged as incorrect). Although Grammarly and Virtual Writing Tutor outperformed&nbsp;Microsoft Word, neither of the online GCs had high rates of overall coverage&nbsp;(&lt;50%). Consequently, they cannot be relied on to supply comprehensive&nbsp;feedback on student compositions. The finding of higher identification rates for&nbsp;errors from simple rather than authentic sentences reinforces this conclusion.&nbsp;Nonetheless, since few inaccurate replacement forms and false alarms were&nbsp;observed, only rarely is the feedback actively misleading. In addition, the GCs&nbsp;were better at handling some error types than others. Ultimately, we suggest&nbsp;that teachers use GCs with specially designed classroom activities that target&nbsp;selected error types before learners apply the technology to their own writing.</p> Paul John Nina Woll Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. 2020-06-04 2020-06-04 37 2 193 196 10.1558/cj.36523 New Technologies and Language Learning by Li Li <p>New Technologies and Language Learning by Li Li<br>London, England: Palgrave<br>US $39.99<br>ISBN 9781137517678 (Paperback)<br>256 pages<br>2017</p> Stephanie M. Knouse Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. 2020-06-04 2020-06-04 37 2 193 196 10.1558/cj.36015 Discourse and Identity on Facebook by Mariza Georgalou <p>Discourse and Identity on Facebook by Mariza Georgalou<br>London, England: Bloomsbury Academic<br>US $128<br>ISBN 9781474289122 (Hardback)<br>332 pages<br>2017</p> Carly M. Lesoski Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. 2020-06-04 2020-06-04 37 2 197 200 10.1558/cj.35928 Cases on Audio-Visual Media in Language Education edited by Catherine Hua Xiang <p>Cases on Audio-Visual Media in Language Education edited by Catherine Hua Xiang<br>Hershey, PA: IGI Global<br>US $156<br>ISBN 9781522527244 (Hardback), 9781522527251<br>(e-book)<br>420 pages<br>2018</p> Vehbi Turel Copyright (c) 2020 Equinox Publishing Ltd. 2020-06-04 2020-06-04 37 2 201 204 10.1558/cj.36624